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I have a Dewalt DWE7480 job site saw. As a hobbyist, I work almost exclusively with hard woods except for pine and MDf for jigs. Most of the wood I cut is under 1" thick but with cutting boards I can go over 1 1/2 inches.

I have a Dewalt 24 tooth thin kerf blade that came with the saw. I bought a Freud Diablo 60 tooth thin kerf from HD. The 24 tooth leaves a rough edge which is fine for rough cuts or breaking down larger boards or panels. The 60 tooth does a decent job crosscutting but doesn't work well as a general purpose blade. When I rip lumber with the 60 tooth it frequently leaves burn marks regardless of the feed rate. I've been doing a lot of reading on line and most of the recommendations say that I should have a 40 tooth, thin kerf, Hi-ATB for a general purpose blade. I then read some reviews that say the more expensive blades are well worth the difference in cost due to the quality of the cut which saves additional milling steps. The prices vary widely. For example, on Amazon the price of a Freud Diablo 10-inch, 40 tooth, ATB, thin kerf is about $30. The Freud P410T 10-Inch by 40-Teeth 30-Degree Hi-ATB Premier Fusion Thin Kerf goes for almost $75. That's a big difference but if it reduces burning and additional planning it could well be worth it. So, the question is, at well over twice the price, is it worth it? Does anyone have any experience with both lower priced and higher priced blades and seen a difference that's worth the price? One additional note, the very high priced blades, that go for over $100 are out of my price range.
 
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Barry; whichever blade you choose, it's probably fair comment to note that the original factory sharpening isn't necessarily the best possible honing job. That is to say that if you have a good blade/bit sharpening shop available to you, the performance, after they've worked their magic, will be substantially better than new.
I expect to pay in the range of $80 to $100 for a decent 10" blade. That doesn't mean that they're the best...I'm not running a commercial cabinet shop. Everyone has a budget. :(
 

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A thicker saw blade may give better performance as it is less like to wander. I'm not particularly a believer in one blade for all jobs. By definition they are a compromise between all jobs. You do get what you pay for from my experience.

One thing to watch for on 60 tooth and plus blades is that some are only designed for a 1" cut depth. This might be the reason you are getting burning. I have a Freud 18 tooth rip blade that is guaranteed to make a glue line cut and it does a pretty smooth job. It was around $105 at the time.
 

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I am using an Irwin Marples 50T Combination blade and it is great. Clean cuts and no wandering. Price is reasonable; about $45.
+1 What he said.

The Marples blade works pretty well.

I also have a cheep 24T thin kerf blade from the big box store that I use for ripping stock to rough widths. like you said, it also leaves marks but that is OK by me. The stock will end up on the jointer anyway.

And I have a Freud glue line rip blade also. It makes a smooth, clean rip.

Hope this helps.
Mike
 

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Barry,
Our late good friend Dick Willis told me that he just used inexpensive $20 blades. When they became dull, he just bought new ones. As I recall they were the Marples brand. I tried one of them, a thin kerf blade and it seemed to work as well as my full kerf combination Forrester $120 blade. However, I simply put in the saw to try it but then after doing so, I put the full kerf combination blade back on.

Jerry
 

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Barry; whichever blade you choose, it's probably fair comment to note that the original factory sharpening isn't necessarily the best possible honing job. That is to say that if you have a good blade/bit sharpening shop available to you, the performance, after they've worked their magic, will be substantially better than new.
I expect to pay in the range of $80 to $100 for a decent 10" blade. That doesn't mean that they're the best...I'm not running a commercial cabinet shop. Everyone has a budget. :(
Dan,
I recently had my Forrest blade re-worked by Forrest. Do you think that your comment on factory sharpening is applicable to that company and if not, who would suggest if you think that the blade could be touched up after leaving Forrest's shop.

I can't be sure but it does seem that the blade is not as sharp as it was when it was new, however it is satisfactory, but your comment did get my attention.

Jerry
 

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Hi,

I have a freud glueline rip blade that needed sharpened. I took it to a tool sharpening place and he gave it back with mirror polished teeth. It now cuts so smooth that oak seems like pine. I highly recommend finding a good sharpening service close to where you live, mine services factories as well as wood butchers like me. Everything I take him comes back performing better than new.

