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Help with band saw please.


82DeanZ
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Hi,

I was using my new band saw to cut down a blank and had trouble cutting a straight line. I set up the saw correctly according to the manual. That is, I made sure both upper and lower guides were set close to the blade and that both upper and lower "push back" bearing guides were within 1/32 of the blade. I also made sure that the blade tension was set according to the blade tension chart. I also had the blade guide assembly within 1/8 in of the top of the blank. Despite all this, the blade kept wandering to the left as I pushed the blank forward for the cut. In order to get a straight line, I had to push the blank throught at nearly a 45 degree angle. I was using a 1/4 blade to cut a nearly 2 in blank. Was the blade to thin for this cut? Thanks in advance for your advice!

Best Regards,

Mike.

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1/32" is way to far off of the rear bearing push back guide, that is .0325", it should only be .005" max, I generally set mine to .003" on the push back guide bearing and the side bearings.

Also, the jury still seems to be out on the size of blade for resawing, I know some master woodworkers who say a 1/4" blade is the biggest you should use for up to 10" resawing and then I know woodworkers who say the wider the better. My bandsaw will take up to a 3/4" blade and in all honesty, resawing works just as well with the 1/4" as it does with the 3/4". If your bandsaw doesn't have a blade tension scale, there is a good rule of thumb.

With all your blade guides backed right off, tighten the blade to where you think it's tight enough, turn on the band saw, if the blade is not tight enough, the blade will flutter (vibrate back and forth), if it does that, tighten the blade until it runs smooth with no flutter, then turn the tension adjustment another 1/4 turn. If it is running smooth right from the start, loosen it off until it starts to flutter, then tighten it until it stops, and then another 1/4 turn. Then set your blade guides to .003 to .005" from the blade on both the side guides and the rear guide.

99% of the time a wandering blade is caused by not being sharp. I had always bought the regular stamped steel blades that were like $12, recently I bought a few that have milled teeth, not stamped, they are $30 for the same size blade, but the difference is like night and day. 2" maple cuts like it's balsa wood, I can resaw 10" maple tops with no effort, and cutting out 2" thick body blanks with tight radius's is effortless. Nothing beats a sharp blade, the blades I'm using now also last substantially longer than the cheaper ones.

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1/4 inch blade to resaw, just don't think that would work, would need to see that, gosh imagine how long that would take :D

I work at a wood shop where we have a resaw machine laguna 20. It has a 1 1/2 blade, my gramps a master craftsman, used a hitachie sp??? with a 3inch blade.

I have a 14' delta with a riser block and I am still figuring how to set it up right, I spent the cash on a 3/4 carbide tooth blade, and I think it cuts a 1000 times better the the stock 3/8 blade.

Also if you have access to a blade tension gauge use it or buy one.

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Wow...you guys are great! Special thanks to Jeremy for the mini-tutorial. That's just what I needed. I found this article on the net:

http://www.taunton.com/finewoodworking/pages/w00013.asp

The author notes that the tension guides on all smaller consumer band saws are horribly inaccurate and even on the larger floor standing models. He recommends that the tension spring be nearly fully compressed with a 1/2 blade on a consumer model! Good stuff. Thank you all again.

Best Regards,

Mike.

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I use a 2" blade for resawing tops, but it's an actual resaw bandsaw

lucky man, I agree if you have an actual resaw then the bigger the better, I've had great results with the 3/4" in my bandsaw, I'm happy with that B)

Yeah but it's moving to Texas in 2 months. I'm gonna have to buy my own tools :D

or move to texas...it's hot here though

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Just a quick update,

I put on my 3/8 blade and setup my band saw as Jeremy suggested and the thing cut my 2 inch alder blank like a champ! Beautiful. Just beautiful. You could actually see the flutter slowly disappear with each turn of the tension knob. Amazing. Thanks again!

Best Regards,

Mike.

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With all your blade guides backed right off, tighten the blade to where you think it's tight enough, turn on the band saw, if the blade is not tight enough, the blade will flutter (vibrate back and forth), if it does that, tighten the blade until it runs smooth with no flutter, then turn the tension adjustment another 1/4 turn. If it is running smooth right from the start, loosen it off until it starts to flutter, then tighten it until it stops, and then another 1/4 turn. Then set your blade guides to .003 to .005" from the blade on both the side guides and the rear guide.

thanks jeremy, i just got my bandsaw and i haven't changed the blade yet, but i was starting to wonder how you're supposed to know how tight is tight enough :D

Are there any other tension meters people have seen for sale, the one in that article Deanz posted said 300$. I'd just like to have something a bit more accurate then trying to observe the blade's behavior. Also are there any known values, or tables that show what tension to use with what saws and blades? even with that 300$ meter would i still have to use lgm's methode to get the the ballpark, then just use the meter to record that value for quick reference down the road??

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ryobi (sp?) has a table top drill press ( 10 " i think) and a (

bandsaw (table top) each for about a hundred a pop, i myself got a scroll saw takes a while to cut out a 2" body, but is usefull for a lot of other things that a bandsaw would be too rough for. also I am kicking meself in the nuts for getting a usuless craftsman knock off the dremel tool (except its bigger) instead of a drill press (theres always the next project)

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