Cold Saws vs. Band Saws: What’s the Difference?

If you’re in the market for a saw, it’s important to know what your options are. Different types of saws have different uses and knowing which one is right for the job at hand is an incredibly important part of making sure that job gets done quickly and correctly. In particular, understanding the difference between cold saws and band saws – two of the most popular and most used types of saws – will help make sure that you are using the right tools for the task at hand.

Cold saw vs band saw

Cold saw vs band saw

Cold Saw or Band Saw?

To quickly sum up the difference between these two types of saws, it’s easiest to say that band saws are more versatile and can cut a wider variety of materials and volumes, whereas cold saws create a cleaner and more accurate cut. There are other differences (which we will go into below), but this difference is the most basic and the best place to start in understanding what sets them apart.

While band saws can cut a wider variety of materials, using one will leave a burr on the edges of whatever surface it is that is being cut. On the other hand, cuts made with cold saws are cleaner (leaving smoother edges) and tend to be more accurate.

Another crucial difference between the two is that band saw blades are disposable, and cannot be sharpened after they become dull. When a band saw blade has reached the end of its life, it should be discarded and replaced. Once a cold saw blade becomes dull, however, it can be sharpened. Cold saw blades can be sharpened between 30 to 40 times before the blade becomes too small to be used effectively, at which point it will have to be replaced.

Accuracy vs. Versatility

Because band saws don’t require as much expertise or scientific understanding to use, they tend to be more popular with beginners and for tasks that don’t require a high level of accuracy or mechanical specialization. Despite being easier to use, however, correct use of a band saw still requires using the right blade for the task at hand. Using blades with the wrong teeth per inch will either damage the material being cut or strip the teeth from the blade.

Cold saws, on the other hand, are popular with metal fabricators and other tradesmen that need a combination of precise handling with horsepower and torque. When using a cold saw, having a firm understanding of factors like chip load, blade teeth per inch, and rotations per minute are incredibly important; failure to understand all the factors will result in a botched job at best, and broken equipment or personal injury at worst.

Band saw or cold saw

Band saw or cold saw

Looking for quality saws, milling equipment, and other machinery? Quantum Machinery Group has a wide array of machine lines for jobs big and small, simple or complex. Find out more by speaking to one of our Sales Engineers today by calling 909-476-8007.