Bandsaw blade life

I've a question about bandsaw blade life.
I use premium bimetal 18 tpi 1/2" wide blades on my 2-speed Delta 14"
bandsaw. These puppies aren't cheap; about $40 a pop, and they seem to
wear out after an unusually short life.
I'm cutting mainly carbon or stainless steels; annealed 1095, ATS-34,
etc. 1/8" to 3/16" thick, titanium up to 1/8" thick, and some other
softer (bronze, nickel silver, e.g.) metals up to 1/2" thick.
I've tried running at both slow and high speeds with no noticeable
difference in blade life. No coolant (not set up for it). A new blade
will slice through the first inch or two of any of the above materials
almost effortlessly, then bog down and cut much slower. After a few
cuts it seems to be mainly friction cutting, leaving hellacious burrs
on the bottom of the piece.
Generally, I can cut a maximum of half dozen blade blanks for my knives
before having to mount a new blade. I contend the blades should last
much longer than this.
What am I doing wrong?
-Frank
Reply to
Frank J Warner
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What speed does the saw actually run at? If you really are friction cutting, then I can only assume you're running the blades way too fast.
I use regular carbon steel blades on my 16" DoAll; most often 6, 10, and 18TPI. They last forever cutting everything from aluminum to molybdenum, cost about $5 each for the blade stock, $10 if the saw shop welds them up, for a 1/2" x 120" blade.
They do become friction blades when worn out, but then I purposely run at the saw's max speed.
Ned Simmons
Reply to
Ned Simmons
I use about the same blades in my 4 X 6. Since they are shorter, they only cost about $20 from Doall. Do you notice a difference in blade life for each of these materials? I have milled some stainless steels that kill inserts just as you say, but for annealed 1095 they last a lot longer. I don't use ATS-34, but ATS-33 cuts just fine for me. Every once in a while, one of my kids tries to cut some hardened part and that, of course, takes out the blade right away. How slow is slow? Can you get down to 60 to 100 SFM? That's the speed range I'd be using.
Pete Stanaitis ----------------------
Frank J Warner wrote:
Reply to
Pete & sheri
Define premium. As in who makes them. In my experience Lenox makes the best blades.
Get a wax stick. They help a LOT.
It sounds like you are running way to fast.
chuck
Reply to
Charles A. Sherwood
I have the 4x6 horizontal $199 jobby, 3 speed, 1/2x60" blades, as cheap as I can get, usually $5-7. Most of'em last quite a while (hard to really quantify) on hot rolled, alum. Slow speed on HR, fast on alum--just got a 6 tpi blade for alum--a shade too long, tho.
Put a chalk mark on the blade, time the mark, post back w/ speeds. No such thing as too slow, ito blade life. I'll hang a weight on the head for more pressure, tho.
I'm curious, tho, as to coolant/wax on bandsaw blades, esp. the longer blades. It seems to me that a given blade tooth encounters the material so rarely that heat is not so much of an issue w/ band saw blades, ergo coolant is not such an issue.
But if it in fact does make a big diff (like mebbe on SS), I would eventually make a drip pan and put a mini giant on the saw. Worth the trouble??
SS bar, drill rod, and the like go on the abrasive cut-off saw. My sears POS was $88--recently saw some cheapies at sears for $58 or $69 or sumpn. Way to go for hard bar. Before the cheapie chop saw I would put an abrasive wheel on my sears POS RAS. ---------------------------- Mr. P.V.'d formerly Droll Troll
Reply to
Proctologically Violated©®
materials
Is this a wood-cutting bandsaw that you're using for metal? 2 speeds makes it sound like it. Those run much too fast for most metal cutting without adding a jackshaft or other speed-reducing mechanism. Short blade life would be the result.
My main complaint about making a up a combo saw is that bits of metal get into the wood when you change back. If you're just using it for profiling knife blanks, have at it. Plenty of speed-reducer advice in the RCM archives, groups.google.com.
Stan
Reply to
stans4
Buy good quality blades. A good lenox blade will cost 20 bucks but will last a long time compared to a generic "premium" blade. IMO premium means good name brand. Lenox is great. Starrett is good.
Using that logic you don't need cutting fluid when you use a hand tap either. However I do know that tapping fluid helps a great deal. I also see smoke coming from the cut when I use a wax stick on my jet 4x6 horizontal band saw so I know there is lots of heat there.
I don't know how much the heat is changing the metal. I use to use my tiny chop saw on 1/8 inch drill rod. Not anymore. Now I use a jewelers fret saw.
Reply to
Charles A. Sherwood
Coolant also helps dramatically with chip clearing. I don't have it on my 4x6, either, and I know that the blade loads up. I can remove the work and just let the blade spin for a while, and there is a pretty steady stream of chips continuing to come off the blade. When I plunge the work back into the blade it cuts like crazy for about 2 revolutions, and then slows down a bit. This is mostly on aluminum, which may fill the tooth gullets a lot faster than harder materials. A wax stick seems to help, but if I get too much on the blade, the blade jumps off the driving wheel.
I think you might find it a big improvement. Especially if you cut a lot of very thick sections, like 2" solid round or bar.
