LumberJocks

Should the blade tension on a bandsaw be released when not in use.

  • Advertise with us

« back to Power Tools, Hardware and Accessories forum

Forum topic by GT350 posted 12-29-2015 05:25 PM 3058 views 0 times favorited 58 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View GT350's profile

GT350

352 posts in 1447 days


12-29-2015 05:25 PM

I recently bought a Lagune 14-12 bandsaw. It has the tension release handle and the manual say’s to release it when you are not going to use it overnight which will make the saw and blade last longer. Do you release the tension on the blade when not in use? I forgot to retension it the other day and it sounded different but I was surprised it still cut reasonably well.
Thanks
Mike


58 replies so far

View bonesbr549's profile

bonesbr549

1176 posts in 2532 days


#1 posted 12-29-2015 05:30 PM

Yea, they say that. Some times I remember some times I don’t. I’ve left my tensioned for long periods of time, and it don’t make not diff that I can tell. Don’t sweat it.

-- Sooner or later Liberals run out of other people's money.

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

4230 posts in 1664 days


#2 posted 12-29-2015 05:31 PM

It’s an age old argument with no real consensus. Some swear you absolutely need to release tension when not in use for any length of time, some will say only when inactive for longer periods, some never release tension except to change blades. If you have a quick release, then it certainly won’t hurt anything doing so, but I don’t think it is something you really need to be overly concerned about if you don’t.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View 716's profile

716

502 posts in 382 days


#3 posted 12-29-2015 05:41 PM

I forgot to retension it the other day and it sounded diferent
- GT350

Should tell you something.
I would imagine a constant stress is not healthy to both the saw and the blade.

-- It's nice!

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5765 posts in 951 days


#4 posted 12-29-2015 05:45 PM

What he said. I’ve seen a couple posts by people who do a bunch of resawing and the blades lasted longer before breaking when they took the tension off. But all in all they said it wasn’t a vast difference and they were using high end blades with long life or something like that and they’d break before getting to dull to use.

Something like that. Not a huge deal in the end of you don’t.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

695 posts in 853 days


#5 posted 12-29-2015 06:06 PM

Probably not a bad idea but you have to remember to re-tension and check, alignment, guides etc. before you use it again. To help me remember, I also unplug the machine and hang the cord over the release arm as a reminder whenever I release the tension. Also, the Timber Wolf blades I just bought seem to take less tension (one of their own claims BTW) than the original blade that came with the saw which would seem to reduce the need to release tension.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View GT350's profile

GT350

352 posts in 1447 days


#6 posted 12-29-2015 06:07 PM

Thanks for the quick responses, it will be interesting to see how many people do release the tension if there are more responses. These new saws aren’t cast iron and I don’t know if that makes any difference either.

716, What I did was forget to push the handle up and put the tension back on it. I was just surprised that the blade didn’t just slide on the drive wheel since there was so little tension on it.
Mike

View bigblockyeti's profile

bigblockyeti

3668 posts in 1186 days


#7 posted 12-29-2015 06:13 PM

It can be a problem with thin blades primarily for the tires on the wheel. The thinner blades could have a greater chance of leaving a flat spot on a tire. That being said, it would probably take a long time to make a noticeable difference, but why chance it, tires are a PITA to install and sometimes expensive.

View fuigb's profile

fuigb

404 posts in 2423 days


#8 posted 12-29-2015 06:17 PM

I remove the tension at the end of each work session. Jet’s manual recommends it and I grew up being told to prolong the life of a spring by removing unnecessary tensio, e.g. never our pump guns loaded. My bandsaw works fine and I’ve never experienced failure when racking shells in our Remmington 870s. So take off the tension I saw.

Having said all of that I can tell you about a 14” Shopfox that gets occasional use/abuse at my work where the guys modify displays and make shipping crates for oddball stuff. The users are great guys but are sub-Neanderthal when it comes to tools. Anyway, the bandsaw blade became too dull to use after some moron used the saw to trim aluminum scaffolding struts and being know as the resident woodworker they called me for help. The short version is that in the course of replacing the blade I learned that it had not been de-tensioned for at least eight years. I about crapped. The saw works fine and I held an impromptu training session to show the guys how to care for the saw but I’m sure that they promptly forgot all and the saw will continue to function long after I’m gone.

-- - Crud. Go tell your mother that I need a Band-aid.

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

4230 posts in 1664 days


#9 posted 12-29-2015 06:23 PM

The users are great guys but are sub-Neanderthal when it comes to tools. Anyway, the bandsaw blade became too dull to use after some moron used the saw to trim aluminum scaffolding struts and being know as the resident woodworker they called me for help. The short version is that in the course of replacing the blade I learned that it had not been de-tensioned for at least eight years. I about crapped.

LOL – then put me in the sub-neanderthal group – I haven’t de-tensioned my BS for over a year since I put the last blade on it :)

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

805 posts in 2226 days


#10 posted 12-29-2015 07:08 PM

I bought my bandsaw, a used Walker-Turner 14” bandsaw around 1960. In 55 years I have NEVER de-tensioned a bandsaw blade. And . . . . the blades just keep cutting just fine. So much for the de-tensioning in my way of thinking.

Planeman

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4456 posts in 3426 days


#11 posted 12-29-2015 07:23 PM

Oh well…...I’m in the detension camp. Just a habit, but I’ve not had any probs.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View JoeinGa's profile

JoeinGa

7482 posts in 1472 days


#12 posted 12-29-2015 07:52 PM


LOL – then put me in the sub-neanderthal group – I haven t de-tensioned my BS for over a year since I put the last blade on it :)

Cheers,
Brad

- MrUnix

LOL! I was waiting to see if any one else was gonna admit they NEVER de-tension their blade ! ME TOO !

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View shampeon's profile

shampeon

1716 posts in 1649 days


#13 posted 12-29-2015 08:12 PM

I would imagine that how frequently you use your bandsaw has a pretty big effect on whether it makes sense to detension it or not. If you only use it occasionally, or leave it for long periods of time, detensioning the blade prevents uneven stresses on the blade, which can lead to breakage and vibration. This would not be an issue if it is used frequently.

And the size of the saw is probably another factor. Larger bandsaws have larger wheels. A 14” with a riser block will put more stress on the blades than a 19” bandsaw due to the break angle and tension needed.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2198 posts in 946 days


#14 posted 12-29-2015 11:29 PM

I have always wondered about this not for the blade but for the tension spring.

I’ve owned maybe 4 bandsaws and never detensioned one.
My big guy (18”) currently has a 1 1/2” blade on it and I know that spring has to be under a lot of tension.

.......think I’m going to throw the lever just based on principle.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View Tennessee's profile

Tennessee

2410 posts in 1980 days


#15 posted 12-29-2015 11:59 PM

My PC saw without a tension release, I never untension the blade by turning that doggone knob thirty-forty times.
My big Grizzly has tension release, and I use it religiously.

End result? The blades on the Grizzly seem to last much longer, no matter what size, than the Porter Cable.
Also remember the the Grizzly has a 131 1/2” blade, and the Porter Cable has a 93 1/2” blade, so rotations are much more often on the PC. That is an obvious factor and may skew my results.
Still, I go through blades much faster on the PC than on the Grizz.

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

showing 1 through 15 of 58 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com