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In sawing applications, the pitch, and therefore the number of teeth for a given diameter is normally chosen on the basis of the number of teeth in contact with the workpiece. Too few teeth will limit production rates and possibly induce vibration. (A saw is usually noisiest as it enters and leaves the cut.)

A greater number of teeth means a smaller pitch and less chip space in the gullet. Therefore, too many teeth may lead to tooth clogging, commonly referred to as loading, and may result in tooth and saw breakage.

In friction sawing, since the feed rates per tooth are generally low and chip space is less of a problem, more teeth in contact with the workpiece is desirable in order to maximize production rates. The rule is generally 10 to 15 teeth in the saw cut depending on the application and saw blade diameter. Typically, pitches range from 0.25" to 0.500" (6 mm to 12 mm). Any values outside these limits should be questioned.

In hot sawing, since heat is already present, greater tooth loads are possible. But if the chip is too thick, excessive heat is transferred to the saw blade and tooth softening occurs rapidly. In general, 4 to 8 teeth should be in the cut for small to medium sections and 8 to 12 teeth for sawing large cross sections. Typically, pitches range from about 5/8" to 1-1/8" (16 mm to 28 mm), but finer pitches are found on continuous casters of thinner sections and, very occasionally, coarser pitches on very large ingots. Having determined the pitch from the above guidelines, the number of teeth in the blade is calculated from the formula:

Number of Teeth = (Diameter x Pi) / Pitch

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