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post #1 of 14 Old 03-26-2020, 07:05 PM Thread Starter
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Cool Blocks

I bought the wrong size blocks for my ~ 40 YO Craftsman band saw. They are ~ 1/8" too big in width and height. Is there any reason I shouldn't sand them to size on my belt sander?
Thanx ~ Ron
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post #2 of 14 Old 03-26-2020, 08:24 PM
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Ron - it will still work as intended - some people actually use
a hardwood, such as oak for blocks.
as long as you can get a good fit in the holder, you will be good.

I'm not sure, but, I think I have a pack of the cool blocks for the
old vintage Craftsman 12" BS. I will check tomorrow.

.

I am a painter: that's what I do, I like to paint things.

Last edited by John Smith_inFL; 03-26-2020 at 08:27 PM.
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post #3 of 14 Old 03-26-2020, 10:34 PM
where's my table saw?
 
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I used to have an older Craftsman 12" bandsaw

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonBenson View Post
I bought the wrong size blocks for my ~ 40 YO Craftsman band saw. They are ~ 1/8" too big in width and height. Is there any reason I shouldn't sand them to size on my belt sander?
Thanx ~ Ron

If I recall, those blade guides held round hardened steel guides. I'm sure they made different guides for different saws and, yours may be the square ones. Those would be the only ones you could sand down to size. This video shows the round ones:


This company offers blade guides in ceramic, much harder material than a typical cool block:
https://spaceageceramics.com/?gclid=...oaApLmEALw_wcB


These are the more common 1/2" square blocks. They are made of a high tech, non-metallic composite material, graphite impregnated phenolic laminate:
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Olson-Sa...B&gclsrc=aw.ds

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 #4 of 14 Old 03-26-2020, 11:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RonBenson View Post
I bought the wrong size blocks for my ~ 40 YO Craftsman band saw. They are ~ 1/8" too big in width and height. Is there any reason I shouldn't sand them to size on my belt sander?
Thanx ~ Ron
Probably not, might need a coarse belt.

Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something -Plato

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post #5 of 14 Old 03-27-2020, 06:56 AM
where's my table saw?
 
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What shape and material are they?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonBenson View Post
I bought the wrong size blocks for my ~ 40 YO Craftsman band saw. They are ~ 1/8" too big in width and height. Is there any reason I shouldn't sand them to size on my belt sander?
Thanx ~ Ron

The reason I posted the various links is to show the different shapes and materials they can be made from. So, before we give you specific advice on what to do, we need to know what they are made out of. Post a link to the brand or the source you purchased them from. Round hardened steel or ceramic will NOT be sandable. Square, softer synthetic material like Delrin or UHMW may be.... ?
Woodcraft sells these:
https://www.woodcraft.com/products/c...size-1-2-x-1-2


A smaller size:
https://www.woodcraft.com/products/c...ze-3-8-x-3-8-9



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; 03-27-2020 at 07:00 AM.
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post #6 of 14 Old 03-27-2020, 08:09 AM Thread Starter
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Thanx all for the comments. I should have given more info. I bought 1/2" square Olson Cool Blocks, (as linked above). I should have bought 3/8", but I was in the local Woodcraft store and saw them and just guessed what size I needed - the box mentioned Craftsman saws as one of the saws they would fit. It's a 45 min drive to the store, and they are only doing curb service now, so it would be easier for me to sand them than return them.
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post #7 of 14 Old 03-27-2020, 11:54 AM
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The best solution might be to contact Olson and ask the experts:
https://www.olsonsaw.net/contact/

Personally, I would sand the oversize Cool Blocks carefully. When I saw "belt sander", I was concerned that Cool Blocks are small and it would be difficult to sand them square. I would look for a small holder that can keep them square as I sanded them. Take light sanding passes and make frequent test fits. From my experience with Cool Blocks, I think they would work fine even if the sanding is a little bit off.

As others have pointed out, if you are waiting for your next order of Cool Blocks to arrive, you can make your own hardwood blocks in a "pinch". :-)
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post #8 of 14 Old 03-27-2020, 07:21 PM
where's my table saw?
 
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Use a Jorgensen clamp to hold them....

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonBenson View Post
Thanx all for the comments. I should have given more info. I bought 1/2" square Olson Cool Blocks, (as linked above). I should have bought 3/8", but I was in the local Woodcraft store and saw them and just guessed what size I needed - the box mentioned Craftsman saws as one of the saws they would fit. It's a 45 min drive to the store, and they are only doing curb service now, so it would be easier for me to sand them than return them.

It is risky to hold such small shapes. I read a review on Amazon for the 1/2" size and they were undersize, so you might be better off sanding yours down. I would use a small Jorgensen clamp to hold them flat on the belt sander table if it were me. They will be more accurate that way but do not hold them freehand!


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; 03-27-2020 at 07:29 PM.
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post #9 of 14 Old 03-27-2020, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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Thanx again to all. My belt sander has a tool rest, so I thought I would just put a piece of masking tape on one side of each block and on the end of a piece of 1/2" plywood and use a bit of super glue to hold the two together. I'm hoping that will make sanding both easier and safer.
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post #10 of 14 Old 03-27-2020, 09:26 PM
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Yes, you can just sand them down, or you can take a sharp chisel to them, that's what I did when I bought the wrong size.


They actually sell the material in large bulk blocks that you can cut smaller blocks from for custom applications so it's completely workable.


CB-SLAB - 6" x 1-3/4" x 1/2" - make your own
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Last edited by JayArr; 03-27-2020 at 10:59 PM.
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post #11 of 14 Old 03-28-2020, 08:51 AM Thread Starter
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Thanx Jay - that seems to be the definitive answer.
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post #12 of 14 Old 03-28-2020, 12:53 PM
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You could make a quick jig by drilling/chiseling a rectangular hole into a piece of wood to the depth you want the block to be (3/8?) then put the block in the hole (some of it will stick out - the extra 1/8?) and press it against the belt until the cool block is sanded down and the belt starts to touch the wood. Voila, now the cool block is 3/8, turn it 90 degrees and do it again and now you have a block that fits your bandsaw. You could quickly do all four blocks without fear of catching your fingers or sending projectiles around the shop. It may even be a little less work than fidgiting with tape and crazy glue.
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post #13 of 14 Old 03-29-2020, 10:31 AM Thread Starter
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Thanx again Jay.
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post #14 of 14 Old 04-09-2020, 07:03 PM Thread Starter
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Just a quick update on what I wound up doing. I used a small clamp to hold the over sized blocks and I sanded then to a usable size on a belt sander. Here's a photo of what I did:

Cool Blocks-p_20200409_112251-1-.jpg

And thanx again to all who replied ~ Ron
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