Saw Blade Corner: 3 Simple Steps to Change a Cold Saw Blade

Just as there are many ways to learn something, there are many ways to teach. Moreover, there are many ways in which you can teach the same information. While not definitive (feel free to reach out for training and help!) I'm sharing 3 key points to make every blade change on your cold saw a success.

Keep it Clean

"Clean" is a relative term when we’re in the manufacturing world. Your saw over time will accrue the patina of a machine that has been well-used.” This being said, when you change your saw blade you need to wipe down every contact point the blade or material touches. This means wiping down with a rag (never use compressed air!) the blade guides and internals of the saw head. It also means opening the vises and cleaning material buildup that will accrue over many cuts and finally checking to ensure the chips don’t build up under the cutting slot. If you don’t keep your machine clean, you shouldn’t expect it to run properly. Imagine if you were to wear the same clothes every day and being surprised when people tell you the odor has become unbearable; you’re only hurting yourself.

Remove Backlash

To properly mount a blade when cutting metal, you must ensure the teeth are pointed towards the material and the backlash is removed. Popular blade manufacturers like Kanefusa will always mill the pin holes for extra room. To properly remove backlash, hand tighten the center bolt, and before completing with a wrench, rotate the blade counterclockwise (on Nishijimax) or in the opposite direction the blade will rotate. Once you have done this, you can finish tightening the blade and are ready to move on to step 3. If you forget this step, you run the risk of the blade doing this as it tries to cut solid steel. This will create a premature blade failure and potentially endanger your personnel and machine.

Adjust the Brush

Most of my customers forget that their blade life will suffer if they don’t replace and adjust their chip brush. You only need to cover the first few millimeters of a tooth for proper placement. The brush should be removed when it has lost all “spring” in its bristles. Placing the brush too far in can cause your teeth to wear and push the blade out of alignment. If the brush is not engaged, you are recutting chips (see: solid pieces of metal) and potentially fusing them to the part you are trying to make. I’ll be honest: placing a chip brush takes a little more finesse than putting a blade on, but when done right, you lower your blade changes overall. More uptime means more money for everyone.