UPDATE! Jet Band Saw on Craigslist..I Bought it!

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Forum topic by Brad_Nailor posted 07-11-2010 02:15 AM 11165 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2539 posts in 3984 days

07-11-2010 02:15 AM

BAM! Another Craigslist deal finds it’s way into my lap…hopefully. It’s my birthday tomorrow (ha!) and that makes it even sweeter! I was going to have the wife buy me the small Rikon tabletop bandsaw and matching stand…from Highland it was a little over $300 with shipping. Then today I see this Craigslist add and I was wondering if anyone has any opinions on either band saw and what you guys think. I would personally rather have the gigger saw..and this one even though it looks a little older, is a pretty solid saw that they still make today. How long ago was Jet painting their stuff blue?…let me hear ya! I went to go check this thing out this morning. I met the guy and I looked at it and it looked great. Really good condition. He ran it a few times and was playing with the tension and the tracking angle and I thought it sounded a little noisy but i figured the blade tension wasnt tight enough. He had three blades with it total and he also had the manuel. It was manufactured in 4/1996. I was able to get the saw for $250.00 Here are some pics of it in a temporary home in my shop..

So I get it home and start messing with it..aligning the bearings and blocks (buying a set of cool blocks for it right away). I couldn’t help but think how noisy it was. I started to investigate and I noticed that it felt like the upper wheel was hitting something. I jumped online and did a few searches and what do I find..a Lumberjocks blog about this exact problem! The minute I read this I went and looked..sure enough the bracket is fully bent like a C, and it has a worn spot from where it had been rubbing against the wheel. I was able to get the blade to track perfect, but the tracking adjustment screw is fully extended. Here are some shots..

You can see how unbelievably distorted that piece is. Its a good thing that the metal is so shitty, it didn’t to any damage to the wheel. I guess this is a pretty common problem with these saws. Good thing I found that blog. I already went online and ordered the updated replacement part. I hope it’s not too big of a deal to take it apart….doesn’t look too bad in the diagram. I was starting to wonder if I shouldn’t have just got the Rikon. I still think this is a really great saw in great condition. This is a known defect and doesn’t really reflect the overall condition of the saw, nor is it any indication that the saw has been abused or over used. It is just an inferior part that couldnt stand up to the intended normal usage. Once i get the part and get it in I think this will be a great saw. I am thinking while I have it apart I might wet sand the table starting with some 800 grit and work my way through 5000. The thrust bearing still seem in great shape but the plastic blocks upper and lower are i am going to but a set of Cool Blocks for it. I ordered the replacement part today..its in TN, and I’m in I should see it by the later part of the week….


14 replies so far

View Dan'um Style's profile

Dan'um Style

14173 posts in 4010 days

#1 posted 07-11-2010 06:03 AM

I would probably get the Rikon … nothing wrong with the jet, but the Rikon looks like a nice one

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

View Pete_Jud's profile


424 posts in 3780 days

#2 posted 07-11-2010 06:32 AM

I would go for the Jet, if you have the floorspace. I have several stationary Jet tools in the shop, and they work very well, and are well made. The larger capacity of the Jet may come in handy some day. And, the extra weight should make it a smoother running saw.

-- Life is to short to own an ugly boat.

View wseand's profile


2796 posts in 3069 days

#3 posted 07-11-2010 06:52 AM

I would go take a look at the Jet, if it is close, and see if it is in good shape. You don’t want to get the saw and than have to put money into it right away. If it looks good than definitely go for the Jet. You will hate yourself if you don’t go take a look. Size does matter.

View a1Jim's profile


117126 posts in 3604 days

#4 posted 07-11-2010 07:17 AM

For a little more you can have this

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View TheDane's profile


5441 posts in 3690 days

#5 posted 07-11-2010 01:57 PM

Go for the Jet. A 14” saw is going to give a lot more capability than any 10” saw.

I had a Rikon-built Craftsman (similar to the Rikon you provided a link to). I got by with it for awhile, but it was way too limited. I sold it and bought a Jet 14” (later version of the one you found on Craigslist) ... what an improvement!

