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Am I the only one who hates the Laguna 14 Twelve guide blocks?

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Forum topic by Mark A posted 03-20-2016 03:59 AM 3808 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Mark A

4 posts in 947 days


03-20-2016 03:59 AM

Topic tags/keywords: laguna bandsaw 14 twelve blade guides

I’ve watched and read a lot of glowing reviews for the Laguna 14 Twelve bandsaw, most of which give particularly high praise to the blade guides. But I’ve owned the 14 Twelve myself for just over two years and I have to say I HATE the blade guides! My experience is so opposite that of others that I have to wonder if my blade guides are defective or they’ve been redesigned since I bought my 14 Twelve.

The biggest problem is that no matter how hard I torque down on the knobs that “lock” the guides in position, I can easily knock them out of position by simply pressing sideways on the blade, which in turn exerts a sideways force against the guides and pushes them out of positions. But this is precisely like the blade deflection the guides are supposed to prevent. In other words, the guides do not keep the blade from deflecting. Instead, they just move out of position and leave a huge gap between the blade and the guide blocks.

I’ve cranked down so hard on the knobs that I’ve actually made my fingers bleed, and that’s still not tight enough. The problem, as I see it, is that the guide components are made of smooth, slick, anodized aluminum, and there simply isn’t enough friction between mating surfaces to keep the guides in adjustment when subjected to normal operating forces.

Have any other Laguna 14 Twelve bandsaw owners experienced this same issue? If so, have you or Laguna come up with a fix for it? Or am I the only one who hates the guide blocks on this bandsaw?

Thanks.


18 replies so far

View ThomasChippendale's profile

ThomasChippendale

244 posts in 1081 days


#1 posted 03-20-2016 09:33 PM

I have a Laguna 14 SUV with the blue anodized quite blocks holder and just went checking, they are as stiff as one could want. Think about it, if you screw down a block, either wood or aluminum, it won’t move sideways with the simple pressure of ones hand. The knobs are plastic, but they apply pressure to the blocks by pressing on a steel washer, do you have washers between the plastic knob and the aluminum surface ?

-- PJ

View conifur's profile

conifur

955 posts in 1300 days


#2 posted 03-20-2016 10:26 PM

If your sure all is correct with it, why not contact Laguna?

-- Knowledge and experience equals Wisdom, Michael Frankowski

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10359 posts in 1635 days


#3 posted 03-20-2016 10:51 PM

I seem to remember something about them not being threaded all the way? You’ve checked with the guides out? I may be thinking of a different machine.

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

View Mark A's profile

Mark A

4 posts in 947 days


#4 posted 03-20-2016 11:47 PM

The stock 14 Twelve doesn’t have washers between the knobs and the aluminum blocks they’re supposed to hold in place, but I’ve tried adding them and they make little if any difference. The adjustable aluminum blocks in which the ceramic inserts are mounted can still slide across the surface of the stationary block when subjected to the lateral force of blade deflection. The mating blocks will slide against one another, rather than hold fast, as long as the force of friction doesn’t exceed the lateral force. I would think having etched, rather than smooth, mating surfaces would be better.

The bolts on the knobs are threaded over their entire length, and they go into holes that go clear through the mounting blocks, so they can’t be bottoming out before tightening.

I do plan on contacting Laguna tomorrow (Monday), but I’m interested in finding out whether anyone else has experienced the same problem.

Thanks for your replies.

View jerryminer's profile

jerryminer

944 posts in 1590 days


#5 posted 03-21-2016 12:38 AM


I would think having etched, rather than smooth, mating surfaces would be better.
- Mark A

That might be your answer. Maybe try roughing up the mating surfaces with some coarse sandpaper—-after you talk to Laguna.

-- Jerry, making sawdust professionally since 1976

View MinnesotaSteve's profile

MinnesotaSteve

54 posts in 1040 days


#6 posted 03-27-2016 03:15 AM

So I just bought a Laguna 14-12 and set it up today.

There’s a lot wrong with the manual… I was really frustrated because it seemed like entire pages were missing. But I have to say, I struggled with those guides… The difficult part was getting the side guides parallel to the blade, when the entire assembly easily twisted no matter how hard you had the bolt tightened down.

Once I got it setup, it seems to be working well. I need to play with it more and figure out what’s the secret.

