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What a Difference a Good Saw Blade Makes!

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Forum topic by knotscott posted 06-26-2014 at 04:58 AM 713 views 2 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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knotscott

5436 posts in 2012 days


06-26-2014 at 04:58 AM

Topic tags/keywords: tip resource

My son needed to cut some reclaimed pine from an old waterbed and I was concerned about encountering staples, nails, screws, etc., so I dug out an Irwin Classic 40T blade, cleaned it, and tossed it on the saw. I could hear the difference from the second I turned on the saw. It rang, zinged, whined, and ticked my ZCI due to blade runout. The sound from hitting the ZCI gave way after a while, but the ringing sound of cheap steel remained, and made a zinging sound at the end of each cut that was reminiscent of a circular saw. The cut quality was pretty poor…the blade wasn’t new, but was clean, and didn’t appear to have been used much, so I assume it was fairly sharp. What a turd that blade is! That prompted me to pull out 60T Avanti “junk” blade I had on hand (not the Freud Avanti), and got pretty similar results.

It’s been more than 10 years since I’ve used anything less than a very good saw blade on my TS, CMS or circ saw for woodworking purposes. I’ve been preaching buying good blades for a decade or so since I learned that lesson the hard way, but this experience was a flagrant reminder that there IS a huge difference between a well made blade, and cheap blades like those that come stock on most saws and many of commonly found aftermarket blades at homecenters. There’s such a blatant difference….I’ll keep preaching!

Buy – Infinity, Forrest, Ridge Carbide, Tenryu Gold Medal, Freud Indstrustial, CMT Industrial, Leitz Pro, Everlast, Systimatic, Amana Tool, Guhdo….on a budget buy Freud Diablo, Irwin Marples, CMT ITK Plus, Tenryu Rapid Cut, Oshlun, DeWalt Precision Trim, discontinued Delta Industrial, Onsrud, etc. on clearance. There are some really good 10” blades for as little as $18 if you know where to look! $30 buys a good 10” blade every day from HD or Lowes.

Avoid (for fine woodworking grade cuts) – DeWalt Construction, Oldham Contractor, Avanti/Avanti Pro, WorkForce, Ryobi, HF, Vermont American., Skil, most Sears, Irwin Classic, Irwin Marathon, and most construction grade multi-packs. These have their place, but… If you do any remotely fine woodworking, and go to any lengths at all to make your saw the best it can be, avoid these blades.

Saw Blade Bargains

The ABCs of Picking Saw Blades

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


17 replies so far

View reelman65's profile

reelman65

29 posts in 1316 days


#1 posted 06-26-2014 at 05:15 AM

thanks for the insight,

View The Box Whisperer's profile

The Box Whisperer

561 posts in 707 days


#2 posted 06-26-2014 at 05:26 AM

You tell the truth! While on the subject, Id like to get a new blade for my dewalt 12” miter saw. I use a Forrest WWII on my table saw and love it, but find 150 bucks a tough pill to swallow for the 12” chopmaster. What are you recommending these days for a good, 12” cross cut blade under 100 bucks?

EDITED: Just noticed your link to saw blades so Im checking that now. Is this new? Ive read yoru ABCs a few times but never noticed this.

-- "despite you best efforts and your confidence that your smarter and faster than a saw blade at 10k rpm…. your not …." - Charles Neil

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4318 posts in 1685 days


#3 posted 06-26-2014 at 05:27 AM

Thank you for the reminder

-- Bert

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

5436 posts in 2012 days


#4 posted 06-26-2014 at 05:45 AM



You tell the truth! While on the subject, Id like to get a new blade for my dewalt 12” miter saw. I use a Forrest WWII on my table saw and love it, but find 150 bucks a tough pill to swallow for the 12” chopmaster. What are you recommending these days for a good, 12” cross cut blade under 100 bucks?

EDITED: Just noticed your link to saw blades so Im checking that now. Is this new? Ive read yoru ABCs a few times but never noticed this.

- JoeGrant78

Hi Joe – I added the blade bargain bit about a year ago….not many top flight 12” blades on it though, as I was trying to keep them all near the $40 mark and under.

I’d take a good look at the Infinity 012-090. Similar design as the Chopmaster, $109 before any discounts (check their specials). They make some great blades, but I haven’t tried this one. The CMT 210.096.12 could be a good choice for fine cuts too ($95)....I’ve tried the 00210.080.10, but not the 12” version.

