5 Best Dado Blade Sets of 2020 – 6-inch & 8-inch Dado Blade Set Reviews
As a master woodworker or novice, you need to have the right tools for the job. Whether you are making a few kitchen drawers or some large cabinets, one of the power tools that you will need is the dado cutter. A dado cutter is very handy as it helps you form the joint cuts that you need to join your pieces of wood.
1. Freud SD508 Super Stacked Dado Blade
2. DeWalt DW7670 24-Tooth Stacked Dado Blade Set
3. Oshlun SDS-0842 42-Tooth Stack Dado Blade Set
4. Mibro Group 416381 14-piece Stacking Dado Blade Set
5. Irwin Tools 1811865 Marples Stack Dado Blade
This cutter is all about fitting some dado blades into a radial arm saw, or table saw, and so your main goal should always be to find the correct blade set. Although there are many brands out there the main decisions that you have to make is whether to go for a 6-inch or 8-inch dado blade set and choose between a stacked dado blade set and the wobble blade. Each of these Dado blade sets have different and variable functionalities, as we’ll learn in the article.
5 Best Dado Blade Sets - Reviews
#1. Freud SD508 8-Inch Super Stacked Dado Blade
Editor's Rating: (4.4 / 5)
The Freud SD508 is the most expensive dado blade set in our list and also one of the best dado stacks that you can get anywhere. This 8-inch set features two outer blades and six chippers, but you also get a shim set, dado tips and tricks and a storage case.
The set is certainly not in the budget-friendly range, but you get excellent value for your money based on its functionality and the extra accessories included with the package.
What makes this the best stacked dado set is that it can cut a broad range of woodworking materials. You can use it for chipboard, hardwood, softwood, plywood and many other types of materials. This stack can cut dado widths that are between 1/4-inch to 29/32-inch, and it also includes 3/32 inch clipper that is perfect for cutting dadoes on the modern plywoods which are quite undersized.
The high performance motor in the set is efficient and, paired with the chipper blades, will give you accurate cuts and clean edges for an overall high quality project.
Freud SD508 dado blade set has some high-quality 24-tooth blades that have 5/8 inch arbors, and they will always create dadoes and grooves that are clean, flat and free from splinters. The cuts that they make are accurate the first time, and you will not have to make many passes. Lastly, the company backs it with a limited lifetime warranty.
- Hi-density carbide and titanium blades for durability and flawless finish.
- 8-inch stack provides deep cuts.
- 24-tooth blades for cutting clean and flat grooves and dadoes.
- Accurate first cuts eliminate the need for repeated passes.
- Fits all radial arms and table saws.
- Can create grooves and dadoes on chipboard, hardwood, softwood, and plywood.
- Anti-kickback design ensures safe operation.
- It is quite a pricey dado blade stack. However, the high quality set comes with enough accessories and functionality to justify its price.
Who Should Buy?
These stacked dado blades are for a professional woodworker or a hobbyist that is ready to spend some extra resources to get something that creates smooth and clean grooves or dadoes with almost no splinter at all. If you're working on a budget, you might want to consider some other Dado blade set options on this list.
#2. DeWalt DW7670 24-Tooth Stacked Dado Blade Set
Editor's Rating: (4.8 / 5)
DeWalt DW7670 is another outstanding 8-inch dado blade set that will help you make some smooth and clean joints. It is the second most expensive stacked dado set on our list, and this should tell you that it is a high-quality blade set. The 24-tooth eight-inch blades can spin at a maximum speed of 7000 RPM, and this set also includes 4 chippers with 4 teeth each.
The heavy gauge laser plates on this stack provide some accurate and exact cuts, and so you can always get the particular joints that you need without ever having to compromise. The precise grooves formed by this set in different types of woods makes for high quality work. Also, there is no splintering when using this dado blade set because the micro-grain carbide teeth not only provide clean cuts but are also useful for preventing splinters.
This dado set comes with some stainless steel shims for ultra fine adjustment of width and a storage case to keep the blades safe from chipping and damages. A wide range of cuts, grooves, and joints can be made with the help of these blades. Finally, you can use this stack to make anything from dados to half-lap joints in hardwood.
- Heavy gauge laser plates always provide true and accurate cuts.
