Can A Wood Saw Blade Cut Aluminum?
It is always advisable to use the proper tools that are designed for the specific materials being worked with. It is for this reason that many people are hesitant to use a wood blade to cut aluminum, which is a strong metal when compared to wood. Using a wood blade, on the other hand, is possible if you take the necessary safety precautions.
Is it possible to cut aluminum with a miter saw? If you use a non-ferrous metal cutting blade on your miter saw, you can cut aluminum with relative ease. A miter saw is an excellent choice for cutting aluminum extrusions, channels, pipes, and other similar materials.
Is it possible to cut aluminum with a wood blade on a miter saw, though?
Aluminum has excellent machinability and is relatively easy to cut when compared to other metals. If you want to cut through aluminum, a wood blade with a large number of teeth will do the trick.
It should be noted that the majority of wood blades are strong enough to cut through non-ferrous materials without tearing them. You can even find carbide grades that are specifically designed for cutting through aluminum. However, if you intend to use a wood blade, you’ll need to take into consideration the TPI, or the number of teeth, on the blade.
Wood Blade on Aluminum
The number of teeth on the blade is the most important consideration. The greater the number of teeth (and thus the higher the TPI), the smoother the cut will be. Lower TPI blades have deep gullets and larger-sized teeth than higher TPI blades. These will grab the edges of the aluminum channels and pull the workpiece in the direction of the cutting blade.
When cutting into aluminum that is less than 1/16th of an inch thick, you will want to use a blade that has more than 10 teeth for each diameter inch of the aluminum you are cutting into. This means that if you have a 12-inch miter saw, you should use a blade with 120 teeth.
120 is the product of 10 (TPI) x 12 (blade diameter in inches).
In fact, many companies manufacture such wood blades with a large number of teeth, sometimes as many as 200, specifically for this purpose.
You will need to use a blade with 10 teeth per diameter inch if the aluminum is thicker than 1/8th inch, such as 1/8th of an inch in thickness. For a quarter-inch thickness, the number of teeth per diameter inch is reduced to just eight per diameter inch. For aluminum that is thicker than a quarter inch, the maximum number of teeth per inch is six.
Can I Cut Aluminum with a Chop Saw?
If by chop saw you mean a miter saw, then the answer is yes. A non-ferrous metal cutting blade can be used on a chop saw (miter saw) to cut aluminum sheet metal.
When using a metal-cutting chop saw, avoid using an abrasive disc to cut through aluminum. Aluminum will clog abrasive cutting discs, causing them to overheat and possibly shattering the disc in the process.
What is the Best Saw Blade for Cutting Aluminum?
Non-ferrous blades with fine teeth are the most effective for cutting aluminum.
Keep in mind that the blade should be suitable for cutting nonferrous materials and should have the appropriate number of teeth for the thickness of the aluminum sheet.
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