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Posted in response to Slab Saw vs Trim Slab Saw???? from Cindy Patrick on March 12, 2008 at 08:05:22:

Re: Slab Saw vs Trim Slab Saw????

I have a six inch trim saw. This size is for use as it's name implies, to trim already slabbed pieces. It is used especially for trimming the more expensive material such as tourquoise when used with a thin kerf saw blade, in addition to other material. Using a thin blade wastes less material in the saw cut so more is remaining for you to use in lapidary work.
You can also use a six inch outfit to cut smaller rocks, maybe 2-3 inch max. by changing to a thicker blade. (do not use oil based coolant with material such as tourquoise)
As for your larger rocks, the 7 inch material you referenced, you'll need a much larger outfit with at lease a 14 inch blade (or, preferably larger). Some guys like to "play" around to force a smaller blade to cut a rock by rotating it while sawing. Not a good thing to do as it will eventually stress the blade and warp it. Diamond blades are expensive. They eventually need to be replaced when worn, of course. But, doesn't make sense to shorten blade life even more through poor practices.
I also have a 10 inch blade outfit to cut rocks up to about 4 inch max and I think that's pressing it a bit. Luckily, a friend has a larger saw available that I may use.
Lapidary can be an expensive hobby and you'd be best advised to obtain equipment suitable to the task. Get what you need and use the equipment as it is designed to be used. It will last for many years with good usage practices.
Best of luck with your new and rewarding hobby. Look into a local rock club to join where you'll be welcomed and benefit from the wealth of experience available.

From Al - March 12, 2008 at 16:19:51

Message: 66181

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