Primarily used for cutting curves on wood, even if you happen to be using thick lumber, band saw reviews speak highly of this tool. They are the ideal (and oftentimes only) tools that can perform crosscuts on short pieces, rip lumber, and even help with cabriolet leg making.
Capable of ripping or resawing lumber so you get thinner slabs of them, band saws have proven to cut irregular shapes like no other tool made to date. Do not get us started on their precision. Not only do they beget some of the smoothest cuts possible, band saws are versatile enough to accommodate different blades, even those that can help this machine cut metal.
How much hectic does it get for any individual to carve a piece of wood for his chores? Without a proper mechanism, it really takes quite much effort and also tends to be quite time taking. The wait is over. Nowadays, the marketplace is flooded with different band saws that provide a variety of mechanisms to help a woodcutter get his work done quite easily.
Amongst all the different variants present in the market, it certainly can be a difficult process on getting hands over the best band saws available. With different advantages and disadvantages posed in getting the work done, this article simply illustrates a few possibilities that can help an individual choose his product for the job.
- Why would be need a band saw?
- Different types of Band saws
- Band Saw Comparison Table
- Best band saws in Market 2015 – 2016
- 1. WEN 3962 Two-Speed Band Saw with Stand and Worklight, 10 Inch
- 2. Laguna Tools MBAND1412-175 14 x 12 Bandsaw, Black/Grey
- 3. Rikon 10-305 Band saw With Fence, 10-Inch
- 4. POWERTEC BS900 Band Saw, 9-Inch
- 5. SKIL 3386-01 120-Volt 9-Inch Band Saw with Light
- 6. JET JWBS-14DXPRO 14-inch Deluxe Pro Band Saw Kit
- 7. Rikon 10-325 Deluxe Band Saw, 14-Inch
- Best portable band saw reviews
- Factors should be Considered When Reading Band Saw Reviews
- How To Properly Use A Band Saw
- Band Saw Safety
- How To Choose Band Saw Blades
- Final Words
Why would be need a band saw?
Band saws are mainly used for making out curves and sawing a wood piece altogether. Almost all the models available in the market have a similarity in terms of their looks but are quite different regarding their price tags. Eventually some of the units are equipped with similar components but is quite different again in terms of up-gradation. Opting for a band saw completely depends on an individual’s degree of shelling out money and the kind of usage that can be anticipated.
Aside from being able to craft complex designs like cabriolet legs, band saw reviews often speak on how these machines are also used to cut square corners and make relief cuts.
In this manner, you can create some amazing multiple cut pieces. When used with an auxiliary table, you can precisely cut and shape circular designs. With a follower and a template, there is no stopping you from making identical cut pieces while you are at it.
Not only can you resaw thick into thin stock, band saws can also release different quantities of waste stock if you rely on several cuts as you craft sharp curves.
Different types of Band saws
Band saws can majorly be differentiated into 3 categories such as Bench-top Band saws, Stand mounted Band saws and Floor Standing Band saws.
Bench-top Band saws
Bench-top band saws are mainly band saws that are portable and can be fixed over a pedestal or on a table. The weight of it is also quite lighter than the other segments and the wheel dimensions range between 8 to 12 inches as per the diameter. The only specification of this product is that the motor is not attached with the belt, instead it is directly fixed to the equipment.
Advantages and Disadvantages over using a Bench-top Band saw
The advantages of using this product can be well pointed out with it usage at home without much instructions needed. The cutting procedure is also supported with a light scrolling cutter that easily carves the wood out pleasantly. These band saws can eventually cut through stationary objects as well. The bench-top band saws are quite cheap in their price range, smaller in size, much lighter in weight and can be moved around the place quite easily.
The only disadvantage that it provides is the low sawing power and capacity. It also comes with a limited capacity for the cutting process as well. The bench space is also bounded and it cannot be used for cutting through the interior.
