The circular saw blade is to the cutter as scissors are to the barber.
Harmony between the respective pairs are essential to create masterpieces.
And much like the drill bit, the blade is the only part that actually comes into contact with the material thus has to be well crafted, solid, precise and deliver clean results.
Choosing the appropriate blade is rather important!
The Blade Explained
The type of work to be performed and the usage frequency are key in determining the type of blade you need.
For finer cutting, a blade with more smaller teeth is deployed as opposed to a blade with fewer, larger teeth where output volume over finesse is required.
Here are the core features of the blade:
Two core factors will effect the type of finish – blade diameter and number of teeth on the blade.
Indeed, power driven by the unit can determine your output however it’s the blade itself which comes into contact with the material. Ultimately, control of the tool needs synergy with the blade.
The depth of the cut will be closely related to the diameter of the blade. For example, a cutting depth of 3 inches will require a blade of diameter of 8 ¼ inches. You will also have to consider the thickness of the material to be treated. Regarding the teeth, they can be flat, trapezoidal or bevel.
Consider the following before purchasing a saw blade.
- The finish of the material cut will be affected by the blade tooth and number of teeth.
- What type of cut you’ll be doing.
- Does your saw house the blade you need? Check the bore size and maximum cutting depth of the saw.
- The RPM is important. This must be relative to the diameter of the blade. Heat will cause blades will expand under continuous exposure to the material.
This is usually a common-sensical decision.
If the blade is visibly cracked, teeth damaged or rusted poor finishing will result, as well as a an unsafe tool to operate.
Occasionally it can be harder to spot less obvious things such as partially worn or rounded teeth or a bowed blade especially when its all too easy to remove the saw from the shelf, fire it up and cut away.
For cut and thrust work such as bulk lumber chops the need for a totally clean cur may lead to complacency but its important to inspect the finishes every so often for consistency. A dull blade results in poor efficiently and takes longer to complete the job.
The number of teeth the blade has will determine the finish and cutting rate.
The more teeth, the better the cutting finish the slower the cutting process.
Fewer teeth are generally deployed for bulk carpentry – quick timber cuts. These are more efficient but less refined.
More teeth = better finish = slower rate
Less teeth = quicker rate = less refined finish
Bore, RPM & Depth of Cut
The bore is the hole in the middle of the blade.
Generally you will purchase a blade with a bore to match the saw it fits however you may need a blade with a bore larger than the saw. For this you will need a reduction ring.
These fit blades whose bore is larger than the shaft of the saw.
It’ important to note the reduction ring must not be thicker than the blade.
And must have a diameter at least 10mm smaller than the clamping flange for secure fitting.
The larger the blade the lower the RPM
The smaller the blade the higher the RPM
Depth of cut
Larger blades = higher depth of cut
These come in standard 7.25″ for a 2.5″ depth of cut and 8.25″ for a 3.0″ depth of cut
As I have stated over a number of articles, the blade is the only part that comes into contact with the material and that part should be appropriate for the material it comes into contact with.
Bordering Dr. Seuss territory with that one.
The table below gives a quick guide to applications and the correct blade to use.
Best Circular Saw Blades for DIY & Professionals
Well, one thing thats quite clear the options for circular saw blades can seem endless.
As highlighted, variables like tooth grind, number of teeth per blade, the kerf (the thickness of the blade), the blade’s material, coating and many other attributes could make choices things more difficult…however…don’t despair. We are here to help, and have gathered the 7 best blades to make your jobs become a reality.
Let’s go for it.
#1 DEWALT DW3128P5
What a better way to start this countdown than with a powerhouse of the tool industry.
As described nearly everywhere on this site, we deploy various DeWalt tools and accessories on several professional projects.
It’s no secret. When it comes to using the tried and tested, only a handful of brands can be relied upon to reproduce consistent quality; DeWalt are one of those brands.
This two blade set from DEWALT is just the best value choice for those woodworkers looking for precision and durability.
There is a 60-tooth crosscutting blade and 32-tooth general purpose 10″ blade.
And for general jobs these two will definitely do the trick
- Designed to cut through softwood, hardwood, chip board or plywood.
- Both blades are made from tough tungsten carbide, enabling them to maintain teeth sharp and durability.
- Thin kerf that’s computer balanced to reduce vibrations thus obtaining better precision.
- You can rip cut, cross cut and produce other cuts with the 32 and 80 teeth blades.
#2 Freud Diablo D1050X Combination Saw Blade
Freud Diablo D1050X Combination Saw Blade There’s no discussion about the appearance of Freud’s blades in this list. This brand elaborates many of the best circular blades on the market –it was so difficult to choose from the variety they have. Nevertheless, the D1050X Diablo has earned its place as the second best in our list thanks to its outstanding features.
