View Full Version : Saw Blade Choice
01-08-2001, 08:05 PM
I've got a new Griz 1023s landing tomorrow, and I'm trying to get some input on a high quality blade.
Who's happy with what and vice versa. Application: weekend furniture building, nice clean razor sharp cuts.
Thanks in advance for your opinions.
01-08-2001, 08:28 PM
I have used and like the Oldham blades, they are very good and about 1/2 the price of the Forest blades. A good combination and a rip blade is what I would recomend. I will put a link to the place I buy mine from below.
But, don't expect this great saw to cut right once it is in your shop. You need to assemble it and align it right. I would recomend some thing like this for the task of setup.
http://shop.woodcraft.com/woodcraft/product_family.asp?mscssid=85EL0HN2GFLU9M7B52UR7H2 2GD0NBXKC&family_id=895&0=default%2Easp%2CTree%3D%2CShop&1=dept%2Easp%2Cdept%5Fid%3D1046%26Tree%3D0%2CPower +Tool+Accessories&2=dept%2Easp%2Cdept%5Fid%3D2167%26Tree%3D1%2CAlign ment+Tools
I am not saying to buy this unit but a dial indicator system that can be reference to the slot - blade will make your life easier. Others have recomended the PALS system as well. I haven't used them but they have gotten great reviews from others.
The Oldham blades are pro level and here is where I get mine.
have fun with the setup of the saw. I like to tune up tools almost as much as cutting wood. I know that is strange but then I am an Engineer by training and so I guess it comes from my background.
01-08-2001, 09:23 PM
Thanks for the tip on both the blade and the PALS. I happen to agree with the importance of the accurate alignment and it happens that the "fee gift" I chose from Grizz with my order was the dial indicator that appears to be this one:
Not quite the same unit, but a dial indicator nonetheless.
01-09-2001, 01:07 AM
So how do you use it and insure that the blade is parallel to the miter slot? The model that Lou referenced seems obvious but with yours I'm confused. (I'm going to have to get one myself so I'm looking for information.)
01-09-2001, 03:16 AM
His will work. It is a magnetic base. You can set it right on the edge of the miter slot in the front of the blade take a reading then move the base to the edge of the slot at the back of the blade and take a reading. It is a bit harder but it will work. On of the other things that helps is a precision machined bar that is bolted on the arbor that is used to measure insead of a blade. The blades all have runout on their own so if you use a blade mark a tooth and make all the measurements to the same point on the blade. rotating the point front and back.
I wish we had the ability to draw pictures with this thing.
01-09-2001, 10:17 PM
Just wanted to add .02$ from a novice and say that thanks to Lou's advice I went with the Oldham Wizard series 50T teflon carbide blade, and with my stabilizer on this blade cuts so smooth I almost didn't know it was cutting the wood(ha,ha) Best blade I've used yet!
01-10-2001, 12:02 AM
my pick is the forrest woodworker ll. spend the time to align everything correctly. you will be thrilled.
a high quality blade stiffener will also make a difference.
01-10-2001, 12:27 AM
I just heard something today from a large mail order supplier of Oldham blades. She said that her company had been getting a lot of blades back recently. Mostly what they sold in December. It seems that Oldham had a big Q problem. She said that oldham took all of their stock back and checked them out. Oldham also replaced the blades. I guess that it is good that Oldham values their reputation and is trying to do right by their customers.
I've always gone with Forrest and DMl and freud's as throw aways.
However Lou suggested I give the Oldham a spin. I was going to wait till I needed a relacement but Picked one up last week.
I put it on w/ stiffener of course. And the first thing I fed it was a scrap piece of rock maple, it liked it. I'm pleased thus far but reserving judgement till after the long haul.
I admittedly scoffed at Oldham for years. Just when did they become a contender with a better quality blade. I never even so much as priced checked them, else I may have given them a closer look.
01-11-2001, 12:26 PM
I have used mine for about 2 years, and it is still going strong. But I don't abuse blades. It has out lasted the last two other brands I bought.
I would have just passed them by, but saw a demo at a wood show and at the price figured why not give them a try. Happy I did.
I think Oldham needs some marketing suaavy.
01-12-2001, 06:46 PM
Sounds like you know what you're doing with the dial indicator. Unless I'm using it the wrong way, my Grizzly was surprisingly dead-on from the factory. I'm lining up the mag. base with the miter slot using the base of a combo square to snug up to the edge. Once I lock the base down, I'm taking a reading from the front of the blade (I'm reading from the blade below the carbide tip, not the tip itself), and repeating the process for the back.
Am I doing this the right way? Seems like I'm at risk of mis-aligining my blade if I happen to be setting the magnetic base 0.001" or more off of the miter slot?
My dial indicator came with no instructions, and the face reads "0.001" which I assume is the increment of each tick, and "0-1"" which I assume means that one full revolution =1".
If the indicator is on the 10, mark, does that represent .01"?
A: is an indication of 0.001 the first tick from zero, or 10 ticks from zero?
B: am I setting up the indicator correctly from the miter slot?
01-13-2001, 04:35 AM
Sounds like you are doing things right. The Mag base has the issue of lining it up with the slot. You might want to cut a hardwood block that just fits into the slot and abut the Dial indicator against it then lock it down.
The other thing I would do is mark the blade and use the same location on the blade as your measurement point. The blade itself with have some run out. after you check the arbor setting then chech the blade itself by checking from one point on the saw and two points 180 apart on the blade.
I think you are reading the indicator right they all are a little different and it takes me a few moments to make sure each time I use one.
The Factory tries to set up the saws, but shipping can cause major shifts in the setup of any tool. That is why we go through the setup proceedure each time you move the tools any real distance. I am not talking about rolling it from one side of the shop to the other.
01-14-2001, 01:18 AM
There is one more important item with the dial indicator. Don't use Zero as your reference. Position the DI so that you have a reading of 15 or 20. Use this initial reading as your reference point and look for variance (+ or -) from the reference point.
The one that I just bought is not easily set to zero. So I'll just use any value as the reference point.
01-14-2001, 01:36 AM
That is a very good point. It is not worth the effort to set it to zero. It helps if it is on a major index but not really important. The key issue is how much it moves over the range of measure.
01-14-2001, 04:39 PM
Thanks everyone for your input. I ended up getting the Forrest WWII with the 5" stiffener. Nice blade! Runout is minimal, and I've been cutting quarter sawn white oak all weekend like butta without so much as a burn. Surprisingly joint-edge cuts.
I'm curious about Oldham,.. I'll give them a try next time.
01-14-2001, 04:41 PM
I ended up zeroing the needle, but I was doing it under tension as opposed to a "zero clearance" approach so as to pick up the most minute variance. Once I got the hang of ensuring I was totally square and flush to the mitre slots, everything went fine from there. Thanks again for all the input.
01-17-2001, 03:17 PM
FREUD BLADES (thin kerf) and FORREST BLADES when they are on sale. You can get Freud blades at Home Depot,Lowes, etc.
Amana also makes blades -- they have a 0 degree hook blade that is good for Radial Arm Saws.
My first choice would be the Freud and wait until I either win the lotto or my IRS refund comes in -- then buy the Forrest.
Forrest will also sharpen non-Forrest blades - they come back better than when the blade was new.
Good luck and be safe, Randy from Oceanside, CA
01-17-2001, 03:48 PM
Try an Oldham blade they are like the Forrest blade in quality at a price like a Freud blade.
I have had them all and saw the Oldham and Forrest blades both being demo'ed at a wood show. I could not see a difference in the cut between the two. Bought an Oldham to try and have been using them since then about 3 years. Good solid blade.