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Anyone Familiar With This Craftsman Bandsaw?


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I'm close to pulling the trigger on a bandsaw for my shop, I've been using my father-in-laws to this point.

Here's the saw I'm looking at:

Craftsman 12" bandsaw

It has a good price, $320 after rebate, and is fairly compact, which is a big consideration for me since I am very limited on space. It has 7" resaw capacity, which is larger than most 14" saws without a riser block, and should be large enough to resaw tops and whatnot. The combination of price and features seems pretty good, not to mention the fact that I can pick it up rather than ordering it, and avoid freight charges.

I went and fiddled with it a few weeks ago, and the quality seemed quite solid. The reviews seem pretty good too. It looks to be a good piece of equipment for its price range. Has anyone here had experience with this particular saw?

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My first saw was a craftsman 12" and it worked. I cant say it was great but it did the job. Now that was several versions ago and this saw is different. The only downside is if you want better blades then you will have to spend more effort. You will have to do a special order with a local or online company. Most of the sears brand blades are not worth the money (also over priced) and a better blade will make the machine cut better.

Sears blade discussion

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I'm not averse to ordering blades online. It seems you can find nearly anything online if you know where to look. :D I don't know if I've ever heard of a company that supplied a good blade from the factory. Thanks for the link to the blade discussion! That certainly simplifies things.

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I looked into it a little. It's apparently made by Rikon for Sears.

I haven't seen it up close, but from what I've read, it's one of the better tools you'll find at Sears.

Having said that, if at all possible, get at least a 14" band saw. I have a Jet 12" band saw, and I love it, but that extra capacity would make it so much more useful. I'm going to eventually have to replace it with a larger one.

Edited by Rick500
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I see what you're saying with regards to size, Rick. However, this saw has a 7" resaw capacity. I have no doubt I will eventually need another saw, but until I get into serious resawing of large stock, I think this size will do fine. And I imagine that, at the rate I work, that is quite a long way into the future. Buying a slightly smaller saw now seems to fit my current and near-future needs, as well as my budget.

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CL can be a great idea - I found a 14" one, brand new, in the box, for $275 on CL. Before that I had the old 12" that I absolutely loved. There wasn't a thing wrong with it, I just couldn't pass up the bigger one at that price. The only downside I have found is that it is more difficult to change blades. Maybe I just need to get used to it. Re-sawing with a 1/2" blade has worked very well.

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I'm close to pulling the trigger on a bandsaw for my shop, I've been using my father-in-laws to this point.

Here's the saw I'm looking at:

Craftsman 12" bandsaw

It has a good price, $320 after rebate, and is fairly compact, which is a big consideration for me since I am very limited on space. It has 7" resaw capacity, which is larger than most 14" saws without a riser block, and should be large enough to resaw tops and whatnot. The combination of price and features seems pretty good, not to mention the fact that I can pick it up rather than ordering it, and avoid freight charges.

I went and fiddled with it a few weeks ago, and the quality seemed quite solid. The reviews seem pretty good too. It looks to be a good piece of equipment for its price range. Has anyone here had experience with this particular saw?

I saw this saw Friday. I've been debating for a while about getting another bandsaw purely for resawing, but I couldn't justify the price of the whole thing after the riser blocks were put on and it was shipped to me. But this one, with this price, and a stock 7" resaw capacity... it's really making me think.

PLEASE... if you get it, let us know how it performs when splitting some 7" stock.

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I purchased it on saturday. I have assembled it, and it's a very high quality of construction for the price. I still have to calibrate everything and will be buying a new blade. The widest stock I have on hand is 5.5" currently, but I'll let you know how it performs after I get it rolling.

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  • 2 weeks later...

From all of the reviews I read, the fine-tuning takes a couple of hours. Supposedly, the bearings are dissicult & quirky, the table has a 3-way adjustment that takes forever to get right, the bearings themselves are crap, and the factory blade is crap. Overall, the reviews were pretty favorable. The main complaint ofter it was all set up is that Sears didn't carry blades for it and that the miter gague wasn't included.

Personally, I'm only interested in how well it resaws 6"-7" stock, and how straight the cut is. The motor looks a bit underpowered, but the lower speed setting is supposed to add torque to compensate.

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  • 1 month later...

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