- Micro-grain carbide teeth reduce splintering and deliver the clean cuts.
- 4-tooth chippers produce smooth and flat bottom cuts.
- Stainless steel shims allow for ultra-fine adjustment of width.
- Heavy duty storage case helps to keep the blades safe.
- It leaves a slight ridge on the outside section of a dado cut, which might need to be sanded off, requiring extra time and labor on your part.
Who Should Buy?
If you are a quality conscious woodworker that wants to get smooth and clean dados consistently, this is the best dado blade set for you as it guarantees this and much more. Also, it is perfect for woodworking professionals that deal with a broad range of materials.
#3. Oshlun SDS-0842 42-Tooth Stack Dado Blade Set
Editor's Rating: (4.5 / 5)
Oshlun SDS-0842 is a 16-piece dado blade set, and it has more pieces than most others not only on this list but also on the market. It is an 8-inch set with some impressive 42 teeth on the blades which are the highest count on our list.
The high tooth count ensures that you always get smooth dado cuts that range from 1/4-inch to 29/32-inch. These blades also have C-4 micro-grain carbide tips that will stay sharp for a long time and can cut through plywood, softwood and hardwood with minimal strain. The versatility of the large number of blades and the wide variety of materials that this set can be used with makes it an excellent choice for woodworkers.
The chippers on this set have a full body which helps in reducing vibrations and are also easier to setup than the wing style ones. Lower vibrations while working means that the tool is easier to control and gives you more accurate and straight cuts. Lastly, the set also includes shims for making fine adjustments, detailed installation instructions and a full-color storage case.
- High tooth count provides very smooth dado cuts for better fitting of joints
- C-4 micro-grain carbide tips will stay sharp for a long time.
- Full body chippers create minimal vibrations that improve accuracy and are easier to control
- Easy to setup.
- Shim set provides fine adjustments.
- Full-color storage case.
- The many pieces make it quite a heavy set.
- Larger number of teeth mean a slower cutting experience
Who Should Buy?
This 16-piece stack dado set is the second cheapest on our list, and it also has more blades than most others in the market. All this makes it perfect for a woodworker that wants a premium cutting dado set without spending a lot of money.
#4. Mibro Group 416381 8-Inch 14-piece Stacking Dado Blade Set
Editor's Rating: (4.4 / 5)
This 14-piece 416381 dado blade set by The Mibro Group is the cheapest on our list, but it is still a set of high quality and very durable blades. The stack is 8-inch, and so it is usable with most table saws making it very convenient. Mibro Group gives the blades and chippers some carbide tips that increase their cutting ability and also makes them more durable.
This ensures that once you buy this set, you won’t have to invest in dado blades for some time. For people working on a budget, this is an especially great option.
The set includes the 2 outside circular saw blades, 4 (1/8-inch) chippers and 2 (1/16-inch) chippers (all the chippers are twin tooth) and 7 metal shims. These shims will help you in adjusting the width so that you can always make some precision cuts. Lastly, the stacking dado blade set comes in a compact plastic case that prevents them from chipping.
- Carbide-tipped chippers and blades are very durable.
- 7 metal shims help to ensure precision work.
- 14-piece has everything you can ever need in a stacked dado set.
- Lightweight and affordable, high-quality blades
- Compact plastic case makes storage easy.
- Thin spacers are sharp and can easily cut your fingers, so using safety measures is recommended
- Sometimes it will leave some uneven grooves from the center blades, which might need extra time and effort for sanding off
Who Should Buy?
Although this is the cheapest dado blade set on our list, it still has some high quality and durable blades that will always get the job done. And so it is a perfect pick for woodworker searching for high-quality dado blades on a tight budget.
#5. Irwin Tools 1811865 Marples Stack Dado Blade
Editor's Rating: (4.5 / 5)
Stacked dado blade reviews will always recommend this one by Irwin Tools for the woodworkers that like to use light dado sets. Their 1811865 Marples set weighs only 1.8 pounds making it the lightest on our list. This 8-inch blade set features 2 outer blades, 3 spacers, 3 chippers and 7 shims.
