Rip blades versus combination blades

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Forum topic by richgreer posted 07-01-2010 05:02 PM 4443 views 0 times favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4541 posts in 2494 days

07-01-2010 05:02 PM

Like most woodworkers (I think) I use a combination blade (WW-II) on my TS for everything. There are dedicated crosscut blades and rip blades available for TSs. I’ve never seen the need for a dedicated crosscut blade because I often use my miter saw for crosscuts and it has a good crosscut blade.

I have considered getting a dedicated rip blade. My combination blade does okay on rip cuts, but I often have burn marks and I usually need to clean up the cut with a pass through the jointer.

There is one blade, the Freud Glue Line Rip Blade, that implies in its name that it produces edges ready for glue up without using a jointer. Frankly, I question that but would love to hear of people’s experiences with this blade.

I’m sure there are LJs who have used both combination blades and rip blades that could comment on the advantages of a rip blade over a combination blade for rip cuts. I would love to hear your thoughts.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

23 replies so far

View Tom's profile


30 posts in 2839 days

#1 posted 07-01-2010 05:08 PM

I am too new to woodworking Rich but I look forward to other LJ’s feedback.

-- Tom

View PurpLev's profile


8523 posts in 3068 days

#2 posted 07-01-2010 05:13 PM

I think the cleanness of the cut is just an added bonus, but the physical aspect of a rip blade is that it has less teeth, and more space to remove the waste, so it will cut faster. for a 1-of rip cuts in the middle of a project – not much of a benetif. but if you’re ripping 100 rails/slats/other – it adds up rather quickly and in this case, a rip blade will quicken the process.

obviously for plywood this doesn’t really do much. but for ripping hardwoods, it’ll make the process faster, and put less strain on the motor.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View TheDane's profile


4934 posts in 3083 days

#3 posted 07-01-2010 05:31 PM

Most of the time, I use a combination blade, but I have a glue-line rip blade (Freud LM74R) that I use to cut tenon shoulders and rip stock.

On tenon shoulders, the rip blade leaves a kerf with a flat top, and does a cleaner job than the combination.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View ChrisCarr's profile


196 posts in 2318 days

#4 posted 07-01-2010 05:43 PM

I use a rigid combination blade (thin kerf) on my delta contractor saw. My setup was not able to handle ripping 3” poplar the other day, I got even more burns on poplar than normal and the blade even start to bind on my first rip. But to fix this i just took multiple passes to rip it and i got a decent finish. I usually edge sand my burns marks with a sanding drum and split fence on the drill press. (I am going to build a disc sander shortly).

I would use a rip blade but i hate changing blades, and its a waste of money for me because I still will have to sand off swirl marks with any blade.

View Moron's profile


5032 posts in 3313 days

#5 posted 07-01-2010 05:45 PM

I have several glue line rip blades and they DO leave a joint/rip cut that can be glued without using a jointer but if you stop cutting part way….....ya gotta start over.

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View jusfine's profile


2405 posts in 2346 days

#6 posted 07-01-2010 05:57 PM

I have some Forrest blades as well, their ripping blade is excellent for thick stock.

Saw a note in FW recently where the new Freud rip blade rivals the Forrest, so would be interested to hear if someone had used both as well. I have other Freud blades, but find I prefer the Forrest blades.

I have a WWII on my saw generally, but switch to the rip blade when I have a lot of material to go through.

-- Randy "You are judged as much by the questions you ask as the answers you give..."

View Gene Howe's profile (online now)

Gene Howe

8095 posts in 2848 days

#7 posted 07-01-2010 07:37 PM

My current rip blade is a Tenyru. I’ve used the Freud and the WWII. I would say that there’s not a difference worth a difference between the three.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View knotscott's profile


7145 posts in 2795 days

#8 posted 07-01-2010 07:42 PM

Most good quality general purpose/combo blades will also leave a surface that’s glue ready right from the saw. You don’t need a blade with a special label to accomplish that. What you may need from time to time is a lower tooth count dedicated rip blade (ie: 20T to 24T) to efficiently rip thick stock without burning. Even most of the better 24T blades are capable of leaving a glue ready edge.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View Mike67's profile


97 posts in 2756 days

#9 posted 07-01-2010 07:48 PM

Note that Freud suggests using the glue line rip blade on wood up to 1 inch thick. I’ve used one on thicker stock and experienced some burning even while really trying to keep the feed rate as fast as I could. Wonder if others have had the same experience. On one inch stock it makes a very smooth cut.

View jayman7's profile


218 posts in 2925 days

#10 posted 07-01-2010 08:05 PM

My WW-II blade would sometimes bog down if I rip >3/4” hard woods in my 1.5 hp delta contractor’s saw. I tried a Freud thin kerf ripping blade and it slices through 1.5” red oak like butter. I think it’s a different blade than the glue line rip that you’re looking for though.

View ChuckV's profile


2872 posts in 2947 days

#11 posted 07-01-2010 08:12 PM

I also use my WW-II combination blade most of the time. But since my saw is only 1.75 hp, I have found that using the WW-II thin-kerf 30T blade is a tremendous help when ripping thicker stock. It is much less likely to burn and still leaves a fairly smooth edge.

-- “And the products of wealth push you along on the bow wave of their spiritless undying selves.” ― I. Anderson

View closetguy's profile


744 posts in 3312 days

#12 posted 07-01-2010 08:14 PM

I have used the Freud glue line rip blade for a few years ripping everything from 4/4 to 8/4. It does what it claims. I usually get a little burning in cherry with the thicker stuff. It’s a great blade.

-- I don't make mistakes, only design

View TheDane's profile


4934 posts in 3083 days

#13 posted 07-01-2010 08:57 PM

FWIW … Charles Neil has just announced a deal on SawStop 40 and 80 tooth Titanium blades … looks like a pretty good price. See:

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View knotscott's profile


7145 posts in 2795 days

#14 posted 07-01-2010 09:13 PM

Piggy backing on my first comment above (had to run) – the specialty 30T “Glue Line Rip” blades do accomplish what they claim and leave a glue ready edge, but like anything there’s no free lunch. They operate in a fairly narrow range (~ 3/4” to 1”) with poor versatility, don’t offer any real additional capabilities over a good combo blade, don’t crosscut well, and still don’t replace a decent 24T ripper for thick stock due to their tight side clearances which have a tendency to burn in thicker materials. The triple chip grind on the 30T GLR’s will wear like iron though, so are a good choice for high volume rip-only operations in materials within the recommended thickness range.

Note that Freud also uses the “Glue Line Rip” label on their LM72 24T FTG ripper. It doesn’t leave as polished of an edge as the 30T version, but definitely rips more efficiently in thick stock with less burning.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 2494 days

#15 posted 07-01-2010 09:44 PM

I’m so impressed. I asked for some input on this subject and got a ton of good information. Reviewing this thread may be beneficial to a lot of people. I certainly have benefited from it.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

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