Stand Mounted Band saws
Stand mounted Band saws has a distinct character to its presence. It comes with a 14 inch diameter wheel size and apparently comes with a cast-iron structure. The equipment can have a display of an open frame or a similar enclosed structure. It is connected with the use of the belt and the motor is present just below the saw within the stand.
Advantages and Disadvantages over using a Stand Mounted Band saw
It can best used in small workshops in the process of woodcutting job with the ability of cutting out curves. The basic advantage over using this product is that it is quite cheap regardless of its size or mechanism provided, quite versatile and does not need much space to set up.
The disadvantage is that it is provided with a limited cutting ability and is a bit low powered for creating boards from small logs.
Floor Standing Band saws
Floor standing band saws is mainly distinctively featured with the large wheel base size measuring between 17 to 24 inches in diameter. These band saws are majorly used by professional woodcutters for a good professional workshop. The motor size is also much bigger compared in size than the other ones available. The structure is also strong and quite durable too. Since it does help in a cutting consistency, professionals use this for getting large wood cutting jobs done.
Advantages and Disadvantages of using a Floor Standing Band saw
It is basically good for a professional usage, is quite sturdy and strong, can easily be dealt with large depths within the boards. It can also be ensured with a good cutting technique with an ability of molding intricate designs plus it is the very best for rip sawing a thick area.
The main advantage of using such products is that they are quite much powerful than the regular ones, highly stable and gives a more consistent cutting edge for getting a wood carved easily.
The disadvantages can be pointed out to it being a bit expensive and requires a good space for accommodating the product.
Band Saw Comparison Table
|Laguna Tools MBAND1412-175 14 x 12 Bandsaw||18 x 25 x 70.2 inches||267 pounds||14 Inches||Stand|
|JET JWBS-14DXPRO 14-Inch Deluxe Pro Band Saw Kit||29 x 28 x 77 inches||258 pounds||14 Inches||Stand||5 Years|
|Rikon 10-325 14-Inch Deluxe Band Saw||25 x 30 x 75 inches||37 pounds||14 Inches||Bare-Tool||5 Years|
|Powermatic 1791216K Model PWBS-14CS Deluxe||20 x 34 x 68 inches||178 pounds||14 Inches||Stand|
|WEN 3962 Two-Speed Band Saw with Stand and Worklight||20 x 25 x 58 inches||73 pounds||10 Inches||Bare-Tool||2 Years|
|Rikon 10-305 Bandsaw With Fence||35.5 x 18 x 13 inches||73.6 pounds||10 Inches||Stand||5 Years|
|POWERTEC BS900 Band Saw||31.5 x 18 x 12 inches||43.6 pounds||9 Inches||Bare-Tool|
|SKIL 3386-01 2.5-Amp 9-Inch Band Saw||31.1 x 16.2 x 12.8 inches||36 pounds||9 Inches||Bare-Tool|
|Grizzly G0513 2 HP Bandsaw||20 x 30 x 81 inches||342 pounds||17 Inches||Stand|
|Grizzly G0513ANV 2 HP Bandsaw Anniversary Edition||21 x 31 x 81 inches||358 pounds||17 Inches||Bare-Tool|
Best band saws in Market 2015 – 2016
1. WEN 3962 Two-Speed Band Saw with Stand and Worklight, 10 Inch
This band saw design by WEN is a culmination of many years of research and tests with an intention of making workshops fun and satisfying.
This band saw has become a powerful companion for workshops because of its extra power, versatility and ease of use.
The 3.5 amps power is strong enough and will rip even the hardest wood. This and a large throat of 9-¾ inches make it easy to cut through wide boards of up to 6 inches deep.
Whether you are working on powerful or intricate pieces, the machine allows you to pick the right speeds, 2620 or 1520 FPM.
The diversity makes it easy to follow all designs with precision or give a new user time to get used to the machine. In addition to this, the machine uses a wide range of 72 inches saws of 1/2-1/8 inches depending on the nature of your project. No mater what are your cutting demands, all you need is the right blade and results will be magnificent.
