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post #1 of 34 Old 06-26-2017, 11:57 AM Thread Starter
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14" Bandsaw

Greetings,

I bought the Harbor Freight Bandsaw a few years ago and really never used it. It seemed like everything I tried to cut was a hassle. I had the OEM blade and a 14TPI bi-metal blade that I bought from enco.

I see a lot of folks online re-sawing they're lumber so I thought I'd give it a try and boy was it slow, nothing like the videos that I watch. It took for ever and made all kind of squealing noise, I dreaded using it (I didn't use it very often to begin with).

I remembered seeing a video on tuning up your bandsaw and I then seen a video that said that a three or four tooth blade was best for re-sawing. A few people had said that the Wood Slicer 1/2 inch Resaw Bandsaw Blade was a good blade. But since mine wasn't cutting so good and I dreaded using it, I didn't want to waste $30. I was at Harbor Freight and seen they have a 3TPI blade for $11 so I thought I'd try it out. BOY did it make a difference. After adjusting the guides and putting on the 3TPI blade that thing cuts like butter now. I thought for $11 I have waited to use my bandsaw. It makes a rough cut but man does it cut. I actually look for reason to use my bandsaw now. I am thinking about getting the riser block for it so I can re-saw taller boards. I wonder how many people out there have bought that bandsaw and thinks it is junk (which it might be) and if they would "Tune it Up" and add a new blade it would be a totally different saw. I will be ordering a Wood Slicer in the not to distant future.

I'm done rambling on now. :)


Gary
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post #2 of 34 Old 06-26-2017, 12:03 PM
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Sure, having the right blade for the job makes a difference on any saw. Even a table saw when you are struggling to rip thick hardwood the fewer the teeth make a profound difference. We used to use a fiber cement blade table saw with just six teeth on it to rip thick maple.
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post #3 of 34 Old 06-26-2017, 12:45 PM
where's my table saw?
 
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Before you buy anthing else ....

For an $11 blade that's pretty good. I wouldn't jump into this with both feet until I used that blade a whole lot more. See if you can find a 6 tooth blade also. That will give a better cut and is good for crosscuts. The 3 TPI blade is for ripping, so don't expect a smooth cut, and you might want a spare.

Are the blades made by Olson?

It's not very often you will need to resaw greater than 6", and your saw may not have enough power for more than that. So, hold off on the riser block until you see what you really need. My 14" bandsaw doe an awful lot as is, no riser block.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 06-26-2017 at 02:56 PM.
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post #4 of 34 Old 06-26-2017, 12:55 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
Sure, having the right blade for the job makes a difference on any saw. Even a table saw when you are struggling to rip thick hardwood the fewer the teeth make a profound difference. We used to use a fiber cement blade table saw with just six teeth on it to rip thick maple.
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For an $11 blade that's pretty good. I wouldn't jump into this with both feet until I used that blade a whole lot more. See if you can find a 6 tooth blade also. That will give a better cut and is good for crosscuts. The 3 TPI blade is for ripping, so don't expect a smooth cut, an you might want a spare.

Are the blades made by Olson?

It's not very often you will need to resaw greater than 6", and you saw may not have enough power for more than that. So, hold off on the riser block until you see what you really need. My 14" bandsaw doe an awful lot as is, no riser block.
Thanks for the replies. I'm not doing much hardwood right now but hopefully in the neat future.

Thanks fir the advice. I will check into the 6TPI blade and yes it will be a good thing to have a spare. I think it is a Portland Saw blade. I don't expect the Harbor Freight blade to last long I just got it to try out before spending $30.

Thanks again,

Gary
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post #5 of 34 Old 06-26-2017, 07:42 PM
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I know you didn't ask about where to buy blades but take a look at the blades from this place, http://woodcraftbands.com/Pricing%20page.htm . I've been very happy with my purchases from them over the years. Ask them about that $30 blade you mentioned, they have one similar for something in the neighborhood of $16-$17.

Dave

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The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes.
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post #6 of 34 Old 06-26-2017, 08:28 PM
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Hey Gary have you recently checked to see if harbor freight sells the riser block kit? I haven't checked and was thinking about ordering the grizzly one because it would probably ship faster from amazon.


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post #7 of 34 Old 06-26-2017, 08:57 PM
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Get yourself a decent blade and follow advice in this video before discounting your bandsaw, you may be surprised,


“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”
― Marcus Aurelius
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post #8 of 34 Old 06-26-2017, 11:02 PM
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I was pretty surprised with the reviews of the central machinery bandsaw. I expected nothing but bad reviews, but that's not so for the most part.
I have a Ridgid 14" saw and it needs some work some day.
Looking at the HF model it looks very much like the Ridgid saw . Mine is missing parts, mainly the bottom guides, blocks and the thrust bearing, but it still cuts.
I wonder if the same parts for the HF model will fit the Ridgid..

