How to Use a Chop Saw for Fast, Accurate, Efficient Cuts

How to use a chop saw

Chop saws often called metal cutting saws, are ideal for small, precise straight cuts on different kinds of materials. These types of saws are very much popular in metal workshops. But these saws can be used for other purposes also like woodworking, decking, molding, etc.

Chop saws make your work more efficient, thus save your time and energy if you know how to use a chop saw properly. For example, there is a great chance of being misused on the saw blade. And so you have to notice the RPM of the blade along with the position of cutting.

But how would you know that the blade is being wasted? Very simple! If you see that only dust is coming from the blade, no sparks, immediately stop the machine because you are then wasting the blade. By checking the speed of the blade and make the cutting position accurate you can have your desired cut.

How to use a chop saw: Step by step guide

Using a chop saw is a traditional process like using other circular saws. Position the material, start the machine, and last slowly take the blade down to the material to cut it. But it is challenging to make any fast and perfect cuts by using the chop saw efficiently.

Noting much complicated! We have some guidelines for your chop saw usage.

Step 1: Preparation

It is very important to check the saw condition and capability of cutting your selected materials before starting the cutting process. Install the right type of blade for the right materials to make a perfect cut. Also, check the power source if it is enough to run this powerful machine.

Step 2: Ensuring your safety

As this saw makes sparks, dirt, and debris, it is recommended to use eye protection with a face shield. For better protection, use gloves, earmuffs, long pants, and sleeved shirts, etc. if you want.

Step 3: Set the saw

The chop saw is basically for cutting metals and it will keep you working usually for a longer time on the ground. So use any flat and solid base like any wooden surface or metal surface under the saw.

Always set the saw at the upright position. Adjust the fence according to the shape of the material. It will help you to have the perfect straight cuts.

If you are working near any walls or windows then remember to safeguard them as sparks and debris are discharged continuously at high speeds to the rear of the saw as long as the saw runs.

Step 4: Mark your cuts first

Before starting the cutting, first mark on your materials to cut with any fine pencil or any sharp french chalk. Place the material on the saw. Put the blade down closest to the material and then clamp it with the fence to the saw. Or you may use any square scale to check the alignment of the mark and the blade.

Step 5: Run the saw

Finally, you are ready to make your cuts. Run the saw blade by pressing the on/off switch. The saw blade will start to spin in place. Hold your material piece with one hand and firmly lower the chop saw blade downward with the other hand.

Don’t force the blade aggressively against the material you are cutting. Let the saw do most of the work. You just need to guide the saw blade down through the material piece. Keep the blade down until it completely cuts through the material.

When the cut has been completed, pull the chop saw blade back to the upright. Turn off it and release your material from the clamp.

Keep the blades clean before you make another cut. There may dust inside the steel blade guard. You may hit the guard from the outside with a hammer to remove the dust.

Tips and Tricks

In case of heavy material that is hard to move, clamp it lightly, and adjust by tapping the end of the material with a hammer until it is aligned with the mark on the material.

  • It is recommended to change the damaged blade because it may cause vibration while running the saw that could damage the machine.
  • Use a square scale to align the blade face to the marked area on the material.
  • For angled steel, set it on the two edges, so there is no flat to cut through.

Safety tips while using a chop saw

  • Always use protective gear especially eye protection is highly recommended while using the metal cutting chop saw.
  • Cutoffs from the material can be very hot. Beware of not touching the drops at the moment of they fall off the saw.
  • Keep the materials flat on the saw.
  • Ensure that you are using the chop saw on solid ground.
  • Make sure the blade is installed perfectly and is tighten enough.
  • Keep your hand and fingers out of the way of the blade as you move the rotating blade down to cut.
  • Don’t cut any materials that your saw in not designed to cut through.

Basic Chop Saw Maintenance Tips

  • Examine the motor brush every-so-often to keep clean for better performance.
  • Clear the dust and grit from the main housing by using an air hose or any brush whenever the dirt is seen.
  • The damaged blade should be changed in proper time because a damaged blade can cause a heavy fatal to the whole machine.
  • Any repair if need it is recommended to go for any certified service center of any experienced shop.

Final Words

Using a chop saw is not difficult if you follow these steps. You will feel more comfortable and be able to make any perfect cuts by following these steps. Chop saws are amazing to the professionals as well as DIY’ers, thus also for you if you know how to properly use a chop saw.

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