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Do You Still Use Your Abrasive Saw(s) ???

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  • Do You Still Use Your Abrasive Saw(s) ???

    I use mine occasionally. I used it a few weeks ago to break down some steel square tube for a couple projects. In that case I had the little band saw pretty busy breaking down solid bar stock, the mills were all running, and I didn't want to stand around. I used the abrasive saw to break down and cut all the pieces for a welded washing machine stand to raise and prelevel a machine in a location where it could not easily be leveled and the floor would catch and bend the feet if preleveled. The other project was a simple rack for firewood to get it off the ground and annoy the termites. I thought that was an exception. If that bandsaw hadn't been busy I'd have used it.

    Last week my little 4x6 band saw went **** up. ((mamaries elevated)) When I opened the gear box I found the brass worm gear (the steel screw was fine) had turned to chowder and the oil in the gear box looked like a gold metal flake paint that belonged on a 1980s low rider. Well after a lot of soul searching, personal cheapness, and a few wasted days I overnighted a gear from Grizzly that all the hobbyists said would fit my saw.

    In the mean time mills were sitting idle and I had 4140 to cut for the current project, so I added some arms to my roller table and threw my old abrasive saw up there. It chopped several blanks and kept the machines going until the new gear arrived.

    Next decent size job that pays I plan to order a little heavier 7x12 bandsaw and just keep the 4x6 as a backup. I've started to put the abrasive saw away and stopped about three times now. Not only did it keep me going (at the cost of several blades), but I also found myself using mini cutoff blades in one of the 4.5 inch angle grinders to do other work I ordinarily would have done with the bandsaw in the upright position.

    Using the abrasive 14" saw and the 4.5 inch angle grinder is messy, gritty, smelly, nasty work. I felt like I had sand down my neck for days. Other than for sanding and grinding (with the grinder) is the abrasive saw ever the best solution for the job if you have other tools? Obviously if its all you have that's working then you have to run what you brung.
    *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

  • #2
    It's a solution if you have to chop hardened-anything

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Bob La Londe View Post
      Other than for sanding and grinding (with the grinder) is the abrasive saw ever the best solution for the job if you have other tools?
      I bought mine, a milwaukee, a million years ago - okay, 22 - and I want to say I don't know why, but I do. I borrowed one from a fab shop when I was cutting 3" 304 stainless tube to make a race car exhaust. It worked really well for that, so I bought one. I have hardly ever used it but it works. As you say, it is incredibly noisy and dirty to use. I always try and use it outside, and I feel bad making anyone hear the thing. I did fab a collector for the bottom and it funnels the sparks and dust into a shop vac.

      Funny thing, I had a 7x12 bandsaw then but I just didn't use it much. Though I doubt I would have wanted to buy and install a really fine tooth blade in for those cuts. I'm not even sure how that would go, given 304. The chopsaw may have been the best thing for that. That was a grdeat of a fab shop that I borrowed one from, so I suspect there were reasons they preferred it for roll cage and header work but I wasn't present for those projects. They didn't have any toy bandsaws in the shop. The chop saw is a lot quicker, especially on something like big 304.

      I still have it and recently used it at a storage unit to chop some 3/4" drill rod for machine skates. It's very compact, I can lift it with one hand, and I don't think I'd sell it for what I could get for it.

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      • #4
        I've only used mine to cut hardened steel axles that came out of a rear end from a car. If I have to do it again, I'll probably just use a 1/4" solid carbide end-mill in the bridgeport and cut them by milling.

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        • #5
          I use it mine I've got full or longer lengths of tube or channel to cut. At home It's easier for me to bring the saw to the job on the ground than to wrestle stuff up into the band saw. I use the one at work the most for hardened stuff though.

          Mines just a cheapy I paid $5 for at a yard sale. There were 2 and neither worked, but look near new, so I figured it was just brushes. Guessed right and made a good one from two. I did have to turn some new caps to hold the brushes in though as the originals crumbled during removal. I wouldn't say I use it a lot, but I wouldn't sell it for twice the price I paid

          I've got a portaband I use for 75% of my cutting at home. Angle grinder is about 15%, horizontal bandsaw about 5% and 14"abrasive, hacksaw, jigsaw, and sawsall take up the rest. I'd use my horizontal more, but most of the tubing I get delivered to work and cut it all to length there as theres more space to work with it in long lengths. I've got the same saw at home, but very limited on space, so I like to break the big stuff down before it gets there.

