LumberJocks

I love mine!!!

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Review by Howarddavidp posted 699 days ago 5118 views 0 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch
I love mine!!! I love mine!!! I love mine!!! Click the pictures to enlarge them

I got mine at Lowes for $399. The review is mostly accurate, but I do not agree with only giving this saw 3 stars. It took about 2 hrs. to assemble, and it was mostly putting the base together. I found it easier to put the base on the saw while it was all lying to the ground, then standing the entire unit upright once it was all assembled.

It cuts great, the stock blade is something like a 10 TPI 1/2” general use blade. I have since purchased the Carter 3 TPI hook for cutting bigger stuff, and a 14 TPI 1/4” Olson for scroll saw type cuts. I have only used the slower speed; it has had enough power to do everything on this speed. If I get into re-sawing, I might change the belt on the pulley to the higher speed. From what it looks like, this is a 5 minute job to move the belt over.

I like the 16×16” table, and the fact that it tilts BOTH ways. This was very hand for cutting some dovetails, as I could use the tilt to cut both directions. I think it goes to the right to 50’, and the left to 30’.

Other than blades, I called the 800 number and ordered the rip fence for $49 +$10 shipping. It fits perfectly, and for the price you can’t go wrong. It ships out of the east coast from North Carolina from some tool company, not Porter Cable. I guess they have some agreement with them to provide the fence. It works well, I made several rips of pressure treated 2×4’s to make slats for Adirondack chairs, worked flawlessly with the 3 TPI blade (not well with he stock blade, but then again I knew better). I also saw a 2 TPI blade online, might order that to see if it is better at rips than the 3 TPI.

The big storage space in the base is nice, and the magnetic door works well. I store all my manuals there so they don’t get lost. It also came with a MITRE; I have used it a few times w/o any issues.

Changing the blade was easy. I followed the instructions, and it was a 5 minute process. There are marks on how much tension to use based on the thickness of your blade, and this seems to work well. There is also a tracking adjustment to position the blade on the tires, which also works well. You turn the upper wheel by hand until your blade lines up, and then tighten the wing nut and the blade stays where you positioned it.

The only minor issue I have had after about 6 months it the lower brush that cleans the dust off the lower tire broke off. I bought a plastic brush for $1 and heated up the handle, then bent it 90’ and drilled a hole, so it fit on the old bolt that held the stock brush. You can buy a OEM replacement for $5 if you don’t want to make your own. Not even sure if you need this, it worked without it for weeks before I noticed it broke off.

The power is great, the noise is minimal, and there is no vibration. Table is nice, easy to adjust, and a good size. If you want to upgrade to the carter roller guides, this will set you back $179. Right now, both the upper and lower guides use cool block for side to side, and the back guide is a roller on both top and bottom. Since the guides have never been a problem, I am not sure it is worth the money to do this; the blade has never come off or drifted. In fact, this is one of the straightest tracking saws; I can cut straight lines without the fence. The blades it will take are the 93-1/2” or the 92-1/2”, or maybe even a 92”. I have used the 93-1/2”, that is also the size of the stock blade. I would highly suggest this saw to anyone who wants a nice Bandsaw for under $400. I saw a coupon which would have got this saw down to $330, and for that price this is almost a steal. The PCB330BS is my main bandsaw for now and the future to come :)




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Howarddavidp

7 posts in 700 days



13 comments so far

View Tedstor's profile

Tedstor

1369 posts in 1229 days


#1 posted 699 days ago

I almost bought that same saw from Lowes. Looked like a top contender in the sub-$400. Sounds like a much better saw than the Ridgid I have. The Ridgid took A LOT of tinkering to get into decent working order. I bought it on clearance for $149, but I kind of wish I would have just bought the PC.
Glad its working so well for you.

View mrbreezeet1's profile

mrbreezeet1

54 posts in 749 days


#2 posted 699 days ago

Glad to hear some saying they like a new tool, instead of how “things today are not made like the used to be”

View TheOldTimer's profile

TheOldTimer

221 posts in 1682 days


#3 posted 699 days ago

Tedstor:

What is the horsepower of the motor?

