Newish woodworker: Saw Blades

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Forum topic by Jesset posted 04-03-2011 03:00 PM 1367 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Jesset's profile


3 posts in 2808 days

04-03-2011 03:00 PM

My dad gave me his table saw a 10” Delta from the 90s. I decided to buy a new blade for it as I was starting a home bar project that I was building almost entirely of Birtch plywood, and the blade appeared to be the original. So I went to Rona and the the guys there picked out a Hussmann plywood blade. It was only $16 and I had never heard of the brand before but I figured that if it lasts a year or so I would be fine with that. I’ll get a better one when I have a little more $$$. Well after three days and about 5 sheets of plywood the blade is extremely dull, it is imposable go push a price of plywood through it and everything burns. I swaped back to the other blade and it works much better, still a little dull but it works a lot better that the new one. Is this typical of cheap saw blades? Do I you think that I could return it as a faulty product? Can you recommend a good saw blade that will not break the bank? Thanks.

11 replies so far

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2170 posts in 3047 days

#1 posted 04-03-2011 05:16 PM

My take, after years of woodworking professionally and, for a stretch, working next door to a company that made bottom end “carbide” blades, is that, in this category, you absolutely get what you pay for.

This is scary for an amateur, but here’s my input: If it’s under $60 USD, it’s not worth it. If it’s sold in a retail setting, don’t even get close. A good laminate blade will be around $100.

Find a tool store that sells to professionals, or buy on line, and look for names like: Amana, Systi-Matic, Infinity, FS Tools and others that fellow LJs will append to this list.

Take good care of it, and it will last years. Years! Compare that in value to your $16 investment (go ahead—use minutes : )) and you’ll see where the value is.

As a friend often tells me, there is tuition for all learning. If you paid only $16 for this class, you’re doing very well.



-- " his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5120 posts in 4157 days

#2 posted 04-03-2011 05:45 PM

Get a good Freud combo blade. Maybe even a thin kerf combination for that saw. I have had good results with the Freud “Diablo” blade though I have a full kerf regular Freud on my TS most of the time. Standard steel blades such as you bought just won’t do (as you found).
A combination blade will allow you to rip and crosscut without changing blades.


View knotscott's profile


8144 posts in 3572 days

#3 posted 04-03-2011 06:05 PM

Did that $16 blade even have carbide tips? For the cleanest cuts in plywood with the least amount of tearout, I’d look for a carbide tipped blade with an alternate top bevel grind (ATB) with exaggerated bevel…it’s more commonly known as a “Hi-ATB” grind, and will have a top bevel of at least 25°….the higher the bevel, the less tearout there will be at the exit of the cut. Lee listed some excellent brands…I’ll add CMT, Freud, Ridge Carbide, and Tenryu to the list of potential candidates. A few specific models that I’m aware of off the top of my head are the Forrest Duraline, Forrest WWI, Infinity Ultrasmooth 010-080 & 010-060 (similar to the Forrest WWI), Amana MB10-800, Freud LU80 & Freud LU79 (thin kerf), CMT 210.080.10 & 255.080.10…these are all very nice blades that’ll do the job well, should hold and edge reasonably well, and can be resharpened. Those can be a little expensive…some more than others, but sale and clearance prices can bring some under $50 on occasion. Oshlun is a decent value line… their SBL-1000080 is a Hi-ATB grind with 80 teeth that might do fairly well, but I haven’t tried that one yet. (Holbren offers 10% with the “BT310” discount code)

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

View neverenoughtools's profile


10 posts in 3413 days

#4 posted 04-03-2011 09:20 PM

My Forrest Duraline HI A/T has been the sweetest plywood cutting blade I have ever used. I also have a Forrest WWI which I used to use on plywood before shelling out the bucks for the Duraline. I’ve used a Forrest WWII and a Freud Fusion as well and by far the Duraline is the best for plywood.
If you can, bite the bullet and buy a good combination blade first which will amaze you compared to what you’ve been used to. I’ve found the Forrest WWII and the Freud Fusion to be pretty equal in my table saw. In my opinion the Forrest left a slightly smoother cut. Whichever one you decide on make sure it is at least carbide tipped. In time invest in a specialty blade like the Duraline and you won’t regret it.
Everyone has different priorities and ability to buy stuff but in general you’ll find that cheap is cheap.
Good luck

View Tedstor's profile


1678 posts in 2830 days

#5 posted 04-03-2011 11:17 PM

I use circular saw blades nearly exclusively on my 8” TS. The only time I don’t is when I need a glue ready edge or a wider kerf. As a disclaimer, the main reason I use circ saw blades, is that decent 8” blade are a bit tough to come by, where as 7.25” circ blades are a .10/dz. Freud Diablo is my blade of choice. I think its 40 tooth, costs under $15, holds an edge reasonably well, and works nicely on the ply that I’ve cut with it. My 2nd fav is a plain-jane Porter Cable that the big boxers sell for about $6.
Am I saying these blades are in the same league as the others that have been rec’d? Hell no. But I bet they’ll perform better and longer than the $15 blade you have now. At least they do for me. A cheap experiment if nothing else. You’l lose some cutting depth, but thats of no concern when cutting sheet goods.

View Jesset's profile


3 posts in 2808 days

#6 posted 04-04-2011 02:29 AM

Thank you! I will check out some of the blades mentioned. I am going to check in the the skil saw blades as well and see if they will cut it for me (no pun intended).

View bubinga's profile


861 posts in 2864 days

#7 posted 04-04-2011 12:44 PM

Just go buy a Forrest WWII and cut all the ply. or any thing else you want
You will never regret buying it

-- E J ------- Always Keep a Firm Grip on Your Tool

View agallant's profile


551 posts in 3083 days

#8 posted 04-04-2011 03:11 PM

This is what I have:

It is under $40 I use it only for ply and never have any chip out, it is about 6 months old and still works fine.

View Jesset's profile


3 posts in 2808 days

#9 posted 04-05-2011 05:03 AM

Rona took back my $16 blade as a defective product and wrenches that I had bought with it but never used. So I took my $50 added $15 and went over to my local Tool Place and bought a Freud LU84M combo blade. I looked at 2 blades the Freud and another brand, Samona? But I ended up getting the Freud cause I had heard it mentioned here. But the upshot is is that it cuts like a hot knife through butter and am very happy. Thank you to everyone who posted here and I hope to stick around.

View Moron's profile


5032 posts in 4090 days

#10 posted 04-05-2011 05:12 AM

you got what you paid for

a good blade is 6x’s that amount

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

View knotscott's profile


8144 posts in 3572 days

#11 posted 04-05-2011 01:28 PM

That should be an improvement….it’s also a very versatile blade. Thanks for the update.

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

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