Innovations in Masonry Saws
Power meets function as masonry saw designs continue to evolve, while meeting the requirements of OSHA’s recently enforced silica regulation.
By Jennifer Morrell
One might assume that the masonry industry was turned on its head upon the enforcement of OSHA’s Crystalline Silica Rule in September, but that assumption isn’t entirely correct. While mason contractors around the country are learning to take the steps necessary to comply with the new regulation, manufacturers are making that compliance a little smoother and easier.
Saw manufacturers have been in deep research and development of both saws and dust collection accessories for years, and they stand ready to offer what masons will now need on the jobsite.
In addition to answering the call of OSHA’s demands, saw manufacturers are offering power and more power – and much of it uncorded. And, as always, safety remains at atop manufacturers’ list of features when creating saws for the masonry industry.
Brian Delahaut, vice president for MK Diamond, says the company’s MK-5000 saws are loaded with countless safety and performance features. “The self-leveling blade guard provides optimum blade coverage for operator safety,” he says. “The cast aluminum cutting head provides lower decibel levels during cutting, and the spring-assisted cutting head allows for easier step cutting.”
Delahaut says MK Diamond’s cutting table runs on stainless steel rails for durability and accuracy, while built-in forklift brackets allow lift to approach from front, back or either side. Built-in tie-downs offer safer saw transport as well.
While all manufacturers are focused on safety, others turn their thought processes toward efficiency. SKILSAW offers a concrete cutting saw that can help advance jobsite productivity.
“With MEDUSAW, we built features into the tool so you don’t need a second person to hold a vacuum or water hose to collect the dust, or a third person to hold a board down onto the surface to make a straight cut.” says Gregg Mangialardi, SKILSAW product manager. Workers can cut concrete in a way that “creates jobsite efficiency and cost savings by combining all of the attachments of aftermarket products into a single, dedicated tool,” he says.
Pro Masonry Guide rounded up a few of the latest and greatest new and innovative masonry saws and accessories to show you what’s available now.
iQ PC912 Power Cutter with Integrated Dust Collection
The iQ PC912 Power Cutter has an Integrated Dust Collection system and uses no water, for 100 percent dry cutting. The cutter collects up to 90 percent of dust, eliminates dust cleanup and solves the problems associated with wet cutting. The iQPC912 can save the user thousands of dollars as cleanup pay can add up quickly. Blowing dust onto houses, cars and landscapes makes unhappy customers and can cost you future business, and this problem is eliminated as well. The cutter is tough, built for professionals and designed to last. With basic care and maintenance, this masonry saw will last for years. IQPowerTools.com
STIHL TS 440 Cutquik
The TS 440 Cutquik cut-off machine is designed for challenging cuts such as the bottom portions of walls, cutting in corners and cutting the underside of in-ground pipes. The expanded guard adjustability is made possible by the sensor-activated STIHL Quickstop wheel brake technology, which stops the rotation of the cutting wheel in fractions of a second if kickback occurs. All STIHL abrasive cutting solutions are designed with an integrated water system for dust suppression. StihlUSA.com
Makita Cutting Solutions
Makita offers concrete and masonry saws with efficient dust management, even when working away from a water source. Makita’s power cutter line-up includes the 14″ 61 cc Power Cutter, which weighs 19 pounds. The 14-inch 75.6cc MM4 4-Stroke Engine Power Cutter requires no fuel mixing and offers fast starts, low noise and low vibration. The Power Cutter Dolly has three wheels and includes a 4.2-gallon tank and adjustable handle. MakitaTools.com
SKILSAW Worm Drive Saw
SKILSAW offers an integrated worm drive saw designed to score and cut concrete. The saw delivers a complete concrete cutting system with SKILSAW worm drive power and durability. It’s engineered with an integrated wet/dry dust management system to control dust, allowing for cleaner cuts, and GFCI protection. Both features extend the life of the saw and protect the user.
MEDUSAW features a Cut-Ready adjustable plunge lock that allows users to quickly and accurately set and make consistent plunge cuts. MEDUSAW masonry saws also have an integrated rolling foot plate with rubber wheels that help users to move it smoothly across hard surfaces and rust resistant brackets and fasteners to protect against corrosion. Skilsaw.com
MK-5000 Series Masonry Saw Series
The MK-5000 Electric Masonry Saw Series from MK Diamond Products is built for heavy-duty industrial use: large jobs for cutting marble, granite, decorative stone, block, brick and pavers. An 8-inch-high block can be cut in a single pass with a 20-inch blade. The open-back design allows for material up to 20 inches long to be cut. Blade guards are available in 14, 20 and 24 inches. The saw is capable of cutting materials 8 x 8 x 20 inches. MK-5000 Electric Masonry Saws are powered by industrial, heavy-duty Baldor motors with one- or three-phase power. Motor options include 5, 7.5 and 10 horsepower. MKDiamond.compPMG