Choosing the right bandsaw blades and bandknives is essential for precise and efficient cutting of various products such as meat, fish, bacon, pizza toppings, bread, and bakery items. This comprehensive guide will provide you with valuable insights into different blade configurations and their suitability for specific applications. Experimenting with different options can help you find the perfect blade for your needs and improve the quality of your products.
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Blade thickness is often overlooked but plays a vital role. Thinner blades create less bone dust but break more easily, while thicker blades generate more waste but have better durability. The standard thickness is typically 0.20" (0.50mm), but options range from 0.16" (0.40mm) to 0.24" (0.60mm).
Length and Width:
The length and width of the blades are determined by the machine manufacturer, offering limited choices. Width commonly ranges from 1/2" (12.5mm) to 1" (25mm), with 5/8" (16mm) being the most common.
Meat, Fish, and Bones:
The blade configuration is crucial for meat, fish, and bone cutting. Here are some options to consider:
- 2 Teeth Per Inch (TPI) or 2 Skip: Suitable for extra-deep frozen fish or large fish blocks like tuna, marlin, and swordfish.
- 3 TPI or 3 Skip: Commonly used for cutting frozen meat and fish in abattoirs.
- 4 TPI or 4 Skip: The most commonly used blade for cutting bone and proven for cow's feet.
- 6 TPI or 6 Skip: Less commonly used but suitable for fresh meat with small bones like poultry.
- 10 SPS or Carcass Splitting: Widely used in abattoirs, this blade features small teeth between big teeth for cleaner cutting, preventing debris build-up.
Slicing Bacon, Pizza Toppings, Bakery Products:
For slicing bacon, pizza toppings, and bakery products, specific bandknives are available. These blades have two bevels on one side and one on the other. The cutting angle can be customized for smooth or toothed options, with micro teeth for extra sharpness and longevity.
Filleting, Skinning, and Slicing:
Bandknives are also designed for delicate operations such as filleting, skinning, and slicing. The concave blade is excellent for processing fish, sausage, vegetables, and cheese, while the convex blade is perfect for chicken and poultry. Discussing your specific needs with your supplier can help find the right solution.
For bread slicing, specialized bandsaw blades are required. Unlike traditional bandsaws, bread slicing blades have minimal tolerance. It's crucial to work with a knowledgeable supplier who understands the intricacies of bread slicing. Customized solutions, including geometry, steel choice, and blade hardness, are available. Four standard types of blades are commonly used:
- Sharp Concave (Traditional): Ideal for soft crust and soft crumb bread.
- Sharp Concave MX (Traditional): Suitable for soft and high-fiber bread with a dense crumb.
- Sharp BW4 (Patented): Designed for hard crust and dense crumb bread.
- Sharp BW3 (Patented): Intended for soft crust and soft crumb bread.
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