The blades have some carbide teeth that you can re-sharpen to maintain their cutting efficiency. These carbide blades also come in an oversize that and they provide a flawless finish and have an extended life. Lastly, the blades have a precision tension that ensures you always get a perfect cut and a non-stick coating that is also heat-resistant.
- Works both on radial arm and table saw.
- Oversized carbides are resharpenable.
- Blades have a non-stick coating that is also heat resistant.
- Precision tension ensures consistent and flawless cuts.
- Non-stick and heat resistant coating makes cleaning easy and also provides clean and precise cuts.
- Versatile as it is usable with plywood, melamine, hardwood and softwood.
- It tends to lose its edge faster than many other top brands on the market.
Who Should Buy?
The oversized carbide blades on this stack blade set will always offer flawless finishing and are also durable hence making them ideal for regular use by a professional woodworker. Also, it will work well for woodworkers that prefer to use light blade sets.
Types of Dado Blade
A dado cutter will always come in handy when cutting joints, and so it will always make your woodworking projects easier. While our dado blade reviews above will make it easy to pick something high-quality to add to your power tool collection, there are many things you need to know about these tools and their blades. The first and most important is the different types available.
#1. Stacked Dado Set
The stacked dado set is what most woodworkers prefer to go for because it is versatile. It consists of two outside blades and some chippers on the inside which is what you use to give the cutting width a fine adjustment. The width that you get on the stacked dado will always depend on the number of chippers that you have between the outer saw blades. Most will have two outer blades and 4 to 6 chippers.
- Precision: If precision is your primary goal when making joints, the stacked dado set is the best for you. The presence of many blades ensures that you always get a very accurate cut and a perfect groove making it the best dado blade for most woodworkers.
- Long Lasting: Since the stacked dado sets use many teeth to make each cut, the edges do no wear out as fast as the wobble blades. Also, they do not require much re-sharpening, and this means that the woodworkers that use the stacked dado set will not need to replace them often.
- Expensive and Hard to Setup: Although the stacked dado set will always outperform the wobble blades, it is more expensive than the latter. The fact that it comes with many blades is one of the reasons that make it pricey. Also, the presence of several blades might increase the efficiency, speed, and precision of cutting but they also make the stacked dado harder to setup for first-time users than the wobble blade.
#2. Wobble Dado Blade
The wobbles dado blades only have one blade in the system that uses a different technique to make the groove instead of relying on stacking. And this entails installing one wobble blade with a hub that you can adjust to various angles. The angle makes it spin in a wobble unlike in the stacked set where the spinning is accurate. As the wobble blade moves back and forth at high speeds, it cuts away the material that it passes through to create a joint.
- Affordable: It consists of only one blade, and so it is way much cheaper than the stacked sets. Also, many companies make it, and so the competition also helps to make it affordable.
- Fast and Easy Setup: With the wobble blade there are fewer parts, and so the set up is easy and also fast. Most experienced woodworkers will not even need to follow the instructions to set it up for the first time.
- Less Accurate and Damaging to the Saw: It is almost impossible to achieve a good flat-bottomed and squared groove when using the wobble blade. Also, their design means that they cause more vibrations which can damage the saws by loosening fasteners and other parts of the saw.
How to Buy the Best Dado Blade Sets
A dado blade set is one of the things that every serious woodworker must have in the workshop. Most know this, and they also understand what they are all about and how to choose the best. However, if you are a beginner woodworker or buying one for the first, you might not know how to make your pick. But, understanding the points below will always make the blade choice easier.
#1. Type of Blade
The kind of dado blade should always be the first thing that you consider when shopping for the best dado blade set. Here you get to chose between a wobble and the stacked ones. Most woodworkers prefer the stacked ones as they are more accurate and create joints with a perfect fit but they are also more expensive than the wobble. The question is, how much accuracy are you willing to compromise for the price of these blades?
Dado blades have fewer variations than most other saw blades types, and so there are minimal compatibility issues. However, there are still a few essential things that you need to know when it comes to dado blades so that you can be able to match them to the right saws.
Saw Blade Specifications: When matching dado blade specifications like TPI (teeth per inch), blade material and hook angle you can follow the guidelines that you would use when matching a standard saw blade. In general, blades with a high TPI will be ideal for material that chip easily and the hard ones. Also, the more the teeth on the dado blade, the slower and finer the cut it will make and fewer teeth will result in faster but rougher cuts.