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

View The Box Whisperer's profile

The Box Whisperer

561 posts in 707 days


#5 posted 06-26-2014 at 07:20 AM

awesome thanks!

-- "despite you best efforts and your confidence that your smarter and faster than a saw blade at 10k rpm…. your not …." - Charles Neil

View TheWoodenOyster's profile

TheWoodenOyster

775 posts in 572 days


#6 posted 06-26-2014 at 07:31 AM

Knotscott,

Just yesterday I used my two industrial Delta blades that I bought from cripe distributing off of ebay. You recommended them to me a few months ago and I just got around to ordering them. They are stellar blades and I thank you for your insight and recommendation. The teeth on those blades have a ton of life in them and they are quality blades. Thanks again.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View Ripthorn's profile

Ripthorn

750 posts in 1622 days


#7 posted 06-26-2014 at 07:57 AM

This same fact holds true for bandsaws as well. I just put a timberwolf blade on after 4 years of trying different blades, tires, springs, guides, etc. The thing now cuts like a respectable saw, finally!

-- Brian T. - Exact science is not an exact science

View bandit571's profile (online now)

bandit571

6870 posts in 1320 days


#8 posted 06-26-2014 at 08:12 AM

With the stuff I ran through the tablesaw and now the circular saw, Not looking for anything close to finish ready cuts.

We are talking nail-infested BARN WOOD and Barn Beam & Rafters. Found the “tang of one old tool in a rafter, found a LOT of buried cut nails, and a couple of bullets, including one that hadn’t been FIRED! At least I saw THAT little gem before the saw did.

So, with all the ripping down going on, and a tooth flying by now and then, I’m NOT spending a ton of cash of a couple rip blades. Put a couple under $20 irwin rip blades to work. Cheap enough that a “PING” now and then is going to break the bank. I tend to finish all edges with another type of “Jointer”

IF you look close, you will see some of the Barn wood I work with. A Stanley #31 from about 1882….

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View Rob's profile

Rob

281 posts in 1708 days


#9 posted 06-26-2014 at 09:48 AM

I had the same experience with my circular saw a couple years ago. The Skil-brand blades I was using were noisy and didn’t cut well. The plywood blade would bind up constantly, and was guaranteed to come to a halt as soon as it touched my sacrificial support piece if I set it more than about 1/8” deeper than my 3/4” OSB or plywood.

I upgraded to a Freud thin kerf blade which is so quiet and cuts so well that I usually can’t even tell when it enters the wood now. I don’t think it has bound up once.

View LeTurbo's profile

LeTurbo

148 posts in 222 days


#10 posted 06-26-2014 at 10:37 AM

Thanks for this … I’ve created a reminder Word doccie for myself called “Good and Bad Saw Blades”. (And I probably should replace mine soon anyway.)

View jonah's profile

jonah

453 posts in 1935 days


#11 posted 06-26-2014 at 12:44 PM

I agree with just about everything knotscott said. I have a few junk blades that I use for cutting rough stuff, and I’m consistently amazed by how poorly they cut compared to my Forrest or Matsushita blade.

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

7689 posts in 2689 days


#12 posted 06-26-2014 at 03:11 PM

YES!

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: http://www.WoodworkStuff.net ... My Small Gallery: http://www.ncwoodworker.net/pp/showgallery.php?ppuser=1389&cat=500"

View DIYaholic's profile

DIYaholic

13365 posts in 1312 days


#13 posted 06-26-2014 at 03:29 PM

Knotscott,
I defer to your recommendations, or I will when I buy top quality blades….
I’m using the Irwin Marples blades in my TS & SCMS.

Nice post… Reaffirmation is never a bad thing!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procratination a bad thing?

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11644 posts in 2325 days


#14 posted 06-26-2014 at 03:37 PM

Good to hear from you again, KnotScott : ) I purchased an Irwin Marples 10” for my TS due to some high praise that was found on this site, but wasn’t impressed with the cut quality it gave me. I put my Freud blade back on and there it stays : ) Believe it or not, I got a couple of Porter Cable branded blades for not a lot of money and their cut quality was better than the Marples. I was quite surprised as I had bought them for use on less demanding projects : )
Have a Happy Fourth of July !

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10760 posts in 1327 days


#15 posted 06-26-2014 at 06:26 PM

I would add that the DeWalt “Ultra Thin Kerf” 7 1/4” are a very worthwhile investment for use in a circular saw that is underpowered as well as in the table saw when a very thin kerf is desired. I use those in my old plastic B&D when reclaiming barn wood with nails.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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