Searching for a Bandsaw - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 Old 03-16-2012, 12:42 PM Thread Starter
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Searching for a Bandsaw

Hi all, I am looking at purchasing a band saw, primary use would be for cutting around 4" thick pieces of wood, into creative looking boxes(jewelry boxes, "puzzle" boxes, etc.) Here and here are a few examples of what I am thinking.If at all possible, I would like to find a bandsaw under $300,that will fit my needs.
Any suggestions?
I am currently looking at the craftsman from sears, I've found alot of both positive, and negative reviews on it, and was wondering if anyone here had any personal experience with it.
I am new to woodworking, so any information,tips, or warnings, on anything regarding bandsaws, are greatly appreciated.
thanks in advance

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post #2 of 13 Old 03-16-2012, 12:50 PM
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Not nearly enough HP for routine 4" thick cutting. There isn't really anything new out there that will be happy doing what you are asking on any regular basis, you can always suffer through the one off. I would look for one of the myriad of 14" cast iron saws often called Delta clones that are usually on Craig's List.

The one new option that I know of is the Harbor Freight 14: cast saw. Round up one of the 20% off coupons and it will be right at $300 out the door. It is by far not the best example of these types of saws but it will work but may take a little more tuning out of the box, but bandsaws are a tool that needs to be tuned. The key with any saw you get is throw away the blade that comes with it and buy a new quality blade from either a local industrial supply or one of the on-line ones like Spectrum Supply.
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post #3 of 13 Old 03-16-2012, 04:14 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info. Being new to this whole "bandsaw" thing, I'm not exactly sure what you mean by "tuning" a bandsaw.(I am assuming its more than simply tightening the blade and such)Care to enlighten me?
And how much Hp would you think necessary for that kind of cutting?

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Last edited by SawdusttillSunset; 05-08-2013 at 07:40 PM.
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post #4 of 13 Old 03-16-2012, 04:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SawdusttillSunset View Post
Thanks for the info. Being new to this whole "bandsaw" thing, I'm not exactly shure what you mean by "tuning" a bandsaw.(I am assuming its more than simply tightening the blade and such)Care to enlighten me?
And how much Hp would you think necessary for that kind of cutting?
Unlike a table saw where you set the fence up correctly and if you have a good saw you won't have to touch it for years a bandsaw is different. Every time you put a new blade on you will have to go through a process of tuning the saw, thats why folks like me have multiple bandsaws! You put the blade on, adjust the tracking, tension the blade, set the upper and lower guides and set the fence for drift, if you need to dut a straight line.

Here are some basic videos to help, there is a TON of info on the web. MArk Duginski's most recent book is excellent and on Amazon for about $14.



http://www.finewoodworking.com/ToolG....aspx?id=34055

A PDF of info from the guy that did the last video

http://www.furnituresociety.org/furn...w_Complete.pdf

For a little primer on blades this is a link to some things i wrote a couple of years ago on another forum

http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthre...s+talk+bandsaw

Last edited by Huxleywood; 03-16-2012 at 04:39 PM.
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post #5 of 13 Old 03-16-2012, 11:01 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huxleywood View Post
Every time you put a new blade on you will have to go through a process of tuning the saw, thats why folks like me have multiple bandsaws!
thanks alot, I didn't realize you had to tune up after every blade change,good to know.
I have been advised to stay away from the harbor freight tools.(they seem to deliver less in quality)
what brand band saws do you own?
and what are the pros and cons of them?

Have thy tools ready. God will find thee work.

Last edited by SawdusttillSunset; 03-16-2012 at 11:03 PM. Reason: typo
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post #6 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 12:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SawdusttillSunset View Post
thanks alot, I didn't realize you had to tune up after every blade change,good to know.
I have been advised to stay away from the harbor freight tools.(they seem to deliver less in quality)
what brand band saws do you own?
and what are the pros and cons of them?
I am not a huge fan of Harbor Freight either but the 14" cast bandsaw is a decent machine. A LOT more bandsaw than the Craftsman you linked to. No it isn't perfect but it is certainly usable. BUt neither here nor there.

