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Thread: TCT Knives?

  1. #1
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    Default TCT Knives?

    I am going to be scrounging and working old jarrrah. IME it is "as tough as" on blades. When chainsawing I used TCT tipped chains. They still needed sharpening but took 10 times longer. I sharpened them myself with a diamond powder tool.

    SO. Where do I get TCT? How much does it cost? Is it worth it in hard wood? Ccan it be sharpened? Is it really expensive to get sharpened?

    .....and anything else anyone wants to talk about..... regarding TCT knives that is

    Thanks in advance
    Nick

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  3. #2
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    Jarrah is hard - especially old Jarrah and it will blunt your planer blades in no time flat. To my knowledge, you can't get TCT planer blades except in the hand held electric planers that have replaceable tungsten sleves

    You have 2 options -

    Straight Tungsten Carbide blades - very expensive - very hard, will last about 50 times what a HSS blade will but hard to sharpen without diamond grinders/hone and if they hit a nail or a loose knot, they may/will shatter or

    17% Tungsten Carbide mixed with HSS - harder then HSS but easier to sharpen then straight Tungsten Carbide, loads cheaper and if you hit a nail or knot - they may dent but will not shatter. I use this in my jointer. They last about 10 times what a HSS blade will.

    I get mine from the saw manufacturer/sharpener her in Brisbane - Peacock saws - they do both sorts and I have heard that Carbatec do them as well - but you can probably source some where you are from a saw shop.

    I have gone to indexed spiral tungsten blades in my thicknesser - they seem to last forever and don't have problems if I accidently hit a nail, I only have to replace a couple of small blades or turn them 90 degrees. They are quieter, more powerful as only 4 blades at any one time are striking the surface (508mm wide) and each blade is only about 1cm wide. You can retro fit this to an existing planer but it is about $100 an inch - which makes it expensive.

    Good luck with it - I love Jarrah.

    Cheers

    Lawrie

  4. #3
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    Ah! Yes. Thanks...and a new member as weel...straight into aid mode!

    I just DAGS the partial tungsten blades...excellent and not that expensive. I know about shattering stuff from TCT chainsaw tips on gravel. Shatter or lose the tip.

    All your summaries make a lot of sense about how the blades will behave.

    Thank you.
    Nick

  5. #4
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    Unhappy Back in my box

    Ok - back in my box - obviously new members are not supposed to post anything - sorry for offence/interuption

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lawriet View Post
    Ok - back in my box - obviously new members are not supposed to post anything - sorry for offence/interuption
    Christ! I was trying to be nice. Get yer hair down old son!

    Bugger me. I even addressed your info and replied to it.
    Nick

  7. #6
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    Lawriet and REALOldNick

    Allow me to be mediator here.

    Lawrie, welcome to the forum. I think R.O.N. was complimenting you on a well-constructed and informative post that to my mind is right on the ball.

    There was obviously a mis-understanding in interpretation. A common failing of our modern internet communication. Please feel free to come out of the box any time you like. You will be welcome, particularly if all your posts are as informative, but also even if they are not.

    Moving on, but expecting more good info from you both, my son who works as a builder, curses the tungsten blades even on the handheld planes. He points out that you strike one hard object (not even neccessarily a nail) and both blades are history. They are so unforgiving. I, too, only use the resharpenable blades, but I do have the luxury of a sharpening device.

    The spiral head is probably the way to go for production work where time starts to become more of an issue than cost.

    The catch is that nothing comes for nothing.

    I looked at the Carbatec site for some comparisons on new machines

    20" thicknesser $2195 Spiral head $3595
    15" thicknesser $1495 Spiral head $2495
    8" jointer $1295 Spiral head $1795

    Replacement cutters $69 for 10.

    Damage a cutter and just rotate it. You can do this up to three times, but your initial outlay is high.

    The alternative is to stick with HSS with 18% tungsten and purchase a sharpener suitable for your size blades. Bear in mind that while sharp these blades will probably cut better than tungsten (even if that is only one pass)

    Regards
    Paul
    Bushmiller;

    "Power tends to corrupt. Absolute power corrupts, absolutely!"

  8. #7
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    15" thicknesser $1495 Spiral head $2495
    I have also ben looking at the carba-tec prices, hoping to see some reduction in prices due to the dollar.Does anyone know if these prices are a reduced price?
    American tractors have dropped by 20% over the last 2 years and that is serious dollars.

