Ridgid BS14002 Bandsaw - Upgrading to Pass the "Nickel Test"

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Forum topic by GrizzlyBagWorks posted 04-10-2014 12:45 AM 18659 views 4 times favorited 27 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View GrizzlyBagWorks's profile


91 posts in 1615 days

04-10-2014 12:45 AM

Topic tags/keywords: bandsaw adjustment ridgid band saw ridgid bandsaw ridgid band saw fix vibration in band saw

—————————- VIDEO—————————-

After w/ General Overview Video and Nickel Test:

—————————- VIDEO—————————-

Let me just start off by saying that after the issues I had with my Ridgid R4512 table saw I was basically finished with Ridgid stationary power tools. Then a project came up that required a band saw and I happened to stumble across one on Craigslist for what seemed like a reasonable price. I did a little research and wasn’t all that surprised to read several scathing reviews with many coming to the conclusion that the Ridgid BS14002 was the “worst tool Ridgid has ever made”. BUT there were a few that were able to address it’s shortcomings and get it to function as it should have from the factory—so I took the plunge.

When I picked the saw up the cast iron surface was covered in rust, the blade was installed with the teeth facing up (and yes, they used it that way), and the thing shook like a paint shaker. I’m not kidding, was shaking like I never thought a tool could. I probably should have passed on it but I bought it anyway.


After w/ General Overview Video and Nickel Test:

Cleaned up but Pre-Modifications:

I made the following adjustments and “upgrades” to the machine:

Balance Upper & Lower Wheels
Align Upper & Lower Wheels
Align Drive Pulleys

- Urethane Tires
- Cool Blocks
- Harbor Freight Link Belt
- 3/4” Plywood Base
- Harbor Freight Mobile Base
- Timberwolf 1/2” x 3tpi Blade
- New Ridgid Inserts (originals were basically destroyed)

In my case the biggest improvement came from replacing the rubber tires, which had a flat spot from years of compression by the blade, for urethane ones that I bought on Amazon. Unfortunately that was the last upgrade I made and I almost gave up on the machine before I finally caved and bought the tires. Next was probably balancing, followed by reinforcing the base with 3/4” plywood and finally changing the belt.

If I were to try and rehab one of these machines again I’d start with balancing the wheels (free) then 3/4” reinforcement of the base and removing the rubber grommets (>$10—if you have the wood). Then inspect the belt for obvious signs of memory, replace if necessary ($10-20). Then I’d go straight for the urethane tires for $35. I might even start with the tires if they were badly cracked.

I didn’t think it was going to be possible but the machine now runs very smooth and passes the “nickel test” without issue, even with the lower wheel being out of true and the upper wheel being slightly out of round. Given how bad this thing shook when I first got it I didn’t think it was going to be possible. I could probably improve things even further by “sanding the urethane tires” round but at this point I’m going to call it a job.

So, if you already have this saw, or are thinking about buying one used, know that there is hope!

Next “upgrade” will be a quick release tensioner and a table with fence for resawing.


27 replies so far

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2714 days

#1 posted 04-10-2014 01:24 AM

That before pic looks a lot like the one I rehabbed! Mine came with black electrical tape for tires! And was the older gray unit before they painted them orange. I did a blog on my fix and like yours it works nicely now. I think they got a bad rap but they do require a bit of tweaking.

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

View toolie's profile


2134 posts in 2653 days

#2 posted 04-10-2014 02:48 AM

nice job. the ridgid forum is rife with horror vibration stories but there are also success stories like this one where the 1400 is concerned.

dump the t-wolf blade for a wood slicer or a lennox from iturra and watch that saw really sing.

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

View GrizzlyBagWorks's profile


91 posts in 1615 days

#3 posted 04-10-2014 03:00 AM

thanks guys!

@toolie, is the wood slicer really that much better than the T-wolf? I had the Woodslicer in my cart and was about to “submit” the order and had a change of heart last second. I wasn’t 100% sure I was going to get the saw to work so I didn’t want to spend $40 on the Woodslicer. Bought the T-wolf since it seemed to have pretty good reviews and was 25% less. I doubt I’ll be resawing 6” hardwood very often, if at all, so the woodslicer seemed like it was beyond what I needed. If I end up putting a riser block on the saw maybe I’ll try the woodslicer now that I know the saw runs well.

View Ocelot's profile


1980 posts in 2663 days

#4 posted 04-10-2014 10:54 AM

The after pic looks very nice! Does this thing come with no fence at all? Can’t do much resawing withoug a fence.

One of my fav things to do with my bandsaw is bookmatched panels. I never get tired of that. You need to be able to resaw very straight and clean because you don’t want to have to plane and sand much on the matched faces or they won’t match anymore.


View Gixxerjoe04's profile


850 posts in 1601 days

#5 posted 04-10-2014 12:57 PM

Took quite a transformation, couple of questions. Haven’t watched your video yet but do you show how you balanced the wheels or know of any good videos for a how to? Also what did you use to clean the rust off? I bought the same saw a little while ago and have been slowly upgrading stuff. Got urathane bands and cool blocks, been wanting to buy the kreg fence for it so I can resaw on it since it’s my only bandsaw. Mine doesn’t shake much at all except when I turn it off.

