Diamond In The Rough: Choosing A Diamond Blade To Cut Your Concrete Patio
When you have to cut concrete, few things will get the job done like a diamond blade. They're durable, strong and can produce a clean cut even in hard materials like concrete. Before you run out and buy the first diamond blade you see for your patio shaping project, you'll want to understand what your options are and how they matter. Having the right blade will make a big difference in the finished product, so here are a few things to consider.
Type of Concrete
The type and size of the aggregate in the concrete can affect the blade that you use. For example, if your concrete has large chunks of aggregate mixed in, you're going to need a heavy-duty blade. The harder the blade, the more durable it will be against these particles in the concrete. If the concrete mixture contains smaller aggregate like pea gravel, on the other hand, you may not need as hard a blade to get the same quality cut.
The sand in your concrete also matters. Sharp sand mixtures are abrasive, and they can wear the blade down quickly if you don't choose a hard blade. Crushed sand is the sharpest, followed by river sand and fine granules.
Age of the Concrete
It's equally important to consider how old your concrete is before you choose a diamond blade. The greener the concrete mixture, the softer it's going to be. This makes it easier to cut without having to invest in an ultra-hard blade. To cut stylish edging into the concrete pad, you'll want to do it while the concrete is still green, that way it's soft enough for you to work with to get the precise look you want. By putting the edge pattern in before the concrete hardens, you'll have less chance of chipping or cracking.
When it comes to cutting concrete, there are two primary methods. Wet cutting uses a slurry or a steady application of water to keep the blade cool and minimize the amount of dust that ends up in the air. Dry cutting doesn't require the water or slurry mess, but it does introduce a lot of concrete dust.
Look for blades designed specifically for dry cutting if you opt for this route. These blades are welded specifically to dissipate heat so that you don't have dangerous heat buildup in the blade. Although you can use a dry cutting blade in wet cutting situations if necessary, you should never do the opposite. Wet cutting blades aren't designed to withstand the heat and friction, so they don't hold up to a dry cutting environment.
Before you tackle your concrete carving project, make sure that you're working with the right blade. With the tips presented here, you'll be able to narrow down your choices. For more information, contact a business such as Web Granite Supply.