Anatomy of Diamond Blades
Cutting through concrete, asphalt and metal is a cinch when you have the right tools. Diamond blades are produced very specifically for each unique application. It becomes much easier to understand a catalogue full of blades or to know what you need for your job when you understand why blades are made the way they are.
All diamond blades include these important parts
Blank or Blade Plate
The blank is the round main structure of the blade and is arguably the most important part of the blade. Though the segments do the actual cutting the blade plate holds the segments properly aligned and must be perfectly flat otherwise it will provide a wobbly cut and cause the area around the arbor hole to wear and break.
The segments are equivalent to the teeth on a standard saw blade. Technically diamond segments do not cut concrete but instead rapidly grind it away. They are made of two parts, the metal bonding compound and diamonds.
- Metal Bonding Compound
The compound is the metal, or resin, that holds the segment together. Compounds are made of varying mixtures of metals to produce harder or softer segments for different needs. The softer a compound is the faster it will wear away, exposing a new layer of diamonds. This can be ideal for situations when you need to cut a large amount quickly, but it is important not to use too soft a compound as it will wear away too quickly which wastes diamonds that were not worn out. Hard compounds are used for segments for asphalt blades, low horsepower saws and green concrete cutting blades. Soft segments are used in cured concrete and reinforced concrete blades as those materials wear faster on the diamonds.
Diamond crystals in diamond blades and bits are man made synthetic diamonds. It is important to use synthetic diamonds in production of blade segments because they can be made to be the right size and shape, ensuring consistent cutting speed and rate of wear of the diamond. They can be sporadically placed throughout the segments or laser arranged in neat rows. Blades made for low horsepower saws will have less diamond content because the higher the diamond content the more horse power is needed to make the blade cut.
Gullets are the spaces cut into the blade plate, between the segments. This space is designed to carry away waste, such as concrete dust, and to carry water through the cut. Blades will have different gullet depths and shapes depending on whether they are meant for wet or dry cutting, and what material the blade is intended to cut.
Abor hole and Shear Pin hole
The arbor and shear pin holes are where the blade mounts on the saw. The Arbor hole mounts on the arbor shaft, which spins the blade. The shear pin hole stabilizes the blade and holds is in place on the arbor so that it does not spin on the shaft.
You may see some unique differences on blades with more specific applications. Some additional features you may come across are cooling holes, flush mounting holes, and arbor rings.
Sometimes you may see holes placed throughout the blank. These are typically blades that are intended for dry cutting and the holes are intended to keep the blade cooler by allowing air to run through the blank and the cut while operating.
Arbor rings are commonly used with handheld saw blades. They are adapters so that you can use your handsaw blade on a variety of different tools.
Flush Cutting Holes
If you see a ring of six countersunk holes around the arbor hole you are looking at a wall saw blade. These extra holes are used to mount the blade differently, so that the saw’s arbor does not get in the way, to allow cutting flush with the ground or wall, usually in a corner.
If you have some specific questions about diamond saw blades ask us in the comment section below or contact us!