I have spent a bit of time wrestling with the Rigid bandsaw that I picked up. I have gone back and forth on the value vs. something from Grizzly. At this point the grizzly G0555 with shipping (just shy of $500) would have been about the same out of pocket. Overall the Rigid won out because of warranty and immediate availability. I also had a Lowe’s coupon that HD honored.
Okay, onto the setup. I knew out of the box that there could be some issue with vibration. Assembly was pretty straight forward. I got the saw up to the point that I could fire it up. Yep, pretty bad vibration. The whole frame chassis was flexing allowing the motor and saw to oscillate on it. The belt was the first suspect in the anti-vabration hunt. So I made a couple of calls and located a Gates v-belt.
Once installed the majority of the vibration was removed, but there was still the issue of flex in the stand allowing the motor and saw to pull towards each other. I had some scrap mdf laying around, so I quickly made a sub base and placed this between the stand and the motor/saw. I remounted everything. It did require some longer screws on the saw. I used the same motor screws, but removed the rubber band-aid bumpers they spec’d. I crossed my fingers and fired it up. Bingo, vibration gone. I ended up having to find a few longer screws to mount the belt shroud, but fortunately I had those on hand.
Everything went smooth from there. I got the table mounted and adjusted and finished adjusting the guides. Nothing major. So I was onto some sample cuts. Gotta say, the stock blade is garbage. Very rough cut, major drift, and too wide to do much curve work. I really don’t know what this blade’s purpose it. I will hang onto it for odd jobs, but only so I don’t damage my nicer blades.
Tonight my Kreg fence, cool blocks, and Olson blades came in. I installed each in turn. Wow, great improvements on all fronts. Kreg fence is a quality piece of equipment. Good instructions and straight forward install and adjustments. The cool blocks also bolted right on, reduced noise and most likely heat. The Olson brand blades seem good quality. Cut is much smoother and drift is only 1-2 degrees. I also noticed quieter running of the saw during cuts.
In the end I can’t say that these upgrades wouldn’t be necessary on the comparable Grizzly. For the Rigid these simply changes and additions make the difference between a saw that I would complain about and a saw that I would be happy to brag about.
short video review: