“Rotary saws are the saw of choice when the task demands high cutting-blade speeds in order to get through materials like concrete, cinder block, asphalt, stone, masonry, cast iron, aluminum … you get the picture — hard stuff,” writes Battalion Chief Robert Avsec (Ret.) at FireRescue1. How do you choose a rotary saw, though? And how do you maintain it once your department buys it?
First, says Avsec, make sure that your department needs a rotary saw. Blades like the Fire Rescue Safety Blade and Carbide Roof Ventilation Blade turn this kind of saw into an effective roof ventilation tool, but if you only need a saw for ventilation and not forcible entry or heavy rescue, then you might want to go with a chainsaw instead. Chainsaws are only good for cutting wood, but Avsec points out that they also cost less and take up less space on apparatus than rotary saws.
If you’ve decided that your department still needs a rotary saw, then Avsec has some handy checklists for choosing and then maintaining it.
FireRescue1, Robert Avsec, “4 things to know before buying a rotary saw“