Bandsaws are a versatile machine for all metal cutting needs, as one of the easiest and fastest ways to cut all kinds of metal. When it comes to straight cuts or irregular cuts, the bandsaw blade choice can really impact the final outcome. Each type of blade features different blade widths and a number of teeth for a wide or narrow cut with a smooth or rough finish.
At ACRA Machinery, we stock a range of new parts for bandsaw maintenance, including bandsaw blades. As experts in vertical and horizontal bandsaws, we’ve outlined the different tooth patterns of bandsaw blades with an explanation of their function and benefits.
The different characteristics of the blades
There are many characteristics to know when choosing the right bandsaw blade. Blades need to be hard-wearing to withstand the stress of initial impact with the material. This longevity is mainly dependent on the blade’s hardness and tooth geometry. Thicker blades are stronger and so generally produce straight cuts but can break due to the wear of bending and twisting actions.
Another important distinction is that the more teeth per inch, the finer the cut will be, whilst fewer teeth per inch creates a rougher cut, and this type is generally used for thicker sections. Each tooth type features different angles of tilt, referred to as the tooth rake, although typically at least 3 – 6 teeth should be involved in the cut at all times.
Remember to first identify what size blade your bandsaw requires within the manufacturer’s manual and that once you’ve selected the appropriate blade for your project’s requirements, you will need to break in your bandsaw blade properly. Choosing the correct blade depends on the specific needs of your project and your type of bandsaw, an incorrect tooth pattern can dramatically reduce the life of the blade. Regardless, all tooth pattern types require ongoing care to properly maintain your bandsaw blades.
1. Regular tooth blades
A common tooth pattern, regular tooth bandsaw blades feature straight teeth with deep gullets, often with a straight rake. This tooth pattern is suited for both contour and cut-off cutting. It is a general-purpose metal cutting blade for thin materials including metals and wood.
2. Hook tooth blades
This type of blade has sharp teeth that look similar to the shape of a hook. These larger teeth are widely spaced and feature an undercut face with a 10° rake angle. This teeth type will produce more coarse cuts. It can also be used for longer cuts due to the deep gullet and rake angle allowing more of the cut material to be moved aside. A hook-tooth blade is best suited for hard, nonferrous alloys and hardwoods.
3. Skip tooth blades
Similar to hook teeth blades, these types of blades have widely spaced teeth and reduce clogging when using materials like softwoods, plastics or nonferrous metals. This type of blade has a shallow gullet and a 90° tooth angle that allows the chips to come out cleanly, but the widely spaced teeth pattern makes it difficult to produce a smooth finish.
4. Variable pitch blades
This tooth pattern involves a variety of teeth in different sizes and settings. The varying angles and gullet depths reduce the vibrations, making this blade perfect for smooth but fast finish cuts and ideal for cutting curves and contouring.
5. Wavy tooth blade
This blade is different from the other types as the teeth are not aligned perfectly straight. The wavy tooth pattern involves blending groups of teeth that are angled right and left. This type of blade is suitable for cutting thin sheets, tubes and metal sections.
In need of new bandsaw blades?
With a selection of blades for all your bandsaw requirements, ACRA Machinery is ready to help with your next metal fabrication project. Our expert team offers a range of quality new and used machinery including bandsaw blades, laser cutters and press brake machines.
To learn more about our product range or the maintenance services we can provide to Melbourne sheet metal fabricators, please contact us by filling out our online enquiry form or by calling 03 9794 6675 today.