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  1. #1
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    Default Scroller newbie question - how often do you break your blade

    I'm new in scroll saw operation, my daughter wants me to cut over 100 alphabetic letters in 10cm x 10cm size (with 3mm MDF) for her vision art project !! I did about 20 with jigsaw and then decide I have enough excuse for buying a scroll saw , so I went down to Carbatec and get this Carbatec 16 inch Scroll Saw?

    Problem is the blade break very quick, I broke 6 blades so far after cutting about 20 letters, it turn out very expensive. Am I doing anything wrong or it is usually what scroll saw blade last ? can some experienced scroller give some advice . Thanks

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  3. #2
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    crowie is offline Life's Good, Enjoy each new day & try to encourage
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    G'Day Ecsk,
    I too am new to scrollsaw works having received a Ryobi on for last Christmas from my darling wife.
    I did some fiddling with it on scrap, then I made 3 jigsaw puzzles out of 3 pictures I painted on some 4mm or 5mm ply and haven't broken a single blade, as yet [I have another 3 ready to scrollsaw into jigsaw puzzles].
    I purchased a whole stack of blades from Harris Traders - Scrollsaw Blades [with the help from a mate for blade selection].
    They were only $4.50 per dozen plus postage and I purchase 14 packets [$64.65 in total].
    I can send you the details of Harris trading if you'd like me to; sorry I can't help on the "WHY" of your broken blades.
    Cheers, Crowie

  4. #3
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    Thanks Crowie

    please post up details of Harris Traders, I bought a 6 pieces Makita pack, it cost me $14 and they're all broken

  5. #4
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    I've found that I need to be careful about the tooth size I use when cutting thin materials. Especially fine-grained timbers and MDF.

    Too fine and it clogs - and then I tend to start "forcing the feed" which, of course, causes blades to break.

    Too coarse - only one or two teeth in the cut at any given time - and the blade tends to "snag", also causing them to break.

    Personally, for 3mm MDF I'd be using spiral blades.

    (And Jim Carroll stocks a good range of quality Olson blades. )
    I may be weird, but I'm saving up to become eccentric.

    - Andy Mc (AKA "Ghost who posts." )

  6. #5
    crowie's Avatar
    crowie is offline Life's Good, Enjoy each new day & try to encourage
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    Quote Originally Posted by ecsk View Post
    Thanks Crowie

    please post up details of Harris Traders, I bought a 6 pieces Makita pack, it cost me $14 and they're all broken
    G'Day Esck,
    I've attached the details but for your reference, my old woodworker mate helped me select a good range of blades as follows:
    2 PKT of 12 - #FD-SR-3,
    2 PKT of 12 - #FD-SR-12,
    2 PKT of 12 - #FD-SP,
    2 PKT of 12 - #FD-TC-3,
    2 PKT of 12 - #FD-TC-9,
    2 PKT of 12 - #FD-NS-3,
    2 PKT of 12 - #FD-P-3.
    You'll see on the list what each are used for, so I hope that's a help.
    Cheers, Crowie

  7. #6
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    Hi,
    The link you gave for your saw from Carbetec shows a saw that uses pinned blades. If your saw uses only pinned blades then either
    1. Buy only pinned blades - Helen sells these too but they are $6 a doz. not $4.50.

    or

    2. Buy an adaptor - Timbecom sells one - so that you can use both pinned and pinless blades. Using the pinless blades at a cheaper cost will offset the cost.

    Why you are breaking blades is difficult to answer, depends on how you are using the saw I think. It is important to have a correct tension on the blade and also not to push too hard against the blade - let it cut. Generally I can use a blade until it loses it's sharpness but now and again one will last just minutes (me I guess). Search this Forum for advice I think that it's been given a few times.
    Hope it helps.
    Bob H.
    p.s. 'Google' Harris Traders will give you Helen Harris's contact info - she is very helpful.

  8. #7
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    Something is amiss, I wouldn't have thought 3mm MDF caused too much grief for any blade really. The blade isn't being twisted or misaligned in its mountings is it? Tension adjustment?

    Try rubbing some soft soap or wax along the blade for lubrication now and again. This may cause problems though if the pieces are to be painted.

    Be aware that MDF dust is toxic, please, please wear a mask.

  9. #8
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    Are you finding the blades are breaking when you are making turns? if so, you might want to slow the feed rate a bit. Try a gross of blades from Harris Traders, you cant go wrong with the price and they let you mix and match so you can try various ones. Hope it works out for you, MDF will be a bit harsher on blades causing them to dull a bit quicker but 3mm MDF shouldnt cause breakages I wouldnt think.

    PLEASE USE A MASK WHEN CUTTING MDF
    Brett

    Only Robinson Crusoe could get everything done by Friday!

  10. #9
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    Thanks guys for the info, same for anything I need to pay for learning

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