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What is a Diamond Blade? How do Diamond Saw Blades work?
What is a Diamond Blade?
Diamond blade is a circular saw blade used for cutting, sawing or abrasive materials. Diamond blades are commonly used in the construction for building, remodeling and repairs, often used for cutting concrete, brick, block, stone and other materials.
Diamond saw blades have a steel core which is combined with diamond segments. Diamond crystals and powder metal are heated and pressed into a molding which form the diamond segments, also known as the "cutting teeth" of the blade. The diamond segments are then welded to the steel core.
How do the Diamond Saw Blades Work?
Diamond blades do not really cut, instead diamond blades grind material through an action of friction with the synthetic diamond-bonding matrix. The diamond crystals, often visible at the leading edge and sides of the rim / segment, remove material by scratching out particles of hard, dense materials, or by knocking out larger particles of loosely bonded abrasive material. This process eventually cracks or fractures the diamond particle, breaking it down into smaller pieces.
As a result of this phenomenon, a diamond saw blade for cutting soft, abrasive material must have a hard metal matrix composition to resist this erosion long enough for the exposed diamonds to be properly utilized.
Conversely, a blade for cutting a hard, non-abrasive material must have a soft bond to ensure that it will erode and expose the diamonds embedded in the matrix. These simple principles are the foundation of “controlled bond erosion.”
How to choose a diamond blade?
In general, a diamond blade's performance is measured in two ways. The first is how proficiently the blade grinds through the material; the second is the life of the blade or total footage yielded by the blade.
The bond is a term used for the softness or hardness of the powder metal being used to form the segments and hold the diamonds in place. The bond controls the rate at which the Diamond Segments wear down and allow new diamonds to become exposed at the surface to continue grinding with a "sharp" edge. The most important step is matching a blade with the right bond to your specific cutting material.
Diamond Blade Life vs Cutting Speed
You want an optimum balance between cutting speed and diamond saw blade life to get the best overall value for your diamond blades. Typically, there is an inverse relationship between cutting speed and diamond blade life. If a saw operator makes a change, such as increasing cutting pressure to make a blade cut faster, blade life will tend to be shortened as a result. Likewise, if and operator wants to extend the blade's life, he can reduce cutting pressure and cut slower. Each job is different, and labor cost also needs to be added to the equation to arrive at the most cost-efficient solution. Professional contractors tend to have larger projects and higher labor costs, and typically lean toward blades and equipment that cut faster and give a higher performance to reduce cost per cut. Rental customers often have smaller jobs, and rent for the diamond blade is calculated by the amount of wear on the rim. Consequently, choosing blades and equipment that provide slightly slower cutting with less wear on the blade is often a good choice.
Wet cutting or Dry cutting?
Diamond tools and saw blades work best when cutting wet. The water will prevent the blade from overheating, greatly reduce the amount of harmful dust created by cutting, and will remove the slurry from the cut. Diamond can not withstand the forces involved at the elevated temperatures of dry cutting ceramic and abrasive materials, and will be subject to rapid tool wear and possible failure. Diamond Blade life is greatly extended by wet cutting. However, many blades are designed to operate either wet or dry.
When water cannot be used (electrical saws for example), measures should be taken so the operator does not inhale dust created by the process, which poses a very serious health risk. When doing dry cutting, the blade should be allowed to cool off periodically. Cooling can be increased by allowing the blade to spin freely out of the cut. This allows cool air to pass between the segments. Dry diamond blade cutting is dangerous for persons unfamiliar with the risks and process.
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Diamond Blade Safety Information
Diamond Blade Safety
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