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  #61  
Old Tue 24 June 2008, 23:20
hennie
Just call me: Hennie #23
 
Roodepoort JHB
South Africa
Jeff ,seems you like to have new toys in the workshop.
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  #62  
Old Tue 24 June 2008, 23:43
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffh View Post
So it sounds like the plan is:
1) Cut the rail to rough size with the saw // Only to save time or get another
tool in the shop. Wife'll love that...
2) Dress the rail to finished height with the grinder/shoe/trashcan setup.
3) Bevel the rail using the JR Skate assembly.

The saw really only saves time since I have to build the height shoe jig anyway. Hmmm....
Steps 1 and 2 have been successfully combined with the right cutting disc.

Moving the rail past a fixed grinder (trash can style) has not been proven for long heavy rails. The popular method is to put the rail down on a good bed and then move the grinder.

I am not convinced that a once-off MechMate justifies the purchase of a specialised steel cutting saw. My money will first go to a high-quality, high-power mini angle grinder and a 20-pack of Pferd disks/wheels.
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  #63  
Old Wed 25 June 2008, 00:26
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Another thing I quickly discovered about the steel saw......it litters/sprays little sharp steel chips. Which stick to your shoes and spread everywhere. Where they start rusting and make permanent stains. Even at my factory, I will be using it outside only. (on gravel or grass).
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  #64  
Old Wed 25 June 2008, 01:57
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
. . . . . and after 4 meters [12ft] of cutting, the Evolution died. Burn smell at end of motor. Will be repaired under warranty, but won't be used for further rail cutting.
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  #65  
Old Wed 25 June 2008, 03:07
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Service company called and informed that unit has thermal overload protection. Tried saw again, and now it works.
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  #66  
Old Wed 25 June 2008, 07:17
domino11
Just call me: Heath
 
Cornwall, Ontario
Canada
Gerald,
Yes works for now, but for how long if it keeps tripping the thermal overload?
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  #67  
Old Wed 25 June 2008, 07:32
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
The thermal overload on this Evolution looks like an after-thought. Not mentioned in the manual. Odd reset button "patched" in bottom of handle casing. Did push it more today, taking it much easier, and managed to trip it once more. If this thing wants to burn, it had better burn this week while their service guys are geared up to take it back.
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  #68  
Old Wed 25 June 2008, 16:12
jeffh
Just call me: Jeff #21
 
Bellingham WA
United States of America
Send a message via Yahoo to jeffh
Hmmmmmm.... That's not good news...

I did notice that there is a maximum recommended duty cycle for this saw
(which I did not see on any of the other saws) of 30 Minutes. Don't know
what that says about the quality but reading Gerald's report is not a resounding "Go buy it now" endorsement.

I do have other uses for a saw like this but... can't just go throwing a bunch
of money around on a whim.

OK Probably don't need to waste any more of people's time or bandwidth on this question. I'll just buck up and do it the "olde timey" way. (sweat, blood, tears, etc.)

Thanks everyone for the feedback!
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  #69  
Old Wed 25 June 2008, 23:22
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan_c View Post
Here is a link to the Evolution site, they seem identical to the steelmax.
After comparing the two brands in terms of spare parts illustrations, they are two totally different designers/producers. Also likely that they are of different qualities.

Neither brand mentions thermal overload switch in the trouble-shooting sections of their manuals. Steelmax does show their switch above the trigger. Evolution's switch is not mentioned/shown anywhere, but in real life sits below the trigger.

