bandsaw problems

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Forum topic by shelly_b posted 04-13-2013 08:02 AM 1587 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View shelly_b's profile


850 posts in 2142 days

04-13-2013 08:02 AM

I decided to make my first bandsaw box the other day. I used a 3/8in blade. When I cut the drawer out, I felt like the kerf was too wide so I switched to a 1/4in blade. I noticed when I opened it up, the welded part was bent pretty bad, almost a 90degree bend. I straightened it out by hand and thought it was straight, but now my bandsaw is vibrating really bad, to the point the blade guard wobbles back and forth. Can a bad spot in the blade cause this? Just a little history, the saw is a new 17in grizzly, the blades are new timberwolf blades. I don’t remember the 3/8in blade causing any vibration, unless I just didn’t notice. The other question would be can I get a super smooth cut with a bandsaw, or is this just a downfall of bandsaws. I get pretty bad saw marks, esp when cutting thicker wood. I’m pretty sure I had it all set up right, but maybe I didn’t. With the 1/4in blade I spent ALOT of time trying to get everything set up exactly perfect to ensure it wasn’t vibrating from user error. Thanks!

16 replies so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

29393 posts in 2363 days

#1 posted 04-13-2013 10:14 AM

Poorly welded blades will make poor cuts. However, bandsaws don’t make as smooth of cut as a tablesaw or miter saw.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View shelly_b's profile


850 posts in 2142 days

#2 posted 04-13-2013 10:29 AM

Thank you. I may send that blade back then. I didn’t think the kink that thing had in it could be good.

View huff's profile


2828 posts in 3310 days

#3 posted 04-13-2013 12:28 PM


That blade could be causing your problem. I’ve used a lot of timberwolf blades and have had good luck with the blades, but I never had one that was bent like you say yours was. I would definitely contact them and see what they will do about a new blade.

What’s the tpi on the blades you’re using for cutting out your bandsaw boxes? The number of teeth per inch will also have an effect on the smoothness of your cut, just like for the table saw, but like Monte said; bandsaws don’t make as smooth of a cut as a tablesaw.

Bandsaws can also be a little more “fussy” than a typical table saw when it comes to getting good cuts. Everything from having the right blade, blade tension, guides set properly, feed rate, making sure the wood is being pushed staight into the blade (especially when cutting curves and the tighter the curve the more critical that is), making sure the large wheels are perfectly clean (nothing stuck to the rubber on the wheels).

I’ve always liked using a 3/16” blade when doing bandsaw boxes. You have to slow your feed rate down a little and really make sure your blade is tracking good, but you can really cut some pretty tight curves and still have control doing straighter cuts.

I love doing band saw boxes, but there is always a lot of hand sanding involved ( but then again, I like the inside of my boxes to look the same as the outside).

For now, I would change blades to make sure your vibration is coming from a blade and not the saw. When you change blades, double check the rubber on the wheels to make sure nothing is stuck to the rubber.

BTW. Have you got your new saw yet?

-- John @

View Roger's profile


20928 posts in 2829 days

#4 posted 04-13-2013 12:48 PM

Sounds like you may have got a kinked blade from the start. I will say this: I kinked a blade when I was cutting bs boxes last Christmas. It did the same thing that you are describing. I know I created the kink because while cutting the back off one of the drawers, the piece got away from me, scared the crap outta me, quickly checked to be sure I had all 10 digits, and, well, etc. All my fingers were still there. I know I didn’t have the piece tight and flat on the table.. Took the blade off, found the kink. Tried to flatten it, but to no avail. The blade is done. Anyway, you may want to slow down your feeding of the piece into the blade, and let the blade do the cutting. Sorry bout the rambling. Hope you get it worked out. OH, and, it’s always good to have 2 of the same blades, in case of a snafu such as what you had. Good luck with the fix. I likeTimberwolf blades, and I hope they’ll give you some satisfaction if their blade was bad to start with. Keep us posted. Work/Play safe.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View bondogaposis's profile


4765 posts in 2376 days

#5 posted 04-13-2013 05:05 PM

I would definitely go w/ new blade and see if that will improve your results. The finer tooth blades leave a smoother surface, but feed slower. The sharp corner edges on the back of the blade can tear the wood when turning a tight radius. Stoning the back of the blade helps prevent that. If the radii of your project are really tight consider a 3/16” blade or even 1/8”.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View toolie's profile