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          • #6
            I bought one decades ago when I wanted something faster than a hack saw to cut metal with. I've used it quite a bit over the years but not very often during the past decade so I am not about to spend the money necessary to obtain one of the nicer alternatives

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            • #7
              I use mine to cuts saw blades into garden hoe ends.. occasionally a hardened shaft but it's easier to pick up the angle grinder with a 0.040 thick wheel for that. Bandsaw and porta-bands for pretty much everything else.

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              • #8
                I had a milwaukee, used it for years, then I bought a 7x12, didn't use the chop saw any more so I sold it and haven't looked back.



                Originally posted by Glug View Post
                I bought mine, a milwaukee, a million years ago - okay, 22 - and I want to say I don't know why, but I do. I borrowed one from a fab shop when I was cutting 3" 304 stainless tube to make a race car exhaust. It worked really well for that, so I bought one. I have hardly ever used it but it works. As you say, it is incredibly noisy and dirty to use. I always try and use it outside, and I feel bad making anyone hear the thing. I did fab a collector for the bottom and it funnels the sparks and dust into a shop vac.

                Funny thing, I had a 7x12 bandsaw then but I just didn't use it much. Though I doubt I would have wanted to buy and install a really fine tooth blade in for those cuts. I'm not even sure how that would go, given 304. The chopsaw may have been the best thing for that. That was a grdeat of a fab shop that I borrowed one from, so I suspect there were reasons they preferred it for roll cage and header work but I wasn't present for those projects. They didn't have any toy bandsaws in the shop. The chop saw is a lot quicker, especially on something like big 304.

                I still have it and recently used it at a storage unit to chop some 3/4" drill rod for machine skates. It's very compact, I can lift it with one hand, and I don't think I'd sell it for what I could get for it.

                That is one of the primary uses for my bandsaw is cutting stainless tube for exhaust.

                This is the blade I use for absolutely everything I put in the saw, I just adjust feed according to what I am cutting.

                Andy

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                • #9
                  Have used mine to cut rebar only.

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                  • #10
                    Used mine to cut landscaping bricks

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                    • #11
                      I have a Dewalt I bought when a local place was going out of business maybe 20 years ago or so. I have used it a lot, mostly for cutting angle iron and unistrut. I only use it outdoors, a bit too much noise and sparks form inside my crowded shop. I do most of my cutting on an old power hacksaw or my vertical bandsaw now. The chop saw is used mostly for outdoor welding projects. At this point if I did not already own it, I don't think I'd go buy one. But it's one of those I use it 'cause I have it kind of tools.

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                      • #12
                        I use mine all the time but I do a lot of welding and fab work. They are messy but fast - knock the burr off with a grinder and you are set. I use the band saw on heavy wall and solid bar over about an inch or so - everything else gets the chop saw treatment.

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                        • #13
                          I must have 6 or 8 but leave one outside on a barrel next to the steel rack. I leave a trash bag over it but most of the time it's out in the open but always works. 5 years ago HF closed out 5 pks of 14" blades for $1 so I bought all they had. It was funny as I bought a bunch back then & knew all the guys so one told me all the closeouts were 80% off so I overflowed a cart then someone else said it was a mistake there was no 80% off but they gave it to me anyway. The blades were marked masonry on the box & metal on the blades so they cost me 16 cents each. I bought well over 100 as well as many more great deals.
                          "Let me recommend the best medicine in the
                          world: a long journey, at a mild season, through a pleasant
                          country, in easy stages."
                          ~ James Madison

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by MattiJ View Post
                            It's a solution if you have to chop hardened-anything
                            That's what mine gets used for,all other material go in the 3-1/2x5 or 10x18 horizontal the Doall Vertical takes care of the rest.

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                            • #15
                              I needed something to cut hardened shaft up to 1/2", so decades ago I made a mini with 4" disks, a blender motor and some 1/4" timing belt. Still drag it out occasionally, mostly to cut hard bolts more precisely than a bolt cutter and belt sander.

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