Buy a Special Blade
The melamine finish chips easily when cut, especially if you’re using an everyday saw blade. But you can largely avoid chipping by investing in a special blade that’s designed to cut plastic materials. The teeth on these blades are less angled, which helps prevent chipping. One example is the Freud LU79R007 7-1/4-in. blade. If you can’t justify spending this much, you can still get good results with a less expensive blade that has at least 40 carbide teeth. But be sure to use the chip-free cutting technique that we show in Tip 4.
Order the Color You Want
You’ll typically find melamine products in white at home centers, but many colors are available. Depending on the brand, you’ll find 10 to 20 or more colors available for special order. Check with your local lumberyard or home center for your options.
Wear Safety Gear
You should always wear safety gear when you’re using power tools. There are particular safety concerns when you’re working with melamine. For starters, the plastic finish tends to chip off as it’s cut. The chips are as sharp as glass, creating a real hazard for your eyes. Safety glasses are a must.
The fine dust created by cutting the fiber core is bad for your lungs. If possible, cut outdoors. Indoors or out, wear a dust mask. Wear gloves when you’re handling large sheets of melamine. The edges can be razor sharp. And don’t forget hearing protection.