talkFestool  

Go Back   talkFestool > Festool > Festool Reviews

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 12-02-2009, 11:13 PM
DanClark's Avatar
Founding Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Bellevue, WA, USA
Posts: 2,761
Default Kapex Saw Blade Review

It would be bit of a long story to explain how I have four blades for my Kapex, but that's not relevant...

Last weekend I had a few free minutes to give them a quick test. I tested using a 10" wide piece of 8/4 red oak. This is not exactly a comprehensive test, but it will give you some idea of the blades. My testing criteria:
- Smoothness of the cut face
- Sharpness of the edge
- Speed of the cut

The blades in order of test result:

1. Tenryu MiterPro plus 80T (rebored for Kapex) - This was the standout blade. The face of the cut was glass smooth. Edges were very sharp and clearly defined. It was acceptably fast cutting even with material this thick and wide. I.e., not as fast as the Festool 60T, but decent for an 80T blade.

2. Forrest ChopMaster 80T (rebored for Kapex) & Festool 60T (comes with the saw) - I rated these fairly equal, not because the ChopMaster was so bad but because the Festool was so good. The ChopMaster had the better cut overall, but the Festool gave a very good cut and (being a 60T and thin kerf) was significantly faster.

As an all around blade, the Festool 60T will always be my first choice. Between the Festool 60T and the ChopMaster, If I wanted production speed and was less concerned with the best cut, I'd go with the Festool 60T. Between the two, if I wanted the best cut, I'd choose the ChopMaster. However, if I wanted the absolute best cut, I'd always go for the Tenryu.

3. Festool 80T - Frankly I was disappointed in this blade. The face cut was only marginally better than the Festool 60T and the edges weren't quite as sharp as the ChopMaster.

Each of the blades will give you very good to excellent results. With all four blades there was NO burn. All four blades had some tear out in the back of the cut, with the Tenryu being slightly less. (I did not use a ZC fence, so I can't comment on the quality if it was used.) The cuts on all blades were flat and dead-nuts square. I didn't notice any deflection on any of them, even though the Tenryu and Festool blades had a narrower kerf than the ChopMaster.

A couple of things - my testing order and gut reactions. Testing order was Festool 60T, Festool 80T, ChopMaster, and then Tenryu. In testing order, my gut reactions were:

Festool 60T - "I'm used to it. Nice blade. Nice cut."

Festool 80T - "Hmmm... Cut isn't that much better than the 60T. A little fuzzy on the face. Strange."

ChopMaster - "Very nice cut. A bit slow, but VERY nice cut. This might be my go-to finishing blade.

Tenryu - "Wow! Day-am... Awesome cut! The face is velvety smooth!" (At this point, the Tenryu became my absolute finishing blade favorite.)

In other words, the other blades were "nice" but the Tenryu knocked my socks off.

In a more comprehensive test, with sound measurements, complex mitered/beveled cuts, and a variety of material types/sizes, the results might be different. YMMV.

Regards,

Dan.

p.s. Going forward, I'll keep trying all three 80T blades on different materials. The results might be different. That said, I'll probably be using the Festool 60T for cutting 2X's and the Tenryu for cutting trim.
__________________
"You see things; and you say, ‘Why?’ But I dream things that never were; and I say, ‘Why not?’" George Bernard Shaw
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 12-03-2009, 04:14 AM
SRSemenza's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Fingerlakes Region, NY State
Posts: 1,627
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

Hi,

Dan your testing seems to confirm several others results with the Tenyru.

If / when I need another blade for the Kapex the Tenyru will be top of the list at the moment.

I just got a Kapex, and for now the Festool 60T should be fine. I was super impressed with it. I had been figuring on needing to get another blade right away but I will wait and use it for a couple jobs first.

I should note that I do not have any others to compare to though.


Seth
__________________
If you know where it's comin' from ...... You can tell where it's goin'. ========> ======> =====> ====> ===> ==> => > > >>>
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 12-03-2009, 05:48 AM
DanClark's Avatar
Founding Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Bellevue, WA, USA
Posts: 2,761
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

Seth,

I'm super impressed with the Kapex 60T too. IMO, it's probably the best OEM blade on any saw.