The cynic in me asks why this style of steel cutting saw is not being offered by the "big boys"....(Metabo, Makita, Fein, Bosch, Milwaukee, etc.)?
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  #70  
Old Thu 26 June 2008, 00:09
Alan_c
Just call me: Alan (#11)
 
Cape Town (Western Cape)
South Africa
Send a message via Skype™ to Alan_c
Makita is offering both a "Skil" saw type and bench cut off saw, models 4131 (Hand held model 1100w) and LC1230 (Cutt off 1750w) as listed in their september 2007 power tool catalogue. Speak to our friends at Power Tool Repairs for feedback if they have had any sales on these items. see here

Last edited by Alan_c; Thu 26 June 2008 at 00:17..
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  #71  
Old Thu 26 June 2008, 00:30
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Wish I had know that before buying Evolution. Makita is a brand that I am very happy with. Their local support is also excellent. That Makita 4131 is a no-frills saw....just the way I like it! The darn Evolution spits out its laser batteries when the going gets rough - the Makita has no laser. The Evolution's tilt adjustment screw comes loose (has plastic head) - the Makita has no tilt adjustment.
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  #72  
Old Thu 26 June 2008, 10:14
jeffh
Just call me: Jeff #21
 
Bellingham WA
United States of America
Send a message via Yahoo to jeffh
Milwaukee also has a Skil-type metal cutting saw that I've been eyeballing.

Milwaukee 6370-20 and 6370-21 (Not sure what the difference is, the specs look the same at a glance. Maybe just an update?)

Has an 8" blade with special teeth. Price is comparable (~$300 USD). I have
the same thoughts as you Gerald, I want a well known manufacturer that
I have had really good luck with in the past. Both Makita and Milwaukee
fit that bill.

We'll see. I have some time while my parts are being cut and bent so I'll stew
with this some more.

-
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  #73  
Old Thu 26 June 2008, 10:50
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffh View Post
Milwaukee 6370-20 and 6370-21 (Not sure what the difference is, the specs look the same at a glance. Maybe just an update?)
The -21 model includes a carry case.

Reading the Makita & Milwaukee literature, it is now clear that the blades are not TCT, they are CerMet (CeramicMetal), and it is now beginning to make sense. . . .
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  #74  
Old Fri 25 July 2008, 01:32
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Here is what I am going to experiment with, to even out the rails after cutting them down with a circular saw:


Uses the top plate from the bevel grinder skate. White is the grind disk, green is the current top plate, yellow is a new plate (couldn't design current bottom plate to be multi-purpose).

Not designed for cutting the rail with a thin disk. Designed for a thick disk to even out the rail after it has been cut by whatever method.
Attached Files
File Type: zip FlatSkate.zip (28.1 KB, 58 views)
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  #75  
Old Fri 25 July 2008, 02:39
Lex
Just call me: Johan #56
 
Empangeni KwaZuluNatal
South Africa
Good idea! No reason why it wouldn't work. I am looking forward to hear the results.
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  #76  
Old Wed 06 August 2008, 11:55
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Well, after a couple of mods, it does work. And it showed up how uneven the circular saw really was.


- Had to add a spacer between the two plates because the nut holding the grind disk fouled the rail

- A fine screw ajustment was essential

As others have learnt, one does have to incline the disk so that only its tip does the heavy cutting . . . . the flat face can be used for polishing only.
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  #77  
Old Wed 06 August 2008, 14:51
domino11
Just call me: Heath
 
Cornwall, Ontario
Canada
Gerald,
Your new grinder arrangement looks really interesting. Do you think you will replace the current design with this new one? Which configuration do you prefer?
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  #78  
Old Wed 06 August 2008, 17:50
smreish
Just call me: Sean - #5, 28, 58 and others
 
Orlando, Florida
United States of America
Heath,
I believe that this new accessory "flattens" the cut via a bottom reference bearing - something I wanted to do and LEKO and I spent hours discussing how to do cheaply and without having a mill.
This appears to be an easy and readily available part.

I see a new plate being added to the Mamba set soon.
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  #79  
Old Wed 06 August 2008, 21:17
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Yes Heath, as Sean said, this is a rig for grinding a flat top after sawing the rail down to height.

I underestimated the amount of tilt to be allowed to make the disk cut nicely, so some re-design is needed before it gets into the drawing set.
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  #80  
Old Thu 04 September 2008, 08:01
domino11
Just call me: Heath
 
Cornwall, Ontario
Canada
Gerald,
So did you use your metal saw to do all your rails and then the new attachment to finish flatten to exact height? Or did you revert to the old method with a cutoff disc? Just interested. I know from your previous posts you seemed unsatisfied with the circular saws results.
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  #81  
Old Thu 04 September 2008, 09:53
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
My previous rails were made on a milling machine. The cutoff disc was a demo to show that method could work (and has worked for others since).

