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How much band saw do I need?

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Forum topic by namrufmot posted 01-24-2016 04:49 PM 630 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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namrufmot

54 posts in 333 days


01-24-2016 04:49 PM

Just a typical small-time DIYer…I make things like firewood racks, houses for feral cats, shelves, etc.

I’m looking too get a band saw (or scroll?) so I can cut some accurate rounded edges – tired of fighting a jig saw.

Do I need a full out 14” or would something like the 10” craftsman be enough for my needs? I’ll probably never use the band saw for ripping or resawing….

it would have been nice to add some gentle curves to this project for example.


16 replies so far

View ohtimberwolf's profile

ohtimberwolf

634 posts in 1818 days


#1 posted 01-24-2016 04:57 PM

Many are better at answering this question than I am but I personally would recommend a band saw over the scroll saw. As for size I still would stick with a 14 inch. You never know what road you are about to travel larry

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

View firecaster's profile

firecaster

570 posts in 2885 days


#2 posted 01-24-2016 05:05 PM

Maybe you can find a used one to try out and see how much you use it.
My old Craftsman does everything I usually need.

-- Father of two sons. Both Eagle Scouts.

View TheWoodRaccoon's profile

TheWoodRaccoon

364 posts in 396 days


#3 posted 01-24-2016 05:09 PM

A 10 inch Rikon, Craftsman, or even a 9 inch Skil bandsaw will be plenty for what you want to do. If you have the space however, a 14 inch bandsaw would be even better!

A scroll saw will also work, and is probably more user friendly. For now I would say you should get a decent scroll saw, and upgrade to a bandsaw if you feel you need the extra capacity.

Have fun shopping!

-- still trying to think of a clever signature......

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

7221 posts in 2842 days


#4 posted 01-24-2016 05:12 PM

If your needs are very modest, and space and money are hard to justify a bigger BS, a decent jigsaw or even a sander probably would have sufficed for what you showed.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View oldretiredjim's profile

oldretiredjim

203 posts in 1852 days


#5 posted 01-24-2016 05:15 PM

Once you have a band saw you will find a lot of uses other than what you describe. Rips are not as clean as a TS but you will find many situations where it is much safer for the hands. The technology has been around for a long time and is pretty simple to work with. Dust collection for a band saw is simple and very effective, even with a shop vac, so it is an easy tool to live with. The number is the throat while the depth of cut is equally important, at least for me. Lots of used ones out there with good bearings.

View namrufmot's profile

namrufmot

54 posts in 333 days


#6 posted 01-24-2016 05:55 PM

Thanks for All of the replies guys. I have the space but not really the budget to buy a deluxe 14 inch. Combing craigslist all I typically find are ancient 12 inch craftsman for around 150, or 14 inch deltas approaching the five to $600 range. I am going to check out a 14 inch Delta with no pictures tomorrow the guy is asking 300. If this deal falls through I’ll have to settle for a newer craftsman or better scroll saw.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3025 posts in 1264 days


#7 posted 01-24-2016 06:02 PM

I have the Rikon looking 12” craftsman and it is great for my use. Every once in a while it bogs down or doesn’t have quite enough resaw capacity, but overall it works well. The older 12” craftsmans had, I believe less resaw capacity.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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MrUnix

4238 posts in 1665 days


#8 posted 01-24-2016 06:41 PM

If this deal falls through I’ll have to settle for a newer craftsman or better scroll saw.
- namrufmot

Then figure on ‘settling’. You can’t just scan CL for a day or two and expect to find what you want. Time and patience are the key.

Having said that… for your purposes, just about any bandsaw should suit your needs. Only suggestion is to stay away from the cheaper plastic ones or those with three wheels. Nice smaller saws show up quite frequently in the $100 or less range around here on CL – but on any given day, there may not be a single one, or there may be a bunch. You just have to wait for them to show up. A scroll saw would also work and give you some extra benefits (like being able to do internal cuts), but they are pretty much limited to thinner wood and cutting thicker stuff will take forever.

Cheers,
Brad

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

View joey502's profile

joey502

487 posts in 984 days


#9 posted 01-24-2016 06:48 PM



I have the Rikon looking 12” craftsman and it is great for my use. Every once in a while it bogs down or doesn t have quite enough resaw capacity, but overall it works well. The older 12” craftsmans had, I believe less resaw capacity.

- CharlesA

I have the 12” craftsman as well, and also like it.

Is your’s the model with the 89 1/2” blade? I have been shopping for blades, where do you buy yours?

View thechipcarver's profile

thechipcarver

178 posts in 1044 days


#10 posted 01-24-2016 07:16 PM

All above are good advice. One thing to keep in mind is the size of blades and are they readily available. I have a 9” Craftsman I bought many years ago at the local Sears. Craftsman has a habit of making blades that you can only get at Sears. Everything was fine until the Sears closed. Now I have to order it online (pay S&H) or drive 30+ minutes to the next Sears.

-- While teaching a class, a gentlemen once asked me: "When chip carving an intricate design, what do you do when you are almost finished and the wood breaks off?" I replied "Cover the kids ears."

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3025 posts in 1264 days


#11 posted 01-24-2016 07:35 PM


I have the Rikon looking 12” craftsman and it is great for my use. Every once in a while it bogs down or doesn t have quite enough resaw capacity, but overall it works well. The older 12” craftsmans had, I believe less resaw capacity.

- CharlesA

I have the 12” craftsman as well, and also like it.

Is your s the model with the 89 1/2” blade? I have been shopping for blades, where do you buy yours?

- joey502

I’ve had the best luck with Olson All Pro in 89 1/2” I can switch between 1/4, 3/8, and 1/2 with a quick adjustment of the guides and everything else is good. i tried a TimberWolf blade, and maybe I didn’t know how to set it up correctly (I understand they have different tension requirements), but I couldn’t get the drift out of that blade-it was pretty serious drift. I also use the Highland Woodworking Woodslicer blade in 1/2” for resawing and it exchanges with the Olson blades with no problem.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4456 posts in 3427 days


#12 posted 01-24-2016 07:52 PM

Cheaping out on a band saw will just give ya grief. Go ahead and get a 14” Grizz 0555. That way you’ll be able to do lots of things, buy good blades, and progress your woodworking.
Just my thoughts.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View Loren's profile

Loren

8313 posts in 3114 days


#13 posted 01-24-2016 08:41 PM

Saws with 10” wheels tend to break blades. It’s an
annoyance. If you get a 14” saw it will be able
to run 1/2” blades which don’t break easily.

I solder up my own blades but you probably won’t
want to get into that. Blades for 14” saws are
common too so replacements can be grabbed
off ebay affordably.

View OSU55's profile

OSU55

1063 posts in 1456 days


#14 posted 01-24-2016 08:54 PM

I have the 10”Cman review here. With proper blades for the task it will do all you need. Can easily saw through 4-1/2” oak. As long as the throat clearance is sufficient it will handle the cuts. Its only about $190 delivered. No reason to buy more tool than needed and if you decide to get a big one for resaw keep this one for curves etc.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3025 posts in 1264 days


#15 posted 01-24-2016 09:17 PM

my tool-buying strategy is to save a search on Craigslist and be patient for awhile. It depends on where you are, but around here there are pretty good deals to be had on 12-14” bandsaws with some regularity. I spent 18 months finding my jointer at the right price! I couldn’t bring myself to pay $600+ on a new one.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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