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Advice on cut off saw

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  • Advice on cut off saw

    I am way new to the whole welding thing and am basically tooling up. I need to see if any of the pros out there could advise me on a chop saw. I have seen the abrasive saws and the carbide tipped saws as well. I will mainly be cutting tubing and nothing bigger than 3 1/2 inch diameter. Sometimes angles will be involved as well. Any advice would be great.
    Last edited by jreid64; 12-29-2008, 02:33 PM.

  • #2
    It all depends on how serious you want to be about it. If you just want to get started and see how it turns out, go with the 14" abrasive. They are cheap and easy to use. If you want to start out hardcore and tool up one time, then go with the carbide saw. The carbide saw will cost more and blade mistakes are extremely costly. ( I pay 125 clams a piece for my blades vs. 3 clams for abrasives.) But, they are a lot more precise than an abrasive saw.

    Each saw has its limitations as to what it will and will not do., I have both and use both. A HF 4x6 bandsaw might do all you want for cheaper. It is quieter and less messy than either saw. They cost about the same as abrasive saws, too.
    Don


    Go Spurs Go!!!!!!

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    • #3
      I've got both DeWalt models, and I can't think of anything to add to what Don said. If I could have only one, it would be the abrasive, though. You can do more with it, even though the carbide will some of it much better.

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      • #4
        This is the saw ya need. 7 1/2 hp 460 3 phase motor, 3 belt drive, 16 x 3/32 blade. The rest are toys.

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        • #5
          I agree that the abrasive saw will do a good job. I have two Makitas, and have used DeWalt, Jepson (Ryobi clone), Ryobi, Milwaukee and DeWalt. I am more impressed with the Makita and DeWalt than the others.

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          • #6
            I used to have a friend that had a Makita saw but it looked like he ahd a wood cutting blade on it and it cut steel like crazy. He swore by it. I have never been around anything much more than the abrasive saws. The main thing I want to do is weld up stuff around the shop and jigs for woodworking and the such. I will make myself some steel sawhorses as well. I am impressed with how many of yoou guys have offered your advice. As you know, you can spend a ton of money and then be told by the pros that you have a pile of junk and that it will never last. Anyway thanks again for any and all advice you can give!

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            • #7
              I was able to pick up the Ridgid chop saw for about $140 from their CPO outlet. A reconditioned model with same warranty as new. Heavy, cast iron base. Good piece of kit at a savings and you can check Ridgid vs. Dewalt vs. Milwaukee side by side at about any Home Depot.

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              • #8
                My experience with abrasive saws has been that the blades make all the difference. I've used dry cut/cold cut saws and they are very nice, but for what I do, my "no-name" brand abrasive saw with a good quality blade serves me well.

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                • #9
                  I think for no more than I do, I will get an abrasive saw. Does anyone have any good ideas on what blade to get. They have a Home Depot and a Lowes here plus a welding supply store. Any help would be great!

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                  • #10
                    I've heard Hilti brand discs work well.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by jreid64 View Post
                      I think for no more than I do, I will get an abrasive saw. Does anyone have any good ideas on what blade to get. They have a Home Depot and a Lowes here plus a welding supply store. Any help would be great!
                      personally, everything else being equal, i'd go to the welding store to
                      1) help keep them in business and
                      2) build a relationship with the local welding experts (asking someone
                      at the orange or blue store about welding is usually not useful)

                      your mileage may vary

                      frank

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by jreid64 View Post
                        I think for no more than I do, I will get an abrasive saw. Does anyone have any good ideas on what blade to get. They have a Home Depot and a Lowes here plus a welding supply store. Any help would be great!
                        Lowe's will sell DeWalt wheels and maybe some other brand. I forget what HD sells, maybe Norton? At any rate, the last ones I bought were Norton, and they work fine.

                        Norton and a few others make abrasives, while Milwaukee, DeWalt, Makita and others make tools. Someone like Norton is making wheels for the tool people.

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                        • #13
                          I've got an OLD Makita abrasive saw. I only use the Makita blades on it. I can buy them for under $4 each if I get a box of 5. They are good quality blades and I've never felt the need to try others. I'm sure that Sait blades are good also since I use them on my 4 1/2" grinder.
                          Jim

                          Miller MM 210
                          Miller Dialarc 250P
                          Airco 225 engine driven
                          Victor O/A
                          Lots of other tools and always wanting more

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                          • #14
                            I've used both abrasive and carbide chop saws. Carbide saws make sweet cuts. They're generally more accurate and blade deflection isn't as much of a factor on angle cuts. For the money, abrasive saws aren't bad either. There are some things you can do easily and much more inexpensively with an abrasive saw. But the quality of cut isn't the same, no matter what brand of disc you use. Bandsaws are great tools too. You can set something up to cut (especially on thicker materials), and go do something else in the meantime. IMHO, they make cuts of a quality somewhere inbetween carbide and abrasive saws. It really depends on what you're going to do with the saw. I'd probably like to have one of each (wait, make that ten of each! ). For the money, get a 14 inch abrisive saw. You can also get high speed carbide blades that can fit an abrasive saw (try morse or bulllit industries), but I haven't tried one yet. Be sure the Max RPM on the blade is higher than the rated max RPM on the saw. My first chop saw was a 10 inch Sliding compound miter saw that I got from HF for around 100 clams. I bought 10 inch abrasive blades for the thing and it still works fine. I use it primarily now for compound cuts. Just be sure to square it up and adjust the saw properly before you use it, just like anything else you get, especially from HF.

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