Wayne
 

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Hi,

I have a freud glueline rip blade that needed sharpened. I took it to a tool sharpening place and he gave it back with mirror polished teeth. It now cuts so smooth that oak seems like pine. I highly recommend finding a good sharpening service close to where you live, mine services factories as well as wood butchers like me. Everything I take him comes back performing better than new.

Wayne
Where does this guy live. To get good service I'd spring for the postage.

Jerry
 

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Jerry; I have no experience with Forrest, but Wayne's comment (above) echoes my experience with the commercial shop I've been using. Thing about them is they don't care what brand I bring in...they just assess the condition and give me their honest opinion. Sometimes it's "Sorry; it's not worth sharpening." I recently took in a bunch of 10" blades and left them for the technician to assess. He rejected 1/2 of them as being too far gone. Fair enough; he could have sharpened them, charged me, and then had to listen to my whining... ;)
On occasion they've suggested modifying the grind angle and I just go along with whatever they want to do. This particular outfit does pretty much all the cabinet shops' sharpening in the Vancouver area, so I have to assume that the general satisfaction level is pretty high.

Back to Forrest; can you get somebody with a lot of cabinet making experience to look at/try your blade? If they've done a good job on it they should get the credit, and if not...well, 'nuff said,
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks to everyone for their suggestions. I ended up going to Lowes today and picked up the Irwin Marples 50T Combination blade. It was on sale for $35. I figured that I'd take a chance on it and, worst case, I'd use to do rough cuts. Although I only had time to run a couple of feet of Padauk through it I'm very happy with the results. Cut very easily, no burning and the results are glue ready. The glue ready is very important to me for making cutting boards and cheese boards. The last cheese board I made consisted of 15 pieces of wood. Not counting the outside edges, the 14 joints required 28 glue ready faces. I'm giving these boards away and I don't like anyone enough to spend that much time milling wood. >:) If I develop my skills enough so that I can start selling the boards I will probably get a better rip blade.

Along the lines of the test cut, I did a really stupid thing last week on the table saw. I didn't get hurt but I could have. I'm too embarrassed to give you the details but, believe me, you'd agree that it was stupid. So, i finally decided to buy a Gripper. It came in today and I used it, along with the new saw blade, to cut 1/4" strips from a triangular piece of off cut that was only 6" long. The Gripper made those cuts safe. Should have gotten one of those a long time ago. If any of you are on the fence :sarcastic: about getting one, I highly recommend it.

I don't know if there are any places in my area that sharpen saw blades. I'll have to check. Out of curiosity, what blades do you have sharpened and how much do you pay? I'm trying to understand when it pays to have a blade sharpened and when it pays to buy a new one.

Stick, thanks for the link to the tool grinder package. I figure that I could buy around 185 Irwin Marples blades for the cost of the grinder. So, once I buy my 186th blade I'll admit that I should have bought the grinder and, I promise, you'll be the first to know.
 

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Barry; it's basically by the tooth, including pre-cleaning, and repairs if required...ie replacing broken or missing carbide. The cost of a full sharpening can easily come close to the cost of an 'economical' blade.
I think my last batch of 10'' carbide blades came to about $20 per blade, averaged out, but I can't honestly remember. There was a 60 tooth in the batch and maybe a 40 tooth plus a couple of jobsite blades that got tossed.
The cost of sharpening a full dado set (8") was the same as an inexpensive set costs, but they guaranteed that the teeth would leave a perfect clean flat bottom. Factory grind, not so much.
Short answer; your mileage may vary, as they say.

Quality Saw & Knife Ltd.
 

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Jerry; I have no experience with Forrest, but Wayne's comment (above) echoes my experience with the commercial shop I've been using. Thing about them is they don't care what brand I bring in...they just assess the condition and give me their honest opinion. Sometimes it's "Sorry; it's not worth sharpening." I recently took in a bunch of 10" blades and left them for the technician to assess. He rejected 1/2 of them as being too far gone. Fair enough; he could have sharpened them, charged me, and then had to listen to my whining... ;)
On occasion they've suggested modifying the grind angle and I just go along with whatever they want to do. This particular outfit does pretty much all the cabinet shops' sharpening in the Vancouver area, so I have to assume that the general satisfaction level is pretty high.

