For Peterson’s agent Simon Ceglinski the new MicroKerf blade is “absolutely brilliant”. Simon has been working with wood all his life on his parents’ property in New South Wales, Australia, cutting mostly hardwoods that are dry and brittle such as Swamp Mahogany, Sydney Blue Gum, Black Butt and the occasional softwood.
“Nothing cuts better than Peterson’s thin kerf blade on these timbers.”
“It was a huge shock to use the new MicroKerf blade. It’s just fantastic to work with, and personally I didn’t want to go back to using the standard blade,” says Ceglinski.
The new blade is mounted with tiny 4mm kerf tips, and utilizes a secondary reinforcing boss for support of the incredibly thin blade. This is mounted straight onto your existing Peterson blade boss, and allows up to a 6″ x 12″ cut. This larger boss increases rigidity and strength, and therefore carries the blade through knots far easier, without bogging down the motor.
Ceglinski finds Australian pines a lot more dense and full of knots compared to New Zealand pines, and so was expecting a bit of movement, but the boards were cutting “nice and straight”. Even in tension hardwoods there was virtually no movement.
Ceglinski found the new design from Peterson’s to be a “far more efficient utilization of horsepower”.
Using the standard blade you are really working to push it through hardwood logs all day, but the thinkerf “just flies, like a hot knife through butter,” says Ceglinski.
“It’s absolutely incredible the difference in the pressure required to push the mill”, which also contributes to a 20-30% faster cutting speed.
Not only was the faster cutting speed noticeable by Ceglinski, but another improvement is the incredible reduction in sawdust.
“Normally small logs create a heap of sawdust and hardly any sawn timber, but when I cut them with the MicroKerf blade, there was just no sawdust or firewood left – just all sawn timber! I didn’t even have enough sawdust to mulch the garden!”
Sawdust is removed cleanly, even on the lighter pines, and designer Jake Peterson found this to contribute to a 15-20% increase in recovery in proven trials. The long fibrous sawdust is also a great cushioning around the mill and is nice and soft on the feet after a hard day’s milling!
Ceglinski sees maintenance costs with the thin kerf blade reduced over a greater period of time. Due to the increased reinforcement of the blade it is less prone to metal fatigue, translating to less servicing required.
Peterson also believes the faster, smoother cutting reduces the strain on the motor, allowing a much longer power-head life, and reduced operator fatigue.