The next step up in quality buying new would be the Grizzly G0580 which will run just over $500 shipped or slightly below that would be the Porter Cable Lowes sales for 399.

A for my saws I have two Italian saws a Minimax MM20 and Laguna LT20 and 4 older American made saws 1 Delta/Crescent and 3 Powermatics.

I worry a little about sending a bandsaw newbie into the used market but if you have a basic understanding of machines you should be fine. With your budget you should be looking for 14" cast iron bandsaws that will all basically look alike. Delta, Jet, Grizzly, Steel City are just a few of the MANY companies that have made clones of this 70+ year old Delta design, the Harbor Freight is a copy also. Ridgid makes one but people have more trouble with it than the Harbor Freight. If you find one of Craig's List you can post about it and people will help you based on what they can tell from the ad, but you will have to make the final determination of quality.
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post #7 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 12:38 AM
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Originally Posted by robinson craft View Post
You should try to make one. They are really easy all you basically need is a motor. But of course you could also go with the boring way of buying one

Could be a fun project, I always like to watch Mathias' projects on woodgears.ca but, if time is money it is cheaper to buy one. Plus, I think the more you have used a bandsaw and tinkered with one the easier the project would be.
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post #8 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 07:08 AM
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I have the Grizzly GO555. Great band saw. Easy to tune up and has given me great service for 4 yrs now.
I buy my blades from Suffork Machinery, (timberwolf blades.). Woodcraft also carries these blades.
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post #9 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 06:16 PM Thread Starter
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hmm... yes I think i would need a little more experience to make my own bandsaw, would be a fun project though, maybe down the road a little.
I am liking the looks of the grizzly, although it's a little more money than i initially planned on spending, maybe i'll have to "reconsider".

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post #10 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 10:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SawdusttillSunset
Hi all, I am looking at purchasing a band saw, primary use would be for cutting around 4" thick pieces of wood, into creative looking boxes(jewelry boxes, "puzzle" boxes, etc.) Here and here are a few examples of what I am thinking.If at all possible, I would like to find a bandsaw under $300,that will fit my needs.
Any suggestions?
I am currently looking at the craftsman from sears, I've found alot of both positive, and negative reviews on it, and was wondering if anyone here had any personal experience with it.
I am new to woodworking, so any information,tips, or warnings, on anything regarding bandsaws, are greatly appreciated.
thanks in advance
If you are looking to make a bunch then save some money and get the best bandsaw you can afford otherwise you will spend everyday wishing you had. Grizzly makes great bandsaws for the buck I own there ultimate 17" and it is a monster. Their 14" is nice and only a little out of your price range but, with a riser block it will work well for your task.
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post #11 of 13 Old 03-28-2012, 08:39 AM Thread Starter
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Any reviews/Experience on the ridgid bandsaws?

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post #12 of 13 Old 03-28-2012, 09:16 AM
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I've got one of those Harbor Freight bandsaws, and while I like it, I wouldn't recommend it here. Granted I haven't upgraded to a really high-quality blade yet (I upgraded to cheap Bosch brand blades from Lowes), but I'm not convinced it would do well cutting 4" thick hardwood. With a good blade I'm sure it would work -- I have resawed 6" wide red oak -- but the feed rate was very slow, and the motor started to bog down a few times.

For my purposes, the HF saw works great. I have a review of it here. I'm just not convinced it's up to cutting 4" hardwood in high quantities. That said... it's probably the best you're going to do for $300.
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post #13 of 13 Old 03-28-2012, 11:24 AM
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For a $300 budget, a used 14" Delta bs, would be my choice, if you could find one. Key word, "if"
I'm talking about an older USA made one, not the crap, import, newer
Delta ones.
I have one and it's a nice saw. I paid $125 for mine, which was a great price. Typical used prices, I have seen are $175 - $350
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