2134 posts in 2653 days

#6 posted 04-13-2013 05:24 PM

get a good blade from iturra design. no website, but they can be reached here:

call lou and let him know you need a blade welded for a saw set up. i did that and the lennox promaster he sold me turned my now sold 18” jet BS from a 350 lb paperweight into a usable BS. that guy really knows how to weld BS blades. there’s a reason timberwolf runs 4 for three sales and good welds isn’t one of them.

also, here’s a copy of his catalog (2010):

aside form the products shown in it, there are articles about set up and use that make a BS book irrelevant.

-- there's a solution to every just have to be willing to find it.

View Gerald Thompson's profile

Gerald Thompson

972 posts in 2259 days

#7 posted 04-13-2013 10:28 PM

This video got me “Tuned UP’’ in band saw tune up. It will not make bad blades work better. I now use my band saw to work with rather than a coat hanger.

-- Jerry

View shelly_b's profile


850 posts in 2142 days

#8 posted 04-13-2013 10:50 PM

Thanks guys. Glad to know it is prob the blade. Huff-still waiting on the new saw. Hopefully next week! I even slept on the couch all week so I wouldn’t miss their phone call if they called early since my best cell service is in the kitchen lol. When I got the bandsaw, I had to wait an extra day b/c they left a msg at like 7am, and by the time I called back the drivers were already on the road. I am going to put the 3/8 back on it and see how it does. If it takes the vibration out I will talk to TW about what they can do for me. I may try another brand next since I already have 3 of theirs. I haven’t tried the 1/2in yet. I watched the Alex Snograss video to tune my BS which seemed to make it pretty easy. Thanks again!

View shelly_b's profile


850 posts in 2142 days

#9 posted 04-13-2013 10:50 PM

lol gerald, just went to your link and saw it was alex’s vid.

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2715 days

#10 posted 04-14-2013 01:22 AM

Shelly, I have kinked a blade before and it will cause severe vibration and a wider kerf. I think 3/8” is prettywide for bandsaw box sawing. I use from 1/8 to 1/4” depending on how tight a radius I need to cut. I always stone the back edge of all my blades when I first get them and recommend it.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View shelly_b's profile


850 posts in 2142 days

#11 posted 04-15-2013 04:16 AM

Thanks gfadvm. I may try a 1/8in blade…and what does it mean to stone the back edge?

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2715 days

#12 posted 04-16-2013 12:46 AM

You just lightly hold a whet stone against the back of the blade while the saw is running and stone the back corners of the blade to smooth and round them. You should get Dujinski’s Bandsaw Book. I learned a lot!

A 3/16 blade is another useful size (probably better than the 1/8). Sterling (from Highland Woodworking) is an excellent brand as is Timberwolf.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View b2rtch's profile


4861 posts in 3073 days

#13 posted 04-16-2013 01:14 AM

Shelly ,I recommend that you buy your blades locally. small local businesses need your support/business.
I buy my blades in a local store and I am very happy with them.
Establish a good relationship with the owner that will be a win win situation.
Check your yellow pages

-- Bert

View shelly_b's profile


850 posts in 2142 days

#14 posted 04-16-2013 11:34 AM

Thanks gfadvm. b2rtch-I don’t think we have anything locally. I am from a very small town. I’m pretty sure lowes, which is 20min from me, is the only place that would carry bandsaw blades. I would much rather buy local. We have a family owned hardware store, but they don’t carry woodworking tools like that. I will check with the owner though. He’s really nice and I know if there is any way he can order one he will. Thanks!

View OliverArts's profile


21 posts in 1891 days

#15 posted 04-17-2013 03:32 AM

Whet stoning a blade helps alot with vibrations with makes the guide blocks last longer. Also, cleaning the tires will. Wouldn’t recommend Lowes blades. I’ve picked up a couple of Bosch’s there when I was in a pinch and was disappointed.

I quality blade on a band saw makes all the difference in the world.

-- Travis Oliver - Luthier and Furniture builder...Thanks dad and grandpa for teaching me how to build it and fix it

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