In the world of metal fabrication, one of the most convenient pieces of equipment is a cold saw—a circular saw that doesn’t create any heat, sparks, or dust. When sheet metal needs to be cut quickly and at a high rate of production, cold saws are especially valuable for their safety and ease of handling.
Cold saws can be made from a variety of metals, some ferrous and some non-ferrous. In this post, we’ll explore the differences between the two types of blades and what kinds of materials are best used with each type.
What’s the Difference?
The terms “ferrous” and “non-ferrous” refer to the iron content in the saw blade. A ferrous saw is one that contains iron, while a non-ferrous saw does not contain iron.
Commonly-used ferrous materials include metals like carbon steel, alloy steel, and (of course) cast or wrought iron. Because of the iron content, ferrous metals are generally vulnerable to rust, with the exception of wrought iron and stainless steel.
Common non-ferrous metals include aluminum, lead, zinc, tin, gold, silver, and copper. Because there is no iron in non-ferrous metals, they are particularly resistant to rust and often used for outdoor objects like signs, gutters, roofing, etc. They are also non-magnetic as a result of their lack of iron, which makes them valuable for various electrical/electronic uses.
Ferrous vs. Non-Ferrous Cold Saws: Uses and Benefits
When it comes to the use of the cold saw, the primary difference between the two blade types is the kinds of metal it can cut. Ferrous cold saws are capable of cutting both ferrous and non-ferrous metals, while non-ferrous saws can only cut non-ferrous metals. Because non-ferrous metal is softer than ferrous metal, non-ferrous blades are typically used for soft metal applications like cutting aluminum.
The benefit of both types of cold saws, of course, is that the cutting can be done without transferring heat energy into the metal, allowing for safer, easier handling. Plus, cold saws don’t create dangerous sparks or a metal burr. Cold saws also create less discoloration on the metal itself. If the saw uses a flood coolant system to cool and lubricate the blade teeth, it may even prevent discoloration entirely.
Get High-Quality Metalworking Equipment from Quantum Machinery Group
With over 150 years of combined experience and more than 760 models of machinery available, Quantum Machinery Group is your source for top-quality metalworking equipment at great prices. Whether you’re looking for a cold saw, band saw, roll bender, or another machine, our expert staff can help you find exactly what you need to get the job done right.
As a leading supplier of metalworking equipment in the United States, Quantum Machinery Group is ready to help your business take its production to the next level. To learn more about our machinery models and convenient financing options, call one of our sales engineers today at (909) 476-8007.