The machine is sold with a wide working table of 14×12 inches with adjustable tilt that makes cutting at angles easy and fun. When the table is illuminated with powerful LED fused lights, the user is sure of clear sight on cuts lines and faster completion of the project.
Because the machine is delivered in parts, the user will find assembly easy and fast. The stand helps to elevate the saw to a perfect working position so that all your energy goes to guiding the machine and not lifting when working.
Besides, the meter gauge provides perfect measurement to the cut line while the blade is guided by ball bearings for smooth cuts.
The designer gives the user a guarantee of 2 years and sells at affordable rate which makes the machine a great piece worth adding into the workshop.
2. Laguna Tools MBAND1412-175 14 x 12 Bandsaw, Black/Grey
This band saw from Laguna Tool is the powerful equipment for woodworking in your workshop because of its amazing features.
It can help you to carry out different projects perfectly from simple and complex one as well as satisfy even your most difficult requirement.
The band saw requires 115V and has a strong motor which can undertake a lot of wood types. Especially, its great performance and capacity allow you to work longer and more efficiently.
Having steel frame construction with cast iron wheels, pyramid spine, this Laguna Tool band saw can stand pretty sturdily. With 12″ of Resaw Capacity, 13 5/8″ of throat capacity and 115″ of Blade Length, it promises to provide the most convenient working moments.
The blade change is easy and quick. The fence is so adjustable and functional that you can lower or drift it without obstacle. The machine also comes with a blade shroud which is in the lower cabinet to support dust collection.
Assembling and operating are extremely easy and do not require you to have lots of skill or abilities. Besides, it can run smoothly without causing vibration and work quietly with almost no noise.
The final point which makes many users love it is the reasonable price for a perfect product. Put the price and quality into comparison, this machine is very worth buying and trustworthy band saw for woodworking lovers.
3. Rikon 10-305 Band saw With Fence, 10-Inch
Rikon’s 10-305 Bandsaw has won praise and hearts of many because of its unique design that makes working in a workshop easy, fun, and satisfying.
The machine is a scale down of the 10-345 and 10-325 as Rikon wanted to make a piece that is more versatile in daily workshop tasks.
It features a solid steel design and steel plate that makes it extra strong compared to most models on the market today. This strength allows you to work on projects every day without wearing it down.
The machine is sold together with a large 13-3/4 table designed from cast iron. This gives you a sturdy working bench to work on small to large projects.
An important addition that extends the machine’s versatility is the rip-off fence. With the 10-305 models, you can remove the main machine to do free work.
With cutting power of up to 115 volts, you will find cutting pens and bowl plants easy, fast and fun.
From the casing, hardened table, cutting motor, and safety guide, this machine was made to last.
The seller made it easy for the user to work on the machine, dismantle, clean, and maintain for extended lifespan. It is because of this that it comes with a long warranty of up to 5 years.
No matter the creative projects you are working on, what is required is a versatile machine that can make the work easier and guarantee top results. With proper care, this is one piece of device that can last for a very long time and we strongly recommend it.
4. POWERTEC BS900 Band Saw, 9-Inch
POWERTEC BS900 Band Saw, 9-Inch design has won hearts of many workshop owners because of its strength and safety. The machine is made from aluminum die casting and steel for extra strength.
From the outer casing, frame, stand and other parts, everything is designed and fitted firmly for longer lifespan. POWERTEC emphasizes that no matter the intensity of use, this machine will last for many years without breaking down.
A good saw blade and system should be easily adjustable to match different cutting needs. The BS900 Band Saw, 9-Inch by POWERTEC was particularly made to drive this versatility.
Its blade is extra hardened and fitted with an adjustable guard for easy and faster replacement. Whether you want to cut a softer or thinner piece, changing the blade is easy so that you do not waste time.
The band saw also comes with a working bench that has adjustable rack and pinion capable of tilting to about 45 degrees.
With this band saw, there is no piece of wood or grain is too hard. The machine generates ½ HP from 2.5 amps which are enough to rip even the hardest wood provided using the right blade size. The user can, therefore, make all sorts of furniture and fittings without going outside the workshop.
