Many people are starting to build their decks all by themselves. But there are a few challenges. One of which is cutting the composite decking. Composite decking, also called wood-composite decking, is not the same as wood. They are denser and more durable. Because of this, many people wonder how to cut them. Will you need a special blade to cut your composite decking boards? What other tools will you need to build one for yourself?
Different Types of Saw Blades
There are a few different types of saw blades you can use. For composite decking, you may need to use a specific type of saw blade depending on the results you are after. For this reason, you may want to get your hands on special blades before you even start your deck project. What are some different types of saw blades? And which one should you use?
One way to classify saw blades is their tooth count. Depending on how much teeth a saw blade has, it will produce various cuts and be used for different materials. In general, the more the teeth a saw blade has, the smoother the cuts are. How it does mean it will cut slower. On the other hand, the fewer the number of teeth, the more material it removes but can cut faster.
Another important factor in choosing a saw blade is its tooth angle, also known as the hook. It refers to the angle of the teeth in regards to the saw blade’s centre line. There are two types of angles, positive and negative. Positive-angled saw blades have teeth leaning forward towards the rotation of the blade, whereas negative-angled saw blades have teeth angled leaning opposite of the direction of the rotation.
Lastly, there are different styles of tooth styles. Some of the types include square type, alternate top bevel, and triple chip. Each has its different purposes, namely for ripping, crosscutting, and precision cutting respectively.
What Type of Saw Blade to Use
When starting a composite decking project, you may need to cut multiple decking boards at a faster rate without compromising accuracy. For this purpose, you may need to use mitre saws, mitre blades, and circular saws. But what type of saw blade should you use? For fast and efficient cutting, you’ll want to get a medium-duty blade. A saw with medium tooth count will work well for this purpose.
For later steps of installing a composite deck, you may need to do more precise cuts. More so if you are working to create unique decking layouts. You will also need more detailed cuts for stairs and other accessories for the deck. In this case, you will need a saw blade with more teeth.
Another thing that you might need to do is to do crosscuts on your decking boards. Crosscutting is the process of sawing the boards along the grains. By using crosscut saw blades, you can produce smooth cuts without splintering or tearing the boards. It’s especially useful if you plan on using grain textured composite decking boards.
Always Follow the Instructions
Of course, not all composite decking boards are the same. What applies to one may not apply to the others. So when deciding to cut composite decking, it’s best to follow any instructions, guides, and manuals supplied to you by the boards’ manufacturers. They can tell you whether you will need a special blade or not. Even if they don’t tell you exactly which one to get, you’ll have a good idea on what type to use.
In general, most types of blades will work for composite decking. But if you want faster cutting, you may use saw blades with medium to high teeth count. The more the teeth, the more accurate and smooth the cuts are. Lastly, you can use special crosscut blades if you plan to saw boards along the grains.