Most saw blades don’t have the strength to chew through the compressed particle board that has become so common in construction. DeWalt and Bosch’s new blades, however, have extra teeth to grab the faux wood ahead of the cutting edge and literally pull the blade forward. The result: a more controllable slice that’s easier on workers’ arms.
As the DeWalt blade (left) works its way through cuts, eight resin-filled slots absorb the vibration that’s usually transferred to the arm of the person holding it. To help the blade glide easily across rough materials, DeWalt glazes the blade’s teeth with a Teflon-like coating.
DeWalt Precision Framing Blade: $10
The Daredevil’s cutting edges (right) also have a nonstick coating to inhibit friction. Meanwhile, Bosch reinforced its 7.25-inch steel blade with manganese, an element that slightly raises the metal’s melting point so that it won’t warp and wobble during long cutting sessions.
Bosch Daredevil Framing Blade: $10
We tested the blades on the same 15-amp heavy-duty circular saw. First we made 71 eight-foot cuts through a 2.5-inch-thick stack of plywood with each blade. After neither one so much as flinched, we pushed them through two layers of asphalt shingles sandwiched between two-inch-thick pressure-treated boards interlaced with 15-gauge nails.
The Bosch blade was harder to hold steady than the DeWalt, making it difficult to follow the cut line or guide it back if it wandered off. As for staying power, after chewing through three football fields’ worth of plywood, the DeWalt made it through another 54 feet of shingle sandwich before getting stuck; the Bosch quit after 30 feet.
WINNER: DeWalt Precision Framing Blade
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.