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Concrete cutting saw blades

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2008-10-27          157509


Are composite concrete cutting blades worthless?

Using a Stihl TS420 saw with a Stihl composite stone cutting blade it took about 15 minutes to cut a 6" thick retaining wall block in half.

A "cheap" diamond blade took about two minutes.

I expected the composite blade to wear quickly but never thought it wouldn't cut.

Does anyone really use composite blades for this type of work?

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7141 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2008-10-27          157510


I can only guess from your comments that you were using the blade dry.

The big difference between composite and steel 'diamond' blade is the size of particles taken and how those particles are handled.

A diamond blade takes bigger 'bites' per tooth and because of the added weight the particles get ejected better.

A composite blade on the other hand sort of grinds it's way through the work, the resulting particles are extremely fine and without water to carry them away they quickly clog the cutting wheel. There is a marked difference between using a comp. blade wet or dry.

The composite blade however leaves a MUCH finer cut than a regular diamond blade will. For precast concrete this doesn't matter much, if you were cutting marble or granite and needed a finished appearance it would make a BIG difference.

Best of luck. ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2008-10-27          157511


I was cutting wet with both blades. I was astonished at how hard it was to cut with the composite stone blade.
....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2008-10-27          157516


(pretending to be Kenny) What's this composite blade ya'll are talkin' 'bout?

KW, purty soon yous gonna be a contractor yerself! Next thing we know we'll be comin' to you for info. And that's a good thing! ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2008-10-27          157517


I don't know about being a contractor but I've learned a lot and the wall is turning out real nice. I'll post pics once I get it done (which will have to wait until my back heals up - those blocks are heavy!). I couldn't have done it without the good advice from you guys.

Here's a link to the Stihl composite blade (they call it an "abrasive wheel"). I was using the hard blade for stone. Don't believe the BS about "super-fast cutting", it's a real dog compared to a diamond blade. ....


Link:   Stihl saw blades

 
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Concrete cutting saw blades

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2008-10-27          157519


I use regular diamond blades. I'm not overly concerned about using them wet or dry as I don't always have a water supply---sometimes the tailings mud they make is worse than the dust the create.

I prefer a customer who, like you, has been in the trenches and appreciates hard work. But then I shudder when I go to do an estimate for someone that hasn't done any actual work but knows everything because they either read on the web, a neighbor told them, or a drunk brother-in-law told them---or, has been my luck they are mechanical or software engineers with no practical application exp. Clients--esp. educated ones, don't like to be told they are just plain wrong. My last client had me waste a whole day redoing what I told him was not going to work. Now he actually wants solicits my opinion AHEAD of time because everytime he wants something done I tell him, "You're the engineer" He don't wanna hear that :) ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-27          157520


Ahhh---the composite abrasive blades. Their "super-fast" cutting oddly wasn't in the context of concrete cutting I noticed. I do know first-hand they can really tear up flesh lickety split! I use them for cutting steel when I have to.

Speaking of cutting steel, I usually rail against Clarke tools sold at TSC. Well I will have to make an exception to that: I bought one of their "metal cutting circular saws" for about $139. The box it came in said it would cut 5 times faster than an abrasive blade--and they ain't kidding. I cut a 40' ocean-going shipping container in half in under 45 minutes including cutting the hardwood floor and cross members. It cuts Cor-Ten steel like it was butter. It doesn't like material thicker than 3/8" as it chips the teeth off. New blades are $30. ....

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____________________________________________________________________________________
Concrete cutting saw blades

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-27          157521


Hey... take it easy on us software engineers :) I knew it
would be hard work but I underestimated the timeline by a
factor of three. A lot of that was just due to mistakes made
by a dumb rookie.

The literature put out by the block manufacturers make it
sound *so easy*. When I post a finished picture I'll type up
a long list of lessons learned. ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-28          157524


Dang! I thought I would be able to s-l-i-d-e that engineer thing by you!

Factor of 3 isn't too bad---I usually figure about 2.

Does your total time include spending time on TP? ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-28          157525


EW, including TP time it would probably extend the factor to ten! ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5219 South Carolina
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2008-10-28          157533


Ken, pretending to be EW,

Are composite concrete cutting blades worthless?

Looking at their suggested blade for the job on their site I do not see where they recommended the Abrasive Wheel, only the diamond wheels. Did see where they said "super-fast". Of course compared to what? Then the diamond wheel is for "high-speed cutting". So, super is slower than high speed? Not sure which policitial speech writer did the wording. :) kt ....

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____________________________________________________________________________________
Concrete cutting saw blades

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-28          157534


Here 'ya go. This site shows the abrasive wheel applications. ....


Link:   Stihl abrasive wheels

 
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Concrete cutting saw blades

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-28          157537


Kenny, are the abrasive blades worthless? Depends on who you talk to I suppose. I have a bunch I keep on hand just in case I wipe out an expensive diamond blade. Ten years ago a good 16" diamond blade was upwards of $600 or more. Now you can buy a cheapy for about $50-$125 on eBay. I did buy two gently used high-quality ones for $35 each off eBay and am still using them. The cheap ones are good for about 5 hours while the good ones are about 3-10 times that or more. Abrasives are about $6-15 each---but you can't consistently cut at depth as it is continually wearing out. You might start out cutting 4" deep at one of a 3-4 foot long cut and end up at zero depth. ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5219 South Carolina
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-29          157550


Ken, below is the link I looked at.

EW, have used the abrasive blades myself and for my little bit of work done fine with them. But I don't play the concrete guy that Ken does. The question on them being worthless was one asked by Ken to begin with. Found them to be only way to cut rebar (with a saw). kt ....


Link:   blades

 
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Concrete cutting saw blades

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-29          157567


Kenny: Bolt cutters or a rebar cutter is much quicker and quieter.

Murf: Did I read your post right about using abrasive blades wet? Unless I was using the wrong kind, I tried water and it took just as long if not longer. ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5219 South Carolina
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2008-10-30          157572


Quote:
Originally Posted by earthwrks | view 157567
Kenny: Bolt cutters or a rebar cutter is much quicker and quieter.


Point well taken but I have learned over the years there are many tools often you can use. The best tool for the job is the one that does it which I already have. Guess that is why Lowes seldom sees me. Yep, I have bought a tool for a job, back in the days when I was allowed to keep some profits by DC. kt ....

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Concrete cutting saw blades

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crunch
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 264 Niagara County, NY
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2008-10-30          157579


I just had my first experience cutting 2" tumbled bluestone that I laid down for my front walk. My expensive cedar walk rotted out in 12 tears due to dampness. I bought a $50 diamond blade from home depot and used my cheap skil circular saw. I was amazed. I layed most of the stone without cutting. But I dry cut maybe 15 total feet of the 2" stone to fix the rough spots. It cut very easily at first , became a chore as I was finishing up. ....

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