Back to Forrest; can you get somebody with a lot of cabinet making experience to look at/try your blade? If they've done a good job on it they should get the credit, and if not...well, 'nuff said,
\\





Thanks Dan,
I have a neighbor friend, I've mentioned him several times before on the forum, and he is pretty knowledgeable on such things as what we are talking about. I can start with him. I know that at on time he told me that he had never had much luck with having blades sharpened which indicates to me that he had not found a person that really knew how to sharpen blades properly.

Then, I'll look for a cabinet shop, I have never done that but I need to just find somebody to talk to about woodworking here in my neck of the woods.

By the way, what do the folks charge for sharpening 40 tooth 10" full kerf blade?

That Forrest blade that I had done that also needed a couple of new teeth cost me $52 for the work, but I had five years of service out of it and so that's not bad.

I suppose that if it is cutting alright for me it's O.K. Maybe, just maybe that when I first got the blade that I was so used to a lessor blade is why I was so impresses with the new Forrest blade that I liked it. Now that I'm so used to it, maybe I can't tell the difference in it after having it re-worked. The primary reason that I sent it to Forrest to be worked on was that I had used it for so long and that the two teeth were missing. I don't know how or when the teeth were lost, it did not seem to make much difference in the way the blade was cutting.

After my eyes are healed from the recent cataract surgery and I get back to the shop I'll pay closer attention to the subject. Maybe put the Freud Fusion blade on the saw and do come comparison, that blade is relative new, that might tell me something.

The only time that I actually felf that my saw blades were getting dull were on a couple of Freud thin kerf $40 blades. The first one of the two really cut nice a first but dulled quickly. I liked it so much that I bought another one and while it also worked very well at first it also dulled in a short time, that is when I stepped up to the $80 Fusion blade. I see that it has gone up in price now to closer to $90. I have not used it a whole lot, saving it for ripping cherry which is what I bought it for in the first place and I will say that it does a good job an does not burn if I do my part and keep the wood moving through the cut as I should.

Anyway Dan, thanks for the post to my question on the matter and I sure would not have a problem sending a blade to Vancouver if I can't find anybody near me here in Texas.



Jerry
 

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Yikes! Jerry, trust me, you don't want to get involved with the US/Can. border duties and brokerage fees thing.
If you had a chance to look at that Quality Saw link, you might have noticed the precision CNC diamond grit honing machines. That's a huge $$$$ investment for a business to make; not the same as taking a chef's knife or pair of scissors in for sharpening.
Lots of high end sharpening shops in Texas! try these:

Service - Texas Saw & Sharpening
Sharpening Services in North Texas (TX) on ThomasNet.com
Saw Blade Sharpening and Servicing :: National Tool Service, Inc., Fort Worth, TX
Freud Tools

Good luck, and yeh, chat with the cabinet shop guys.
 

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Yikes! Jerry, trust me, you don't want to get involved with the US/Can. border duties and brokerage fees thing.
If you had a chance to look at that Quality Saw link, you might have noticed the precision CNC diamond grit honing machines. That's a huge $$$$ investment for a business to make; not the same as taking a chef's knife or pair of scissors in for sharpening.
Lots of high end sharpening shops in Texas! try these:

Service - Texas Saw & Sharpening
Sharpening Services in North Texas (TX) on ThomasNet.com
Saw Blade Sharpening and Servicing :: National Tool Service, Inc., Fort Worth, TX
Freud Tools

Good luck, and yeh, chat with the cabinet shop guys.
Dan,
I didn't decern the difference between Vancouver, Wa. and Vancouver, British Columbia, sooooo, nuff of that idea.

Jerry
 

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That's a great suggestion. Do you know if these are available used? New would be out of my price range, and I think Dan's as well based on his comments. Used might work.
 

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