Best blade for cutting aluminum?
I am replacing some aluminum framed windows and doors and have two jobs to do as part of it.
1. Cutting the door frames in pieces so I can demolish them without damaging the stucco or drywall. First I used a 7 inch plywood blade in my wormdrive skillsaw but quickly wore it out when the teeth hit the stucco. Then I switched to 7 inch abrasive wheels and they worked better. Someone suggested using a 40 or 60 tooth carbide blade instead.
2. The windows have about a half inch drip edge protruding past the stucco which has to be cutoff flush with the stucco before installing the replacement vinyl windows. I tried the seven inch abrasive wheel in the skillsaw but it was too hard to control and couldn't reach the corners. So I went and bought a cheap 4 1/2 inch wheel Ryobi hand grinder for $39.99 which burnt out after about 20 minutes use using 1/8 inch abrasive wheels. The 5.5 amp motor just couldn't hack it. So I bought a Firestorm 4.5 inch grinder which was rated 8.5 amps for the same price, and switched to thinner 1/16 inch thick blades which I couldn't use in the Ryobi because it wouldn't clamp down enough on them. The thinner blades worked like a champ, only trouble is they wear out so fast, wore this one out just cutting off 3 feet of aluminum. At this rate I would use 6 blades up on one window, and they cost $1.98 each. I think part of the problem is there is some stucco touching the aluminum which eats the metal cutting blades up. Maybe I should use masonary blades instead? I don't guess a diamond blade would work on aluminum. Do they make a 4.5 inch carbide blade that would work in a hand grinder?
3. Some people have recommended I use my sawsall reciprocating saw, but I am thinking the thin layer of stucco on the aluminum would wear the blades out in about 30 seconds.
4. I do have a portaband saw but again I think the stucco would chew up the bandsaw blades so I can't use that, plus it couldn't get into the corners.