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Small table saw cuts metals - excellent results

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  • Small table saw cuts metals - excellent results

    Following up with a quick comment on recommendations received here - for what it's worth.

    DeWalt DWE 7480 @ 5K rpm cuts aluminum and steel effortlessly with and excellent edge finish.

    For 1018 steel - a Metal Devil NXT 8" dia. (42 teeth) went through 3/8" so easily I wouldn't hesitate running much thicker or harder stock.
    For Aluminum - an Amana Tool 10" dia. non-ferous 60 teeth went through 3/4" like butter.
    For Grade 8 threaded rod - a 6" dia. 3/32 thick 36 grit aluminum oxide cutoff disc left a mirror finish and perfect threads on 1/2 rod in a matter of seconds.

    That's all. Cheers!

  • #2
    That's all good but do be aware that all it takes is one tiny slip-up for things to go south real quick. Wear lots of protective equipment and have some spare blades on hand. I hope your a**hole is puckered up real good when you're making those cuts--there are reasons why it's not common practice...
    Keith
    __________________________
    Just one project too many--that's what finally got him...

    Comment


    • #3
      The trick, if there is a trick, with cutting metal on a wood saw is controlling the feed rate. You can't control the width of the cut by very much (blade width) and generally the cut depth will be the full thickness of the material. And the cutting speed is not easily controlled on a wood saw: they deliberately run fast for cutting wood. So you must feed the work into the saw slowly. It can be done, but it is not the best thing to be doing. Get a metal cutting band saw.
      Paul A.
      SE Texas

      Make it fit.
      You can't win and there IS a penalty for trying!

      Comment


      • #4
        It is like playing Russian Roulette.
        Just waiting for the inevitable jam and
        to fling the piece across the shop.
        I would much rather do my work an a machine
        where I an hold my job in a vise or bolt it to
        the table. If you light dynamite and throw it
        enough times, you might find a fast fuse.
        You are a living example, my friend, of what
        NOT to do.

        --Doozer


        -Doozer
        DZER

        Comment


        • #5
          Oh krapp. I was completely oblivious to any to risk other than that associated with power tools in general. The only thing that kept me from cutting (or trying to) a 1-1/2 inch thick steel block (about 14 " long & diagonal) was the fact it was too long to fit on the table of the saw and was too heavy to support reliably. I will look into a band saw as I seem to be doing this at some level of frequency.

          Thanks.

          Comment


          • #6
            I cut through some cast iron on my table saw one day- actually the cutting took place 30 seconds at a time, with cooling times of several minutes, over a period of a couple days. I used a cheap skil saw type carbide blade, and it made it through the job- about 10 sq inches in total, with the thickest parts being about 1-1/2 inches thick. It was a puckering experience for sure. This was something large enough that I couldn't get it through my bandsaw.

            I have, at times, while cutting scrap on the table saw, cut through nails and screws, sometimes lengthwise, using a carbide blade. Screws in particular give a spectacular display of sparks, and at one time I set the sawdust in the bottom of the saw on fire. I had to reach in and scoop out handfuls of swarf with a growing, glowing ember in the middle of it. That's another shower of sparks as you toss it on the floor.

            Aluminum is pretty good to cut, but you do have to be aware that the softer stuff is gummy and will easily clog a blade tooth. Once that happens you immediately start to generate a lot of heat. Yes there's a considerable danger involved and any activity like this is not for the faint of heart.
            I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

            Comment


            • #7
              Good grief, some of you guys are so gloomy-doomy. The average homeowner's table saw is under 2hp, and when the blade binds it just stops. The end of the world isn't yet, for heaven's sake. In addition to chips finding their way into motors, the biggest worry is likely hot chips on your bod. You take care of that, and don't care about the longevity of the saw, and have at it. Most of you guys howling about the horrendous danger have probably not done it yourself. Half of you talk like you're related to lawyers. I get so damn sick of the incessant 'what if's. You can 'what if' yourself into doing absolutely nothing.
              Southwest Utah

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by chipmaker4130 View Post
                Good grief, some of you guys are so gloomy-doomy. The average homeowner's table saw is under 2hp, and when the blade binds it just stops. The end of the world isn't yet, for heaven's sake. In addition to chips finding their way into motors, the biggest worry is likely hot chips on your bod. You take care of that, and don't care about the longevity of the saw, and have at it. Most of you guys howling about the horrendous danger have probably not done it yourself. Half of you talk like you're related to lawyers. I get so damn sick of the incessant 'what if's. You can 'what if' yourself into doing absolutely nothing.
                I have to admit this my favorite response. Of course that's mostly due to its self-serving content. My lack of experience or depth of experience forces me to seek-out opinions. I pay attention to all opinions and alter my actions accordingly to fit my personal risk/benefit tolerance. In this case, I will likely avail myself to more cutting on the table saw, but I will increase my focus and take additional precautions. I also won't push beyond reasonable limits - It's pretty hard to argue against safety. With that said, the cautions above are appreciated, respected and will help me to form my own methodology.

                Here's where I relate to chipmaker's comment (beyond just convenience of the self-serving benefit). An activity I have extensive expertise in and that is inherently dangerous is technical diving. I will spare you the boasting and long list of quals but suffice to say, I have been diving deep wrecks and caves since the early 1980's and was part of the movement into mixed gases when it started gaining traction in the early 90's. Anyway, I will keep this short because I doubt there is much interest, however communities today are riddled with fear mongering about dangers like getting bent, oxygen toxicity, narcosis effects, micro-bubbles, embolisms, blood thickening and so on (all relevant but in context). Without going into details, the limits that these 'collective' groups preach, borders on absurd - that's all.

