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Mixed Opinion About This Bandsaw...

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Review by Edwardnorton posted 05-21-2016 07:47 AM 9660 views 2 times favorited 34 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Mixed Opinion About This Bandsaw... Mixed Opinion About This Bandsaw... Mixed Opinion About This Bandsaw... Click the pictures to enlarge them

About 15 months ago I purchased my Grizzly GO555 bandsaw. After it arrived I unboxed it and put it together. I normally put the boxes of items I buy in a shed I built just to keep them in until the warranty expires, but one of my kids tossed the boxes out without my knowing it.

As soon as had it all together I grabbed some scrap and fired the saw up with the anticipation of a 5 year old on Christmas day only to be a bit disappointed in how it operated. The blade lead was horrible to say the least. I have two other bandsaws, a Hitachi & a Harbor Freight (cheapies I know) and both of those worked perfectly right out of the box. Well I grabbed the manual and after not getting a lot of satisfaction from it I went to the internet. Again with not much satisfaction to speak of.

I am not one to use a telephone because my disability makes it very hard to hear and or understand me on one so I hesitated in calling Grizzly’s support. After a few more days & a few hours trying to figure the problem out I finally gave in & called Grizzly.

The man was patient and made no rush while trying to hear me and after an hour he gave me a few suggestions to try. I done as he instructed but still the same results. I called them back and fortunately for me got the same man on the phone. He suggested that I box it back up and return it to them once I received the postage paid return label would arrive. When I explained that my kid had tossed the boxes out & because of my disability it was nearly impossible for me to go out and buy boxes large enough to repack the tool in, he told me that he would send me the part he suspected was not right. I am thinking at this point, GREAT, what a deal.

A week or so later the part arrived. I removed the original from the saw & installed the replacement only to find the problem was still there. So now I am getting really frustrated & called Grizzly back. To keep this as short as possible, we done this very same dance many times over the course of a few months. I’m not kidding about this.

With all of the parts Grizzly sent me I can almost build a completely new saw, I kid you not. The only thing they did not send me was the cast case that all the parts are in, a new table & the saw base. Seriously!

So here I am almost a year and a half later with a bandsaw I’ve never been able to use and one which still has the original problem. It just sits in my shop collecting dust while I continue to use my old cheap bandsaws. I will say though that the service Grizzly offers is outstanding to say the least. Of course the warranty has long since expired and Grizzly and I are no longer doing the dance so to speak. I give the tool a -0 rating on a 1 to 10 scale but at the same time I give their service a +20 on the same scale.

I venture to say that I am one of the very few, if not the only one that has had this experience. If it had not happened to me personally and I was reading this review I would not believe it. It would have been cheaper for them to ship me an entirely new bandsaw than to do all the shipping or replacement parts. Makes no sense to me but it is what it is I guess.

-- EdwardNorton




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Edwardnorton

203 posts in 1927 days



34 comments so far

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

20488 posts in 3105 days


#1 posted 05-21-2016 12:01 PM

WOW, Edward, that is a disaster on a saw that gets great reviews. I bought one years ago and I love it.
I don’t quite understand what you mean by ” blade lead” was horrible? Will it not follow a straight line?
With you having two other band saws, this must be a blatant problem.

Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Bob Kassmeyer's profile

Bob Kassmeyer

223 posts in 2925 days


#2 posted 05-21-2016 02:04 PM

Edward, I have had mine for over ten years and for the most part love it. I added a riser block several years ago and have never been happy when raising or lowering the upper blade guide as it changes the angle of the blade in relation to the table. I suppose if I were not so lazy and it was not so easy to correct with the table I could shim it to correct. Other then this and a little bit of maintenance once in a while it has worked flawlessly.

