How to shop for bandsaws

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Forum topic by ROB_IN_MN posted 10-29-2013 03:33 PM 1252 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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32 posts in 2350 days

10-29-2013 03:33 PM


I am starting to shop bandsaws. My budget is around $1000. 700 of that is a store credit due to a rewards program at a local home center, so I have to buy through them or my budget is not quite so high :) Budget is somewhat negotiable based on SWMBO!

My primary use for the saw will be resawing to create veneers and such. Because of that, the main thing I’m looking for is how tall a board I can run through the saw. it looks like when sites list a bandsaw as 14” they mean the distance between the blade and the arm holding up the top of the saw. so, I’m having a hard time tracking down saws with more than 6 inches of resaw capability. am I even going to be able to find a saw with that kind of resaw capacity in that price category?

The main brands that the local place has accounts for are Jet and Shop Fox, but the guy told me to ask about other brands if I found one I really liked. anyone know much about these two brands? I’ve never even heard of shop fox.

I technically have 220 in my shop, but that same circuit runs my air compressor and my saw location options would be severely limited by 220 outlet availability, so I’d like to stick with 110 (single phase, of course).

18 replies so far

View JayT's profile


5961 posts in 2415 days

#1 posted 10-29-2013 03:54 PM

I can’t help much on the bandsaw itself, but can help you with Shop Fox.

Shop Fox and Grizzly are both owned by the same parent company—Woodstock Int’l. Grizzly is the direct ship line, Shop Fox is the dealer only line. Most, but not all, of the Shop Fox tools have a direct Grizzly equivalent—they come off the same assembly lines and just end up with different paint jobs and badging. Shop Fox tools also mostly come with a 2 year warranty, versus Grizzly’s one year. If you need parts or anything else, it is the same customer service department and people.

My company has been a Shop Fox dealer for a while and I am impressed with the quality for the price.

-- In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock. Thomas Jefferson

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32 posts in 2350 days

#2 posted 10-29-2013 03:55 PM

ah, cool. thanks for the info Jay.

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3851 days

#3 posted 10-29-2013 03:58 PM

Look for an older 18” or 20” machine.

View ROB_IN_MN's profile


32 posts in 2350 days

#4 posted 10-29-2013 04:03 PM

unfortunately, that won’t let me use the in-store credit I have.

View ol104's profile


56 posts in 2190 days

#5 posted 10-29-2013 04:06 PM

Hey Rob – i was in your predicament resently as well. I had quite a few gift cards saved up from the Orange. Roughly the same amount you have now. So i began the journey by looking at what they offered in bandsaws. Most all of their 14” units will only have a 6” resaw. However, both the Jet and Shop Fox offer block kits that will increase that resaw to 12”. I believe the kits are priced $75-100 based on the brand of saw you buy. My issue was that i really wanted the Rikon 10-325, it has a 13” resaw standard and terrific reviews. I was able to sell some other items i no longer needed to get the $$ to buy the Rikon without having to use the gift cards (got lucky). I would see what specific saws the Orange had and then check out reviews for the unit at other sites (amazon and other woodworker forums). The Jet and Shop Fox are both C type bandsaws and extrememly similar. Jets have a higher sticker price presumably due to their name recognition but the Shop Fox is still a solid unit from the reviews i researched at the time. Good luck on your search, it can be overwhelming at times.

View 7Footer's profile


2569 posts in 2152 days

#6 posted 10-29-2013 04:15 PM

I’m not 100% sure about this and I am sure someone will correct me if I am wrong, but I thought that when they say 14”, 19”, 21” or whatever the size referenced of the BS is refers to the size of the wheels. I picked up a used 14” Grizzly G1019Z a little over a month ago, and although I haven’t used it a ton, I’m very impressed with it, definitely the best tool in my shop. It has a 3/4 HP motor and with the Timber Wolf blades I have it cuts really hard wood like butter.

I’m sure that Shop Fox has equivalents to most of the Grizzle machines but This One is about $900 has a 12” re-saw and 2 hp, pre-wired for 220v, but can be wired for 110, although I’m sure it runs way better on 220. I kind of think that anything over 1 HP is going to be wired and preferred to run 220, so if you want to keep it on 110 then you might want to get a bit of a smaller BS.

