How to Choose the Right Circular Saw Blade


The perfect circular saw blade exists for nearly every job. Don't mess up your project by using the wrong one.

Things You'll Need

  • Circular Saws
  • Combination Blades
  • Crosscut Blades
  • Flooring Blades
  • Hollow-ground Planer Blades
  • Hollow-ground Plywood Blades
  • Masonry Blades
  • Metal/plastic-cutting Blades
  • Nail-cutting Blades
  • Ripping Blades
  • Thin-kerf Blades
  • Learn how blades are named. Some are obvious: A masonry blade is used to cut brick. A flooring blade is made for cutting flooring and rough lumber. This type of blade can even handle an occasional nail.

  • Recognize that the more teeth that are on the blade, the cleaner the cut. Carbide-tipped blades are more expensive, but they require less frequent sharpening and make the smoothest cuts.

  • Select a ripping blade for long cuts with the grain. Don't use this blade with plywood. The crosscut blade can cut plywood easily, as well as regular wood (across the grain).

  • Use a combination blade for general-purpose woodwork. The large teeth leave a rough-cut and the blade can be used for cross cutting or with-the-grain rips.

  • Look for a hollow-ground planer for smooth miter and crosscuts. There is also a hollow-ground plywood blade that cuts plywood and paneling without splintering.

  • Choose a non-ferrous metal/plastic-cutting blade for aluminum, brass, copper, lead, and most solid plastics.

  • Pick up a thin-kerf blade to minimize wood waste when cutting.

  • Try a nail-cutter if you're doing heavy remodeling. You may run across hardware in the wood.

Tips & Warnings

  • Never use a saw to cut a material it is not designed to cut.

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