-- Bob Kassmeyer, Nebraska

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

942 posts in 816 days


#3 posted 05-21-2016 03:34 PM

I have bought several band saws and currently own two. The only one that did not require substantial tuning before it became operational was the Laguna and I consider that a happy accident. Manufacturers don’t have time to cut with each saw and adjust it until it is perfect. There are many possible adjustments that can render the saw unusable.I suggest you buy a good band saw setup and maintenance book and follow it carefully if you aren’t familiar with tuning. Have you tried a new blade? There may be hope yet.

View Paul Stoops's profile

Paul Stoops

348 posts in 2561 days


#4 posted 05-21-2016 04:20 PM

Hi Edward,
Sorry to hear you are having such difficulty with the bandsaw. I like mine very much.
When I read your post, the first thought that came to mind was a problem with the blade. Characteristically, it seems that many of the stock blades provided with a new saw have very questionable performance. I would suggest that you purchase a brand name blade, Olson, Lennox, etc. and adjust your saw to accommodate the new blade in accordance with the manufacturer’s instruction manual. Hopefully, that might solve your problem.
If you do this, please update your post to show us the results.

-- Paul, Auburn, WA

View playingwithmywood's profile

playingwithmywood

414 posts in 1597 days


#5 posted 05-21-2016 07:28 PM



Hi Edward,
Sorry to hear you are having such difficulty with the bandsaw. I like mine very much.
When I read your post, the first thought that came to mind was a problem with the blade.
- Paul Stoops

yea did you ever change blades….

View Grumpymike's profile

Grumpymike

2238 posts in 2315 days


#6 posted 05-21-2016 08:45 PM

Hi Edward,
Sorry that you are having a problem with your saw … I interpret “Blade lead” as ‘blade drift’, as we say out west.

Two things that I have learned about band saws is first,: Don’t read the tension scale. Instead raise the blade guide about 6 inches and deflect the blade to the side. If the tension is right there will be about 1/4” deflection Max with about 5 lbs. pressure. Too loose and it will drift.

Second,: You may have to many teeth in the wood, and by that statement I mean if you are ripping or re-sawing 1-1/2” of wood or more and you have more than 3TPI (teeth per inch) you have to many teeth in the wood and that will cause drift. I have a 5/8” 6TPI blade that works well on general cutting, but if I try to rip or re-saw 2 or 3” wood it pulls away from the fence and wanders or drifts all over the place. When I install a good 3TPI blade all the problems go away.

Now with all that said, if you are cutting out some bandsaw boxes all the rules change …

Oh Yeah, check the back of the blade, some times cheap blades won’t be hardened on the back, just the tooth side.
Should you find a burr on the back, use a small stone to grind it off and round the back edge while on the saw. But please do this very carefully as your fingers are dangerously close to the teeth. (I have a pocket stone glued to a stick like a spatula )...

If you are using the blade that came with your Grizz, ok for general cutting, but buy a good blade like a Timberwolf or similar, a good blade will cost you around $30.00 but a good investment. A cheesy blade will cost half of that, but they know what their blades are worth.

I hope that these tips do the trick for you …

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

View Wildwood's profile

Wildwood

2306 posts in 2134 days


#7 posted 05-21-2016 08:52 PM

Before buying same saw bought a copy of “Band Saw Hand Book, by Mark Dunginske.” You might find a copy of the updated version at public library. I have own and abused that saw for over ten years. Manual that came with saw made set up a breeze. Have replaced some components along the way (guide bearings, tire, screws, and tension spring) all long after warranty period.

Have learned bade saw blades will give fits, thanks to Dunginske know what blade works best for type of sawing.

-- Bill

View OSU55's profile

OSU55

1672 posts in 1989 days


#8 posted 05-22-2016 12:13 AM

Edward, please explain ” blade lead”. Does the cut drift or what?

View ohtimberwolf's profile

ohtimberwolf

799 posts in 2352 days


#9 posted 05-22-2016 01:26 AM

All of the above plus see this if you haven’t. larry

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGbZqWac0jU

-- Just a barn cat, now gone to cat heaven.