Regards,

Dan.
__________________
"You see things; and you say, ‘Why?’ But I dream things that never were; and I say, ‘Why not?’" George Bernard Shaw
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 12-03-2009, 09:07 AM
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Normandy
Posts: 98
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

You did not mention if all the blades were new?
I have often found that blades (including Festool branded ones) cut better after they have been sharpened. I have finally found a company not too far (45 minutes) away that do a good job.
I too am not too impressed with the 80t Festool blade - I have a couple of 60s that I use.

I find I have to get the Kapex blades sharpened more often than I would imagine appropriate. Does anyone know - is it the cutting action of an scms that causes the blade to suffer more?

Richard.
__________________
I think I now have TOO many Festools to list
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 12-03-2009, 02:51 PM
ecofurniture's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 829
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by moulinabois View Post
You did not mention if all the blades were new?
I have often found that blades (including Festool branded ones) cut better after they have been sharpened. I have finally found a company not too far (45 minutes) away that do a good job.
I too am not too impressed with the 80t Festool blade - I have a couple of 60s that I use.

I find I have to get the Kapex blades sharpened more often than I would imagine appropriate. Does anyone know - is it the cutting action of an scms that causes the blade to suffer more?

Richard.
Like everyone else, I'm impressed with the 60t blade. But funny enough I also find that it need re-sharpening sooner then other blades... I remember using my original bosch blade longer then the kapex... Maybe I got a bit picky now but I was cutting less with the kapex blade then I did with the Ts55.
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 12-03-2009, 04:53 PM
DanClark's Avatar
Founding Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Bellevue, WA, USA
Posts: 2,761
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

Richard,

Here is a list of answers to questions asked on another forum. I'll post some pics of my testing.

Regards,

Dan.

Using 8/4 Oak in tests?

A gentleman complained that the Kapex struggles to cut 5/4 Oak and it showed burning.

While the Kapex isn't a heavy duty construction saw, my Kapex didn't have either of these problems. Since I had some 8/4 X 10 Oak, I decided that it would make a fine torture test for the Kapex and these blades. As you can see from the pics, the cuts on all of the blades are quite good and none of the blades showed any signs of burning. And that includes the Festool 80T (not pictured).

Age of the blades?

Festool 60T & 80T - Brand new with the saw.

ChopMaster - Originally purchased for my Bosch. About two years old, but rarely used. I mostly used the Bosch OEM blade (not a bad blade actually) and pulled out the ChopMaster only when I needed it for cutting trim. It's still razor sharp and essentially brand new.

Tenryu - Purchased it after buying for my 1016 and before returning it. It is brand new.

All cuts from same piece of wood?

Yes. The cuts are not only in the same piece of wood, but also back to back from the same end and cutting in the same direction . Look at the smaller 4/4 oak examples in my first and second post. As I mentioned in those posts, I made two samples for each of the three blades (Festool 60T, Chopmaster, and Tenryu). Notice that all six have the same blemish in the wood - that's how close the cuts were.

Do all blades have the same tooth pitch?

The Festool blades are 10-1/4". The ChopMaster and Tenryu are 10-1/16". The Festool 60T obviously has the largest pitch, then the Festool 80T, and then the ChopMaster 80T and Tenryu 80T having a slightly smaller pitch.

The Festool blades are ATB (all beveled teeth). I believe the ChopMaster has four beveled teeth (Forrest calls them "Points") and one flat top tooth. The Tenryu has two beveled teeth and one flat top tooth.

As far as cut goes, I think the overall design of the teeth, including rake, top angle, bevel angle, yada, yada, has more to do with the cut quality than the pitch of the 80T blades.

For exact blade specs (like rake, etc.) you'll need to research those yourselves. Be warned that some of the information is difficult to find and it looks like different vendors use slightly different terms.

Resharpened blades testing

I'll let one of you handsome fellows do follow-on testing of resharpened blades. I would expect you to use stratified sampling with detailed records showing the exact usage of the blade, number of boards cut, and include the width, depth, and type of each board cut. Then describe post-sharpening cut characteristics. Hmmm... Sounds like to much work? Yeah, I think so too. But if one of you gents want to do it...