The machine has a quick blade tension relieve lever that makes it easy to stop for adjustments or preventing an emergency.
If you are looking for a flexible band saw that can guarantee better result, well, this is the device to beat.
5. SKIL 3386-01 120-Volt 9-Inch Band Saw with Light
This piece is a noble model device for working on medium to light cutting tasks. It is ideal for cutting irregular shapes as well as ripping lumber into thin sheets for demanding projects.
The machine makes it easy to rip through various wooden materials using its 6-TPI blade, adjust height and make angle cuts with ease.
The machine is versatile and has a large working bench. Whether you are cutting through thick pieces of wood or board sheets, you can adjust the height and cut with ease.
Besides, the table and rack are adjustable to suit the workers height and make angle cuts easy. This is crucial especially when working with special blocks and wood for joineries.
In addition to this, the band saw has an LED lighting that illuminates the entire working bench. If you want to work extra hours or need to finish a project after dusk, you are sure of total illumination.
When this machine is compared with others, it stands out because of ease of use.
It features a unique RIP FENCE that is adjustable to help in guiding straight work pieces. However, when cutting curves and crosses, the miter gauge comes in handy.
These are designed with extra hardened materials and fitted firmly for longer lifespan.
Unlike other machines that make the workplace very dirty and dusty with excess debris, SKIL 3386-01 120-Volt 9-Inch Band Saw with Light has a dust port for attaching to a vacuum horse.
From its design to ease of use and versatility, this machine no doubt stands out from others and it a worth investment.
6. JET JWBS-14DXPRO 14-inch Deluxe Pro Band Saw Kit
This band saw is sturdily built to meet the ever changing demand of o woodworkers. The machine has well thought of high cutting capability and features a retractable guard or enhanced capability.
It offers a cutting capacity width of up to 13.5 inches and height of 12 inches. These and a retractable guard make working on small and large tasks easy and fast.
To guarantee every user of extra performance, the frame is made of cast iron. This super-tough design and high blade speed of 3000/1500 SFMP makes the saw able to cut through even the toughest piece of wood.
In addition, it is more rigid compared to previous models that make it easy to use and fast to cut through every piece of wood.
In their focus, JET made the working table firmer to give the user flexibility of working on a wide range of projects. With a 15×15 inch work bench that can tilt at 10-45 degrees, you are sure of working easily even on demanding projects.
On safety, JWBS-14DXPRO has a wide range of features to make sure your cutting line is easy to follow and working with the equipment safer.
The machine has a poly-v driver system that helps to enhance precision and two speed controls.
Beside this, it also has a quick release blade tension to help in halting a project instantly for adjustments. When this machine is mounted on its firm stand, the user is sure of working for longer hours, enjoying every moment, and getting top results.
7. Rikon 10-325 Deluxe Band Saw, 14-Inch
People with small to medium cutting needs need stronger, tougher, and flexible band saws such as the Rikon 10-325, 14-Inch Deluxe Band Saw.
It has a high cutting capability of 13 inches, 2-speed settings, and hinged guard to protect the blade. Whether you are cutting a wide block of timber, re-sawing, or angle slicing plastic pieces, this machine will rip them in no time.
The machine is sold with a wide table of 16×12-1/2 inches designed from heavy metal and fixed firmly to allow you concentrate on cutting. This is meant to hold any weight placed on it and withstand daily vibrations from the motor.
To guarantee the user greater flexibility when working on special projects, the table is can tilt slightly for angle cuts. You can, therefore, cut angles, rip edges, and finish demanding tasks faster and perfectly.
In addition to this, the user can select the blades of 14 inches for cutting wood, plastic, and non-ferrous metal.
To make working easier and security top notch, the device is fitted with lighting system so that the working bench and cutting lines are clearly visible hen cutting.
Its stands are also easy to assemble so that the band saw is elevated to the perfect working height.
Rikon patents its band saws to demonstrate its focus on quality and needs to be part of their success as they work on projects after project.
With the demonstrated effectiveness and designer’s commitment to quality, we suggest you consider adding this device to your workshop.
Featuring a 2.5 amp motor with a tilt- adjustable table made of ribbed aluminum; this is one of the best band saws around.
For increased versatility and visibility, it comes with a flexible lamp making it even more unique.
Everything about this machine is just perfect. Be it changing the blades or cutting wood to desired dimensions, it makes every activity easy to perform.
Best portable band saw reviews
1. DEWALT DWM120K 10 Amp 5-Inch Deep Cut Portable Band Saw Kit
DWM120K 10 Amp 5-Inch Deep Cut Portable Band Saw Kit is a uniquely designed to combine quality and performance.
The machine is easy to use, and every part is built to last longer without compromising the quality of service.
The motor is very powerful which makes it able to withstand even tough jobs the band saw cuts with 120 volts of power which helps to prevent getting bogged down.
The machine will perform perfectly at a speed ranging from 350-100 sfm which is variable so that you can adjust to your personal fit.
The design of this machine makes it extra durable and longer lasting. The casing, motor, and controls are made with top quality materials and fitted firmly to withstand vibrations.
The machine, further, features an integrated hook that makes it easy to hang it as opposed to placing on surfaces that might get wet, dusty, or very dirty. If you take care of this piece properly, rest assured of enjoying top quality services for a long period.
Just like other products designed by DEWALT, the cutting blade is hardened to cut through even the toughest grains.
The machine has top precision blade tracking system that makes work easier, reduces rate of tear and wear, and extends its lifespan.
Additionally, it has two blade rollers and blade change lever that makes changing easy and convenient.
This band saw is one of the most comfortable and easy to use. Whether you are new or has some experience with band saws, the grip in this piece is no doubt comfortable which makes it easy to follow the cutting line.
Besides, it has bright LED lighting that makes visibility easy in all working conditions. If you are looking or a band saw, this piece has proven to be worth its price and is worth trying.
2. DEWALT Bare-Tool DCS370B 18-Volt Cordless Band Saw
DEWALT’s design for this machine was informed by the need to create more versatile and simpler devices with high efficiency.
The DEWALT Bare-Tool DCS370B 18-Volt Cordless Band Saw is a heavy duty machine with a cutting capacity of up to 2- ½ inches and 2 inches pipes.
DEWALT creativity is evident in the design because the machine is strong, firm, light and highly effective. Whether cutting a piece of pipe or working on wood edges, you will not suffer fatigue but find the task enthralling.
Like other hand-held equipment, DEWALT was concerned about balancing. To address this, the machine has a center handle for perfect balancing, especially for overhead applications.
Users and experts find the device very reliable because of its blade tracking adjustments, dual bearing blade guide that ease working with it. Whether you are working on demanding projects or cutting hard plumbing lines, all you need is the right blade to complete the tasks fast.
On maintenance, the DCS370B is among the easier to guarantee users of extra durability and value for money.
It has a tool-less blade changing system and an ergonomically softened grip to prevent falls.
Besides, it has a hanging hook so that you can store it up in the store free of dust and dirt.
The most crucial uniqueness of this band saw is that it is cordless. Unlike others that require full-time connection to a power plug, the DCS370B uses a battery without compromising the quality of service. As a result, it is a perfect option for working outdoors, reaching narrow areas, and even assisting clients on site.
However, clients are required to buy the batteries separately; a consideration that raises the cost of the device. Even with this fact, this band saw was one of the best and we strongly recommend it or every workshop and other people with cutting needs.
3. DEWALT DCS371B 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Band Saw, Bare-Tool
When you work in a workshop, some jobs, and indeed higher paying ones will demand you operate from client’s site.
It is at this point that a portable cordless band saw remains the most reliable device. DEWALT created the DCS371B 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Band Saw, Bare-Tool to help wood-workers, technicians, plumber electricians, and construction experts can work from sites.
