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Craftsman 1/3 hp 3.5 amp 10" Band Saw (21400)

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Review by ShipWreck posted 06-27-2012 11:43 AM 13772 views 0 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Craftsman 1/3 hp 3.5 amp 10" Band Saw (21400) Craftsman 1/3 hp 3.5 amp 10" Band Saw (21400) Craftsman 1/3 hp 3.5 amp 10" Band Saw (21400) Click the pictures to enlarge them

A friend of mine has the previous version of this machine with the 3’ depth instead of the 4 5/8” depth of this 21400 model. I have used his doing some curvy cuts on smaller projects and it performed very well. The wife had mentioned getting another bandsaw for the shop but I kept shrugging it off until I had the funds for a 17” later this year. When I saw this one go on sale at Sears I decided to take the plunge. This is the very same saw as the Rikon 10-305 but sells for around $100.00 cheaper.

Packaging: The box was banged up pretty badly, but the saw was well protected by styrofoam.

Manual: Functional, but I can see wear a couple of diagrams might mislead a non mechanical person…..but no biggie.

Fit & Finish: This little saw has a very rugged frame, and a well machined table. The trunnion looked to be a little cheesy but actually is quite strong. The doors have double latches and lock shut pretty tight. It is a nice looking machine overall and the paint appears to be of good quality. The miter gauge & fence are a bit toyish, but the fence functions ok. I always measure both ends from the miter slot anyways before making rips.

Assembly: Pretty straight forward. It comes assmbled with the exception of the trunnion and table. The trunnion is a little cumbersome attaching to the frame/body. All parts were neatly bagged.

Tuning: Setting the lower guide bearings can be a PITA. I settled on setting the guides by eye instead of using anything for a gauge. I would suggest this over trying to hold a gauge and locking down the bearings at the same time.

Operation: The saw vibrates very little…if at all. The tracking adjustment works very well, and I was surprised how responsive it is. There is no blade tension indicator on this saw, but I never use them anyways. The motor is pretty strong and handles ripping 2” red oak pretty easily. With the right blade it should handle thicker stock pretty easily. I did some resawing on a 5 foot piece of SYP 4X4 and the motor barely slowed at all. I cannot wait to see what this saw can do with a good blade.

Dust control: Excellent! It comes with a lower wheel brush that works pretty well. A Dry Vac is all you need for this saw. After using it for a few hours, I checked inside the lower door and it was pretty clean.

PRO’s

Rugged frame
Runs very smooth….. well balanced wheels
Great dust collection
4 5/8” depth is pretty nice for a hobby saw
Good table
Price $179.00 Rikon is $279.00
Strong little motor. Ran pretty cool ripping 4X4’s for about 25 minutes. Warm to the touch…not hot.
Very little plastic

CON’s

Cheesy miter gauge and fence…...but I knew that before hand.
Bearings instead of blocks. I hate roller bearing guides for small saws anyways. Blocks would work better for tracking.
Lower bearings are a PITA unless you set them by eye.
The manual says you can use a 1/8” blade….......... NO Way! The teeth would be up against the bearings.

Overall: The saw is a little wood muncher and will stay in the shop after I get the 17” saw of my dreams. It is alot of fun to use after setting it up. I would like to see Craftsman sell this with solid guides instead of the roller bearings, but at least the bearings seem to be of fairly good quality. This is not a fragile little machine like most smaller saws. It is built pretty stout for its size.




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ShipWreck

536 posts in 2505 days



17 comments so far

View Everett1's profile

Everett1

208 posts in 1287 days


#1 posted 06-27-2012 12:32 PM

I got the same exact saw a couple months ago. It was the floor model, they sold it to me for 160 bucks (that included the advanced warranty too!). it looks like your’s didn’t come with the stand, I got lucky as mine did. No Miter gauge, but from the sounds of it, i’d be better off using the one from my table saw anyway. And the fench, ugh! I have it on my list to make a real fence for it, hopefully i can get it to latch onto the back edge of the table, as the worst part of the fence is it can move on the back portion of the fence.

I agree with you on everything you have pointed out. I just ordered three Timberwolf blades for mine (a 1/8”, 1/4”, and a 1/2”). The guy at Timberwolf said there shouldn’t be any problem with the 1/8” blade. I can’t comment on how good they are yet, but ordering from Timberwolf was a pleasure, as you have to do it on the phone. The guy knew his stuff too. He asked where I heard of them, I told him Lumberjocks, and his reply was “Yeah, I don’t know why I bother asking that question anymore”

-- Ev in Framingham, MA

View MichaelAgate's profile

MichaelAgate

398 posts in 1076 days


#2 posted 06-27-2012 01:25 PM

Great review, thanks ShipWreck!

-- Michael and Matthew

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2847 posts in 1001 days


#3 posted 06-27-2012 02:08 PM

I am considering this saw. The funny thing is it gets terrible reviews on Amazon, however the Rikon 10-305 gets good reviews. These are the SAME saw. It just alludes to my gripe of people dismissing a product based on the name stamped into the front. Also it alludes to improper use and expectations. Hardcore wood workers or at least people that know what they are talking about would be more apt to but the Rikon saw because it is available at places they frequent (Woodcraft for example). General consumers may pick one up at sears and expect it to work perfectly out of the box without adjustments, and using the extremely crappy included blade. This is a 1/3hp benchtop saw, it’s not a 1.5hp 14” grizzly extreme.