When it comes to the hook angle, most dado blades will have a 0-degree one as they are mostly for use with table saws. However, some can have -12 degrees and -5 degrees hook angles which make them suitable for radial arm saws. For the material, carbon, steel, and carbide are the most common ones and whatever your dado blade uses will determine what it can cut.
Diameter and Power: As a woodworker, it is vital to make sure that you match your dado blade to a saw that can to run it optimally. Most dado blades will come with a diameter of 6 or 8 inches. The larger 8-inch blade is ideal for deeper cuts, and it will require a saw like a cabinet saw due to its power and some types of or contractor saws to operate it. A 6-inch dado set, on the other hand, can work on contractor saws, cabinet saws and also with the portable and bench saws.
#3. Insert Plates
An insert plate is where the blades protrude from, and so it is an important factor to consider in your search for the best dado blade set. If you intend to use the blade on a table saw it would be necessary to install a customized insert plate. For this, you can choose between a pre-cut dado insert plate and a zero clearance one which does not have a pre-cut slot for the blade and so you have to make it with your dado blade.
6-Inch vs. 8-Inch Dado Stacks
If you do not have a lot of experience with dado stacks or you are buying your first dado blade set you are likely to face different challenges. The most common one that most woodworkers will face is whether to go for a 6-inch or 8-inch stack. Both these blade stacks will help you make some grooves and dados, but having some information about each will help you get the best dado blade set for your needs.
#1. 6-Inch Dado Stacks
The 6-inch dado stacks are the smaller of the two standard options available. Also, they are also lighter than the 8-inch, and this means that the saw does not have to work very hard to spin them. However, their small size means that they will not produce very deep cuts. But the quality of the cut that they provide is similar to the 8-inch stacks, and so you can still achieve almost any joint when using them.
#2. 8-Inch Dado Stacks
Most woodworkers will prefer to go for the 8-inch dado stacks because it looks more appropriate for their 10-inch table saw. Whereas it is bigger than the 6-inch, it still makes almost the same quality of cut, but it can make cuts that are up to 1-inch deeper than the latter. And so if you intend to be cutting deeper dados the 8-inch is the best option. However, it is noteworthy to know that the 8-inch stack requires a saw with a more powerful motor and it is also pricier than the 6-inch stack.
Read More: How To Make Blade Storage Rack
Most Common Joints with Dado Blade
#1. Dado Joint
The dado joint is the most common and probably the easiest to make with the dado blades. In its basic definition, it is a trench or slot that you make into the surface of a block of wood. When you view this joint in the cross-section, it will have three sides, and you can cut it either perpendicular or across the grain.
#2. Finger Joint
The finger joint is what many woodworkers will also refer to as the comb joint. To make this joint, you need to cut a set of corresponding rectangular slots in two pieces of wood and join them with wood glue. This joint is stronger than the lap joint, and you can visualize it by locking your fingers at a 90-degree angle.
A tenon is what makes the popular mortise and tenon joint possible. It is a rail that you form at the end of a piece of wood for inserting in a rectangular or square hole that you have to drill out in another piece. When making the tenon, it is important to ensure that it forms a perfect or exact fit for the mortise.
The rabbet is a groove/recess which woodworkers cut into the end of a piece of wood or any other material that the dado blade can cut. When viewing it from the side, it will appear two-sided, and it will be open to the edge of the surface.
The Bottom Line
It doesn't matter how simple your woodworking tasks are, you’re going to need some joints to put together your creation and complete your project. While these can be created by saws and power tools, you need specific tools to make your joints accurate and cause them to fit together perfectly. This is where Dado blade sets come into the picture.
In this buying guide, we’ve reviewed the 5 best Dado blade sets available on the market today. We hope that this guide has helped you make an informed choice about which one of these sets is the best fit for your woodworking projects.
Please leave a comment if you think we missed out on any set that you’d recommend. We also have a lot of informational articles and reviews on our website. If you're a budding woodworker and are interested in adding new items to your workshop, feel free to check out our other articles, as well!
Last Updated on August 30, 2021 by Tom Bradly