For many years the only successful way of cutting materials accurately was by circular saw. However, as bandsaw machines developed over the past 40 years, the demand for circular saws has reduced. And yet those seeking a clean, square and fast cut on small-to-medium size sections could well benefit from a circular saw, as might any shops exclusively cutting aluminium or plastics. In contrast, those looking at cutting larger sections and solids may likely find a bandsaw is the more favourable option. With these thoughts in mind, Prosaw has published a new beginner’s guide to sawing.
Take mitring, for example: is it necessary? Well, for steel fabricators, some work will involve cutting angles on sections to enable the manufacture of frames or complex shapes. Swing-frame sawing machines offer quick set mitring and even the most basic of saws will often offer a mitre facility, albeit not as quick as a swing-frame model. Even some automatic bandsaws can mitre in-cycle, producing complete components for fabricating.
A common question is whether each material requires a different blade? Not necessarily. For most sections and even solids, one blade will cover a wide range of material shapes and sizes. Of course, for those cutting from a very small section or solid through to the machine’s maximum capacity, then the best choice would be a different blade to cut both extremes. The same applies to the speed of the blade. Prosaw provides a cutting chart with all of its machines to select the most suitable blade speed and cutting rate.
Cutting fluid is another common area of confusion. Many companies can increase their blade life and reduce consumables cost by just taking a close look at their cutting fluid mixture. Unlike machine tools, which generally use carbide inserts, saw blades create a lot of heat at the cutting point, which means that with a low-level mix of fluid the tool will eventually fatigue and break. Prosaw recommends a mixture level of between 8-12%, depending on workpiece material.
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