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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
What is everyone using for a blade to rip and crosscut plywood on the table saw? Here is my task. I have some 3/4" oak veneered plywood that I have had and used a portion of, without fail. I have always used the Freud LU85 1, It has done reasonably well, little to no chipping. Not this time.

My original blade is here somewhere, but I purchased a new LU85 1 and this is the first use. I used 1/4" hardboard on the table top to make zero clearance kerf board and cut the plywood face down ( against hardboard top) both ripping and crosscutting based on veneer grain and I have chipping in both directions.

I tried a second cut, this time I taped the cut line, I think that made it worse as I pulled more chips off when I pulled the tape. So I'm at a bit of a loss. The blade seems to be running true and clean, no wobble.

Nothing is ever the same, I would appreciate your thought especially if you can share your experiences and thoughts. By the way I just found my old blade and it looks the same.
 

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Assuming the blade is good and sharp I think you have done all you can do. Sometimes plywood isn't made very well and chips easily because the veneer isn't glued down very well. Since you are pulling veneer off with tape I would put the blame on the plywood. If the project is important I would get another sheet from a different supplier. The veneer could start delaminating after the project is done and finished.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Veneered plywood is something I have never enjoyed working with and I was thinking maybe the same. The blade is new, this was its first cut. Are you or anyone using a different blade. Perhaps Freud has made a change to the blade that is not easily recognized. I'm going to put the old blade on and see what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I
That is what was described and if so, is not the best technic. Usually best results are obtained by having the good side up so the teeth are cutting down into the good face.
Thanks Dave,

I guess thats different than I have ever tried, I have always cut it face down. I just put the old blade back on and using the same setup I cut and had one small ship at the two machined corners. considerably better.

I'm leaving to go get another sheet to try and take that defective plywood variable out of the equation.. I will try cutting it face up when I get back( old sheet) and then the new sheet. Thanks for your thoughts. If any one else has a comment, I would love to hear it.

I can't believe the price of this plywood!
 

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This is a lot of effort, but it works.

after making your measurement, make a cut with a utility knife right on the cut line. If you'd like, you can add another cut the thickness of the blade away from the first cut. Cut through the veneer and it won't chip off when you make the saw cut.
 

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In addition to the suggestions above, you might try a high angle top bevel 60 tooth blade like this one. I recently got a similar one and it makes a very smooth cut. Also, one of the best blades I have ever used for plywood is a non-carbide tooth plywood blade that has over 100 small teeth that look much like a hand saw. Neither is very expensive, but if you get them in the 7 1/4" size, they are even less costly.
 

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................ I will try cutting it face up when I get back( old sheet) and then the new sheet. ................QUOTE]

Tony B's reply:
I was taught to always cut face up on table saw and band saw. The blade will always tear out a little on the way out of the cut which will be the bottom side laying against the table top. because of blade rotation, a circular saw will tear out on the side facing up, so it must be used with good side down.

Also note, depending on the way your shop is set, it makes sense to cut face op for other reasons also.
1). When unloading from truck/van assuming you loaded ply face up, There wont be any scars from tailgate also, no scars/dents from possible rough contact with edge of table saw top.
2). After cutting on the table saw and sliding across outfeed table, there wont be any marks from outfeed table whether it be trash on rollers or the outfeed table top.
3) My outfeed table is on retractable wheels. My 'sheet goods' rack is vertical. I roll my outfeed table to my vertical storage rack, slide the ply off table (still good side up) and and let leading edge drop down onto the rack. The leading corner that makes first contact is on the underside. I lift the part of the board still on the outfeed up ant straight onto the rack. Now the good side is protected by laying against the rack backboard and not exposed to any accidental bumps and bangs in the shop.
When you reverse this procedure to put ply back onto the table saw, the good side will always up and ready for cutting.
 

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The Nut in the Cellar
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I’ve cut a fair amount of veneer plywood over the years. I use a Freud 80T thin kerf carbide blade and the workpiece face up. I also use a zero clearance throat plate in my table saw. Fortunately, my saw has plastic throat plate blanks, so I can cut true zero clearance throat plates for each blade.
 
