question about table saw blade

Old 01-22-01, 11:27 AM
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I am about to use my new Delta 10" portable table saw for the first time. I will be cutting and ripping a piece of high density wood. (The sawdust like stuff that is all compressed together.) I will be practicing on something else. The blade that came with the saw looks like it would cut most anything. I know there are different types of blades for various cutting projects. Would this blade be ok to use or should it be a finer toothed blade? Is there a site that I can go to to learn about the various blades and their cutting uses? Thanks for any info that you can offer me.
Old 01-22-01, 08:48 PM
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The steel blade that came with your saw will work for one fair project. Replace it with one of two carbide blades - 60+ tooth for crosscutting and finish cuts or 40- tooth for ripping.
Old 01-25-01, 01:36 AM
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The steel blade provided with your saw should not be used for cutting particleboard. It will surely be destroyed! Use a carbide tipped blade only. Cheaper blades can be used but will not cut cleanly for long. A decent carbide blade should have 50 or more teeth and cost about 40 dollars. A combination blade can be used for most projects.
Old 01-25-01, 03:30 AM
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The best way to learn about blades is to go to your Home Improvement store, and in the saw blade dept. they will labeled according to their use. They will have really cheap ones. Don't buy these. Then they will have medium priced ones and high priced ones. For the home owner usually the medium priced ones will work just fine. You should probably have three blades. One course blade, one medium blade, and one fine blade. For particle board you need a fine tooth blade.
Old 01-26-01, 10:17 PM
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Two notes on your question . . .

First, the other folks who posted replies are right that the blade that came with your saw probably won't last long cutting any kind of "engineered" wood product, like MDF, OSB, or even plywood (that is, if it's a steel blade and not carbide-tipped). I find that it always helps to know the "why," though, which the others left out. In this case, the adhesives and binders used to produce engineered wood products will dull ordinary steel cutting edges very quickly (not only on saw blades, but on router bits and drill bits, too). Carbide-tipped blades are much more durable than steel and therefore are recommended for use on engineered wood products.

Second, the sawdust produced from cutting and milling engineered wood products can be very hazardous to your health -- much more so than ordinary wood sawdust, although ordinary sawdust is dangerous, too. Be sure to wear a NIOSH-approved particulate filter mask (not just a cheap paper dust mask) when cutting these materials. NIOSH-approved paper masks are not much more costly than plain paper masks - look for "N"-rated masks. "P" and "R" rated masks will work, too, but they tend to be more expensive because they are meant for use where oil vapors will be present (as in paint-spraying operations). An N-95 mask filters 95 percent of airborne particles down to 0.3 microns, while N-97 and N-99 masks work at 97 percent and 99 percent efficiency, respectively. For more on all this, see "Sawdust: Harmless Nuisance or Deadly Hazard?" at

Good luck with your new saw, and watch those fingers!


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