I think this saw with the proper tuning and upgrades (cool blocks, a good blade or two) would fit the bill for what I need it for. Maybe I’ll grab one this weekend.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View RogerBean's profile

RogerBean

1296 posts in 1706 days


#4 posted 06-27-2012 03:18 PM

Nice review. I have the 12” version, and it has become my go-to saw for box work. I also have a 20” Delta that now sits unused most of the time in favor of the convenience of the little Craftsman with a 3/8 – 6 TimberWolf blade.
Roger

-- "Everybody makes mistakes. A craftsman always fixes them." (Monty Kennedy, "The Checkering and Carving of Gunstocks", 1952)

View meikou's profile

meikou

115 posts in 2388 days


#5 posted 06-27-2012 05:05 PM

Thanks for the review.

I’ve been considering this one and also been considering the 12 but can’t quite figure out how they justify the price difference. I’d really like to be able to resaw 6” but with more than 4” I may decide to get the 10.

View NormG's profile

NormG

4544 posts in 1756 days


#6 posted 06-28-2012 01:49 AM

I have the 12 inch, had it since they came out, great saw and I only use Timber Wolf blades

-- Norman

View Tomj's profile

Tomj

204 posts in 1134 days


#7 posted 06-28-2012 06:25 AM

I have had this Bandsaw for well over 1 1/2 years and it has performed very well for what I thought might not cut it. I agree with everything you said. I myself will be upgrading to a Grizzly 14” soon but I will keep this little guy with a different blade on for smaller cuts. Good review.

View ShipWreck's profile

ShipWreck

536 posts in 2505 days


#8 posted 06-29-2012 10:52 AM

Everett1: Let me know how the 1/8” works out. My opinion is that the 1/4” and 3/8” blades are perfect for this saw. The 1/8” will be a PITA with no guides, and the tensioning system would be hard pressed to handle a 1/2” blade.

LumberJoe: Funny aint it? The Rikon got great reviews and the Craftsman got slammed. A perfect example why people should always take reviews with a grain of salt. About 50% of woodworkers that I know have very little mechanical aptitude and then try to convince others why a certain product is junk.

RogerBeam: I could give that 20” a nice home :)

Tomj: Why not just go right past the 14”. I see too many people buying the 14” saws and end up tweeking thier time away trying to make it do what a larger saw could do to begin with. I owned a Grizzly G0555 and was never satified with it because it didnt have the heavier parts to handle what I liked doing, which is milling my own boards. The Grizz was a ok saw, but I was foolish not to get a larger platform. Nothing beats free lumber :)

View Bob Kollman's profile

Bob Kollman

1797 posts in 1944 days


#9 posted 06-29-2012 05:12 PM

Good review, I have the 14” big brother for about 6 years now and it has worked great with the exception of having to buy a new switch. Enjoy your new toy!!!!

-- Bob Kenosha Wi.

View crank49's profile

crank49

3524 posts in 1724 days


#10 posted 06-30-2012 08:00 PM

I have the Rikon 10”, which I got on sale about 18 months ago, and I have been very happy with it. I have plans to build the 16” saw from plans I got at WoodGears. But, for small curvy jobs this fits the bill nicely. I have used it to cut 4” Red Oak and it never whimpered.

I would have gotten the Sears version myself but the only one they had in stock was the similar looking 9”. That is not nearly the same saw. Smaller motor, plastic wheels and no fence at all.

-- Michael :-{| “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” ― A H

View WhiskeyWaters's profile

WhiskeyWaters

213 posts in 2558 days


#11 posted 07-03-2012 02:28 AM

@ shipwreck -

I run a 1/2” almost exclusively on this saw. My biggest issue is that 10” blades are cheap blades for the most part – I can burn out a blade in 4” oak pretty quick. The saw tho, rocks on like a beast.

-- make it safe & keep the rubber side down.

View Tomj's profile

Tomj

204 posts in 1134 days


#12 posted 07-03-2012 04:59 AM

That’s a good point shipwreck. What’s stopping me from buying a bigger saw besides money ( I could save a little more) is the weight and if has to be run on 220. The weight because my shop is on a second floor and I just got done hauling my new Ridgid table saw upstairs which wasn’t easy. The power because I’m not committed to putting in 220 right now being I’m not sure how much longer I will be living where I’m living. Believe me it’s in the back of my head to just get a bigger saw. I mainly build bows dealing with anywhere from 4” staves to 8-9” logs but that’s not all I want to do so I would like to have a bandsaw that could handle almost anything, so I can build whatever I want to build. I’m just not sure yet.

View ShipWreck's profile

ShipWreck

536 posts in 2505 days


#13 posted 07-03-2012 09:56 AM

WhiskyWater: Thanks for letting me know about the 1/2” blade. You should call Starret and have them make you a couple blades. The “Woodpecker” premium blade should handle anything you can throw at it.

http://www.starrett.com/saws/saws-hand-tool-products/band-saw-blades/wood-cutting-band-saw-blades/woodpecker-premium

View HardWoodHead's profile

HardWoodHead

34 posts in 2117 days


#14 posted 09-27-2012 02:49 PM

Good review and I have read others on this saw as well. 145 reviews on the Sears site give it 4 stars. I have a huge Silver Manufacturing 36” band saw but still don’t have it going and plan on using it for some major big stuff resawing in the future. Still I need something to use now and although I will eventually get a 14” to 16”, this thing looks like it is going to fit the bill for small stuff and then some. I think I will buy one today before the sale ends at 7am central time tomorrow morning. $ 152.99.

Online Only! Extra 15% off select tools Sold by Sears! Valid thru 7AM CT 9/28 Offer ends 27-Sep-2012

-- Dan Benson---Hitchcock, Texas......Got wood?

View Amoc's profile

Amoc

35 posts in 717 days


#15 posted 01-10-2013 08:16 PM

I bought this saw for Christmas and so far I have no regrets.

-- Ken from Ft Hood, TX

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