One swipe of 220 takes care of whiskers?

That's my reaction too. Even the Festool 60T (which is still a very good blade) gives very nice cuts. I usually use a finger to wipe away most of them. A swipe of 220 is even better.

For minimum whiskers, the Tenryu is the top blade in my test. Also, remember that all of these cuts were done with the original fence and turntable insert. An auxiliary fences and a ZC insert should help with whiskers.

So I'm telling you to buy the Tenryu?

Nope. No way! I'm reporting what I found. Your preferences are your preferences. And mine are mine. I'm doing my best to separate facts that I find from my personal preferences.

Rebore a ChopMaster?

My tests were done with a ChopMaster (and Tenryu and an Amana composite blade that I didn't report here) rebored by Forrest. Here's the Forrest sharpening page: Forrest Manufactureing Saw Blade Sharpening Charges. They do a variety of repair/modification services, including reboring. The reboring cost is $11/blade. Return shipping is $9 for the first blade and $1 thereafter. Overall I found their work to be excellent.

Regards,

Dan.

p.s. In case you wondered, "Tenryu" is pronounced "ten roo". (I talked to their tech rep.)
__________________
"You see things; and you say, ‘Why?’ But I dream things that never were; and I say, ‘Why not?’" George Bernard Shaw

Last edited by DanClark; 12-03-2009 at 04:57 PM.
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 12-03-2009, 05:14 PM
DanClark's Avatar
Founding Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Bellevue, WA, USA
Posts: 2,761
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

More review info, with pics...

The pic below shows the test samples from the Kapex 60T, ChopMaster 80T, and Tenryu 80T blades. As you can see, the cut surfaces from all of the blades are essentially perfect. By feel, the Tenryu surface is superior by a small amount.

The back of the cut is to the left in all samples. I intentionally removed any slivers from the bottom back of the boards so that any splintering shown would be from the Top Back (test cut side) of the board. The Festool blade has some splintering, the ChopMaster has less, but the Tenryu has virtually none.


This pic shows the finished samples from the top. As you can see the top cuts are razor sharp and clean. When I ran my finger down the edges, I couldn't tell a difference.


This picture shows three different samples cut at a 23 degree bevel and 20 degree miter. There's nothing magic about the numbers; they are just random.

As you can see, the Festool 60T has the most splintering, with the ChopMaster having slightly less, and the Tenryu having none. NONE!


These two pics are closeups of the ChopMaster and Tenryu. They better show the quality of cuts and splintering on each blade.




Keep in mind a couple of things - I've already spent the bucks for these blades, so I don't care which is best. Since the Festool blades are German and Forrest makes good blades, my going-in assumption was that the Festool 80T would be the best, Forrest would be number 2, and Tenryu would be number 3. It's amazing how your biases crumble with some facts.

Regards,

Dan.
__________________
"You see things; and you say, ‘Why?’ But I dream things that never were; and I say, ‘Why not?’" George Bernard Shaw
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 12-04-2009, 06:43 PM
Wonderwino's Avatar
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Grew up in Peekskill, NY; Now living in Northwest Kansas
Posts: 2,558
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanClark View Post
More review info, with pics...

Since the Festool blades are German and Forrest makes good blades, my going-in assumption was that the Festool 80T would be the best, Forrest would be number 2, and Tenryu would be number 3. It's amazing how your biases crumble with some facts.

Regards,

Dan.
If only all scientific research was conducted with your integrity...
__________________
Water separates the people of the world; wine unites them.

"If you have good manners and are well spoken, you can be welcome anywhere." -Mom, 1959
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 12-07-2009, 08:54 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Normandy
Posts: 98
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

Dan,
Thanks for the excellent extra info. I will have to see if TEN ROO is available here in France.
richard
__________________
I think I now have TOO many Festools to list

Last edited by moulinabois; 12-07-2009 at 09:15 PM.
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 12-07-2009, 11:43 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: 41°N 79°W One of the Thirteen Original Colonies of the United States of America
Posts: 4,828
Default Re: Kapex Saw Blade Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderwino View Post
If only all scientific research was conducted with your integrity...
Hear, Hear!
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 03:56 AM.