Decades after tradesmen stopped using non-carbide-tipped circular blades and router bits, they continue to use bimetal recip blades. Why? Because it’s difficult to produce reasonably priced carbide-tipped recip blades with teeth that won’t break or come off when they hit something hard. Diablo figured out how to do it and has been pushing forward with the technology.
We tested one of Diablo’s first generation carbide-tipped blades for a story we in 2012. Testing it on nail-embedded wood we found it to be incredibly durable, but over time (as the teeth began to dull) it cut more slowly than the best bimetal blades. These next generation Demo Demon blades have a new tooth design, better tip to blade connection, and a new carbide formulation that Diablo says will make for faster cutting, less vibration, and longer cutting life than before.
You can’t tell by looking that the carbide and tip to tip to blade connection have been altered, but it’s easy to see that the tooth configuration has changed. This new blade has what Diablo refers to as Variable Tooth Design: The teeth are spaced more closely close to the tang than they are along the rest of the blade, a design that is said to make for smoother faster cutting.
At the recent STAFDA tradeshow I attended a media event where Diablo ran their new Demo Demon against competing bimetal blades. The blades were put in identical Milwaukee Sawzalls and used to cut across a series of hardened concrete nails that had been driven into the ends of 2x12 material (video below—the Demo Demon is on the far right). The nails quickly destroyed the bimetal blades while the carbide-tipped Demo Demon made cut after cut. I’m not sure what to make of the demonstration. It’s hard not to be impressed by a blade that can cut through a bunch of concrete nails—which is incredibly difficult to do. On the other hand, concrete nails are not something tradesmen normally have to cut. It would have been more realistic to have used standard framing nails. Though that would have turned a two-minute test into one that could have eaten up the entire hour allotted to the event—which included demonstrations of a new bimetal hole saw system, a circular blade for laminate flooring, and the Steel Demon carbide-tipped thick metal cutting blade (more on the laminate flooring blade and Steel Demon later).
In addition to the features mentioned above, the new Demo Demon blades have a non-stick coating, a stiff one-inch body, and a tip designed for plunging. Available 6, 9, and 12 inches long, they retail for $7-13.