I figured it's time to change my signature so hold your breath. This is it.
Impressive, huh?
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post #9 of 34 Old 06-27-2017, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sweensdv View Post
I know you didn't ask about where to buy blades but take a look at the blades from this place, http://woodcraftbands.com/Pricing%20page.htm . I've been very happy with my purchases from them over the years. Ask them about that $30 blade you mentioned, they have one similar for something in the neighborhood of $16-$17.
Thanks for the reply and the info on the less expensive blade. I will check them out.


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post #10 of 34 Old 06-27-2017, 05:48 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankC View Post
Get yourself a decent blade and follow advice in this video before discounting your bandsaw, you may be surprised,

https://youtu.be/wGbZqWac0jU
That is the video that caused me to re-think my band saw. That guy is great.

Gary
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post #11 of 34 Old 06-27-2017, 05:51 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allpurpose View Post
I was pretty surprised with the reviews of the central machinery bandsaw. I expected nothing but bad reviews, but that's not so for the most part.
I have a Ridgid 14" saw and it needs some work some day.
Looking at the HF model it looks very much like the Ridgid saw . Mine is missing parts, mainly the bottom guides, blocks and the thrust bearing, but it still cuts.
I wonder if the same parts for the HF model will fit the Ridgid..
I don't think Harbor Freight sells the riser block anymore. I have read about people use the Grizzly riser block. That is the one I am thinking of getting.

From what I've read a lot of these bandsaws are pretty much the same with a few different parts.

Gary
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post #12 of 34 Old 06-28-2017, 11:15 AM
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Well I ordered the riser block last night . I'll confirm if it is a direct fit


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post #13 of 34 Old 06-28-2017, 12:40 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tylerdru90 View Post
Well I ordered the riser block last night . I'll confirm if it is a direct fit


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Thank you sir. I curious to see if it is.


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post #14 of 34 Old 06-30-2017, 11:28 PM
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I got the kit today. It looks like everything will fit except for the guide rod. I'm not too worried about the guide rod since it's just a steel rod. I'm sure I can find something that works


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post #15 of 34 Old 07-01-2017, 06:25 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tylerdru90 View Post
I got the kit today. It looks like everything will fit except for the guide rod. I'm not too worried about the guide rod since it's just a steel rod. I'm sure I can find something that works


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That didn't take long to get. Let us know how it works out.

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post #16 of 34 Old 07-02-2017, 10:28 AM
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That didn't take long to get. Let us know how it works out.

Gary

It bolted on just fine. I had to remove the pins that help align the block to the saw because they were not in the same spot. Still have to get a steel rod for the guide post. Everything is pretty straight forward



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post #17 of 34 Old 07-02-2017, 01:52 PM
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that may be an issue...

Quote:
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It bolted on just fine. I had to remove the pins that help align the block to the saw because they were not in the same spot. Still have to get a steel rod for the guide post. Everything is pretty straight forward
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Those pins keep the wheels in the same vertical plane. If you don't have them parallel, your blade won't stay on. My solution to check that, FWIW, would be to take 2 - 1 X 6" boards long enough to span the wheel from edge to edge, horizontally, and remove enough of the center to allow for the hub to clear. Hold each board against the wheel on the bare rim and sight them like you would "winding sticks" and check them for parallel. You might have to stand on a ladder to sight down both of them.

It's a cheap and easy way to check them. There are probably more sophisticated methods, but they would require gauges and other $$ stuff....?

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #18 of 34 Old 07-02-2017, 02:32 PM
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I've never owned a HF bandsaw so this might not be true of them. Riser blocks require a stiffer frame or the frame will flex while trying to saw thick material. It will then go into harmonic vibration that is very difficult to deal with. You will need to tighten the blade a lot more also to prevent blade wander. It may work for soft wood but not likely maple. With your low horse power you will want to let the saw cut at it's pace and not push it too hard. Fewer teeth allow for more gullet space which allows for faster cutting. Once the gullets fill it will stop the cutting. Always have at least 3 teeth in the work.
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post #19 of 34 Old 07-02-2017, 06:31 PM
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I was aware that I would need to check the wheels since the alignment pins are gone. As far as the frame flexing, I just looked into it a bit and read from someone else that they did not experience the issue. The frame is cast iron so we shall see.


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post #20 of 34 Old 07-12-2017, 04:59 AM
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Bandsaw’s being such a versatile tool has become an integral part of any woodworking. Any respectable wood shop has one. Whatever your saw, it is only as good as the blade you put in it, so always use the best – and at the correct cutting speed too of course! A band saw is a great addition to any workshop, so much so that it should be your first choice when it comes to cutting timber as it’s safe, easy to set up and use, and is extremely versatile.

Last edited by BigJim; 08-03-2017 at 01:18 PM. Reason: Ads removed against forum rules
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