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Help! My DeWalt 18v circular saw is performing very badly (broken?)!


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Hi there!

About a month ago, I bought a 5 pieces set of DeWalt Ni-Cad 18v tools. I took the set for a test drive to help my friend put up some drywall and roofing in his basement. The impact and hammer drills worked perfectly and the reciprocating saw was very useful with general demolition and cutting.

However, the first time I used my circular saw, I was underwhelmed by it's lack of performance. I used it on some regular 2x4 to cut small pieces and it worked decently for the first few cuts. After maybe 5 cuts, I couldn't even finish the next, as it was "rebounding" off the far edge. I would go through maybe 95% of the cut and then it would not go further. If I tried to push it through (gently), it would still get stuck.

I thought it might the battery, so I put in a new one straight from the charger (100%) and it did the same thing. It was the original blade that came with the saw, so I thought it might be the blade that was awful, so I changed it with my friend's 50$ Diablo with much more teeth. It went trough without any problems, So we chalked it to a crappy blade. He gave me his Ridgid starter blade until I bought a better one.

Today, I was cutting 1x3 lumber and the same thing happened with the Ridgid blade. 3rd or 4th cut and it won't go through. Both times the blades were getting really hot. Keep in mind that these lumber were easily cut with the recip. and jigsaw from the same set. Both who happened to have upgraded blades.

Is there something I'm doing wrong? I know 18v ain't supposed to have the performance of a corded one, but I'd expect it to be able to cut a 1x3 properly... I don't mind buying a new, more expensive blade, but if I'm scrapping blades, I'd wait to solve the problem before doing so.

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Sounds like your material is "pinching" the blade. That is why your blade is getting hot as well. The blade that came with the saw will rip through anything, if you use the saw/have the material placed correctly.

Also, if your friend is paying $50 for a 6.5" blade, he is getting beyond ripped off! Diablo's in that size shouldn't be more that $18 on the high side.

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I come from Canada, land of the overpriced stuff. It's sad, but it's not uncommon to pay 25$ and up for a 6 1/2 blade of a known brand. I went to buy some wood at the home depot earlier today and I can attest there was one priced 44$ and several in the 25$-35$ range. Somebody forgot to tell retailers our dollar are near 1-1, because they have the same prices scheme as when it was 0.60 to 1$...

Anyway, I knew I was most likely doing something wrong (I'm a complete amateur), but I just had no idea what. I googled this wood pinching stuff and I came back with kerf size, splitter thickness and other stuff I don't understand. I did read about the importance of proper support and how a lack of it would make the wood press on the blade and halt it. It should go much better now.

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