I got one of my staff members to finish cutting all the rails down with the circular saw. Then I ground one rail to height with the modified skate shown above. That was a pain because the circular saw left some divots that were quite deep and the whole length of the rail had to be removed to repair the divot.

Re-investigated sending the cut down rails to a knife-grinder (Roemers) and was quoted $18/meter to take out the divots and put on the bevels. That price was accepted and 3 days later the job was done.
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  #82  
Old Mon 26 January 2009, 19:53
jhiggins7
Just call me: John #26
 
Hebron, Ohio
United States of America
Yesterday I cut the steel into manageable pieces so I could carry them to my backyard where the workshop is. Good thing I got them off the driveway and inside. It's raining today.

Rail ready to cut resize.jpg
Here, I've got the first piece of angle ready to cut-down.

Here's the Mikita Metal Cutting Saw with the jig I made to guide the cut. A little about the saw. It's the Makita 4131. When the discussion about Metal Cutting Saws was raging on the forum and the discussion turned to the Mikita saw, I happened to see it on Amazon for $140 with free shipping. I bought it. I'm afraid it's about twice that now.


I made a wider base. The one it came with was only about 4" wide. I made two guides to attach to the base. The one on the right in the picture is fixed and held with small clamps at 28 mm from the blade. The one on the left has springs between the guide nearest the blade and the fixed piece furthest from the blade. The springs help hold the fixed guide on the right tight against the steel. Good thing I used the springs and not just two fixed guides. The steel width varied nearly 1/8th inch.

The cutting went very well. It only takes about 5 minutes to cut the larger pieces. I cut them at 28.5 mm to allow for clean-up. After cutting them down, I used the belt sander to smooth them. It only took a lite sanding to get them smooth. I only took off less than .25 mm and they were smooth.


I'm sorry these pictures are a little fuzzy. I was trying to show the forum how the Metal Cutting Saw cut. I'm afraid I didn't do too well.
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  #83  
Old Mon 26 January 2009, 22:55
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Quote:
Originally Posted by jhiggins7 View Post
. . the Makita Metal Cutting Saw with the jig I made to guide the cut. . . . . I made a wider base. The one it came with was only about 4" wide. I made two guides to attach to the base. The one on the right in the picture is fixed and held with small clamps at 28 mm from the blade. The one on the left has springs between the guide nearest the blade and the fixed piece furthest from the blade. The springs help hold the fixed guide on the right tight against the steel. Good thing I used the springs and not just two fixed guides. The steel width varied nearly 1/8th inch..
You learnt a lot from us guinea pigs! I made the mistake of handing the saw and the rails (for 5 big tables) to one of my staff and told him to get on with it. At the end of the day he was wandering off the line. A spring loaded guide would have prevented that.
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  #84  
Old Tue 27 January 2009, 06:39
jhiggins7
Just call me: John #26
 
Hebron, Ohio
United States of America
To paraphrase Newton, (and this IS a loose paraphrasing), we who follow "stand on the shoulders of giants."

When I read about your experience, I started thinking about how to control the path of the saw. The jig is the result.

Regards,
John
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  #85  
Old Mon 23 February 2009, 08:26
revved_up
Just call me: Craig
 
Hartland, MI
United States of America
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerald D View Post
I am toying with the idea of importing some "Steelmax" blades to run on a modified "chopsaw". The correct speed will be observed. (If the Steelmax is so good, why isn't there a "chopsaw" version?).
I am thinking of buying this for my rails it is available on amazon.com for 110.00 for the tool and one blade but looking at the manufacter's website www.kwiktool.com they also have blades available for chopsaws. evoulution rage blades are also available for chopsaws in 10" size, I think that I read somewhere that the evoulution blades only fit their tools though because of the arbor size.
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