MelaWood is PG Bison’s leading brand of decorative melamine faced board and is popular because it is easy to use, looks good and offers great strength and durability. It is basically a 16mm thick piece of chipboard and each flat side is covered with a melamine layer in one of four different finishes – Peen, Ashwood, Linear, and Natural Touch. One thing DIY-ers struggle with however is getting the perfect edge when cutting it with either a table saw or a circular saw.
When the cutting is done professionally, typically at a cut and edge factory, you will notice that the material has a perfectly cut edge as compared to an amateur’s attempts. This is because professional panel saws use two blades in order to cut the board. First, a smaller blade cuts a groove all along the bottom and on the cutline. This ensures that the main circular blade doesn’t chip the edge as it breaks through the bottom of the material while making a cut.
You can achieve the same or similar quality with immense care and precision. For instance to reduce the damage, cut slowly and make sure you use a sharp fine tooth blade. To eliminate the chipping, first draw where the cut should be and then score a line at the top and bottom of the material with a sharp blade.
Another alternative is to set the depth on your saw to about 3mm. Cut on the line and then turn the material over and cut again – this time at full depth. This method is only advisable if you use a table saw. It will be difficult the cut precisely on the same line using only a circular saw.
Using power tools such as table and circular saws is highly dangerous. Always wear the necessary personal protective gear when using these tools. Pursue the perfect cut!