-- TheOldTimer,Chandler Arizona

View ChuckC's profile

ChuckC

679 posts in 1531 days


#4 posted 699 days ago

Good luck with the saw! You will find that a BS adds a lot of functionality to a shop.

View cirvin's profile

cirvin

9 posts in 1554 days


#5 posted 699 days ago

I have looked into purchasing this saw. Thanks for the review.

View meikou's profile

meikou

115 posts in 2231 days


#6 posted 698 days ago

Nice review. Any idea if you can get a riser block for it?

View Tennessee's profile

Tennessee

1447 posts in 1110 days


#7 posted 698 days ago

I also own this saw, and I had a set of upper bearing guides on an old Reliant I was selling, and they swapped out so I put the bearings on the PC and the cool block unit on the Reliant, which is now sold.
There is NO riser for this PC at this time that I know of. PC appears to have no plans to issue one. All that being said, set up right, it does cut well.
I use Steel City 1/8” blades for bandsaw jewelry boxes on this saw. I believe the motor is 1HP. I don’t do any resawing on this unit.
The cabinet is a nice feature, and the saw does cut true when set up right. At first I was sad I bought it cause it held up my purchase of my big Grizzly 17 incher, but now that I have both, I tend to use both pretty equally.
Overall, it’s a pretty good saw, especially if you put an upper guide bearing set on it.

-- Paul, Tennessee, http://www.tsunamiguitars.com

View Sarit's profile

Sarit

466 posts in 1736 days


#8 posted 683 days ago

Do you know if any riser block kits work with it?

View gsmwf30's profile

gsmwf30

2 posts in 556 days


#9 posted 556 days ago

They now offer at riser bock for $80.49. Call the costomer support number.
Also the motor is 1 1/2 hp 10 amp motor. plenty of power!

View GeBeWubya's profile

GeBeWubya

47 posts in 632 days


#10 posted 543 days ago

The motor on this saw is advertised as a 10 amp motor. 10 amps at 120 volts is 1200 watts, or about 1.6 HP (if you figure it at 110 volts, you get a little less than 1.5 HP.)

Is there a reason PC/Lowe’s would NOT advertise this as a 1 1/2 HP? The upgrade of most bandsaw families from 1HP to 1.5HP makes about a $250 difference. If the motor is in fact a legitimate 1.5HP, this would be the only saw of that power in the $400 range.

What am I missing?

-- (- |: \,/

View GeBeWubya's profile

GeBeWubya

47 posts in 632 days


#11 posted 531 days ago

I did a little more research, and I see what I was missing. The actual horsepower delivered by the motor is calculated as Voltage Current (Amps) Efficiency / 745.7. If a 10 amp 120 volt motor operated at 100% efficiency, its maximum horsepower would be 1.6 Hp, but actually at 50 to 80% efficiency, a “10 amp” motor delivers about 1 Hp. PC’s rating the motor in amps rather than horsepower seems designed to trap folks like me into thinking they are getting more power than they actually are.

All that said, I agree with Howarddavidp’s assessment of the saw. I also found the setup and tuning straightforward, and I find the saw cuts straight and quietly (when tuned). I’m happy with my decision to get the PC.

I did add a riser to mine (see my saga at http://lumberjocks.com/GeBeWubya/blog/34257) and I’ve successfully resawn 1×8 red oak boards into 3/8 panels for making boxes. Now I’m looking for an excuse to resaw something bigger.

-- (- |: \,/

View malcolmc's profile

malcolmc

10 posts in 865 days


#12 posted 451 days ago

I just bought this saw from craigslist, practically new. I have some 45mmX45mm extruded aluminum I want to make a fence system with but I can’t find the bolt/thread size/type for the cast iron table top. Does anyone know what bolts fit the table? I suspect 6mm but I can’t find it anywhere in the owners manual.

Thanks,

Malcolm

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malcolmc

10 posts in 865 days


#13 posted 384 days ago

Do you have a picture of the fence you can share?

Thankes

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