Does cutting Particleboard wear out blades faster? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 18 Old 04-12-2012, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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Does cutting Particleboard wear out blades faster?

I just bought a new Freud 60 Tooth Fine Finish Saw Blade and I needed to make a couple of cuts on white MELAMINE particleboard. I went ahead and used the blade, but Iím worried that I may have caused some extra wear.

I need to make some more cuts and wondering if I should change blade before making the cuts.

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post #2 of 18 Old 04-12-2012, 08:28 PM
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Pressboard, melamine, MDF, etc., will definitely wear your blade quicker than most solid wood, but it's hard to know how quickly. I wouldn't worry too much about a few cuts. For any kind of serious volume, I'd want a triple chip grind for best wear.
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post #3 of 18 Old 04-12-2012, 09:04 PM
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It is my understanding that any wood product that has been ground up will dull your blades quicker. Like Scott said, it is hard to determine how fast, so I try to not use my "good" blades on them.

I used to use my regular all in one blade to cut everything... I then ran across a deal at a BORG for a melamine blade when it was on clearance, and I haven't looked back when I need to cut melamine. I have cut quite a bit for various projects and am glad that I am not wearing out my other good blades.

hope this helps

Fabian

I used to be fairly indecisive, but now....... I'm not so sure.
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post #4 of 18 Old 04-12-2012, 09:31 PM Thread Starter
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It is my understanding that any wood product that has been ground up will dull your blades quicker. Like Scott said, it is hard to determine how fast, so I try to not use my "good" blades on them.

I used to use my regular all in one blade to cut everything... I then ran across a deal at a BORG for a melamine blade when it was on clearance, and I haven't looked back when I need to cut melamine. I have cut quite a bit for various projects and am glad that I am not wearing out my other good blades.

hope this helps
Thanks I have been using an old carbide blade that I bought 15 years ago for $15 or $20, but it’s not so good for smooth cuts anymore.

I wanted a near perfect cut to use for a router jig fence so I went ahead and used my good blade and I have to say it was a nice cut even with the voids and imperfections in the particleboard.

I probably need to replace my old carbide blade with a new blade just for melamine particleboard or or have it sharpened.

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post #5 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 08:18 AM
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At one time I cut 100 sheets of particle board five days a week. I can't say that it dulls a blade more than anything else except from time to time I would hit something metal buried in the sheets. Even though I hit a piece of metal in probably 1 in a thousand sheets it only dulled the blade a little. There was only one occasion where I hit a 3/8" bolt and knocked some teeth off the blade. That was in 1973. It's very possible they may have eliminated the steel in the sheets by now. Itís been many years since Iíve used particle board for anything so I don't have recent experience.
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post #6 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
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At one time I cut 100 sheets of particle board five days a week. I can't say that it dulls a blade more than anything else except from time to time I would hit something metal buried in the sheets. Even though I hit a piece of metal in probably 1 in a thousand sheets it only dulled the blade a little. There was only one occasion where I hit a 3/8" bolt and knocked some teeth off the blade. That was in 1973. It's very possible they may have eliminated the steel in the sheets by now. Itís been many years since Iíve used particle board for anything so I don't have recent experience.
Wow now thatís interesting because once I noticed metal shavings on the edge of a cut and looked everywhere to find the source. I figured that it must have been on the floor and stuck to edge when I sat the pieces down to make another cut, although I donít know how anything would have been on that side of the shop.
I wounder if they use recycled wood in particleboard.

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post #7 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 10:05 AM
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You can get metal in most anything. Every once in a while you hear about someone that has a Civil War mini ball imbedded in a board. I've seen shotgun shot, rifle and pistol bullets in lumber. More recently I heard of a story that out west the tree hugger clan was going out into the woods and driving spikes into the trees. They were driving them in the trees about the area where the loggers would tear their chain saws with it. Of course if they missed the spike it could end up in lumber. Like you I always wondered if they ground up wood from old houses to add to their particle board but I never worried about it enough to find out. It was a such a rare event to hit anything anyway. Most of the time you would just see a little spark and keep going. I think most likely it was nuts and bolts vibrating out of their equipment getting into the mix.
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post #8 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 10:45 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
You can get metal in most anything. Every once in a while you hear about someone that has a Civil War mini ball imbedded in a board. I've seen shotgun shot, rifle and pistol bullets in lumber. More recently I heard of a story that out west the tree hugger clan was going out into the woods and driving spikes into the trees. They were driving them in the trees about the area where the loggers would tear their chain saws with it. Of course if they missed the spike it could end up in lumber. Like you I always wondered if they ground up wood from old houses to add to their particle board but I never worried about it enough to find out. It was a such a rare event to hit anything anyway. Most of the time you would just see a little spark and keep going. I think most likely it was nuts and bolts vibrating out of their equipment getting into the mix.
Now that you mention that I just remembered a time when a friend of mine in Northern Ca wanted to sell some trees on his land to the local mill and had to sign an agreement that the trees where free of nails and metal before they would come and get them. Donít know all the details but I seem to remember him asking around about how much a saw mill blade cost.

