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Forum topic by OrvsR4me posted 04-05-2016 11:24 PM 726 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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OrvsR4me

13 posts in 297 days


04-05-2016 11:24 PM

Topic tags/keywords: bandsaw

Hi folks, long time lurker, first time writer. Thanks for any advise.

Time to upgrade (upsize mainly) my Grizzy GO555. This saw has been working well lately after I discovered its secrets: 1.Get a good blade (woodslicer blades have magic in them) and 2.Replace the bearing guides with cool block style (your ears will thank you). With the WS blade, the saw works excellent but I need more resaw capacity and throat depth. I don’t really like the idea of a riser block so…

Rikon 10-341
Grizzly GO513×2
Laguna 1412

These are in preference order and all have basically the same price after shipping so which would you choose? I like the fence on the Griz and Laguna. The guides, capcities, and warranty on the Rikon. The brand on the Laguna. If any were made in USA I wouldn’t be asking this question at all.

All will get woodslicer blades but I wish Highland made a wider version. Is a Laguna resaw king worth 4x the price? I’m going to order in the next couple days but thought I’d ask here first for those of you who have used any of these saws. Thanks!

-- Small minds talk about people. Average minds talk about events. Great minds talk about ideas.


13 replies so far

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

131 posts in 277 days


#1 posted 04-05-2016 11:43 PM

I have a Craftsman branded Rikon and a Laguna 14/12 band saw. I use the Craftsman to do fine work and the Laguna for resawing. I absolutely despise the bearing guides on the Craftsman model. The mechanics are made very loose and sloppy and that makes it extremely difficult to adjust them accurately. I now buy bearings in tubes of 10 each because I have to replace them so often. The Laguna uses ceramic blocks and it only takes a few seconds to readjust them. Perhaps the new Rikons have a better guide system but it would be worth checking it out before buying.

I have used both 1/2 and 3/4 inch Woodslicer resaw blades and I prefer the 1/2 inch. There is less friction and I can’t tell much difference in how well they cut. However, I did set up the saw very carefully to eliminate drift and that makes a big difference.

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OrvsR4me

13 posts in 297 days


#2 posted 04-06-2016 07:29 PM

Thanks ArtMann. I was set on the Laguna to begin with but the reviews are all over the place. Most everyone thinks it is the best bandsaw ever. The rest think they should scap it for parts. Bizarre. I am sure it is an excellent saw but for the same $ the other two came into the picture and have a larger capacity.

Do you ever get sparks off the ceramic guides? Plus I have read to use the widest blade possible to resaw otherwise I would not look beyond the 1/2 WS blade. I don’t see a 3/4 at Highland?

-- Small minds talk about people. Average minds talk about events. Great minds talk about ideas.

View jfoobar's profile

jfoobar

39 posts in 791 days


#3 posted 04-06-2016 09:58 PM

FWIW, Highland Woodworking has the 10-341 right now for $999.

Never used it, but I have been fairly happy with my 10-325.

View Rob's profile

Rob

229 posts in 2448 days


#4 posted 04-06-2016 10:07 PM

I upgraded from the Craftsman 14” (Rikon knockoff) to the Grizzly G0513X2F 17” and couldn’t be happier. It’s Apples to Oranges but the G0513 is head and shoulders above what the Craftsman saw was. I’ve had it about a year and have had no issues whatsoever with it. If I had it to do over again, I’d buy the same saw.

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geauxtiger

15 posts in 2056 days


#5 posted 04-06-2016 10:26 PM

I have had the Rikon 341 for about a yr with no problems. Changed the blade and have no problem with 6” walnut or oak. The blade takes forever to stop(no brake). Dust collection to HF vacuum good. Haven’t tried anything thicker.

View BulldogLouisiana's profile

BulldogLouisiana

215 posts in 601 days


#6 posted 04-06-2016 11:28 PM

I’d strongly consider the 14bx model. I just turned my 2.5 hp version on for the first time..it purred. I also tested out the disc brake….awesome! I was really impressed with the finish as well. It’s a beaut.

-- There are 10 types of people in the world. Those who understand binary and those who don't.

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ArtMann

131 posts in 277 days


#7 posted 04-07-2016 01:27 AM

I see sparks on the ceramic guides just every once in a while. The owner’s manual says to expect them. I haven’t seen any excessive wear on the blade or guides as a result. It is a non issue.

I am quite certain you can buy a 3/4 inch Woodslicer from Highland Woodworking because that is what I am using right now. I used to have a 1/2 inch Woodslicer on the Craftsman/Rikon and it worked just fine. I know what people say about using the widest blade you can but that has not been my experience. On the smaller saws such as you are looking at, I think they are a disadvantage. It takes a lot more force and stress to tension a wide blade, although the thin Woodslicer makes it easier. I used to have a 3/4 inch Timberwolf on the Craftsman and it worked fairly well, but the speed and smoothness of cut improved dramatically when I went to the 1/2 inch Woodslicer.

