This is a topic I wish I had covered earlier. I had been told by a few woodworkers I know that they had been using a blade called the Freud Fusion table saw blade and were extremely happy with the cuts it was making ... and this was a General Purpose Blade!!
Watch it on Youtube: https://youtu.be/v4dKGqncaqg
As a long-time woodworker, I have come from the "school" that says you need to select the right blade for the job, ripping blades for ripping natural wood, cross-cut blades ...
.. for cutting across the grain of the wood, and on plywood, and MDF and other man-made woods and that General Purpose or Combination Blades as they were called, were somewhat inferior because they all did an "OK" job of all cuts, but for the best cuts you needed dedicated blades.
Well, after trying out this Freud Fusion blade, which Freud calls their "Premier" General Purpose Blade, all bets are off. This blade is as good or better than most dedicated ripping blades and as good or better than most cross-cutting blades !!
The Freud Fusion blade has all the characteristics of every Freud blade, German Steel, Laser Cut Expansion, and Anti Vibration slots, all of which are designed to help make better, cleaner saw blade cuts. But the Fusion blade has also had a lot of engineering expertise attached to it in order to create a blade of such superior performance. The Alternating Top Bevel Teeth (ATB) have been designed with special hook angles to achieve better cutting while the carbide is ground to highly accurate degrees and even the cheeks of the carbide teeth are ground to be slightly wider at the cutting edge than tapering in further back to give them a slicing effect on the wood they are cutting. All of this is what goes into making a highly effective blade.
There are of course many other details, but as woodworkers, all we really want to know is how well this blade cuts and is really as good as top-performing dedicated blades.
I know the test below is hard to see the detail in, but I think most people can pick up from the video just how clean the cuts are. I used this blade to demonstrate cutting Red Oak, Double Sided Melamine, and Pine as well as cross-cutting Red Oak and all of the cuts are outstanding.
The underside of the cut, on a table saw, is always the worst part of the cut because it is where the blade is exiting the wood so there is a high tendency for wood to "blow out", "Chip" or otherwise create a fuzzy cut. In all of the cuts I made, the worst I could come up with was the bottom side of the double-sided melamine had one small chip out, which you can barely see towards the top of the cut in the lower picture.
Below are the cross-cut examples in Red Oak, again the Freud Fusion Blade performed outstanding, of course, the top of the cut is clean but even the underside of the Red Oak is clean, and there is no shredding, whiskers, or blowout of any wood fibers.
Below is the underside of the Red Oak crosscut.
The Freud Fusion blade is not an inexpensive blade, but if you consider yourself a serious woodworker and are fussy about how clean your woodcuts are, and normally purchase dedicated saw blades as I have done, the Fusion Blade may change your mind. Based on the cost of the Fusion Blade, when I am using Amazon USA as a reference, the Fusion would actually save you money rather than buying the high-end, dedicated ripping and cross cutting blades. At least as of the writing of this article.
Here are some examples for you to consider
Freud Fusion Thin Kerf, - check price here
Freud Fusion Full Kerf - check price here
Don't forget, if you prefer excellent quality "DEDICATED" Ripping or Cross Cutting blades, the comparatives are here
Freud Glue Line Rip - Full Kerf - check price here
Freud LU80R010 Ultimate cross-cut blade - check price here
Copyright Colin Knecht