This band saw generates enough power and has a cutting capacity of 2-1/2 inches on wood and 2 inches on pipe
Because some working sites might not be connected to the grid or power might be out, this band saw is designed to use a 20 volts lithium battery which is rechargeable. You can, therefore, work from anywhere. However, you will need to buy the charger and battery separately for the band saw.
The design carefully places the motor, controls, hang hook, and blade strategically for perfect balancing which is very crucial when working on delicate projects or overhead.
Additionally, the handle is located at the center so that you can follow the cutting lines easily whether on the table or overhead.
To make working with the machine easy, it has a bright LED lighting that will illuminate the entire working area so that you can make clear cuts, curves, and grooves for your project.
Every workshop owner who bought this band saw indicated its ease of use even when working in poorly lit areas. No matter what cutting needs you have, this piece is no doubt a priceless addition that you will pride of for many years.
Factors should be Considered When Reading Band Saw Reviews
When you are out shopping or browsing online (which is somewhat the same thing), let there be no doubt as to how band saws look. With two or three wheels holding up a support table, motor housing, and a rotating blade, you cannot go wrong. Also, do not assume a band saw is just another tool due the simple setup.
If you know how, you can put together your own band saw. For example, the wheels can come from the company/manufacturer of your preference while you get the motor elsewhere. Or even craft your own wooden cabinet, in keeping with the efficient band saw design.
The sizes vary, of course. You can find bench-top models, which are rather compact and lightweight, or go for the colossal floor models, which are preferred only by those doing business using band saw technology.
Yes, the bench-toppers are portable. They also sit easy in small spaces. You can even bolt them to a stand to gain added support. However, they lack the capacity that floor models bring; aka, resawing capabilities.
Small spaces like shops and residential garages, though, find excellent use of the smaller version.
We cannot honestly say that size matters in the world of band saws, because they do not always. Sometimes smaller blades are called for where at other times the bigger the better.
We will later discuss the sizes of blades you can use to improve efficiency for your band saw, but for now let us describe how stock size and handling is determined by the size of the band saw equipment.
The Distance between the Saw’s Throat and the Inner Edge of the Blade is one factor to consider. If you read a measure ‘14 inches’ for a band saw, it means that saw can accommodate a 14 inch object between the blade edges and saw throat. You have a range to select from, namely anywhere from 10-24 inches.
Quick note: If you happen to consider the wheel size in these measures, some manufacturers do consider them and the total size is consequently lowered.
Another size factor where band saws are concerned includes Cutting Depth. This is essentially the distance between the blade guard or guide’s underside portion and the table itself. An example with this one will be a saw with a 6 inch cutting depth giving you the ability to cut only 5 and 7/8 inches. This is mainly due to the clearance that the guide needs; otherwise mobility will be affected.
You will often come across professional woodworkers commenting on the table’s importance in all this. ‘Stock’ refers to the material being used, namely wood, metal, etc. For you to move the stock smoothly, the table has to be a certain size. The larger the better in this regard. You should also be able to set the table at specific angles, namely from 1-45 degrees.
Suppose you wish to perform stock removal while turning it on a lathe. You can take out large turning block corners using such angle versatility, and thereby speed up the project.
Other Band Saw Factors
Most of these devices (i.e., band saws) come with fences. We will cover this and other factors for ease of reference.
You use fences for help with resawing tasks much like miter gauges also incorporated into the band saw design that help with crosscut sawing.
Vibration plays an influential part in project turnover and success. No matter the model or type of band saw, it will vibrate during work, which is why having a strong cabinet is a good idea.
If you have chosen a bench-top band saw, make sure it is firmly screwed, clamped, or bolted to a solid non-shaky surface.
These machines are often usable as they are, factory-fresh, but some professionals have found that buying riser kits (sold separately) can help increase cutting depth; if this is something you need for a project.
Keep an eye open for after-market additions like blade guides. They need to as accurate as the blade itself. Guides are actual design elements not how-to manuals (!). As long as you adjust the guides properly, your band saw will work like a charm. These guides for blades can be adjusted (down or up) to help complement the stock’s thickness. (Note: Quality band saws have amazing roller-bearing guide technology and wheels to help you adjust the guides themselves).
