bandsaw tracking advice needed

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Forum topic by Chaplainrandy posted 08-15-2015 11:24 AM 880 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Chaplainrandy's profile


31 posts in 1194 days

08-15-2015 11:24 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question bandsaw carving

I have a grizzly GO555LX bandsaw. I recently bought a 1/8 blade and installed it. Basically this thing is all over the place and I cannot seem to keep it centered or tracking correctly. The only time is seems stay anywhere near still is when the blade comes off the bottom rubber and rides on the metal. I understand that the bottom blade will ride slightly closer to the front, but my guess is it is supposed to stay on the rubber. It seems to work fine with bigger blades, I am guessing just because there is more surface area of the blade.

Any advice would or tips would be greatly appreciated.


-- Randy

10 replies so far

View Ghidrah's profile


667 posts in 1222 days

#1 posted 08-15-2015 03:27 PM

Only 1/8” band thrashes around not 1/4 or 3/8? If the wider bands are moving, just not as crazy you may have an out of shape tire/s, or the band itself might be welded at a bad or slight angle. Lastly one or both wheels might be out of alignment, non coplanar.

-- I meant to do that!

View ElChe's profile


630 posts in 1336 days

#2 posted 08-15-2015 05:35 PM

Agree with Ghidrah. My first thought is a bad weld or twist on the blade if the bandsaw tracks other blade widths ok. Unplug it and spin blade bynhand. Does it jump around at the weld?

-- Tom - Measure twice cut once. Then measure again. Curse. Fudge.

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2656 posts in 2922 days

#3 posted 08-15-2015 07:28 PM

I have this band saw. Running a one eighth inch blade is asking a lot of this large saw. I would be surprised if it will ever run a blade that small. Trying to get the blade guides to within 1/16” to avoid rubbing the teeth on that blade seems like a pretty touchy issue to me. I use a 1/2” blade on this saw and when I need a tighter turn I use my scroll saw. I will watch this thread to see if you ever get a one eighth inch blade to work well on this saw.

-- Website is No PHD just a DD214 and a GED

View upinflames's profile


217 posts in 2162 days

#4 posted 08-15-2015 07:31 PM

Coplanar is a bunch of misleading jibberish, tension, bad blade or gummed up tires, don’t fall for the “the wheels have to be coplanar and the sun has to be at your back, hold two fingers together when you tighten this thing….” google the snodgrass video for tuning a band saw and you’ll be fine

View Redoak49's profile


3248 posts in 1988 days

#5 posted 08-15-2015 09:18 PM

I agree with Jim Finn that running a blade this small is difficult on larger band saws. I have a larger Jet bandsaw and running smaller blades is difficult for me. One could use Carter guides but not cheap. I ended up buying a Rikon 10” when it was on sale and use it for 3/16” blades. I use a scroll saw for smaller blades.

Let us know if you figure it out.

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2690 days

#6 posted 08-16-2015 12:14 AM

I used to use 1/8” blades on my 17” Grizzly and found that centering the bottom of the gullet on the top wheel and DECREASING the tension was the answer to getting it to track well. That said, it remained a problem keeping the teeth away from the side bearings. I bought a Carter Stabilizer and solved all those problems. Pricey, but very worthwhile if you use 1/8 – 3/16 blades often.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Chaplainrandy's profile


31 posts in 1194 days

#7 posted 08-16-2015 02:23 AM

I appreciate all the advice. Something goofy happened this afternoon, and I have no idea what it was. I had been messing with for about 45 minutes. Finally threw the blade completely off. After a lot of un-chaplain like words, I re-installed the blade and it seems to be tracking pretty well. I did try lowering the tension, and maybe that was it. I only made a couple of test cuts, and it seemed to do ok. I don’t know if it was working well as I am new to this. I only noticed that it didn’t seem quite as squirrely as it did the last time. I checked the blades on both wheels and there only seems to be a millimeter or so difference in where they are running in relation to the outer edge of the of the tire.

As I am new to trying to do anything other than re-sawing with the band saw, can I still get pretty tight curves with the a larger blade. I am not looking for anything to tight, just wanted to try some bandsaw boxes. For the smaller things with tighter cuts I will use the scroll saw. What size blade would everyone suggest for a curvy band saw box?

thanks again.

-- Randy

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2690 days

#8 posted 08-16-2015 01:33 PM

There is a chart somewhere that shows what radius can be cut with each blade width (someone will find and post it – Please). I use 1/4 – 1/8” bands for bandsaw boxes with 3/16” being my favorite .

If it’s in the budget, get a Carter Stabilizer to use with these narrower blades. It makes things a lot easier. There is a great demonstration video of Alex Snodgrass cutting reindeer with a Stabilizer on You Tube.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View MrUnix's profile


6715 posts in 2199 days

#9 posted 08-16-2015 01:43 PM

And the obligatory band saw tune up video:
Alex Snodgrass Band Saw Clinic


-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2690 days

#10 posted 08-16-2015 02:03 PM

Thanks Brad. I KNEW you would come through!

Here’s the link to the Stabilizer Video.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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