View GrizzlyBagWorks's profile


91 posts in 1615 days

#6 posted 04-10-2014 03:04 PM

No fence unfortunately. I was thinking about the Kreg fence but don’t want to put any more money into the thing so I’ll be building “miter gauge fence” for it instead (

I just statically balanced the wheels. Basically just let them spin, come to a rest and mark the bottom of the wheel. Do this many times and you’ll see where you heavy spot is. I then taped various item to the opposite side to get an idea of how much weight to add. After a little trial and error I got it balanced and the wheel stopped rocking and stopped at a random point every time. Didn’t include that in the video though.

View jumbojack's profile


1677 posts in 2649 days

#7 posted 04-10-2014 03:26 PM

YES The Woodslicer is all that. I’ve tried most and for resawing the WS is THE champ!

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View MrRon's profile


4794 posts in 3268 days

#8 posted 04-10-2014 06:31 PM

I located the motor to a shelf below the saw in addition to what you did. The lower center of gravity helps dampen vibration and on mine, the original motor location kept me from opening the lower door completely.

View Surfside's profile


3389 posts in 2198 days

#9 posted 04-10-2014 08:42 PM

Great modification on the bandsaw. How did you remove the rust ?

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View GrizzlyBagWorks's profile


91 posts in 1615 days

#10 posted 04-10-2014 09:55 PM

MrRon – I found a pic of your saw while researching the BS14002. Very smart modfication! I almost did the same thing on mine, and probably will down the road. Seems like a much better placement for it. And ya, my motor blocks the lower door as well.

Surfside – I broke out the orbital sander with some 80 grit paper to knock most of the rust off. As soon as I started to see a little bit of steel I went to 120. Once the rust was just a fine layer over the steel I went to 220 wet/dry sandpaper on a block and sanded while spraying WD-40 occasionally. Then I went up in grit until like 1000 or so. After that I wiped everything down with denatured alcohol and then put a heavy coat of Paste Wax on it. I just was careful to go light on the power sander and be mindful of how close I was to actually removing steel.

View GrizzlyBagWorks's profile


91 posts in 1615 days

#11 posted 04-11-2014 02:37 AM

Finished the table and resaw fence. Works surprisingly well!

———- Video of the table & resawing 4” walnut———

View toolie's profile


2134 posts in 2653 days

#12 posted 04-12-2014 02:47 PM

toolie, is the wood slicer really that much better than the T-wolf?

Yes, yes it is. There’s a reason t-wolf runs a four for three sale and it’s not because they are making superior band saw blades or that they really like woodworkers.

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

View JollyGreen67's profile


1676 posts in 2787 days

#13 posted 04-12-2014 10:18 PM

Great job ! My PC almost passes the nickel test – gonna try the balancing act on the wheels, see if that helps. One word of advice about the left side saw blade track guide, the one right next to the switch – cover it with duct tape ! While reaching for the switch one just might perhaps by chance stick their finger into the track while the saw is running – and – don’t ask me how I know this. ;o)

-- When I was a kid I wanted to be older . . . . . this CRAP is not what I expected !

View hcstoops's profile


6 posts in 1602 days

#14 posted 04-14-2014 01:40 AM

I went through the similar remorse after I bought a used Rigid band saw off craigs list and then read the reviews of how the upper shaft broke,terrible vibration , worst tool ever made. But since I had already bought it so thought I would try to get it running smooth. It is the same saw basically that the Harbor Freight, Grizzly and a couple of others sell and the parts are interchangeable. I know several woodworkers who have those saws and are happy with them.

I bought the saw from a steel fab shop,that made utility trailers and they cut steel with it. It had a finer toothed steel cutting balde on it. the cool blocks were gone as were all the knobs for the guide adjustments. The rubber tires were not there the blade rode against the metal wheels. I started it up before I bought it and it ran fairly smooth, not much vibration.

When I opened it up it was full of black gunk and metal filings. The first thing I did was take it all apart and clean all that up then I checked out the upper tilt/spindle assembly. it looked good,no cracks or wear and the bearings were free.

I ordered a new upper spindle as a spare plus all the thumb screws (metric) table alignment pin, cool blocks ,table inserts,vinyl tires, guide bearings,and a riser block kit. BTW I found out that the grizzly riser block kit is identical and costs half what I paid . I ordered 105”Kerfmaster blades, that I like better than wood slicer and they run $17.00 + shipping. (I order 6 at a time to save on shipping,if you order one the shipping is almost as much as the blade.

after it was reassembled ,it ran great vibration free. the new tires seemed to take out what vibration was there before. I did notice when I had it apart that there was some drilling going on on the upper wheel, maybe the previous owners had balanced the wheel.

I went on to put a Kreig fence and micro dial adjustment on it. Also filled in the table between the column and the table,extended the table out the back, enclosed the dust collector port, put a 1 hp. Harbor Freight motor on it.

it does what I want and I am happy with it.


-- Woodworkers make things fit,Machinists make things that fit.

View not2shabby's profile


6 posts in 686 days

#15 posted 01-05-2017 04:53 PM

Can anybody give me the specs on the motor and drive pulleys? I think the specs say it’s supposed to turn 2,700 fpm with no load. I’m guessing this was originally a 1725rpm motor?

I’m asking because I have a chance to buy a BS14002 body – very cheap – but no motor. Fortunately, I have an spare motor in the garage. The body is also missing the drive pulley, so I could use specs on both.

Thank you!

showing 1 through 15 of 27 replies

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