Chop Saw/Circuit Breaker Question

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Ken Scharabok, May 9, 2004.

  1. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

    Messages:
    6,844
    Joined:
    May 11, 2002
    I use my 14" DeWalt chopsaw frequently. I am use to it not being able to cut through, say 1" mild steel, without popping the circuit breaker, but it seems to be happening even with small size stock now. Saw is 15 amp. I don't see the watts anywhere.

    It is a 20 amp circuit breaker. Could it be going bad?

    Could it indicate the brushes in the saw itself are going bad?

    Please keep replies simple to understand. I am not a techie.

    Ken S. in WC TN
     
  2. mikell

    mikell Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    932
    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2002
    Location:
    South West MI
    A new breaker would probably be about 5$ and easier to find than the brushes for starters. Yes breakers go bad after being tripped or used as switches. Some are made for it but not all. Brushes are simple to replace but usually take alot of time to go bad. The old 6 of one a half dozen of the other. Tried a different circut and no extension cord??


    mikell
     

  3. Oregonsparkie

    Oregonsparkie Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    386
    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2003
    Location:
    Hermiston,Oregon
    You might also try tighting up the screws on the receptical and breaker. I slightly loose connection can do this also.
     
  4. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,264
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2003
    Location:
    Whiskey Flats(Ft. Worth) , Tx
    .....................Ken, breakers can and DO lose their sensitivity after multiple shutdown cycles. Another problem that can occur with the blade is that if you happen to get it dirty\greasy etc., it Will Not cut. I use to cut alot of oilfield pipe which can have small deposits of parrafin\wax present and it would coat the blade and subsequentially quit cutting altogether. Your motor may need a new set of brushes , ...fordy.. :)
     
  5. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

    Messages:
    6,844
    Joined:
    May 11, 2002
    OK, I have lots of 20 amp breakers I can switch out in the box. Is a 20 amp correct for this tool?

    I have noticed on the blade sometimes it seems to stop cutting. If I push down hard for a second, it will start cutting again. Apparently this is burning off some built up coating?

    Ken S. in WC TN
     
  6. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,264
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2003
    Location:
    Whiskey Flats(Ft. Worth) , Tx
    ...................ken, If , you push "Hard" and the blade doesn't cut, it maybe a futile effort and the blade maybe dysfunctional , i.e. new blade. Also, besure and check the Bolt holding the blade on as they can come loose if they wer not snugly tightened . A 20 amp fuse should work with no problem. One more thing to check........If there are OTHER loads on this particular circuit that are pulling on that 20 amp breaker maybe causing it too pop. You might want to turn them OFF till your thru cutting ...fordy.. :)
     
  7. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

    Messages:
    10,854
    Joined:
    May 22, 2003
    Location:
    Zone 7
    ken, at 15 amps on 120 volts the unit is already making 2.4 HP. If you are forcing it to cut, the HP is rising to where it is kicking the breaker. A characteristic of an electric mototr is that it will attempt to make the HP required for the task. It will do that until the task is met or until the motor burns out from overheating. In your case the breaker may be protecting the tool. Try to mount a weight on the tool handle to load the blade consistently and below the 20 amp draw. This should give a continuous infeed load and not exert additional operator frustration when the cut slows. :)
     
  8. desnri

    desnri Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    128
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2003
    Location:
    Texas
    Ken, don't push down too hard on the handle, this will trip a breaker. An extension cord under 100' length with 12/3 wire is safe. I also use 14" Dewalt chop saw. Another idea for cutting is to intermittently apply pressure and let off. More than likely your problem is that you hold too much pressure on the handle. Been there, done that, this should work. Des.
     
  9. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

    Messages:
    6,844
    Joined:
    May 11, 2002
    Used two solutions.

    1. Replaced the circuit breaker. That really seemed to help.

    2. Bought a metal band saw from Northern Tools. Really does nice work and seems to be well built. Nice to be able to handle something cut without having to cool it first and almost no metal edge clean-up. Can do up to a 45 degree cut and can be put upright. Made in Taiwan, which still makes pretty good tools. However, a lot of Northern Tools are made in China and I don't think much of them.

    The band saw also makes far less mess in the shop. Chop saw dust can get anywhere.

    Thank you for the prior advice.

    Ken S. in WC TN
     
  10. ChuckinVA

    ChuckinVA Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    167
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Location:
    Virginia
    Ken,

    Just a note about the circuit breaker change out. The breaker is designed to protect the wire ie a 15 amp breaker protects 14 guage wire, a 20 amp breaker protects 12 guage wire. If your wire size is 14 guage,I would put the circuit back on a 15 amp breaker to be safe.

    Regards,
     
  11. That could be the original problem - too light a wire or too long of a poor quality extension cord can pop the breakers on a high-draw device like this. Line losses get too high.

    --->Paul