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post #9 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 11:34 AM
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Particle board is slightly more abrasive than plywood. Glue (binder) pockets are larger than a thin layer of glue for the laminations in plywood. I've seen what looks like sparking from cutting particle board. There could be anything in it. I do like a very sharp blade and an appropriate tooth count and design for what I'm cutting.

Whether it's plywood or any substrate, I check all four edges first for staples, or any kind of fastener (from tags, etc). I also check the sheet for square before cutting. I like nice clean edges as chip free as possible with melamine, so I don't put on an old blade to cut that stuff.






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post #10 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 11:44 AM
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I would need to see proof that it dulls the blade any faster. I don't personally believe it does. It will get the blade dirty real quick because of the glue in the board. As long as you clean your blade it will last a lot longer. Particle board with laminate on it is another story. The density of laminate will dull a blade quicker then average. Heat is the ultimate enemy of carbide tipped blades so a dirty blade will create more heat therefore a dirty blade will dull your blade faster. I rip over 500ft at a time, of bevel edge for countertops. I installed a blower from the compressor into my zero clearance TS insert. keeps my blade clean and cool... if i don't use it i would have to stop halfway through to change or clean the blade. The blade is not "dull" after but i need a fresh very sharp blade for a clean rip
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post #11 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 02:46 PM
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I have always been told it does because it is harder than wood.

Bob making sawdust in SW Louisiana
with a EX-21
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post #12 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 03:09 PM
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I have also always been told that it does, but I believe that it is a case of conventional wisdom not being 100% accurate by not considering all the variables. Although I am comparing it to maple and other dense woods I am sure that pine or something may be easier on a blade then k3...
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post #13 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 05:23 PM
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There are a lot variables involved, so it's hard to draw absolute conclusions that apply to all blades across the board (pardon the pun...). How quickly any blade dulls depends in part on the type of grind that it has, hook angle, carbide hardness, side clearance, blade height, user technique, moisture content of the material, heat, etc....all play a role. Grinds that have pointy tips like Hi-ATB and ATB grinds tend to abrade faster than other grinds, and they'll definitely wear more rapidly in very dense brittle or abrasive materials. A triple chip grind that has the corners of the teeth mitered off will hold up better, but they give up some sheering action....with no sharp points to wear down, I'm not sure if this type of grind would wear any faster in brittle manmade stuff than in wood.

I'm assuming the OP's blade is an ATB or possibly a Hi-ATB, so it's likely that the materials he mentioned will wear that blade faster than most common hardwoods like cherry, oak, walnut, ash, poplar, or soft maple.

Last edited by knotscott; 04-13-2012 at 08:06 PM.
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post #14 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 08:16 PM Thread Starter
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..........I'm assuming the OP's blade is an ATB or possibly a Hi-ATB, so it's likely that the materials he mentioned will wear that blade faster than most common hardwoods like cherry, oak, walnut, ash, poplar, or soft maple.
I don't know what that means, but these are the blades I'm using


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post #15 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 08:37 PM
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Soak your blade in mineral spirits/toluol/xylol/naphtha/other hydrocarbon solvent, the dip it in rubbing alcohol/isopropanol and wipe off the blade tips. The resin is not hard enough to dull the blade, but it can gum up your blade teeth and make it harder to cut.
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post #16 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 08:51 PM Thread Starter
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So I started searching for information on Saw Blades to find out what I should actually using and I found that the blades I have are for natural wood and I should be using something like this Freud LU96R010 for the melamine coated plywood.





I checked out the prices and I’m not sure yet if I want to go that way because I really don’t cut much of this stuff. I only used it this time because someone gave it to me and I built a router table cabinet. So I’m looking for something a little cheaper than the Freud blades.

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Last edited by Sleeper; 04-13-2012 at 09:06 PM. Reason: spelling
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post #17 of 18 Old 04-13-2012, 08:52 PM
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Freud lists the D1060X as a Hi-ATB but doesn't specify what specific angle the bevel really is....usually Hi-ATB is 25į or higher, which makes them the most vulnerable of any. The D1024X is a standard ATB grind with a lower bevel angle than your 60T. There's no way for me to know what, if any effect your material will have on these two blades, but given a choice between trashing a rip blade and a fine crosscut blade, I'd sacrifice the ripper every time, since it's not intended to offer a clean cut in the first place. It's also cheaper to replace.

If you're not comfortable risking either of those, you might consider taking a shot at one of these Onsrud blades for dirt cheap:
8" Non-ferrous TCG (current bid = $12)
10" xcut TCG (buy it now for $20 shipped)
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post #18 of 18 Old 04-14-2012, 10:53 AM
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I still find traces of metal in melamine,i always change blade
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