What should a bandsaw do?

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Blog entry by Dave Rutan posted 01-23-2015 01:43 AM 1488 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve been thinking that I’d like to post a review of my Skil benchtop bandsaw. The thing is, I don’t use it all that much and I’d hate to misrepresent the tool one way or the other based on my moderate use of it. So what sort of ‘tests’ should I put the saw through to see how it performs?

I also don’t have a lot of experience on the saw and don’t want that to color my review.

-- Ni faru ion el ligno!

4 comments so far

View SirGareth's profile


126 posts in 2349 days

#1 posted 01-23-2015 02:39 AM

Hi Dave, I don’t have much bandsaw experience, but I’ve had some small project experience on two very different bandsaws. My first bandsaw was a delta tabletop with three wheels. I paid $10 at a yard sale, replaced the power cable and I was in business.

Well not quite. I had a lot of trouble getting the blade set up on those three wheels. If I tensioned the blade, it wouldn’t track straight. If I got it to track, the lack of tension let the blade deflect quite a bit and sometimes it would pop off, particularly if I were working a tight curve (with relief cuts) or thicker stock. I replaced the tires and bought new blades, but to no avail.

Then I bought a Grizzly Anniversary edition 18” saw. Blade changes are easy. Tensioning is easy. The blades track very well. Adjustments are a breeze and it has done a fine job with the few small projects I have tried thus far.

So, I would be interested in reviews that cover the basics of setup and operation. Then, I would be interested in how it handles resaws in tall, hard stock. Does it drift? Does it bog down? Finally, I would be interested in how it handles tight curves. You might want to mention the brand and tpi of blades you use for your testing.

-- Even if you fall on your face, you are still moving forward. - Tim, Southern California

View Oldtool's profile


2724 posts in 2340 days

#2 posted 01-23-2015 03:49 AM

Dave, I have a band saw which I use primarily for resawing, and that is the primary reason I bought it. I hate to waste away half of 4 quarter lumber just to get thinner material. So I guess any information regarding resawing would be of a interest to me. However, for further ideas, simply Google “band saw reviews” and you’ll get plenty of examples to review, including articles by all the woodworking magazines.

-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

View Dave Rutan's profile

Dave Rutan

1733 posts in 2337 days

#3 posted 01-23-2015 01:01 PM

Thanks guys. Now I have an idea of what I need to do. I haven’t tried much re-sawing on that bandsaw, and when I did it was with the original blade. We’ll see what happens.

-- Ni faru ion el ligno!

View TechTeacher04's profile


389 posts in 1680 days

#4 posted 01-23-2015 02:58 PM

Ease of adjustment, quality of the blade guides. Quality of table machining. Accuracy of table tilt. Power, noise, vibration. General fit and finish of parts.

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