Bosch Edge Reciprocating Saw Blade - Review
We think of recip saw blades the same way we think about tissues; one, two, if you're lucky three uses and it's in the trash. Or rather, they should be in the trash, but if you're like us, you've got a tool case filled with bent, toothless, stripped-out blades that you're convinced you can get just one more go out of (note: tissues, we throw out; recip saw blades, we tend to keep around).
Bosch has recently released a new blade called the Edge, specifically made for heavy metal cutting. According to the company, the Edge's teeth stay sharper longer, the blade is more resistant to heat, it cuts 20% faster, and it has a thicker body to make straighter cuts. We got a sample of the toughest of the three different Edge blades and were happy to put it to the test against its competitors.
And who were the competitors? We hopped down to the local lumber yard and picked up a pack of Lenox Demolition Fire & Rescue Blades as well as a Task Demolition and Heavy Metal Blade. The Lenox blade didn't specifically say heavy metal, but the whole 'Fire & Rescue' theme makes us think of mangled car doors being cut in half, so we figured that it would be a good blade for the test. It was also the toughest looking one they had in stock.
For recip saw blades, the only two questions we have are 1) can it cut the material at hand and 2) how long can it last? To test out the Edge, we went into the shop and found the rudest scrap of metal we have: 1/8" thick sheet stock of acid-etched steel. Last summer we had to cut a chunk out of it for a project and we vividly remember thinking that it might be the worst thing we've ever had to cut. Ever.
With the piece set up on blocks, we decided that the easiest way to test the blades was to give each of them two minutes on the brutal metal and see how they did and if they'd be up for more.
We had at it and the results of the test were pretty extreme. The Lenox cut a line about 7" long, most of which was done in the first minute. The second minute, the blade slowed considerably and even though no teeth were broken, they were dulled to the point of being useless. The Task blade fared much better on the cut, making it to the 11" mark, but at that point the blade was done. And when we say done, we mean it. The teeth on the blade were literally obliterated, from the nose all the way up to the recip saw guard. The blade was so trashed that it didn't even make it back into the tool case. We tossed it in a garbage can on the spot (a very rare occurrence).
But how about the Edge? Well, in the two minutes, the Edge cut all the way to the 17-1/4" mark and had there been no time constraint on the test, it would have kept going. Examining the blade after the fact, we found that two of the teeth had broken off around the center of the blade, the teeth up at the nose were showing wear but were intact, and the rear third hadn't even been touched yet. The blade still had a lot more life left in it. The test was a bit tough to photograph, but in the image, the tips of the blades are positioned at the end of the respective cuts.
We were very impressed with how the Edge made the competition look foolish and if, in the future, we ever need to cut metal, we're going straight for these blades. As far as price goes, it looks like the blades are a little more expensive than the competition. But that's just the price per pack. Is it really more expensive when one Edge blade does the work of two or three Lenox blades?
There is more information, video, and even a contest over at www.boschedge.com.
At Ohio Power Tools
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Posted by Doug Mahoney at February 13, 2009 5:35 AM