- It is ideal for ripping and crosscutting wood and its composites. In addition, it leaves smooth cuts thanks to its thin kerf.
- This blade includes laser cut stabilizer vents that help keeping the blade cool, reducing cutting noise and vibrations.
- The D1050X also counts with laser cut heat expansion slots that allow the blade to expand due to heat and maintain the cut straight.
- This blade is made to endure thanks to Freud’s exclusive shock resistant TiCo Hi-Density Carbide formula with an extra Perma-Shield non-stick coating.
#3 Irwin Metal-Cutting Circular Saw Blade
Irwin Metal-Cutting Circular Saw Blade, 7-1/4”, 68T, 4935560: If you came to this post looking for the best circular saw blade to cut metals, look no further. This Irwin blade will allow you to cut through tough metals like steel without any problem. On top of that, it just have an amazing price that won’t allow you to let it go.
- This blade has 68 multi-cutting grade carbide teeth designed to slice through metals, even steel, with ease –which also enables it to cut wood and plywood. It works best in thin metals.
- The 4935560 comes with laser cut anti-vibration vents that enable it to prevent wobble and to obtain more straight cuts.
- It has an anti-kickback tooth shoulder design to enhance safety in the workplace, also reducing dust and sparks.
#4 Rockwell RW9282
Rockwell RW9282 4-1/2-Inch 60T High Speed Steel Compact Circular Saw Blade: So you need a circular saw blade that can handle the job, but are short in budget? This Rockwell blade is the ideal for you. Thanks to the incredible features it reunites, its quality and its astonishing low price, the RW9282 is definitely our best budget pick.
- This HSS made blade is designed to cut through wood, plastic, aluminum, soft metals and drywall.
- The 60 teeth condensed in its small 4-1/2” diameter, alongside its thin kerf, allow this blade to perform smooth and clean cuts no matter the material.
- This blade is really budget friendly, so it can be the perfect acquisition for a pro or homeowner.
- Its small diameter of the arbor makes it suitable only for small saws like the Rockwell RK3441K Compact Circular Saw (for which it was designed). Look if it fits yours prior to purchasing it.
#5 DEWALT DW9196
DEWALT DW9196 6-1/2-Inch 40T Cutting Precision Finishing Saw Blade: This blade is our best value pick, the one that will give you more return out of your money. This DEWALT blade gathers many of the features of its DW3128P5 counterpart (the first of our list), yet, its price is, roughly, half of it. Be aware that this blade doesn’t fit well with every circular saw on the market, but its features and low price made it earn this spot in our list.
- Its 40 carbide teeth make it ideal for applications involving framing, roofing and siding installation and concrete forms.
- The DW9196 has a unique plate technology, in which expansion slots are filled with resin to help with vibrations and improve the cutting feel.
- This blade can make some precise cuts thanks to its thin kerf and the anti kickback shoulder incorporated to them –which also enhances safety.
#6 Concord Blades ACB1000T100HP
Concord Blades ACB1000T100HP 10-Inch 100 Teeth TCT Non-Ferrous Metal Saw Blade: Don’t be fooled by its clean and good-looking appearance, this Concord blade is just a beast of its own. If you require slicing aluminum and other non ferrous metals, alongside with tough plastics, this beast is the one for you.
- This blade is made out of hard titanium carbide and is ideal for non ferrous metals (aluminum, brass, copper, bronze and more), as well as plastics, plexiglass, PVC, acrylics and fiberglass.
- It has a triple chip grind design that enables it to perform smooth cuts.
- Concord has also incorporated hooks with a -5-degree hook angle into the blade to help maintaining the cuts smooth and precise.
#7 Freud Diablo D1060X
Freud Diablo D1060X 10”x60 Tooth Fine Finish Saw Blade: Last but not least in our list, we include the D0160X. This blade is the ultimate gift for a carpenter since its clean and smooth cuts require little to no sanding. If you require a blade that could help you with the last touches during woodworking applications, this is the one for you.
- This blade is ideal for smooth finish cuts in materials such as veneer plywood, delicate hardwood and delicate molding.
- This Diablo is built to last thanks to its TiCo Hi-Density carbide, designed to preserve its edges after each application.
- Like the D1050X, it comes with a Perma-Shield Non-Stick coating that protects from heat, gumming and corrosion.
- It also includes laser-cut stabilizer vents to reduce noise and vibration and a thin laser-cut kerf for precision.
Although there many factors included while evaluating the blades on this list (kerf diameter, material, coating, vents and others), remember that the most important one relies outside of your blade: it’s the work you are going to perform. In fact, your blade you choose must be a consequence of the task you’ll be performing with it. Remember, there is no favorable wind for that who doesn’t know where to go