The blades are mounted on wheels covered with rubber. This imparts tension. It is important that the blade’s width match the blade’s tension. Most good band saws have tension guides built into them to help you perform ideal match-ups.
As long as the saw of your choice is high quality, you will not need to waste time worrying too much about the above extras and inclusions.
Much like blade and table sizes, there are also different motor sizes out there. 1/3 to 1½ horsepower are your options. The smaller the motor the more readily it can handle thin stock. For resawing work, a larger motor is imperative.
How To Properly Use A Band Saw
It is all in the adjustment. If the adjustments are off or wrong, your band saw will not function at optimum. Aside from proper blade tensioning, the guides too need to be adjusted; nothing the manufacturer’s manual will not tell you how to do. Let us share key stages and pointers on band saw usage anyway.
Whenever the occasion calls for blade change or installation, you will need to loosen the tension first.
In keeping with your band saw’s requirements, the tension of the blade (at the center of the wheels) is determined by the blade’s width. You will need to set more tension as the blade’s width increases.
Good blade tension can make all the difference in proper blade tracking. Too much tension, however, and the blade will break.
Turn off the band saw and unplug it. Leave the blade guard open. You are going to check to see if the blade is aligned properly for which you are going to give the wheel a few turns.
Close the guard now and turn on the machine. You can now see for yourself if the blade is tracking correctly.
We now move to guide adjustments. The rear of the guide and the back of the blade should barely touch each other; they should not be in contact. Meanwhile, the teeth should be able to run clear of the guides.
These days, you can find band saws with bearing guides integrated into their design. These should be positioned in such a way that the blade and guide only just touch each other when pressure is placed by the wood stock.
With some band saw models, you get metal or brass side bearings filed or replaced, adjusted out or in, or turned around. These are your options when the bearings are worn out.
If you seek to gain marked proficiency with your band saw, note that it is NOT only about following steps like the ones listed above. It has a lot to do with practice too, which grants you experience, which in turn gives you an instinctive edge on how to use a band saw like a pro.
Refer band saw user’s guide for more information.
Band Saw Safety
The number one rule is to keep your hands and arms clear of the cutting line. Compared to similar machines, band saws are safe. However, their blades are quite fast. All it takes is a fraction of a second and you could be facing serious injury. Aside from the 100% requirement, namely safety glasses and protective gloves, here are some more safety steps to follow.
As you work, and throughout the duration, train yourself to position your hands on the sides of the cutting line. This will ensure you stay clear of the blade.
If you are cutting a small waste piece, hold the object with both hands as you cut. Once the piece is released after cutting, your hands will not slip into the blade; you are holding the main piece.
Practice cutting softwood scrap stock first. This will prepare you for hardwood scrap practice.
Once you have demarcated the cutting line, maintain a firm and steady pace as you move the stock against the blade. More than a safety point, this is to ensure a precise vertical cut; you will not get one if the stock is off to a side of the cut line.
If the blade size does not come ready to handle a small radius for cutting, do not attempt to do so. An occurrence called ‘blade binding’ can take place at which point the blade will in all probability leap off the wheel.
There is, however, a way to accomplish the previous step safely. Make a series of relief cuts all the way to the cutting line mark. Once you have performed these sharp curves, rely on some ‘whittling’ cuts; this takes out the waste accumulated between relief cuts. A safety guide will give you fully tips for being safe while working with the band saw.
How To Choose Band Saw Blades
Depending on your project’s requirements, you can choose a blade designed with particular tooth patterns. Colloquial terms: wavy-set, hook tooth, raker-set, skip-tooth.
With more closely spaced teeth that are, in themselves, wide a hook tooth band saw blade is used to cut some types of plastics, tough non-ferrous metals, and hardwoods.
When it comes to raker- and wavy-set (in horizontal band saws) blades, you will find them best for ferrous metal cutting.
