|Review by jchomme||posted 04-30-2013 03:16 AM||6620 views||1 time favorited||15 comments|
-My rating is mostly based on Price and build Quality.
-These are first impressions only. I will report back after a while of use.
-Notice from the pics, the similarities of the Professional model and regular.
I’ve basically been out of the woodworking game this whole past year. I restored a Belsaw-Foley planer (craftsman branded) and not much else. Unfortunately, I sold the planer for peanuts, and I ended up selling a bunch of my other tools. I actually have done more tool restoration than tool utilization. There is something wrong with that…
OK, so I scoured Craigslist, found some used tools in Atlanta and went to check them out. Long story short, one of my truck wheels fell off while cruising at 70 up 1-75. I was forced to buy local and there isn’t much in the classifieds, so I went retail shopping. I was either going to go to Lowes for the 14” Porter Cable or HF for the 14” central machinery from HF. I checked them both out and know they are both very capable if set up properly, but I would hate myself if I bought one at full price and one came up on CL for a song. So, I decided to check sears out. I called them hoping they would have the discontinued 12” steel bandsaw display model I saw there a few weeks back and it would be at a good price and hold me over for a while. They didn’t, but they did have a 14” which was news to me, so I decided to check it out.
The last bandsaw I had was a 14” Craftsman Professional model, and I was surprised that the new one was basically the same saw. The biggest differences I notice are the guide bearings are a simpler, the base is no longer a cabinet, no fence system is included( the other one wasn’t that good anyways), the new door mechanism is better and you don’t get a light, oh and the all important “Craftsman Professional” placard isnt there, just a plain old Craftsman sticker. As far as I can tell, everything else is the same: The main frame, wheels, 1HP motor/2 speed drive system and 8” resaw capacity. This thing has me excited!
Right now these can be had for $368 brand new, that’s almost $100 less than the PC and on par with the HF. Everything looks nice to me as I am a fan of the Craftsman Black/grey/red color scheme. For me one of the best parts of my purchase was the whole thing(boxed) fit in the back set of my VW passat; unfortunately I no longer have the truck…