Jon
Reply to
Jon Elson
On Tue, 29 Mar 2005 06:22:49 -0800, Frank J Warner wrote something ......and in reply I say!:
You need lubricant/coolant, and the blade speed, especially for stainless / titanium should be down around 70 FPM, and down from there for thicker stuff. For a 14" BS that's about 20 RPM.
I wouldn't be surprised to find that your Delta runs at 1000-1500 FPM on low speed, at least. In fact I just checked a site and it is 2500 nd 3000! It's really not meant for metal.
Even knife steel will need to be slow. At least use wax to lubricate and help clear.
Start thinking gearboxes.
Bronze et al will cause clogging of finer blades as well.
You also need to be aware that you shoold have at least three teeth in the work, as a rule of thumb. Too many more teeth will clog, less will chip. More is better than less, in general, although it slows cutting.
If you use the wood BS for metal, especially if you use coolant, you will need to clean it _meticulously_ for use with wood. You can also get troubles with buildup of coolant on the blade and wheels as you use it. I am converting a wood BS to metal for sheet usage, and basically I will write it off for wood work for the duration.
not something, you probably are.
Nick White --- HEAD:Hertz Music
remove ns from my header address to reply via email
!!
Reply to
Old Nick
On Tue, 29 Mar 2005 11:41:08 -0500, "Proctologically Violated©®" wrote something ......and in reply I say!:
Although the toothe has plenty of time to cool down, when it's in there, it is under apalling conditions. The temps generated by tearing ghat steel away, all acting upon a tiny point are quite amazing. There was a discaussion about drilling here a while back, and it is all happening in a very tiny place.
It does get questionable ****************************************************************************************** Whenever you have to prove to yourself that you are not something, you probably are.
Nick White --- HEAD:Hertz Music
remove ns from my header address to reply via email
!!
Reply to
Old Nick
I have not been at all impressed w/ Starrett blades, or service. But a lot of the cheapie blades I use are in fact Starretts, and I don't seem to have your problems. As others have noted, you probably have a wicked sfm problem.
As a reference, I measured my 4x6 metal jobby at 80, 120, and 200 fpm (by watching the weld). 200 fpm really whizzes by!
Horizontal saws lend themselves to coolant better than verticals. You could use wax, as has been suggested, or a misting unit.
My old shop has been pretty happy w/ Marvel blades, albeit large 1" jobbies, 130" long.
A trick I use to prolong blade life is that when a tooth does chip, and the blade starts to grab the mat'l, I grind a sort of "ramp" on the broken tooth portion, so the blade rides up to full tooth height less abruptly. ---------------------------- Mr. P.V.'d formerly Droll Troll
Reply to
Proctologically Violated©®
These are Starrett blades.
Using that method I calculate 2100 sfpm at high speed, 92 sfpm at slow speed. This was originally a single speed saw. My dad modified it years ago by adding the 2nd speed. He was a machinist for more than 40 years. Cut all kinds of materials with this saw.
-Frank
Reply to
Frank J Warner
2100 or 210?? A jump from 92 fpm to 2100 is astronomical! 90 is pretty good--shouldn't be dulling blades. At 2100, I don't think you could even see the mark on the blade! ---------------------------- Mr. P.V.'d formerly Droll Troll
Reply to
Proctologically Violated©®
It went by pretty fast :). I mainly counted the clicks of the weld. It went by 80 times in 17.75 seconds. If my math is right, that's real close to 2100 fpm for a 93" blade.
There are two motors on this saw. You change speeds by plugging in one of the two motors and removing or adding a 2nd V-belt. There's no gear box involved.
-Frank
Reply to
Frank J Warner
One thing no one has touched on is sequence of cuts. Once you've used a blade for tougher materials, it's unlikely it will perform well for the softer materials, aluminum, brass, bronze, nickel silver. The very sharp edge that clean cutting requires tends to get wiped off, making the blade float instead of cut. That happens particularly fast when cutting stainless, which has a rather high friction coefficient. Titanium is notorious for doing the same thing.
While it's a bit of a PITA, it's not a bad idea to have a couple blades and change them when going from one group of metals to the other.
Harold
Reply to
Harold and Susan Vordos
Wow! That is two speeds, indeed! So the next question is, was the dulling occuring at the low speed or the high speed? ---------------------------- Mr. P.V.'d formerly Droll Troll
Reply to
Proctologically Violated©®
Would wax work as well as a pumped coolant on a band saw blade? Proly not, but mebbe close?? We used wax for cutting aluminum bundles w/ a carbide circular saw blade (sears chop saw). Chop saw works well, I assume the wax helped, but what a mess, after a while.
Switching blades is not a bad idea. SS is indeed such a bear. If you watch closely on SS, even when hand deburring w/ a shaviv-type tool, you can see little puffs of smoke from residual oil!!
Someone mentioned abrasive cutting being sort of a problem metallurgically. While this can indeed be a problem in some contexts, I would think this should be minimal on SS, since most SS is not heat treatable. ---------------------------- Mr. P.V.'d formerly Droll Troll
Reply to
Proctologically Violated©®
The 92 Sfm is your only choice. I did the same thing with my old 10" Delta band saw 30 years ago and it is still working fine.
Pete Stanaitis -------------------
Frank J Warner wrote:
Reply to
Pete & sheri

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