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Never owned a bandsaw, but looking to add one to the shop for cutting furniture legs, skirts, simple rounded corners, and maybe some small resawing.

I am looking at the Rikon 10-3061 1/2HP 10" $500 or the Rikon 10-324tg 1.5HP 14" $1200, or even the Grizzly GO555LX - 1HP 10" $800.

I can barely afford to spend the 1200 for the 14", and i get the idea of buying more than you "currently" need, but realistically if the 10" 1/2 HP will do the job for the 2-3x a month I use it, id rather save the $700. The Grizz would be a compromise of both price and power, so not sure its a good option but it is more power, and still $500 less than the 14" Rikon.

So, the question is, where do you draw the line as far as HP requirements for a bandsaw? I know the 14" is more than i need, but on the other hand, is the 10" 1/2HP just not enough?
 

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David - Machinist in wood
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will do the job for the 2-3x a month I use it
You may find that once you have the bandsaw it gets used far more than you realize at this point. I have a Laguna 14 SUV for resawing and a 1950 King-Seeley 12" that gets used a LOT in my shop.
 

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where's my table saw?
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I have the little 10" Craftsman, a Rikon clone, with a 1/3 HP motor. It was essentially my son's hobby saw when he was 8 years old.
I have two other 14" Craftsman 1 HP saws and an 18" saw with 3 HP, so it just gets used for small radius cuts.
However, I needed to shorten a bunch of "overly long" firewood and used the 10" saw to do that.
I was impressed with the power and it worked just fine:
 

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@redline9k
"............ looking to add one to the shop for cutting furniture legs, skirts, simple rounded corners, and maybe some small resawing."

I dont think anything less than 1HP will do the job. And probably forget about resawing anything of size and most hardwoods.
The bad news is that if you buy an under-performing tool you have thrown your money away.
 

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The small wheels put more flex on the blade, which cause the blades to break easier. The small saws also use shorter blades, so they build up more heat, which also breaks more blades...
 
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I had a 10" bandsaw as a starter when I fist got into hobby woodworking. I fought it for over a year trying to make it do what I wanted. I finally gave in and went to a 14", which on paper is overkill for my very small hobbyist needs. I have never once regretted buying it, its my most used machine.
 

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where's my table saw?
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Whoa there redline.
You said:
I am looking at the Rikon 10-3061 1/2HP 10" $500 or the Rikon 10-324tg 1.5HP 14" $1200, or even the Grizzly GO555LX - 1HP 10" $800.
That Grizzly is a 14" not a 10":

That is a very popular saw and will save you money over the 1.5 HP Rikon. Unless you need 12" of resaw capacity the Grizzly should be just fine.
My 14" Craftsman with 1 HP motors are my "go to" bandsaws. I use two because they wear different tooth size blades and changing blades is not much fun.
 

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Never owned a bandsaw, but looking to add one to the shop for cutting furniture legs, skirts, simple rounded corners, and maybe some small resawing.

I am looking at the Rikon 10-3061 1/2HP 10" $500 or the Rikon 10-324tg 1.5HP 14" $1200, or even the Grizzly GO555LX - 1HP 10" $800.

I can barely afford to spend the 1200 for the 14", and i get the idea of buying more than you "currently" need, but realistically if the 10" 1/2 HP will do the job for the 2-3x a month I use it, id rather save the $700. The Grizz would be a compromise of both price and power, so not sure its a good option but it is more power, and still $500 less than the 14" Rikon.

So, the question is, where do you draw the line as far as HP requirements for a bandsaw? I know the 14" is more than i need, but on the other hand, is the 10" 1/2HP just not enough?
What species of wood will you be working. If only soft species like plywood, fir and maybe pine, that is one thing. On the other hand, if you intend to re-saw oak, ash or hickory that is >4", you will want all the HP you can get. It is not as much about how many boards you intend to process as the size and species.
 

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If you can deal with the $ dent, I recommend a 14" saw. I've used saws up to 24" and always appreciated the flexibilty that comes from being able to cut the work piece on my terms rather than the living with the saw's limitations. And I agree with one of the posters that said you will use it more than you think. I bought a Rikon 10-326 variable speed about a year ago with a similar notion that it might be lit up just once in a while. Seriously mistaken. While I haven't got to the point where I'm buying blades in quantity, I find myself putting in a lot more time in front of that table than I ever thought.
 