With wide set teeth, and better chip clearance because of it, skip-tooth blades are great for soft metal cutting projects and soft non-ferrous metal cutting (e.g. aluminium).
There are also generic blades for sundry woodworking purposes, from ferrous and non-ferrous metal cutting to scrolling and everyday woodwork.
Since band saws are perfect tools for performing irregular or curved cuts with utmost precision, it is important to match the radius being cut to the type of blade chosen (aka blade size).
The blades used in band saws are not thin one-type-cuts-all kind of blades. Just as their sizes vary, so too do their widths. These widths differ from 1/8 inches to 1 inch.
Make sure that the blade is as wide as your saw can handle in cases where you need to perform straight cuts like resawing, ripping, and crosscutting. After all, to get the straightest cuts you need to use as wide a blade as required.
As mentioned earlier, irregular cuts can do with the blade suiting the radius of the stock being cut.
As you can imagine, it is not uncommon to have an array of blades in the toolbox to pick and use for diverse woodworking jobs.
Most band saws have easy to mount blades. These are indeed a dream come true as they take up less time, adding to your convenience.
All band saw blades come coiled. This is a safety concern, because you need to make absolutely certain that they do not snap back when you release the coil. Take care with this step and you can avoid experiencing unnecessary injuries. Hint: protective industrial-grade gloves.
How do you recoil a blade? There will come a time when you need to indulge this option. Hold the blade in such a way that you have its back facing you. Rotate your right wrist and thumb up and your left wrist down simultaneously. Do not forget to move your hands inward at the exact same time.
This is a simple maneuver, one that demands a fluid move. It does not stop there, keep wrist-twisting so the blade is forced into a triple loop coil. By way of conclusion, tie the coils in three places and spray on quality rust-prevention liquid. Click here for a complete guide for choosing band saw blades.
Read more tips for sharpening band saws’ blades
What Else Can Be Done Using Band Saws
See your budget and buy the best possible band saw capacity and quality you can with that money. Small shop-based requirements could do with a steel-framed band saw with wheel diameter measuring fourteen or sixteen inches. Complementing those measures is a cutting height of twelve inches. Get a motor that can perform optimally with these measures.
Resawing is, hands down, the best use for a band saw. By sawing boards along their widths you can have inner-faced stock that can be used in paneling (for cabinet doors, to offer an example).
You can also use resawing techniques to make thinner segments from thicker ones.
The above idea gets you wood with consistent hues and the resawing process itself keeps you from wasting wood.
In addition to these, a quality band saw can also do the following.
Board Face Resetting – The effects in a stock piece are maximized; you get a better handle on the wood’s figure and grain. From angling ring end grain patterns (usually involving a 45-degree angle) to maximizing ray figures, you can produce quality woodwork using a band saw.
Lamination Bending – Bent lamination are comprised of thin laminates, granting you unmatched design possibilities. You can use a thick board choice and saw laminates in succession. You can then rely on apt techniques to glue them together; you now have curved furniture parts for use.
Board Edge Resetting – You can re-do the edges of standard boards to better align the figure lengthwise. Table top gluing using several boards could do with consistency and alignment. Band saws make this happen for you.
Veneer Making – You can saw a board into a handful of thin slices and use them like matching sets for use in furniture design involving, say, doors and drawers.
From quality, elegance, refinement, and charm, a band saw enables the use of varied techniques to make some of the most gorgeous wood and metal works out there. You can even get creative, if you like, and craft innovative designs. A band saw alone can help you do this.
In our opinion, the band saw is the star and all other components and ‘extras’ else are the ‘supporting cast and crew’. Read more our band saw woodworking tips
The benefits of band saws are almost self-explanatory if you read everything we had to say about them so far in this ‘generic’ band saw reviews. The price range of band saws, excluding accessories like replacement bands etc.
As with most machines, their value for money lies in what purpose you plan to put them to. If they get your job or project done to satisfaction, you could well have made a friend in a particular band saw.