Shop Fox are great machines from what I’ve heard, and like Jay says if they are one in the same with Grizzly then I’d go for that over the Jet, I’m very impressed with Grizzly, and have heard nothing but good things about their customer service.


View ROB_IN_MN's profile


32 posts in 2350 days

#7 posted 10-29-2013 04:32 PM

thanks for the info guys. I’m going to have to do some research on these block kits for the 14” saws.

View bullhead1's profile


228 posts in 2452 days

#8 posted 10-29-2013 04:39 PM

I have a Shop Fox W1706. It’s a 14” with one horse power motor. It can be wired for 110 or 220. You can buy a riser block to increase the resaw capacity of a 17”. You should be able to get it and the riser for well under a $1,000. With the one horse motor you have to watch your feed rate but I have resawn 5.5” without a problem. I do not have the riser as what I resaw isn’t that wide. The saw has worked very well for me for a year and a half. Shop Fox also makes a 19” with a 2hp motor that is probably the mate to the Grizzle mentioned above. I would guess it will be about a $100 to a $150 more than the Grizzle. I also have a Shop Fox table saw and am very happy with it also. I just love the white paint job!!
ps. The Shop Fox web sit is

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3851 days

#9 posted 10-29-2013 04:40 PM

I recommend considering the material in the Fine Woodworking
book “Veneering Marquetry & Inlay (Best of Fine Woodworking)”
which includes articles from craftspeople working at professional levels on
band saw selection and setup for cutting veneers. I’d
say generally a saw with a 1 piece frame would be an
easier saw to get good results with than one with a 2
(or 3, with a riser block) piece frame.

It is also easier to get nice veneers by sticking to under 6”
resaw cuts. There will be less misbehavior of the blade
in the cut and fence setups are not as finicky.

View paxorion's profile


1107 posts in 2249 days

#10 posted 10-29-2013 05:35 PM

Rob, it looks like one requirement of your that hasn’t been clarified is where your $700 store credit is good at. It seems like most people are recommending Grizzly/Shop Fox which makes sense from a bang for your buck standpoint, but if your budget is locked to a specific store, then you’re not likely going to be able to spend it on the machine you want to get.

Also riser kits may raise capacity, but it may not give you the muscle needed to power the blade through. From a physics standpoint a 14” bandsaw w/ 1-1.5HP 110v motor will have a lot more trouble resawing wide (12” boards). A 17” w/ 3HP 220v will do a lot better, and may be a better bet if you often resaw large boards.

-- paxorion

View ROB_IN_MN's profile


32 posts in 2350 days

#11 posted 10-29-2013 05:43 PM

sorry, wasn’t clear. the store my 700 bucks is good at primarily carries Jet and Shop Fox. that’s how we got on that subject.

View JonHitThingWithRock's profile


97 posts in 1926 days

#12 posted 10-29-2013 05:48 PM

i recently got the grizzly g0555 anniversary model with riser block and mobile base for $680, with a brand new olson 3tpi blade i resaw’d a 8” wide board very easily. The anniversary edition isn’t available anymore as far as i can tell, but the regular one is. worth a look

View bullhead1's profile


228 posts in 2452 days

#13 posted 10-29-2013 07:00 PM

Rob, I see your in sw Minnesota. I live just across the boarder in SD and you would be welcome to let saw a couple boards on my Shop Fox if you’d like. Send me a PM if you want to.

View ROB_IN_MN's profile


32 posts in 2350 days

#14 posted 10-29-2013 07:02 PM

that’s a very generous offer bullhead1. I am comfortable with answers several people have given regarding the quality of Shop Fox… but maybe I’ll have you give me some band sawing lessons some day :)

View b2rtch's profile


4868 posts in 3252 days

#15 posted 10-29-2013 07:29 PM

ROBINMN, to bad that you do not live in Utah,I would sale you my 14” handsaw with the riser kit and spare blades for $300.00

-- Bert

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