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Sawing/Cutting

Listen & learn

By Lauren Duensing

Above: The Xiphos carbide-tipped blade is designed to cut virtually any material and fit any 7¼-in. circular saw.

Solving problems is saw blade manufacturer’s specialty

October 2020 - The short version of Ernest Hemingway’s advice to a young writer included, “When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen.” The team at Sawblade.com takes listening seriously because many new ideas have sprouted from conversations with people who use the blades and related equipment.

The company’s products are all “made for us or by us,” Chris Luke, CEO of Sawblade.com, Houston, says. This direct involvement allows for a give-and-take with customers, providing them a better overall experience and lower cost. Instead of accolades, Luke often prefers to hear what customers think can be improved about the company’s products and services—everything from the blades themselves to the packaging they’re shipped in.

“For years, we put wheels in wooden crates to ship them out. Customers complained because the nailed-shut crates were too hard to open, so we switched to a patented corrugated box,” Luke says.

FFJ 1020 sawing image1

The Trajan Q1400 industrial carbide saw cuts without heat buildup for quick processing.

A blade for everything

Certain fab shops, like trailer manufacturers, cut a wide variety of materials, including “corrugated tin, angle iron, plate, and wood for the decking,” Luke says. For these customers, the company recently released “the Swiss army knife of blades”—the Xiphos, which fits any standard 71/4-in. circular saw. “It will cut wood, plastic, nail-embedded wood, angle iron and 3/16-in.-thick steel plate.”

Another new Sawblade.com product aimed at structural steel fabricators is the Qsaw 501 IC structural band saw blade, which addresses noise, a common customer complaint. It has a unique tooth design that is performs quieter cutting and prevents over-feeding and the resulting stripped teeth.

Luke also cites the Trajan Q1400 industrial carbide saw, a 14-in. dry cut metal saw that cuts without sparks, excessive noise, smell or heat buildup. Luke recalls a customer’s experience cutting angle iron for a cattle guard. “He cut it with an abrasive saw, threw it on the ground and the grass caught fire.” With this saw, that same customer can “cut the piece, put it down, weld it and be done.”

The Trajan Q1400 is four times faster than a bandsaw and is under $1,000, Luke continues. The customer who inspired this product “wanted a quick cut, inexpensive, and they didn’t want to burn their hand on the part after it was done because abrasive saws can both get the part incredibly hot and create a terrible burr—this does neither,” he says, so there’s no cooling, deburring or cleaning needed for parts before moving on to fit-up or painting. Users can achieve “a complete, workable finish.”

In addition to being able to handle metal projects in agricultural settings, the Trajan Q1400 saw is suited for the custom car and racecar industry.

Buy direct

In addition to blades, Sawblade.com sells parts for most major bandsaws and works with a paperless system that expedites orders. Ninety-five percent of customer orders go out the same day. “Even losing one day of productivity can have a drastic impact on a workshop,” Luke says.

“We sell blades. We sell machines. And we sell the parts for your machine. If you buy $2,000 a year in saw blades, you get a 20 percent discount on your parts, saving roughly $2,800 on average per year on replacement parts. And then we provide a video library that shows how to put on the parts, so you also save on labor.”

Sawblade.tv grew out of the company’s problem-solver mentality. “We have thousands of how-to videos,” Luke says, showing everything from how to install parts and properly set up saws to changing blades brushes or cutting specific materials.

“A lot of online companies think they can automate ordering,” but matching up material and size to a chart “doesn’t always tell the true story,” Luke says, noting that dynamics change if a customer is cutting on an old saw or if they are located in a warmer climate that requires a little more coolant. “We have a large call center to walk customers through their purchase.” There are a lot of intricacies “that you just can’t automate.”

Sawblade.com’s customer list is diverse, everything from aerospace manufacturers to ski resorts. “Primarily we sell to smaller shops that need good service and pricing. People use our blades to make everything from airplanes to national monuments.

“We’re trying to change industrial distribution,” Luke continues. “That is the end goal. We want people to go to a ‘buy-direct’ method. Buying direct makes the most sense.” FFJ

Sources

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Company Profiles

AIR FILTRATION

HYDRAULIC PRESSES

NESTING SOFTWARE

SERVICE CENTERS

Camfil APC - Equipment Beckwood Press Co. Metamation Inc. Admiral Steel
Camfil APC - Replacement Filters Triform

PLASMA TECHNOLOGY

Alliance Steel
Donaldson Company Inc.

LASER TECHNOLOGY

Messer Cutting Systems Inc.

SOFTWARE

BENDING/FOLDING

AMADA AMERICA, INC.

PLATE

Enmark Systems Inc.
MetalForming Inc. Mazak Optonics Corp. Peddinghaus Lantek Systems Inc.
RAS Systems LLC MC Machinery Systems Inc.

PLATE & ANGLE ROLLS

SigmaTEK Systems LLC

BEVELING

Murata Machinery, USA, Inc. Davi Inc. Striker Systems
Steelmax Tools LLC TRUMPF Inc.

PRESS BRAKE TOOLING

STAMPING/PRESSES

COIL PROCESSING

LINEAR POSITION SENSORS

Mate Precision Tooling AIDA-America Corp.
Bradbury Group MTS Sensors Rolleri USA

STEEL

Burghardt + Schmidt Group

MATERIAL HANDLING

PRESS BRAKES

Alliance Steel
Butech Bliss Fehr Warehouse Solutions Inc. AMADA AMERICA, INC.

TUBE & PIPE

Red Bud Industries UFP Industrial Automec Inc. BLM Group
Tishken

MEASUREMENT & QUALITY CONTROL

MC Machinery Systems Inc. Prudential Stainless & Alloys

CONVEYOR SYSTEMS

Advanced Gauging Technologies SafanDarley

WATERJET

Mayfran International

METAL FABRICATION MACHINERY

PUNCHING

Barton International

DEBURRING/FINISHING

Cincinnati Inc. Hougen Manufacturing Flow International Corporation
ATI Industrial Automation LVD Strippit

SAWING

Jet Edge Waterjet Systems
Lissmac Corp. Scotchman Industries Inc. Behringer Saws Inc.

WELDING

Osborn Trilogy Machinery Inc. DoALL Sawing American Weldquip
SuperMax Tools

METAL FORMING

HE&M Saw Strong Hand Tools
Timesavers FAGOR Arrasate USA Inc. Savage Saws T. J. Snow Company

 

MetalForming Inc.

 

 

 

MICROFINISHING TOOLS

 

 

 

Titan Tool Supply Inc.

 

 


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