                Anyway, no disrespect to anyone here and of course, my sincere gratitude to all for sharing your advice!
                Last edited by Mr-Mike; 01-12-2016, 06:04 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Mr.Mike
                  Thanks for the follow up. It's fair that people should point out hazards since anyone can read these boards and a neophyte could get bit in the a$$.
                  Assuming someone who has done what appears hazardous doesn't have a clue is short sighted.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by chipmaker4130 View Post
                    Good grief, some of you guys are so gloomy-doomy. The average homeowner's table saw is under 2hp, and when the blade binds it just stops. The end of the world isn't yet, for heaven's sake. In addition to chips finding their way into motors, the biggest worry is likely hot chips on your bod. You take care of that, and don't care about the longevity of the saw, and have at it. Most of you guys howling about the horrendous danger have probably not done it yourself. Half of you talk like you're related to lawyers. I get so damn sick of the incessant 'what if's. You can 'what if' yourself into doing absolutely nothing.

                    I've had kick-back with non-ferrous. It was one of the scariest things ever. It is a far different event than with wood kick-back. Fortunately I was un-harmed and got out of it with only a trashed 80 tooth carbide blade.

                    Many on this forum will (rightly so) condemn anyone who advocates/practices not clamping a workpiece to a drill press table. But somehow hand feeding a piece of metal into a high rpm circular blade is OK, as long as you hold on real tight?

                    Cut metal with metal working tools only.
                    Gary


                    Appearance is Everything...

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have plenty of dangerous shlt including cutting aluminum
                      on the table saw. I admit I don't have the balls to steel.
                      I would not ask any man in the shop to do something that
                      I myself would not do first. That is because it is my azz because
                      I set the man up with the job. I would not set up a man to do
                      something dangerous or sketchy. Makes sense to me.
                      If in your home shop you want to do something sketchy to save
                      a dollar, have at it.
                      The video from ThisOldTony running steel in his gantry router is
                      totally a different thing. It was about speeds and feeds and rigidity.
                      Not about how unsafe can we do something and still live to tell the
                      tale. Cutting even aluminum on the table saw scares the crap out
                      of me. And for good reason. Sheet metal is one thing, but not
                      1/4" or bigger. Just too heavy, and can hurt if it smacks you in
                      the 'ol Jimmy Johnson. I seen it happen with a table saw.
                      Got this 300 pound guy right in the Chotchkie. He was rolling
                      around on the shop floor, trying to make sure he still had a Frank
                      and beans. Not kool.

                      --Doozer
                      DZER

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The biggest reason for kickback with a table saw is keeping the blade low. For some reason, people seem to think that it is somehow safer if the blade height is barely greater than material thickness. Keep the blade high and the cutting/grabbing force is DOWN into the table. Even with narrow cuts (close to the fence), keep it high and use a pusher. There are, of course, times when the blade must be lowered such as rabbeting, etc.
                        Last edited by chipmaker4130; 01-12-2016, 09:06 PM. Reason: spelling
                        Southwest Utah

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                        • #13
                          My brother regularly cut aluminum on his table saw . One time he wanted to slit one side of an aluminum tube about 1 3/4 " diameter. This had been used as a post for a traffic sign and had broken from fatigue due to vibrating in the wind, leaving a long jagged spear-like point on the broken end.

                          He started to cut, square-cut end first, and decided he didn't like the look of the spear end pointing towards his entrails. He grabbed a short length of 2X2, hammered it into the end, and proceeded to cut.

                          Part way through, the cut closed on the blade, the tube shot back, hit him, spun him around so fast he was completely dis-oriented for a few seconds.

                          It left a massive bruise, but luckily he had stuck the wood in the end, and luckily it hit bone (the right side of his pelvis), and not a couple of inches inboard of that.

                          Apparently, that blade did not stop when it jammed.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I've had a lot of stuff jam on me, and get shot out. One day I saw that a piece was going to jam and as usual I make sure I'm out of the way and that my fingers aren't going to get pulled in. The piece shot out and ended up sticking straight out of the cement wall behind. Another time I was cutting acrylic and had no warning of the impending jam. Suddenly I heard a bang, felt a sting in my stomach, saw a shadow fly by in my peripheral vision, and saw that the piece was no longer on the saw table. All in about 1/4 second or so-

                            I got lucky that time as the piece hit me edge on and not corner on. I had a good welt that was exactly as long as the piece was wide- looked kind of cool actually, a linear bruise

                            Our saw at work gave us a flying saucer one day. A piece of sheet goods decided to climb up onto the blade and do a little spin as it launched towards me. I was out of the way, and my real concern was whether it would punch through the drywall and go into the office. This was a case where the fence was out and would pinch the material as you pushed it past the back of the blade.

                            I'm not a safety nazi, but ship can sure happen. What it really boils down to is using your brain. If you're not comfortable with an operation, then don't do it. If you are performing a risky procedure, have it all worked out in your head before you start cutting.
                            I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              A 2" block of aluminum I was cutting on the table saw grabbed and it hit me right in the stomach. Knocked the wind out of me and dropped me to the floor. I couldn't catch my breath and lay there gasping for about 5 minutes. Left one hell of a bruise! I had a face shield on but it would've punched right through that. Wrecked a $60 blade too.

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