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Ryobi bandsaw owners: Good or bad?

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Forum topic by dpoisson posted 12-22-2010 11:29 PM 30249 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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dpoisson

190 posts in 2377 days


12-22-2010 11:29 PM

Howdy, I’m comtemplating buying the ryobi bandsaw. I’ve read some good reviews, nearly all strongly suggest buying a new blade, which I would do. I’m concerned how good it would be cutting hardwoods.

To the owners, what have you been able and NOT able to do with your ryobi bandsaw?

Cheers,

Fish

-- http://picasaweb.google.ca/dpoisson


16 replies so far

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knotscott

7211 posts in 2839 days


#1 posted 12-22-2010 11:49 PM

I had a little Ryobi BS900 9” BS for a couple of years….not sure which one you’re looking at. These little plastic and aluminum guys are all pretty similar….kinda small, kinda light, kinda underpowered, kinda limiting, but with a reasonable blade they’ll make most of the cuts you might ask of them. Obviously you can’t cut anything beyond it’s capacity, so you won’t be making deep cuts or resawing 6” veneers, you have to respect it’s weight and power limitations, and it had a little vibration to it.

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

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Loren

8302 posts in 3111 days


#2 posted 12-23-2010 12:24 AM

I’d hold out for a used Delta 10” or 12” saw with the belt drive
motor if you can handle having a floor model. The Shopsmith
saws are good too, and can be got from time to time on Craigslist.

These days everyone wants the 14” and bigger saws but there are
some bargains to be had in older, smaller saws which were made to
a better standard than any small bandsaws made today.

The current crop of benchtop saws are all shabbily made from what
I’ve seen. Not much good for accurate straight cutting. Since
lots of people want a hobby bandsaw for work that better suits
a scroll saw, the market isn’t very discerning I guess.

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D_Allen

495 posts in 2247 days


#3 posted 12-23-2010 03:07 AM

I too have been looking, specifically at the BS903. Actually I have been looking at several others. I was in a sears store yesterday and was looking at their 9” and noted that the blade guide used a single ball bearing at the back of the blade and some small round guides on either side. However, a look at the BS903 indicates that there are 3 bearings on it. One in the back and one on each side. I’m thinking that this is a better setup since their 10” also has 3 bearings. Can anyone confirm this observation?
I don’t have floor space for a 14” so a benchtop is in my future.

-- Website is finally up and running....www.woodandwrite.com

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dpoisson

190 posts in 2377 days


#4 posted 12-23-2010 04:24 AM

I’m with d_allen on this…no can do on the floor space for now unfortunately.

Knotscott: Interesting. I’d be very curious as to what is the ryobi’s limit’s though. Could it cut through 2” thick walnut or am-I daydreaming?

Fish

-- http://picasaweb.google.ca/dpoisson

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D_Allen

495 posts in 2247 days


#5 posted 12-23-2010 05:06 AM

I think the BS903 has about a 3.5” cutting height. But then my tablesaw blade goes that high too. But I would never try to cut through a 3.5” piece of hardwood with it and I would not expect the bandsaw to do that either. I figure if I want to do any resawing I will have to limit the height to about 2” and with a good blade go sssssllllloooooowwwww!!!!
Now if I was cutting 3” balsawood….no problem!

-- Website is finally up and running....www.woodandwrite.com

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dpoisson

190 posts in 2377 days


#6 posted 12-23-2010 05:17 AM

d_allen: Thanks for the information. Do you have the stock blade on it, if not, which blade do you have?

fish

-- http://picasaweb.google.ca/dpoisson

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D_Allen

495 posts in 2247 days


#7 posted 12-23-2010 05:23 AM

You misunderstand…I do not yet have the saw. I was just supposin!

-- Website is finally up and running....www.woodandwrite.com

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dbhost

5605 posts in 2695 days


#8 posted 12-23-2010 07:06 AM

I had a BS900 for about 2 years. It worked, sort of. I upgraded to a floor model 14” C frame saw. It sounds like those aren’t in your future due to space constraints… Have you looked at the current Craftsman 10” model? Not sure of the #. If you can find one used I bet they would have a good deal…. I have heard a lot of good about those. I think they are made by Rikon…. (I have heard good things about the 10 and 12” models. The 9” I have heard is a dud though….)

