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bimetal or carbon steel bandsaw blades?

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  • bimetal or carbon steel bandsaw blades?

    Shop is up and running. I don't have a bandsaw yet. My uncle up the road has a 4x6 that works pretty well. I need to buy a blade or two to feel right using it to cut my stock until I have my own saw.

    So bimetal or carbon? Most of my cutting will be 1018, 1044, and a small amount of O-1.

    Thanks,

    Clutch

  • #2
    I use Starrett bi-metal blades for my old Craftsman horizontal bandsaw and was fortunate at that to find the odd length it uses. The bi-metal performs well on everything from plastics to non-ferrous to alloy steels. The blade is a 12 - 14 variable pitch which helps reduce resonances. Den
    Last edited by nheng; 12-28-2009, 09:24 PM.

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    • #3
      I purchased a chinese 4x6 bandsaw it came with a carbon steel blade.
      The blade dulled very quickly. I replaced it with an inexpensive bimetal blade and have used it a lot and it still cuts like new.
      Terry

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      • #4
        My vote is bi-metal. They last way longer than carbon steel blades.
        "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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        • #5
          bimetal.
          10-14 variable pitch.
          I like the Lenox Diemaster II blades better than the Starretts.

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          • #6
            Bimetal UNLESS you plan to cut something so nasty bimetal isent worth it... AFAIK that only includes really abrasive/nasty materials like fiberglass, all metals should cut better with a bimetal.

            ie, anything that can dull a bimetal in a few cuts your better off going with carbon steel, it won't last longer but it will be cheaper per cut.

            Basicly as a HSM your best off with bimetal unless you have some nasty production job to do.
            Play Brutal Nature, Black Moons free to play highly realistic voxel sandbox game.

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            • #7
              1 x bimetal = 10 x carbon steel

              I don't agree with BM. If it will kill a bimetal blade then it will rip the teeth off a carbon blade in one rev. I've done it.

              If you have something that nasty to cut it's time for a diamond grit blade.
              Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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              • #8
                Get the speed and feed right and run some sort of coolant on your saw even a carbon steel blade will last quite awhile.

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                • #9
                  Evan: then what are carbon blades even for? Im pertty sure theres gotta be something they cut better for the dollar or they would'nt be sold anymore.

                  Im not saying nasty as in hard steel nasty, im saying nasty as in like fiberglass PCB's. things that would abrasively dull a bimetal blade.
                  Play Brutal Nature, Black Moons free to play highly realistic voxel sandbox game.

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                  • #10
                    Go for the cheap carbon blades.
                    In no time at all you'll be a whiz at changing blades.
                    Amaze your friends with your lightening fast reflexes as you change blades with your eyes closed!

                    Seriously though, go for the 10-14tpi variable pitch for general purpose cutting.
                    I've had really good experience with MK Morse brand saw blades, but I think you'll have good results with any of the brand names others have suggested.
                    Home, down in the valley behind the Red Angus
                    Bad Decisions Make Good Stories​

                    Location: British Columbia

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                    • #11
                      nah the better amazement is when you managed to untwist the blade infront of your friends without decapitating anyone.

                      And if you screw up, just tell them that was your 'sawing a guy in half trick!'
                      Play Brutal Nature, Black Moons free to play highly realistic voxel sandbox game.

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                      • #12
                        If you intend to use your saw buy good blades. I used a lot of carbon steel blades before I discovered bimetal blades. I still have several carbon steel blades hanging on the wall but when it is time to change blades I reach for the better ones. It is surprising how long a good blade lasts compared to the cheaper ones. Good blades are cheaper in the long run but you can wreck anything. Carbon blades function best as loaners.
                        Byron Boucher
                        Burnet, TX

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                        • #13
                          The most common answer is Bi-metal.
                          I choose another path. I use only quality blade stock to make my own blades. The reason is this:
                          I'm a scrounger, and have a metal rack with all sorts of steel, Al, Brass, several types of tool steel. Many are known alloys, some are not. I have a bunch of stock/drops that are pure blade-dull-ium, not sure where they came from, and I am slowly marking that alloy, as it is discovered. It lathes just fine, but kills blades with 100% certainty. It would drive a stake in my heart to use a new bi-metal blade and discover that I had grabbed a bar of blade-dull-ium.
                          Another thing, I use TPI's from a 4 skip for thick stock, to 32 for thin stock, depending on the material thickness. Buying blades to cover the range can be rather expensive. As always tooling is often more expensive than the tool itself.

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                          • #14
                            mechanicalmagic: Ever try to file or hacksaw those 'blade killing' materials? Might be a little easyer test.
                            Play Brutal Nature, Black Moons free to play highly realistic voxel sandbox game.

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                            • #15
                              mm's way is probably the best, although i confess to buying bimetal blades and slapping them on. unless you're cranking the speed, what exactly is the advantage of the bimetal blade? hss's advantage over tool steel is maintaining hardness at higher temps.....and temps are a direct function of cutting speed. So long as temps are down so it doesn't draw a temper, tools steel should last as long as hss. Run slowly, tool steel would i think deliver quite a bit more square inches of cut per dollar
                              .

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