View Mark A's profile

Mark A

4 posts in 947 days


#7 posted 03-27-2016 04:13 AM

I contacted Laguna customer service about the issues I’m having with the blade guides. They suggested adding metal washers to the lock knobs, which I’ve tried before but I tried it again. It helps somewhat, but not enough to eliminate the problem of the guides slipping out of position.

I also experience the problem of the entire upper guide assembly rotating on the support shaft. I’ve been able to reduce that problem by screwing a bolt into the second threaded hole in the fixed block of the assembly.

View ThomasChippendale's profile

ThomasChippendale

244 posts in 1081 days


#8 posted 03-27-2016 12:45 PM

Seems you are not tightening things enough, try making a block with a groove to fit on the knob and give you a better grip to tighten the knobs, same for the screws, use more torque. I have not experienced any slippage with mine by hand tighhtening but it requires some effort and the position is less than ideal. Adjusting blocks parallel does take some getting used to but after a dozen set-ups, it becomes easy.

-- PJ

View Mark A's profile

Mark A

4 posts in 947 days


#9 posted 03-27-2016 06:06 PM

I think you’re absolutely right that I’m not tightening things enough, but my chief complaint is that it’s not possible to tighten things enough without making modifications to the guide system. My bleeding fingers are proof of that, and that’s an indication that the design and/or manufacture is less than it’s cracked up to be.

What I’ve done to more-or-less overcome the problems is replace the round, finger-tightened lock knobs with Allen-head screws, which I can torque down hard with a wrench. I’ve also added second bolts to hold the entire guide assembly onto its shaft to help keep the assembly from rotating when I am cranking down on those Allen-head screws. That assembly on a round shaft is another design miss, in my opinion.

I’ve also contacted Carter Products about a guide upgrade kit for the Laguna 14 Twelve. They do offer one. It’s Carter product LAG1412. It’s price is $274. It’s currently not listed on carterproducts.com. You have to order it by phone.

View asloanie's profile

asloanie

54 posts in 2137 days


#10 posted 02-15-2018 03:05 PM

I am late to the dance on this topic but would like to weigh in. I have the BX model and absolutely hate hate hate the guide blocks.. I would never buy the saw again. No mater how tight i go down on the them..they loosen up like my 6 year old was the one that tightened them.

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

1081 posts in 965 days


#11 posted 02-15-2018 03:13 PM

Sounds like a defective part. I have had my 14/twelve for over three years and I have never had a problem with the guides. In fact, I consider the ceramic guides one of the really great features of the saw.

View Bill_Steele's profile

Bill_Steele

416 posts in 1880 days


#12 posted 02-15-2018 08:15 PM

I also have a 14/twelve and have not experienced problems with the guides moving once I tighten them. I don’t feel that I have to bear down on them to get them tight. I have little to no experience with other types of guides so I can’t compare. The lower guides are a little tricky to adjust, but not to the point where I feel like cursing ;)

It sounds to me like your saw may be defective/damaged or perhaps missing a part. Perhaps try removing the guide assemblies and cleaning them. Maybe something slick is on them—like the corrosion inhibitor that the table is coated with when you get the saw brand new.

I have a tendency to get the guides a little to close to the blade when I’m adjusting them. I can tell this when I spin the wheels and the blade slightly drags on the guides. I find that a rolling paper wrapped around the blade gives me a good clearance.

View BattleRidge's profile

BattleRidge

58 posts in 364 days


#13 posted 02-15-2018 08:33 PM

While it’s likely not an issue with your saw, I have a Laguna 18BX and found that the piece of angle that holds the lower guide seemed to be a little off. Upon disassembly, I discovered a couple small spots of welding splatter on the bottom of the plate. Using a Dremel tool with a sanding attachment, I was able to easily remove the spots and all fits smooth and snug. It might help to brightly light the parts and see if you notice any deformity or other impairments. I really like my Laguna guides.

View Drew's profile

Drew

350 posts in 3248 days


#14 posted 02-15-2018 11:55 PM

I am not a fan of the guide blocks at all. I was going to replace them with some Carters but I’ve had enough with this saw (14 twelve). Looking to replace mine very soon.

-- TruCraftFurniture.com

View Sunstealer73's profile

Sunstealer73

169 posts in 2241 days


#15 posted 02-16-2018 12:28 AM

I actually converted my Rikon 10-325 to the ceramic guide blocks similar to the Laguna. I like them much better than the roller bearings that came stock.

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