-- My workshop blog can be found at http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com

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knotscott

7211 posts in 2839 days


#9 posted 12-23-2010 02:41 PM

I bought a 6TPI Vermont American blade, which I doubt is overly high quality but was notably better than the stock blade. The limitations are throat depth (~ 9”) and height of cut (~ 3”), motor power, instability due to lack of weight, and the vibration I mentioned (also due to lack of weight). There’s not much you can do to upgrade parts either. It should go thru 2” walnut fine, but it won’t cut too fast.

The 10” Craftsman (Rikon clone) that was mentioned has taller resaw capacity (5” IIRC), a cast iron table, a fence, and is heavier making it a bit more user friendly all around….I’d opt for that over the Ryobi if you can find one near your budget.

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

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dpoisson

190 posts in 2377 days


#10 posted 12-23-2010 08:27 PM

sigh, well, there one thing that I need to add into the mix…with our daughter (2nd kid!) that got here a couple of days ago, I’ll need to think that making all kinds of noise in the basement will be kind of out of the question for the next little bit…

So I’m thinking of ditching the idea of the bandsaw (one day my sweet, one day…) or other power tools and instead, investing in a quality bench vise. I only have a little 6” portable vise right now and it’s holding power is very limited.

Fish

-- http://picasaweb.google.ca/dpoisson

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knotscott

7211 posts in 2839 days


#11 posted 12-23-2010 09:12 PM

Fish, these little BS’s should be a lot quieter than a TS, planer, router, or jointer. Not necessarily quiet per se, but among the quieter power tools I can think of.

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

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D_Allen

495 posts in 2247 days


#12 posted 12-24-2010 01:10 AM

Now you guys have gone and done it. After more consideration I have decided that I want the craftsman 10” instead. I also remined myself that I have never been real pleased with my Ryobi cordless drill. The batteries don’t hold a charge long and it does have a lot of plastic. I’ll look for a sale on the 10”. It gets better reviews than the BS903 too.

-- Website is finally up and running....www.woodandwrite.com

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Jesse

105 posts in 2325 days


#13 posted 12-24-2010 10:54 AM

I would advise against the Ryobi 9” also. Mine get’s me by on the little things I do, but there are plenty of other times when I feel limited. I “can” cut 3” babinga with it…but not well and I have to go super slow. In fact, after my telling my dad about my band saw, he feels it’s a testament to me that I’ve been able to build anything. Forget resawing all together. It’s also not a very durable tool if you try to push it beyond cutting out a pattern on 3/4 wood. I’ve only had mine 6 months and I’ve had to tear it apart and rebuild it once because the tension spring was rubbing against the upper wheel. Finally, ryobi uses an uncommon blade size. 59 1/4” I believe. This limits the availability of blades you can get. You can use the slightly more common 59 1/2 but you can’t tension it enough to make it stay perpendicular to the table. Overall, 2 out of 5 for me. Just fine if you only plan to use it as a big scroll saw.

I am not sure I would lean toward craftsmen either. While I read good reviews on their 10”, I would echo the above advice and sit tight. Do some craigslist stalking and wait for a 14”-er.

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crank49

3981 posts in 2434 days


#14 posted 12-24-2010 02:18 PM

I can’t speak to the 9” Ryobi BS, but I have the Rikon 10”, 1/3hp, benchtop BS. I think the Sears 10” you might be looking at is the same saw with a different paint color. They have the same cast iron table and extruded aluminum fence, die cast wheels, blade guide bearings. By the way, the Sears 9” is not half the saw as the 10” so I would definately pass it by; too much plastic (wheels), no fence, even smaller (1/5hp) motor.

I got the Rikon last fall on sale at Woodcrafter for ~$200. Sears has their equivalent 10” on sale from time to time for ~$180. I like my Rikon just fine. It is a good little saw and I have resawed a 2×4 size piece of maple with it. Not fast, but do-able.

I think the Sears (or Rikon) 12” is an even better saw than the 10”, and about perfect for benchtop work. I think it has a 7-1/2” resaw capacity and a bigger, beefier table and fence and a 1/3hp motor. Sears had it on sale last summer for ~$280. I regret that I missed that sale, but I still like the one I got.

-- Michael: Hillary has a long list of accomplishments, though most DAs would refer to them as felonies.

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D_Allen

495 posts in 2247 days


#15 posted 01-11-2011 04:06 AM

Fish, just wanted you to know that I got the 10” Craftsman yesterday at 10% off and Ii must say….what a nice saw. Right out of the box it ran fine. I did some adjusting this evening and made 8 cuts needed for a table I’m building and it worked great. It’s a bit more money than the 9” you mentioned but I’m glad I went with it as it has good reviews.

-- Website is finally up and running....www.woodandwrite.com

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