Makita already makes some of the best stock blades in the business. They’re one of the few that our Pro team doesn’t immediately swap out when a new saw arrives. When we saw the Makita Max Efficiency Circular Saw Blade, there was no question we wanted to bring it in for some testing.
- Fastest circular saw blade we’ve tested
- Greater efficiency than other blades we use
- Exceeds the performance of stock blades from other Pro brands
- Smoother cutting
- Wanders more easily than thicker blades on tough rip cuts
The Bottom Line
We love the speed and efficiency improvements that we’re getting from the Makita Max Efficiency Circular Saw Blade, but we can’t ignore the wandering on tougher rip cuts. I really like this blade as the primary for a cordless circular saw that you’re going to be making cross cuts and ripping sheet goods with. I’ll stick with a slightly thicker blade for worm drive wor, though.
Makita Max Efficiency Circular Saw Blades
What Makita Says You Can Expect
- Up to 70% more cuts per charge
- Up to 70% faster cutting
How Makita is Accomplishing the Improvements
- Ultra-thin 0.057″ kerf (Diablo uses 0.059″): reduces load
- High-grade tungsten carbide tips: greater durability
- ATAFR carbide tips – Alternate Top Alternate Face with Raker: smoother, faster cutting
- Blade coating: smoother cutting
- Engineered tooth assist: reduces load
- Reduced swing width: smoother material removal and less resistance
- 23° top bevel angle: smoother cutting
- Slimmer tip bottoms: reduces resistance
Making the Cut
To test the Makita Max Efficiency Circular Saw Blade, we set up lab tests in the shop and sent a few blades out to our Pros in the field for some real-world feedback to go along with our results. We used the blade in multiple saws, including Makita’s 18V X2 XSH06, and against 3 other competitors on full-depth rip cuts in pressure-treated 4×4 pine.
With the speed tests complete, Makita is clearly the fastest blade of the group. Here’s how it breaks down:
- 38% faster than Irwin Marathon
- 33% faster than Milwaukee’s premium carbide framing blade
- 15% faster than Diablo’s Framing Blade with Tracking Point
To test efficiency, we grabbed some pressure-treated 2 x 12 pine and started making cross cuts. Dropping Milwaukee and Irwin, We just tested it against Diablo since only it and Makita were so far ahead in speed testing. Makita comes out in front here as well:
- 36% more cuts than Diablo’s Framing Blade with Tracking Point
Additional Field Notes
What our contractors reported back is the same thing that we experienced in our testing – the Makita Max Efficiency Circular Saw Blade does cut faster and more efficiently. They also noted that on tougher rip cuts, the blade tends to wander a bit. It’s something to keep in mind when you’re deciding what saw to pair the blade with, though.
The coating stays on impressively well. After nearly 100 cuts, the coating is in better shape than Diablo’s after close to 70.
The Bottom Line
We love the speed and efficiency improvements that we’re getting from the Makita Max Efficiency Circular Saw Blade, but we can’t ignore the wandering on tougher rip cuts. We really like this blade as the primary for a cordless circular saw that you’re going to be making cross cuts and ripping sheet goods with. We’ll stick with a slightly thicker blade for worm drive work.
Makita Max Efficiency Circular Saw Blade Specifications
- Tested Blade: Makita B-61656
- Diameter: 7-1/4″
- Arbor: 5/8″
- Teeth: 24
- Tooth Grind: ATAFR (alternate top alternate face with raker)
- Kerf: 0.057″
- Max RPM: 8300
- Price: $9.99