I looked at the Rikon and the Laguna side by side in the local Woodcraft store and the fit and finish on the Laguna is superior. Th Rikon had blade guides that looked like the Craftsman/Rikon I already owned. I don’t think I could bring myself to buy that design again. Compare for yourself if it is possible.

I have only heard good things about the Grizzly but I wasn’t able to see one before buying so I went with the Laguna.

I need to add my usage for your comparison. I typically resaw walnut, maple or cherry. The width is anywhere from 2 to 10 inches or so and the thickness is normally between 9/32 and 11/16 inch. I use a drum sander to take the wood to the final dimensions. I make boxes and do carvings on a CNC router and that requires precision dimensioned material.


Thanks ArtMann. I was set on the Laguna to begin with but the reviews are all over the place. Most everyone thinks it is the best bandsaw ever. The rest think they should scap it for parts. Bizarre. I am sure it is an excellent saw but for the same $ the other two came into the picture and have a larger capacity.

Do you ever get sparks off the ceramic guides? Plus I have read to use the widest blade possible to resaw otherwise I would not look beyond the 1/2 WS blade. I don t see a 3/4 at Highland?

- OrvsR4me

View TheGreatJon's profile

TheGreatJon

295 posts in 694 days


#8 posted 04-07-2016 02:33 AM



I have a Craftsman branded Rikon and a Laguna 14/12 band saw. I use the Craftsman to do fine work and the Laguna for resawing. I absolutely despise the bearing guides on the Craftsman model. The mechanics are made very loose and sloppy and that makes it extremely difficult to adjust them accurately. I now buy bearings in tubes of 10 each because I have to replace them so often.

- ArtMann

Sounds like you should just put some cool blocks on it, or get yourself some aftermarket guides.

-- This is not the signature line you are looking for.

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OrvsR4me

13 posts in 297 days


#9 posted 04-07-2016 01:57 PM

Thanks for the replies everyone. Thanks geauxtiger as I was wondering about the brake. I sounds like it would be worth upgrading to get at least a foot brake. Although the maker in me thinks it shouldn’t be hard to retrofit a bicycle disk brake somewhere…

About the only decent bandsaws I can look at locally is Jet and occasionally they get in a Powermatic. No Rockler or Woodcraft etc near me. I hate places that sell equipment but could care less about knowing anything about it.

I also CNC and drum sand to thickness. A poor bandsaw cut equals more wasted material sanding or planing.

ArtMann-The reason I wonder about sparks is because of the obvious fire danger. I realize that the occasional spark must be so small and rare that it must be a non-issue. Otherwise manufactures wouldn’t use that design. I will look at Highland for the 3/4” blade. That is good news that I just didn’t find it before.

-- Small minds talk about people. Average minds talk about events. Great minds talk about ideas.

View Ocelot's profile

Ocelot

1470 posts in 2099 days


#10 posted 04-07-2016 03:31 PM

I have the Grizzley 513×2. If I were ordering today, I might pony up the extra $150 for the brake. It takes a very long time to spin down those cast iron wheels.

-Paul

View splintergroup's profile

splintergroup

826 posts in 683 days


#11 posted 04-07-2016 03:52 PM

Wider blades tend to provide better cuts, IF the saw can properly tension the blade. The WS blades work very well for me, I just wish they had a 1” version.

Saw brakes are very useful. Aside from the safety aspects, it makes operations much faster since you can quickly stop the saw to back out of a cut, swap templates, or any of the gazillion other operations you do that require stopping the saw and waiting for the blade top stop.

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OrvsR4me

13 posts in 297 days


#12 posted 04-07-2016 05:19 PM

I have one of those obsessive personalities I guess. I research things to death and then try to put a value on everything. I needed to make a decision before I lost my mind and just ordered the Laguna 14bx 240v. Also ordered Woodslicer 1/2 and 3/4 resaw blades. I doubt I could have gone wrong with any of the choices, but the blade guides and blade brake on the 14bx were the final straws on the decision.

I bumped the budget more than I would have liked but I have learned to do exactly that when making tool purchases. Almost every time I’ve been glad I did.

FYI the direct shipping on the 14bx was $135 less than the Woodstock shipping on the 1412 which made their prices get close enough together that I made the jump.

I need a drink…

-- Small minds talk about people. Average minds talk about events. Great minds talk about ideas.

View BulldogLouisiana's profile

BulldogLouisiana

215 posts in 601 days


#13 posted 04-07-2016 07:37 PM

I think you made a wise choice. Of course it’s the choice I made, so hope it turns out well for both of us.

-- There are 10 types of people in the world. Those who understand binary and those who don't.

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