16.5″ Q-Drive Blades and the Materials They CutSarah Hurtado
We wanted to spend a little bit of time and talk about the different 16.5″ Q-Drive blades we have for the IQMS362.
The iQMS362 comes with this black blade as the standard; we call it our combo blade. This blade was designed to really to cut just what it sounds like, a combination of material. This is the blade we first developed. Cutting lots of different types of material – primarily concrete products, cinder block type products, pavers. We did tons of testing with pavers and this blade proved to be really successful. As we released the 362, started getting out in the marketplace, we were finding that there’s pockets in North America where that blade wasn’t performing as well.
And so we developed this gray blade, which is our hard material one (HM1) blade. And then we have our orange blade, which is the hard material two (HM2). Let’s talk about the differences in those. The hard material one blade was really developed to cut hard brick. For example, here’s some brick out of Ohio, different bricks from around the country. The segment on the HM1 blade was designed for cutting more smaller products that are hard, and clay products that are very hard. That is why we recommend the gray blade or hard material one blade for hard brick.
However, even though we may recommend a specific blade, you need to test different things for the products in your market and on your job site. If you start thinking about the differences in material out there, there’s tens of thousands of different things to cut out there. So not… One blade cannot cut it all. So you have to find the right blade to match it with the material to your machine and horsepower and RPM. That’s what we’ve tried to do as best as possible with the our extensive testing here at IQ.
The next blade we can talk about is the HM2, the hard material two blade. And this works really well for larger products and even harder materials from different parts of the country. For example, up in the Northwest, they have some very hard aggregate. This is a particular paver from the Northwest that we were having trouble cutting with the original combo blade. So this [HM2] blade was really designed for that material. Here is some material, you may call it blue stone or it may be called something different in your region. But again, a very hard material, with larger pieces. The HM2 would be a good blade for that application.
We are constantly developing blades. We’re doing testing with our tile saw blades and doing testing with our 16.5 inch blades. This is one of the blades we’re currently in the final stages of development. It’s doing really well. It’s an M segment blade. We are trying to develop something that does well with our hardest of the hard materials. We have tested using some old precast, concrete products, as well as some brutally hard black granite. But you’ll be learning more about this blade in the future as we finish up the testing and roll it out and show you guys what it’s made for and what it’ll be successful with.
Blade development has been really tough because the iQMS362 is limited by AMPS; that’s our limiting factor. In the best case scenario, we have 20 amps. You want the blade to cut as best as possible with 20 amps. And honestly, when you start getting and cutting this type of material, some really large format concrete products, 20 amps is really on the low side. If you start looking at machines out there that are running gas powered, 10, 13 horsepower machines to cut this type of stuff. And we’re trying to do it with relatively a small amount of energy. So that’s why the development of these blades is real critical. The blades are designed specifically to be used with the iQMS362 as an entire system. We’ve tried to do as much as possible with the electrical supply that we have.
Lastly, one of the things we’d like to show you is what you can expect and what you should be seeing with a blade, if it’s the right blade for the material.
So here is an image of two combo blades. You can compare the segments that are left here on the older blade to the segments from new blade. The older blade still has a little bit of life left to it, but it’s almost done. This is what we would say was a successful blade, it has been cutting the right material because it’s wearing well. You’re getting your money’s worth and your value out of this blade. That’s when you really should expect the type of wear for any blades that you’re using. And that goes for dry or wet blades. You should be able to wear out the segments.
Thanks for reading our quick overview of the blades we currently have available. Keep in mind we do have other blades for the 362 that are coming soon. We’re currently testing a new porcelain blade designed to for cutting 20 millimeter porcelain.
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