    Cheers PW

  9. #8
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    @bushmiller

    The unforgiving TC blades that you are referring to: are they the 18% ones? I was under the impression( from experience and talk) that TC tipped stuff was bad, because it fractured or chipped. And then it was lost. These 18% ones seems simply like a super - hard version of HSS: you can still sharpen them and they do not shatter.

    I can see why multiple blades would be stuffed if they shattered on a hard thing. None of the blades would actually shear the offending thing. but is the 18% stuff that touchy?
    Nick

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Petethebutcher View Post
    I have also ben looking at the carba-tec prices, hoping to see some reduction in prices due to the dollar.Does anyone know if these prices are a reduced price?
    American tractors have dropped by 20% over the last 2 years and that is serious dollars.

    Cheers PW
    Not being dismissive, but this would fair better in a new thread. It is a topic of interest, but you will not get a high view/reply rate by posting to another thread.
    Nick

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by REALOldNick View Post
    @bushmiller

    The unforgiving TC blades that you are referring to: are they the 18% ones? I was under the impression( from experience and talk) that TC tipped stuff was bad, because it fractured or chipped. And then it was lost. These 18% ones seems simply like a super - hard version of HSS: you can still sharpen them and they do not shatter.

    I can see why multiple blades would be stuffed if they shattered on a hard thing. None of the blades would actually shear the offending thing. but is the 18% stuff that touchy?
    Esteemed son was referring to the throw away blades that are common in handheld electric planers. These are only 4 or 5mm wide. The HSS blades with 18% Tungsten are the blades to go for. For the common thicknessers they will be a minimum of 25mm wide and normally have stated on the blades the tungsten composition as they look the same as the standard HSS blades.

    Regards
    Paul
    Bushmiller;

    "Power tends to corrupt. Absolute power corrupts, absolutely!"

  12. #11
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    OK. Thanks for your patience. They are quite an affordable price as well. I will get 1 set to start as I have a couple of HSS backup sets when sharpen time comes.

    Just OOI. Back again to my chainsawing days, I know that the danger with TCT tipped chain teeth was that they would still seem to cut well (compared to a blunt steel tooth) even when getting seriously blunt. This made for worse cuts and was tough on the saw and the chain. Do the 18% ones start cutting pretty badly like HSS (that's a good thing) as they blunten?
    Nick

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by REALOldNick View Post
    Do the 18% ones start cutting pretty badly like HSS (that's a good thing) as they blunten?
    In softwood they seem to go for ever. In hardwood they will "chatter" and the noise factor increases alarmingly. Just be aware that it does tend to creep up on you. When you finally do change blades you'll be horrified at their condition.

    Regards
    Paul
    Bushmiller;

    "Power tends to corrupt. Absolute power corrupts, absolutely!"

  14. #13
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    I am sure that HSS will creep up, but because these lasts longer, the creep is slower. So I will watch for that. With TCT tipped stuff, it is not creep, but a sudden realisation that you have stretched a chain so it skips. I learned about it early enough to prevent that, but it was still tempting on a day's sawing in the bush.

    Actually what _really_ struck home tome was the idea that sharpening is a self and safety issue. Every couple hours you stop, have a cuppa, sharpen, get back to work. Like a drive break. It's probably not _quite_ as bad in a shop, but it may make the day more safe, enjoyable and even productive.

    Did I see somewhere that a huge percent of accidents are during that "just one more" phase?

    Thanks again for your input I really appreciate it. As with most good advice it will probably cost money, but make my life a better place
    Nick

  15. #14
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    Shortly after buying an Electra Beckum planer/thicknesser with disposable blades about 30 years ago I bought a pair of TCT blades for it. These are still going strong. I touch them up in place with a low cost diamond hone made for planer blades. And I've had them resharpened by a local sharpener a number of times.
    They've had a little chip out a couple of times but they have never shattered. In short I use them with complete confidence. (Doesn't stop me yearning for a spiral head though.)
    A few years back I had a spare set made. No trouble to obtain these. Carbitool list TCT planer blade material in their catalogue and a Carbitool reseller should be able to make or have made blades for a particular machine.
    Brian

  16. #15
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    OK. Another definite vote for a YES!

    OOI. What was the advantage of getting them made? Cost?
    Nick

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