View Grumpymike's profile

Grumpymike

2238 posts in 2315 days


#10 posted 05-22-2016 10:55 PM

ohtimberwolf Thanks for that link Larry, (I didn’t know how to attach it). Snodgrass has taught a bunch of us old guys a thing or two … All my blade drift went away after attending his class some years ago.
So, I would suggest everyone replay this video a couple of times.

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

View ohtimberwolf's profile

ohtimberwolf

799 posts in 2352 days


#11 posted 05-23-2016 01:41 AM

Grumpy, it sure helped me and a lot of others. Glad you now have it. Just copy the address and and then paste it in your post. larry

-- Just a barn cat, now gone to cat heaven.

View Ken90712's profile

Ken90712

17556 posts in 3189 days


#12 posted 05-24-2016 11:18 AM

I have had this saw for yrs and after spending a few hours tuning it up and throwing the stock blade away it works like a dream. Great saw for the money unless you upgrade to the bigger ones like Laguna.
Keep at it and you’ll have her dialed in soon.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View Dwain's profile

Dwain

524 posts in 3859 days


#13 posted 05-24-2016 06:37 PM

Sounds like something that can be corrected. It also sounds as if Grizzly really went above and beyond to do what they could to help out. I too believe it is an adjustment issue. I believe this to be a combination of many issues. Ideally the saw should have been sent back if it were possible, it wasn’t. Grizzly did everything possible to resolve this issue.

-- When you earnestly believe you can compensate for a lack of skill by doubling your efforts, there is no end to what you CAN'T do

View Edwardnorton's profile

Edwardnorton

203 posts in 1927 days


#14 posted 05-24-2016 07:26 PM

Lots of comments & suggestions here so far, they’er MUCH appreciated guys! I watched 2 video’s concerning this, one with Alex Snodgrass – Carter Products ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGbZqWac0jU ) & then one with Kent – Grizzly Products ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rxfZphxj2eM ).

I thought Alex with carter products was very well done but he mentions that you should never have to do any of the most mentioned adjustments on the net but then goes on to say follow the manufacturers directions. Then watching Kent from Grizzly’s video he mentions doing the ones you see most on the internet. So I guess it just comes down to doing what one thinks is best. Kind of like politics & religion, you just cannot ever get a unified answer.

Of course I have all of grizzlys suggestions from the emails exchanges over the past several months so I may just watch the video from carter products again and try it his way.

To answer a question to me about blade lead, yes I meant blade wondering and or drift. It never stays true to the line I try to follow. My intention for using the Grizzly was for making square cuts and or re-sawing while using my Hitachi for making curved cuts on small projects.

Grizzly sent me 2 different 1/2 blades as well as 2 different 3/4” blades to try all with the same results. I’m not exaggerating one bit when I say IF I had the saw body I could assemble another complete saw! The only thing I was not told to do was to adjust the set screw behind the upper wheel as indicated in the video I posted herein from Grizzly. I may remove the top wheel and try that before doing as Carter suggests. It’s odd that those set screws are not in the manual nor that the techs from Grizzly did not mention.

Anyway, I appreciate ALL of the input here fella’s. I have learned some from the comments AND hopefully in the near future I’ll be able to use the saw as intended. I’ll post how it’s going as my health allows me to make changes.

BTW Dwain, yes indeed they went above and beyond. Not sure if it is was their intent to go so far or a disgruntled employee sending out so many new parts but I can’t complain. It does seem odd to me that they did not just send a box with a pre-paid label on it rather than to send me hundreds of dollars in parts (shipping costs included).

-- EdwardNorton

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

3248 posts in 1988 days


#15 posted 05-24-2016 07:39 PM

I followed the Snodgrass suggestions for a Jet, Rikon, and a 60 year old Delta with excellent results.

My guess is that you now have tried so many things that you need to go back to square one and realign everything.

I can only guess how frustrating this must be. You want a shiny new tool to be great and now this.

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