I recently had the opportunity to try out some of Lenox’s new titanium-treated, “Power Arc” bi-metal reciprocating saw blades in the metal shop. These blades, part of the Lenox “Gold” line, feature a curved blade, which Lenox claims “allow the blade to cut aggressively and more efficiently versus a straight blade.” I used them to cut some mild steel, copper pipe, polycarbonate and other materials, just to put them through their paces. So, is the Power Arc merely marketing gimmickry, or is Lenox on the cutting edge of new blade technology?
Reciprocating saw blades are one of those categories of products that are constantly being redesigned, and yet quite often still leave the user wanting. Manufacturers continually work to improve the blade life, but no matter what, they always seem to wear out faster than they should. Of course, it is because of the abuse that they take, both inherently from the nature of a recip saw, but also from the misuse that they can have heaped on them by impatient or overly aggressive users. Not that any Home Fixated readers would ever fall into that category! Here’s a quick video overview from Lenox:
I did my best to deal these bi-metal blades some abuse, but they did hold up well. The slight curve in the blade did seem to make the area out toward the tip of the blade cut more effectively. Also, they seemed to handle cutting at weird angles well. Overhead cuts and tight spaces can lead to mangled blades, but these did their job admirably from a variety of angles. Usually, I find that I end up with a lot of blades bouncing around the toolbox that are completely worn out near the foot of the saw, but basically untouched at the tip. The curve does seem to extend the effective cutting area, and seems to reduce the “grab” that can happen at the tip of other recip blades, leading to bent blades.
The gold titanium coating on the teeth of the blade does seem to make for a nice, clean cut, but I will need to burn through a few of these to really decide if they are worth the premium price. Their T2™ Technology and the precision applied titanium coating supposedly help to disperse heat – which certainly is a common reason that reciprocating saw blades wear out. However, a lot of other factors lead to blade failure. Laboratory conditions are not the same as in the field, obviously.
Despite my skepticism, I really do think that Lenox is on to something here. Where other companies have opted for a more aggressive saw tooth design, Lenox has kept a finer tooth with a slightly more aggressive blade shape. As an older guy who would rather let the blade do the work, I like that. I am happy to pay a little more for a blade, rather than having to lean into the saw and getting my teeth rattled. I’m tentatively going to give these “Lenox Gold Power-Arc” blades a big thumbs up. I hope that they catch on with tradesmen who recognize the value of a premium product. If you give them a shot, please let us know what your experience is with them.
You can find these in 6″, 8″, 9″ and 12″ sizes in both 5 and 25 blade packages, with costs ranging from $14 for a pack of five six inch blades to $148 for a pack of 25 twelve inch blades.