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Thinking of adding a riser block to my old Jet bandsaw, Advice?

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Forum topic by BFamous posted 05-16-2018 01:41 AM 986 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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BFamous

119 posts in 115 days


05-16-2018 01:41 AM

I have an older Jet bandsaw that gets a fair amount of use, but not daily by any means. I typically leave a 3/4” blade on the Jet all of the time, occasionally swapping out to a 1/2”

I also have a table top craftsman bandsaw I tend to use for anything that will fit on it that needs to be cut with a smaller blade.

That said, I’m thinking of adding a 6” riser block to the Jet so I can resaw wider boards, and occasionally use it to mill wood from trees that fall or we cut down on my property.
So, I’m assuming a fair number of people here have added a riser block, or have a saw with one. Any advice on the process of adding one? Or any downside or regret about adding one? Any reason to not add it?

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com


17 replies so far

View ColonelTravis's profile

ColonelTravis

1768 posts in 1889 days


#1 posted 05-16-2018 01:52 AM

No advice on adding one. But I own a 17” bandsaw, which can resaw 12”. Never have I ever thought – I wish I didn’t have that capacity. A handful of times times I’ve wished I had more – a lot more, like 24”, but at that point you’re talking about a mill, not a bandsaw.

View bilyo's profile

bilyo

211 posts in 1097 days


#2 posted 05-16-2018 03:09 AM

I put a 6” riser on my 14” Delta some years ago. No regrets. It works great. I assume you know that in addition to a longer blade, you will also need to lengthen the left side blade guard, the movable guard over the table, and a longer guide block support shaft.

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BFamous

119 posts in 115 days


#3 posted 05-16-2018 03:34 AM

Well, I’m looking at a kit and was assuming that it included those three extended guards – but I’ll definitely check before I purchase.

And do I really need a longer blade? Can’t I just duct tape two of my old ones together?? :)
If duct tape doesn’t fix it, use more duct tape…

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

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GrantA

123 posts in 1402 days


#4 posted 05-16-2018 09:35 AM

I put a riser on my 14” craftsman not too long ago and have never looked back. Since you have a jet I assume the jet kit will bolt right up with no fuss, u had to modify mine so little bit that was expected

I installed a Carter tension spring and a tension crank handle at the same time, along with urethane tires, cool blocks and kreg fence. Then I picked up a 3-pack of Timberwolf blades – all those are recommended. Changed my saw completely!

View bbasiaga's profile

bbasiaga

1231 posts in 1990 days


#5 posted 05-16-2018 02:10 PM

Upgraded my shop for with the 6” riser. Have t used the full capacity yet, but the upgrade was easy with a set of helping hands. Only downside is new blades are more expensive.

Bria

-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

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BFamous

119 posts in 115 days


#6 posted 05-17-2018 12:10 AM

Thanks all.

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

View bilyo's profile

bilyo

211 posts in 1097 days


#7 posted 05-18-2018 01:07 AM


And do I really need a longer blade? Can t I just duct tape two of my old ones together?? :)
If duct tape doesn t fix it, use more duct tape…

- BFamous


Of course! Duct tape will fix it! Just buy the best quality you can afford. The cheap stuff will get all balled up in the kerf. ;>)

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BFamous

119 posts in 115 days


#8 posted 05-18-2018 01:09 AM


And do I really need a longer blade? Can t I just duct tape two of my old ones together?? :)
If duct tape doesn t fix it, use more duct tape…

- BFamous

Of course! Duct tape will fix it! Just buy the best quality you can afford. The cheap stuff will get all balled up in the kerf. ;>)

- bilyo

Haha

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

View crb's profile

crb

17 posts in 404 days


#9 posted 05-18-2018 01:38 AM

I think it depends on your motor hp. I had a 3/4hp 14” Delta with riser and found it was underpowered for tall cuts if you do lots of them (slow). I ended up selling it and finding a saw with more hp to mill bigger logs with. What is the kit cost vs new saw cost, soon you may be upgrading the motor…

-- Tighten it until it breaks, then back off a quarter turn!