And if the Jet is gone by the time you get there, I would go for the Grizzly Jim suggested.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 3984 days

#6 posted 07-11-2010 02:23 PM

Ya I hear ya Jim..but now were getting into a totally different area. I want this if I am going to buy a new band saw. I figured, I would offer the guy $250. I can buy this exact band saw brand new for $520 on Amazon with free ground shipping. I did some research, and it seems Jet tools were colored blue up until 1999. They changed to white for the millennium and kept it that way. So at the very least its a 11 year old saw. Of course the guy says it was used very little…(some old lady just cut wood for the church on Sundays). I figured if it seems like its in good shape and I can get it cheap enough…it will get me by till I can replace it with the saw I really want. I really like the little Rikon…I don’t have allot of room in my little shop so it would be a good fit…but you guys make a valid point… I would trade all that to have a full size 14” saw..its just so much more useful…and I don’t think the foot print between the two will be that much different.. I am going to see it in person around 11. The guy lives really close to my house so that’s convenient. I have a feeling if it runs good and looks good I will probably be coming home with it!

If I snag this saw, then I am going to have an almost completely Craigslist deal equipped shop..ha..


View Bob Kollman's profile

Bob Kollman

1798 posts in 3218 days

#7 posted 07-11-2010 02:35 PM

I have had my 12” craftsman band saw for 3 years runs great $ 300.00 new. Very happy with it 7” clearance for recut capacity.

Jet is one of the standard band saws for machine shops, you know buying used is as good as the man selling, either he’s honest and a good person to do business with, or he’ll lie cheat and steal to make the sale.

-- Bob Kenosha Wi.

View a1Jim's profile


117126 posts in 3604 days

#8 posted 07-11-2010 04:40 PM

You know what you want. I just didn’t have that good of luck with jet . I bought a 18” band saw and the bearings went out in 8 mouths . I have found many table top band saws are only good for small projects and usually have poor adjustments . I have a 10” craftsman band saw I had in my tool sale that I’ve only 4 0r five times (One of 3 band saws) that I used just a couple times that is hard to get tension right and is just a all around poor saw.I asked $65 and had no takers. There doesn’t seem to be a big difference between the two models of grizzly models for the price difference other than a closed stand and a 1/2 hp more. When we think of buying tools we all have a target tool we think of. All said and done we all buy what we like and can afford.
Enjoy what ever you get.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10123 posts in 4079 days

#9 posted 07-11-2010 10:03 PM

I would CALL him ASAP… talk and possibly go look at it…

If it’s in Neat condition as he meant, Sounds like a good deal to me.

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:"

View davidroberts's profile


1027 posts in 3513 days

#10 posted 07-11-2010 10:54 PM

what are you waiting for. the jet will be gone while you’re scratching your head. call the guy now and go get it. buy the jet, you won’t regret.

-- Better woodworking through old hand tools.

View a1Jim's profile


117126 posts in 3604 days

#11 posted 07-12-2010 01:13 AM

Looking good and the price you wanted too. Enjoy

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View CharlieM1958's profile


16275 posts in 4245 days

#12 posted 07-12-2010 02:49 AM

Great deal!!!

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10123 posts in 4079 days

#13 posted 07-12-2010 03:15 AM


Glad you got it at such a good price!

You will like it…

It has a Tension Lever (on/off) doesn’t it?
If not, you might be able to install one… seems like I’ve seen articles on doing it… Sure makes life easier with it.

C O N G R A T U L A T I O N S !!

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:"

View Kelly's profile


2039 posts in 2971 days

#14 posted 07-12-2010 03:59 AM

An awful lot of used Craftsman band saws are available for around $200.00. If I had to choose spending the extra fifty on the Jet, it would still be my choice.

I’ve owned two Craftsman band saws. I just gave away the latest, though I could have gotten toy money for it, it was intended to addict, uh, help another woodworker get started.

My current band saw is a fourteen inch Powermatic. This looks like it could be my Powermatic’s older brother (machines evolve, whether people do or don’t) and is just lacking a bearings in place of guide blocks, a Carter tensioning handle and a bigger motor.

I agree with other posts – you’d soon out grow a bench top unit. If you outgrow this one, you will probably be able to sell if for what you paid for it, or a little profit.

If the Jet performs anywhere near as well as the current Grizzleys and Powermatics, you are going to step into a whole new world.

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