At the World of Concrete show recently I was lucky enough to walk by iQ Power Tools just as one of its representatives was cutting tile—inside, on a carpeted surface, without a dust mask or hose hookup, on a full-sized tile saw. At a show dominated by commercial products, it was worth stopping to learn more. We’ve covered some of iQ’s products in the past including a dust-free masonry chop saw, and a dust-collecting cutoff saw (scroll down on the link to see the two); the brand was blue and yellow back then. Now, it’s orange and gray—almost the same color scheme as Husqvarna.
The new saw (iQTS244), which is scheduled to release this month, is completely dustless thanks to an integral vacuum that includes a multistage cyclonic filtration system and dust collection tray. It requires a specialized 10-inch blade, which is included, that cuts porcelain, marble, granite, ceramic, and stone. According to the manufacturer, the blade life is similar to what you would expect from a good-quality wet-cutting blade.
How the dust collection works
As dust is sucked through a slot beneath the cut, it is captured first by the cyclonic filtration system, which sits just below the saw’s sled, while the rest falls into the dust collection tray. After about 500 lineal feet of cutting, you spin the knob, which shakes the captured dust from the filter and dumps it onto the tray. Pull the tray out, empty it, reinstall it, and you’re ready to continue. A replacement filter runs about $90 and is expected to last up to one year with daily use. The built-in vacuum serves two functions: It cools the blade throughout the cut, and it removes debris from the kerf so the blade isn’t grinding the same material throughout.
As of right now the saw will not bevel, but the manufacturer says a bevel-cutting attachment will be available later this year. It features a 24-inch cutting capacity at 90°. A proprietary arbor that’s specially shaped holds the blade—presumably ensuring you won’t use a wet saw blade, which would deem the integral dust collection system virtually useless. These specialized blades are designed to stay cool while dry-cutting—a technology that IQ Power Tools has utilized in other masonry saws we’ve covered in the past. A replacement blade will run you $99.
The saw will sell for $1,590, which will include one blade. It’s got a 10-foot cord, two wheels, and a handle built into the cage-design of the main housing so it can be moved around like a piece of large luggage. A folding stand will sell separately for $150. It’s a hefty price tag—but the manufacturer is banking on the saw’s convenience. You can use it inside and not worry about tarps or have to deal with water, slurry, emptying, or cleaning the reservoir, or a clogged pump. For those of you who do a lot of tilework it might be worth a closer look—especially if you often work on second-floor bathrooms and have to set up your saw outside. The time you’ll save not walking up and down the stairs alone could be worth the money.
iQ Power Tools is offering a second blade for free on pre-orders (ends February 8th).
Check out the videos below to see it in action. You’ll notice in the video the slow speed at which the user is pushing the material through the cut. I can only assume that this is in order to keep the dust contained and that pushing it through any faster would create at least some dust. But we’ll have to test the saw out to know for sure. Stay tuned for more on the saw once we’ve had a chance to use it.