Over time, technology has rapidly brought forth the best of equipment forged to help humans overcome and surmount his greatest challenge encountered in asphalt cutting blade.
Asphalt is a naturally occurring mineral resource or a refined product as the case may be. It is an averagely hard mineral material famous for its use in road construction and other similar functions. However, as a user of Asphalt, you must understand that cutting a sizeable portion of asphalt concrete requires an adequate understanding of the suitable cutting tool. You must also understand the techniques that are essential to prevent damage to this asphalt cutting blade.
Figure 1: Asphalt cutting using a Asphalt Cutting Blade
Table of Contents
- 1.What to do in the face of expanded Asphalt
- 2. Make sure the cutting area is clean
- 3. Asphalt Cutting Blade- Use plenty of water (wet-cutting)
- 4.Sink into the cutting area slowly
- 5.Run the blade back to expose cut
- 6.Make theAsphalt Cutting Blade at full speed RPM
- 7.Getting your cable into the Asphalt
1.What to do in the face of expanded Asphalt
Asphalt, as a civil works construction material, is exposed to the direct rays of the sunlight. The road is a good conductor of heat. If you have ever tried walking barefooted on an asphalt-coated walkway, then you can testify to its conducting ability. According to available statistics, Asphalt’s temperature can rise to 170 degrees under the intense heat of the sun. The alternate heating and cooling of Asphalt during the day and night, respectively, also largely contribute to the inelastic expansion of Asphalt.
Due to Asphalt being softer than concrete, the diamond saw blade used should be the hard-bonded type as against the soft-bonded. This diamond asphalt cutting blade has a hard-bonded diamond around its edges, mainly because it ensures a clean cut of the marked portion. The harder asphalt cutting blade gives off grit quickly and cuts accurately.
Another approach to solving this problem of expanded Asphalt is to run the cutting saw backward such that the diamond saw blade climbs out of the cut.
Lastly, you can thoroughly coat the surface of the Asphalt with special sealant combined with unique antioxidants additive to ensure that sun rays do not dry out the moisture content of the Asphalt and cause cracks and expansion. This coating is appropriate once in two to three years.
Figure 2: An expanded portion of Asphalt on a road
2. Make sure the cutting area is clean
Cleaning is yet another important activity in asphalt cutting using a diamond saw blade. Before you begin cutting, make sure you clean dust, pebbles, debris, large rocks, and dirt that may be lying around the area of work. Clearing and Cleaning the area of interest, including the immediate surrounding environment, is primarily to avoid the cutting blade from being obstructed by them. This singular act eliminates all possible forms of work hazard surrounding the job.
The presence of this dirt and debris can damage your diamond saw blade and lower the quality of cuts.
Figure 3: Portion of an asphalt road cleaned of large and small rocks.Asphalt Cutting Blade
3. Asphalt Cutting Blade- Use plenty of water (wet-cutting)
Having established that a diamond saw blade suits Asphalt cutting operation and that asphalt cutting is usually a deep cut, then it becomes necessary to adopt wet-cutting.
The advantages of using wet-cutting are endless, but to mention a few, we have the following:
1.Water helps to reduce the temperature of the cutting lade due to the extreme friction that must have built up between the two surfaces.
2.Water removes dust and wash-off dust particles.
3.Cooling with water further increases the lifespan of the asphalt cutting.
Failure to use wet-cutting diamond cutting blades can lead to the following:
i.Extreme damage to the blade
ii.High risk of blade failure in service.
iii.Failure might lead to serious injury to the operator or passers-by.
Figure 4: Wet-cutting of Asphalt Cutting Blade
4.Sink into the cutting area slowly
Achieving a smooth cut is a mix of an operator’s patience, and the characteristics of the selected diamond saw blade used, such as TPI, hook angle, etc. Just like the famous saying” slow and steady wins the race,” so does it apply to asphalt cutting or any other material cutting.
Sinking is possible with the use of an asphalt cutting diamond blade with higher TPI and slower feed rate. A slow feed rate gently helps you to achieve your desired aim accurately, lower/entirely strike-out the possibility of an accident happening during cutting. Going too fast into the cutting area would only leave you with a roughly cut surface eventually.
Figure 5: Gradual asphalt cutting using a Asphalt Cutting Blade.
5.Run the blade back to expose cut
This phenomenon is attributable to the angle of teeth. Backward leaned teeth are generally known to have a negative hook angle. Backward tipped blades are unique because they climb out of the cut. Whenever you run your blade back, it enables you to see your cutting path and avoid possible mistakes. Running the asphalt cutting using a low or negative hook angle blade produces a smooth and clean-cut, although it is slower.
The backward leaned blade tends to help avoid self-feeding of the material to be cut and is far safer to use than the forward-leaned blades. Whenever you use the backward leaned blade for cutting Asphalt, you are sure to have full control without fear of the blade getting stuck in the workpiece.
Figure 6: Set of various backward leaned Asphalt Cutting Blade
6.Make theAsphalt Cutting Blade at full speed RPM
The speed at which blades rotate due to the power supplied also creates a fast or slow cut. All manufactured saw usually has a specified limit of speed. It is best not to follow the manufacturer’s recommendation in running the cutting blade at the maximum speed. The manufacturer specified rotational speed indicated on the saw blade is the maximum allowable speed that is still considered safe.
When buying diamond saw blades, it is overly important to ensure that the maximum RPM of the blade is lesser than that of the mounting saw. The idea behind running the saw blade at full speed is to ensure that the asphalt cutting blade runs faster.
Another interesting fact about speed is that the diameter of the blade also matters. Large modules run at a slower pace while smaller leaves run at higher rates. The outer edge of a large blade runs faster than that of the short blade even at the same speed. For a typical asphalt cutting blade, the rate is usually around 5000 to 6000 RPM with a regular diameter of 7’ to 8’.
Asphalt cutting blades could be gear driven, belt-driven, or even driven by a direct motor, which all have a different implication on the final speed produced.
Generally, you need to know that the high speed of the diamond saw blade translates to the high impact of the diamond around the blade edges. If you want to run at high rpm, then make sure that the blade is of excellent quality.
In conclusion, there should be an agreement between cutting speed, the concentration of diamonds around the blade segment, and the type of bond existing between the synthetic diamond particles around the section.
Figure 7: Set of Asphalt Cutting Blade showing speed specification indicated.
7.Getting your cable into the Asphalt
Just in case you intend to run a cable through your asphalt-finished sidewalks, then you need to learn a thing or two about how to go about it to avoid making a mess of it. For this purpose, you need to ensure you do the following;
1.Get your asphalt cutting tool ready, the exact type of tool you need depends on the thickness of the asphalt concrete.
2.Mark out the area that is equivalent to the diameter of the cable you intend to pass through using aa chalk.
3.Commence cutting by following the marked-out pattern.
4.In some cases, you might need a hammer and chisel to add some touches to the cut-out area.
5.Pass your desired cable through the gap opened.
6.Use a crack filler to close-up the gap after putting the wires in place.
For further assistance guidance on asphalt cutting for laying cables, you can watch this YouTube video.
Figure 8: Gap creation for cable laying.
Having understood the content of this article, you should have zero worries about asphalt cutting. Henceforth, asphalt cutting should be easy-peasy for you.
At NCCuttingtools, our range of services spans across all forms and types of saw blades to satisfy your cutting needs. Do not hesitate to contact us for your next cutting tool purchase as we would be more than willing to walk you through the selection process.