How to sharpen a circular saw blade by hand

One of the most important woodworking tools is a circular saw. However, by regularly using the tool, the blade will become blunt affecting the quality of your cuts. This is where you need to sharpen the blade to continue achieving a smooth cut. This will also help to increase the lifespan of the blade and you will not need to keep on replacing the blade.

Why do you need to sharpen a circular saw blade?

Should you sharpen your circular saw or you should just buy a new blade when the one you are using becomes blunt? First, you need to realize that the circular saw blade doesn’t come cheap. This means it can be cost-effective to buy a new blade when the new one becomes blunt.

By sharpening your blade well, it will become as good as new. It will provide you with an extended lifespan.  It’s possible to sharpen any circular saw with a carbide tip and steel blade.  The good news is that the majority of circular saws in the market today have a carbide tip.

How to sharpen a circular saw blade by hand

How many times should you sharpen your circular saw?

The number of times you can sharpen will depend on the blade type. Some can be sharpened many times for up to 3 years. However, some blades cant be sharpened as they are of poor quality. These need a complete replacement.

How do you tell if the circular saw blade is dull?

There are several factors that you will show that the blade to your corded or cordless circular saw is blunt. These include:

  • Slow progression and turning of the blade
  • Sudden generation of the saw
  • Unusual vibration of the circular saw
  • Frayed or poorer cut
  • Production of fine sawdust
  • Charred interfaces

There will also be evidence of broken teeth. This often happens as a result of the circular saw blade hitting metallic objects such as nails. If the saw has only gotten blunt, you may want to consider re-sharpening it.

How to sharpen the circular saw by hand

To ensure that your circular saw is always in top condition, you should understand how to sharpen it. This will help to improve how it works.  You can use a calibrated machine to sharpen your saw. However, this method can be expensive due to the cost associated with the machine.

The other option is to sharpen the saw by hand. This method is economical as it is cheap and easy to use. With this method, you sharpen the circular saw using a chisel. Here are the steps involved in sharpening the circular saw by hand.

Tools needed

  • A triangular file
  • A pencil to mark
  • Piece of spanner or wrench
  • The dull blade that requires sharpening

How to sharpen a circular saw blade by hand

Circular saw sharpening procedure

These are the steps you need to follow when sharpening a circular saw by hand.

  1. First, ensure that it’s not plugged into a power source. If the saw is powered by a battery, remove the battery.
  2. Remove the blade using a wrench or spanner. Ensure that you are using the recommended wrench depending on the saw specs. Put the blade on a vice.
  3. Mark a part of the teeth where you plan to begin. Ensure that this tooth is marked and you understand that this is where you should begin to sharpen your saw. It will also be the endpoint.
  4. Place the triangular file in the space under the marked foot. Ensure that the file remains perpendicular to the blade as the file won’t fit well.
  5. Change the sharpening angle of the circular blade until you get the angle that will allow you to sharpen as needed. The best angle is when the file is horizontal and has been aligning at a particular angle.
  6. You should file the face of the tooth 4 times in horizontal strokes. Avoid applying a lot of pressure on the tooth. Just press them slightly.
  7. When the file is well placed, it will be easier to sharpen. Keep moving from one tooth to the other while skipping one. This is important as the title teeth are what you will skip. You will sharpen the skipped tooth when you turn the saw to the other side.
  8. Repeat process four to six on the second tooth and for all the other teeth titled at the same angle as the tooth you marked with a pencil.
  9. Keep sharpening until you get to the tooth that you marked with the pencil
  10. Remove the blade and rotate it at 180 degrees before putting it on the vice. This will help sharpen the teeth that were titled in the opposite direction. Mark one of the teeth and repeat the process four to nine.

Final thoughts

If you need some good quality cuts, you will want to resharpen your circular saw.  With regular use, the blade will get dull. A blunt blade will also overburden the motor leading to its lower lifespan.  If you find that the motor and the blade are becoming noisy, it can also be an indication of a blunt blade. You can follow the above steps to sharpen your circular saw by hand. If you find it hard, you can contact a professional.

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