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where's my table saw?
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If you can deal with the $ dent, I recommend a 14" saw. I've used saws up to 24" and always appreciated the flexibilty that comes from being able to cut the work piece on my terms rather than the living with the saw's limitations. And I agree with one of the posters that said you will use it more than you think. I bought a Rikon 10-326 variable speed about a year ago with a similar notion that it might be lit up just once in a while. Seriously mistaken. While I haven't got to the point where I'm buying blades in quantity, I find myself putting in a lot more time in front of that table than I ever thought.
I love my bandsaws, all of them! I even designed one as a Master's Thesis in graduate school and made a mock up that looked so real they put in in the Art Museum hallway for about 6 months. That aside, I hate changing blades and fussing with the adjustments from different widths, so I actually have two identical Craftsman 14" Pro saws and run different blades on each one. In the same shop there's an 18" Min Max I use only for resawing with a 3 TPI X 3/4" wide blade and a small 10" which was my son's when it was about 8 years old. In a different shop there's a 14 Wilton multi speed and 2 metal cutting saws, which brings the total to 7.
My prototype mockup:
Creative arts Gas Machine Composite material Household appliance accessory



The bandsaw is THE most underrated machine in the woodshop. JMO.
 

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From my limited experience a half horsepower is it good for a 1/4 and 3/8 in Blade..
Three-quarter horsepower is good for a 3/8 to half inch maybe a three-quarter inch blade and those are limited anyhow.
If you’re looking at some of the very good hardwoods, greater 4 inches high, you’re kind of needing to be at a one horsepower greater.
Basically saying the same thing as others above sad, just wording it differently.

Some of the larger hardwoods are like cutting through very solid, hard material that has very little give . The longer It has to carry through more bind it applies because it’s all trying to set up in a gullet between the teeth and more horsepower takes to pull through also creates more heat and friction. Both are the enemy of a long life blade.
 

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I do not mind losing the 1/8" saw kerf from a table saw. Not sure of the exact sizes I do this with probably around 2 1/2" to 3 1/2" boards. Run them through the table saw on edge and flip it over to complete the cut on the other half. If wider board than that, I do the same thing and finish the cut to separate the 2 halves on the band saw. Then plane the cut faces. Truth be known, I am still probably saving more wood than a wabbly cut through the band saw alone - depending on make, model, size and your skill level.
Depending on the type of wood and how wide the board being sliced in 2 is, I may be wasting less wood and ime than than a bandsaw cut along
 

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where's my table saw?
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I am still probably saving more wood than a wabbly cut through the band saw alone
LOL. If the best you and your saw can do is a "wobbly cut" through the bandsaw, you indeed should use the table saw.
However, that's not what I get with my bandsaws. I joint the freshly cut surface that I register against fence each time I make a new pass which always gives me one straight, flat surface on each piece.
 

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Bandsaw cutting is all about speed, or rather, NOT speed. Too fast gives you "wobbly cuts" "drifting", "bogging down" right up to 90 degree veers and broken blades.
You have to allow the teeth time to travel through the wood and remove the dust.
If youre a hobbyist and time is NOT money, then you can use a quite small machine to cut really thin hardwood slices almost good enough to glue straight back on.
I can cut 8" high bubinga ( a LOT harder than walnut) to almost veneer thickness, and using a 3/16" blade, because I hate changing blades so much and dont mind the 5 minutes per foot cutting time.
If time is money, then big and bold is the way to go.
 

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where's my table saw?
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Bandsaw cutting is all about speed, or rather, NOT speed. (FEEDING) Too fast gives you "wobbly cuts" "drifting", "bogging down" right up to 90 degree veers and broken blades.
You have to allow the teeth time to travel through the wood and remove the dust.
If youre a hobbyist and time is NOT money, then you can use a quite small machine to cut really thin hardwood slices almost good enough to glue straight back on.
I can cut 8" high bubinga ( a LOT harder than walnut) to almost veneer thickness, and using a 3/16" blade, because I hate changing blades so much and dont mind the 5 minutes per foot cutting time.
If time is money, then big and bold is the way to go.
You are correct. But you are referring to feed rate, not blade speed.
Commercial bandsaws saws run at 4,000 to 5,000 FPM, which is fast!
Your feeding rate must allow the the blade to "work" and cut at it's own pace.
 

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I did over-exaggerate the wabaly cut part. Just wanted to say that it is not as smooth as the table saw if the TS is an option as in tenons.
 
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