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Diminishing Returns?

2590 Views 7 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  rob.hough
Is cleaning a standard off-the-shelf quality (Bosch, DeWalt, Craftsman, Oldham, etc.) 40T 10" blade and having it resharpened by a service cost effective when compared to buying a new one outright? My Bosch blade saw better days after 3 years of rough and general purpose cutting tasks and so I replaced it with an Irwin carbide tipped one for a whopping $24. Now, I'm looking at the old blade and wondering if I should just pitch it. Do old, well-used blades become fatigued? Out-of-true to the naked eye? Again, we're talking lower-end blades, not top-notch shop blades geared for more serious woodworking.
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Kind of a tough question. I run a sharpening service, a 40t is $10 ($.25 a tooth). I fear the day of the professional sharpener is going away. You can go to the "big box" and buy a 2 pack of new carbide blades for $15 on sale, right there at the checkout by the chewing gum. They are cheap imported junk and you will throw them away in a year once they dull...or take a quality blade to a service and "reinvest" in your good ones.
I guess it is a personal preference thing. You have to consider your time too, what do you make in the hour you take it to the shop? Do the cheaps ones produce in the hours you spend using them ? Or do they let you down.
I have sharpened 30 (?) year old carbide blades that I wish the fellers would have forgot they dropped off here :yes:, cause I don't know were to get one that good. I have sharpened "new" ones that I personally would have pitched (or never bought in the first place new)
I guess I would have to vote towards the higher ends blades and a good sharpening service, in the long run I think that is the best investment.
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the new "cheapy" Oldham blade 40t is about 15 bucks at HD the 24t was 12 bucks....... (happened to notice as I had to pack out some to the shelf tonight)
the new "cheapy" Oldham blade 40t is about 15 bucks at HD the 24t was 12 bucks....... (happened to notice as I had to pack out some to the shelf tonight)

I got one of those for my circular saw, what a piece of garbage.
A lot can be said about a "good" sharpening service. I use two that are within 5 miles and both are competent carbide shops. They will tell me if the blade is worthwhile to be sharpened, warped, or otherwise questionable. They can fix teeth, and provide a service to the blade that equals or is better in some instances than when the blade was new. Besides having a short turn around (less than a week), they also do router bits, sell different sizes of bearings, replace carbide, service jointer and planer knives, and can make custom profiles for moulders and shapers.

I vote yes on finding a good service. That old cheapie blade can come in handy for cutting questionable stock. If nothin' else, they look cool just hangin' on the wall.
Or... you could buy the cheap ones,use 'em once and turn 'em into clocks and make your $ back!!!!:yes:
Points are well taken.

But I don't have a woodworking shop per say. Because of my occupation, my shop has to be mobile, i.e. fit into my capped p/u and ready to roll. So, I use a Bosch transportable saw with folding stand and built-in infeed/outfeed supports. I also have a very inexpensive Ryobi 10" table saw for those times when I simply have to rough cut old used wood with no finesse at a job. One hidden nail or screw remnant and the blade's a goner. So, I can't afford to put $100 - $200 top-end blades on my saws. Given that the Bosch is a cast aluminum saw with a fairly decent fence and a pretty small table, cabinetry and fine woodworking are pretty much out of the question. And so, buying a really hi-quality $$$ blade is possibly just overkill. Perhaps buying less expensive blades and simply changing them out and discarding them when they become dull is the practical and economic way for me to go.
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I'd factor in the cost of a blade at each jobsite if you're going to go the cheapie route.
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