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To recap some of the comments above, on a table saw the good face of the plywood needs to be cut face up, and use a high ATB blade (it’s what I use) or dedicated plywood blade. However you still may have some tear out on the back side when cross cutting the veneer. To prevent that tear out, what I do is set the blade height about a 1/16 above the table surface and make my first cut. That will cut through the back side veneer cleanly (unless the veneer is just not bonded well in which case I would not use that sheet of plywood). Then I raise the height of the blade and run the plywood through again making the final cut.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks Tom,
I don't do a lot of plywood work, primarily solid wood like oaks, poplar, pine and birch. Most of it is to replicate wood features on a property, like wainscoting, chair rail molding, doors, flooring, etc. I actually have a hi-atb freud general purpose 40T here that I have not used for a long time and not sure why I purchased it, I will give that a try as well.

Cutting the plywood face up, makes perfect sense and I'm not sure why I didn't think of it.Doing an initial cut slicing the back side of the veneered plywood does as well, thanks so much for providing your insight. I purchased another sheet of ply yesterday, but I had to be very selective. just doing a simple knock test on the finish side I could find some that did not appear to be properly adhered. So I went to another yard to purchase. Thanks again, I will let everyone know how I do with this.
 

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Sometimes scoring the plywood works and sometimes it doesnt. Often we would cut the parts out a bit heavy then run them across the jointer or set up a router table to clean both edges.
 

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I think if the plywood was good and the blade was good and the fence was parallel with the blade, even with a 40 tooth blade you could cut it face down without a cover plate at all and the chipping would be so minimal you would have to look at it with a magnifying glass to see it. Often a fence is set closer to the back of the blade than the front and the blade tears at the veneer on the up stroke.
 

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What is everyone using for a blade to rip and crosscut plywood on the table saw? Here is my task. I have some 3/4" oak veneered plywood that I have had and used a portion of, without fail. I have always used the Freud LU85 1, It has done reasonably well, little to no chipping. Not this time.

My original blade is here somewhere, but I purchased a new LU85 1 and this is the first use. I used 1/4" hardboard on the table top to make zero clearance kerf board and cut the plywood face down ( against hardboard top) both ripping and crosscutting based on veneer grain and I have chipping in both directions.

I tried a second cut, this time I taped the cut line, I think that made it worse as I pulled more chips off when I pulled the tape. So I'm at a bit of a loss. The blade seems to be running true and clean, no wobble.

Nothing is ever the same, I would appreciate your thought especially if you can share your experiences and thoughts. By the way I just found mold blade and it looks the same.
Like what has been said the good side should be up on a table saw. A zero clearance insert, like you have, is a must. I use a Forrest Woodworker II blade and have good results. I have also used a Triple Chip Grind (TCG) blade with good results. If I am using the Chinese crap plywood with the paper thin veneer, I get what I get, usually not to good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Like what has been said the good side should be up on a table saw. A zero clearance insert, like you have, is a must. I use a Forrest Woodworker II blade and have good results. I have also used a Triple Chip Grind (TCG) blade with good results. If I am using the Chinese crap plywood with the paper thin veneer, I get what I get, usually not to good.
Thanks Coll, I have not been back to the shop to experiment with my chipping issues anymore. It has been raining here all day and my new sheet of veneered plywood is in the carriage house, I don't want to haul it in the rain to the shop. (Uncovered pickup) I have seen the Forrest Woodworker II blades at the retail shop I frequent, but have never used one. I use a lot of Freud router bits so I just followed with the LU85. I will see how things work out with what I have and report back, but I may want to follow up with the Forrest. Thanks for the information. I appreciate it.
 

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Egg Spurt
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I try to avoid the box stores for lumber in general since you never know what garbage you're getting or how many yohoos have messed with it in the store before you got there. Lowes where I live is the absolute worst place to get lumber bar none. I had to get some maple veneer plywood the other day at HD only because it was about to rain and I have to get the job finished..Otherwise I go to a known great source for all my lumber across town. Thinking about that..the job ain't gonna finish itself while I'm sitting here posting now is it? I gotta go get paint and maybe a better spray gun than my crappy HF guns.. Any budget recommendations?
 

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I’ve been noticing a lot of shelled oak veneer lately which blows apart during fabrication & even during finishing no matter how good the blade is, even if using a table saw with an underscore blade...thinking that some veneer mills are using logs sourced from wet lowland regions which are characterized by larger than normal vessels and ring shake.
 
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