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crb

17 posts in 404 days


#10 posted 05-18-2018 01:44 AM

I should add I use Lenox blades on the new saw (still 14”) and there is no way my Delta would have tensioned them properly without pancaking the cast iron frame. Like anything else I guess it all depends on what you want to do and how you want to do it.

-- Tighten it until it breaks, then back off a quarter turn!

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

6703 posts in 2194 days


#11 posted 05-18-2018 01:44 AM

If you decide to go with a riser, I would give up the idea of using a 3/4” blade on it… 3/4” is pushing the limits of the machine without a riser – and with the riser, there will be a lot of additional flex injected. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen people try to run wide blades with a riser only to have stuff break – usually the tension/tracking arm which is a weak point to begin with. With a riser, even 1/2” is pushing it and you need to be very careful to not over stress things.

Generally, if you want greater capacity for re-sawing, it’s better to get a larger machine or one with a steel frame instead of cast iron.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View GrantA's profile

GrantA

123 posts in 1402 days


#12 posted 05-18-2018 02:57 AM

Brad I’ve been pleased with my 3/4” 2/3tpi Timberwolf, which they call a low tension blade. Cuts great and I don’t have to tighten it like a banjo string

View CaptainKlutz's profile

CaptainKlutz

263 posts in 1489 days


#13 posted 05-18-2018 03:07 AM

One caution:
If your current band saw configuration has any vibration during start up/shut down, or when running due upper wheel balance, worn bushings/bearings, slop in tension spring assembly; the riser block will amplify the vibration.

+1 on saw blade width limitations, and required horsepower for re-saw greater than 6”.
Even with a 1.5HP motor on my 14” Delta with riser block, it is not fast cutting thick stock.

+1 If you intend to re-saw more than a few times per year, will be much happier buying a larger 2-3HP band saw intended for the job.

FWIW – I’ve owned an antique Delta, and white painted Taiwanese clone 14” band saw(s); adding riser block did NOT make either a better saw. Both of these saws passed the ‘standing nickel’ test without riser, but only Delta could pass with riser added (unless near max tension for 3/4” blade, then it would fail also, IE stuck using only 1/2” blades).
IMHO – there is too much flex with cast iron frame and cast aluminum upper pivot mechanisms on most late model 14” band saws to make adding a riser viable long term: even with larger motor, new ball bearing guides, and Carter spring package; especially if goal is 3/4” wide blades.
Do not get me wrong, my 14” Delta with riser slices a 1/2” blade thru 10” lumber very well, simply requires patience and some extra effort to keep equipment properly tuned.

Put another way > Been there, done riser block upgrade, got the T-Shirt, and Now I want a larger band saw! :)

Best Luck on your decision.

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

View JohnMcClure's profile

JohnMcClure

177 posts in 635 days


#14 posted 05-18-2018 03:10 AM

A suggestion: Buy a bigger bandsaw, like the Grizzly 17”, that has the power to handle wide resawing and wide blades. Then sell the Jet. Compare the total expenditure (cost of Griz – sale of Jet) vs the improvement in capacity, to the cost and labor of the riser block and that capacity. Which is more bang for your buck?

-- I'd rather be a hammer than a nail

View BFamous's profile

BFamous

119 posts in 115 days


#15 posted 05-18-2018 03:32 AM

Thank you all for the extremely helpful feedback. This is exactly the type of information I was looking for.

To be clear, I have a 3/4 HP Jet, so it sounds like I wouldn’t be happy with the cutting capability after adding the riser anyway. So I’ll probably just save up to get the grizzly instead. Though that begs the question of if there is a “mini mill” with an even larger capacity than the grizzly I could buy for relatively the same price range? If I could get something I could use to cut wider pieces when needed, but then still have the Jet for regular use…

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

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