Table Saw blades

I'm using the stock blade that came with my saw, and have been cutting plywood with it. On the cuts where I'm cutting from a large (48") section, I tended to get a lot of tearout on the veneer layer. However, when cutting smaller sections (16-24"), I got much less tearout. Is this just a technique thing, or is it the blade's fault too?
If it's the blade's fault, what kind of blades should I be looking at? Is there one that will do an excellent job on plywood and a good job on rip cuts? (Changing blades isn't my idea of fun.)
Puckdropper
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"Puckdropper" <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote in message

Several things come into play.
First, almost all plywood has some bow to it and the larger the piece the more likely. Small pieces reduce this bow. If the bow causes the wood to lift from the table at the blade, the cut at that point has no support as the blade cuts down through the bottom of the panel. Tear out is the usual result.
Second, to help reduce this on smaller panels and all other cuts use a zero clearance insert. This supports the wood up to the point of contact with the blade.
Third, a better blade will give you better results. A good all around blade for solid woods, plywoods, MDF whether ripping, cross cutting or making compound angle cuts is the Forrest WWII. Pricey but unless I cut dado's on my saw I use that blade for all cuts.
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Easier than changing a blade, which would also be a good idea, is to lay a strip of masking tape over the cut line to keep the veneer where it belongs.
P D Q

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Easier than changing a blade, which would also be a good idea, is to lay a strip of masking tape over the cut line to keep the veneer where it belongs.
P D Q
You stole my idea...;-)
But I'll add a word of caution. Use low adhesive type tape (think 3M Blue) and when you peel it off, peel it at almost a ~ 90 angle to the line of tape, flat to the surface and pull it away from the veneer edge - not towards the plywood. If not, you create tear also. Pull slowly but steady and if you do get tear, the piece is captured on the tape so you could glue it back in place if needed. Try a practice piece and get the feel for pulling the tape off. Different plywood's will tear no matter what you try but using a zero-clearance insert, plywood blade with Leon's and PDQ's suggestion are certainly good starting points.
You can also score the cut line through the veneer on the good face side (which goes face up on the TS) with a sharp blade and a straight-edge. Then make the cut right on the scored line. If you can spare a kerf of plywood, make a cut about 1/16th away (on the waste side) of the scored line then sneak up on the cut line.
A good plywood blade helps too....
Bob S.
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"Puckdropper" wrote:

Cutting 4x8 sheet goods on a table saw can be a real PITA unless you have adequate infeed and runout tables.
Trying to cut sheet goods down to size using a rip blade is also a PITA.
Changing blades is NBD, IMHO.
Suggest you consider a good set of carbide tipped blades, 24T, 50T & 80T for your T/S and use a saber or circular saw to break down sheet goods into proud pieces that are then finished at the T/S.
Using an 80T blade and a zero clearance insert, you will get clean cuts.
Why fight changing blades?
WFM
YMMV
Lew
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"Puckdropper" <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote in message

A cutting rack, a guide and a circular saw with a good blade will solve all that. No blade changing, accurate cuts and no tear out. IMHO.
Max
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On 29 Apr 2008 20:38:28 GMT, Puckdropper <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote:>I'm using the stock blade that came with my saw, and have been cutting

If you see a hairy edge the blade may be dull. There are combination blades designed to cut various materials. While this kind of blade reduces blade changing, you will get a better cut using a blade designed for the specific kind of material. Blade quality as well as sharpness makes a big difference. Perhaps you should try a blade specifically designed for laminated materials. One recommendation is to place good-side down and raise the blade.
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Some blades cut differently at different projections. Test cut the plywood with the blade fully raised and compare with one that is just slightly higher than the wood. You will find that the best cut is often with the blade projecting about 1/4" above the wood, but some blades will have their best cut at a different position.
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Phisherman said:

Even with a zero-clearance insert I don't think putting the good side down on a tablesaw is a good idea. But I've never tried doing it that way either. Does that really work?
Bob S.
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I doubt it. Where I got the most tearout was actually on the lower side. The cutting of the teeth pulled the veneer away from the glued surface.
Puckdropper
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On Wed, 30 Apr 2008 20:31:44 -0400, BobS wrote:

Naaah - he got it backwards. Good side down for a circular saw, up for a table saw.
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No.
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Thanks for everyone's suggestions. I'll put a better blade on my wishlist, and keep an eye out. I know several people in here like the Forest WWII, so I'll definately look for that.
I'm certain the plywood was bowing a bit. I'll have to see what I can do about it next time. (Cross cut sled, perhaps?)
Puckdropper
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"Puckdropper" <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote in message
.

A cross cut sled can certainly help on many cuts but will not help if the stock bows up, it will still bow up on the sled also.
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On Thu, 01 May 2008 15:32:07 +0000, Puckdropper wrote:

That's a good blade and I've used it, but I still like a plywood blade for plywood. I replaced my old one with a new Freud a month or so ago and it works great. Even on the down side any chipout is hard to see.
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