14" bandsaw, can't decide

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I want to buy a new bandsaw. I'm not too worried about the cost but I don't think I need a big machine. So, I think a 14" will do me fine, maybe with a riser block. I was trying to decide between a Powermatic (light, rip fence) or a Delta X5 (mobile base, USA?) or maybe something else if you can talk me into it. I like the Powermatic but it is 75 pounds lighter than the Delta.
Thanks
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foster239 wrote:

don't worry about the weight. The Powermatic is much smoother than the Delta. it tracks blades like a dream. you'll love the light, the integral dust collection port, the blower. Nice tension lever and guides too. In fact in the 2-3 years I've had mine, I haven't found anything I don't like about it. I can't think of ONE thing I liked about the Delta I had. :) (oh, yes I can--getting rid of it!)
Dave
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You might also want to check out Languna and MiniMax. They sell 14" saws that are a little more expensive, but might be even better than the two saws you mentioned. I haven't seen either, but worth a shot.
Mark
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I've had my powermatic a little over a year. It's never balked on me yet, cuts straight and true without adjusting for any drift. I bought mine after asking an editor at one of the woodworking mags between the Powermatic and the Jet 16". He said the Powermatic was used everyday and they were selling the jet.
HTH
foster239 wrote:

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foster239 wrote:

Welcome to the club! I've been looking at Grizzly's (diverse) offerings. They have a 16" in the "outlet" section with a one-piece cast iron frame and motor mounted in the base, but its max resaw is 7-3/4". I'm not sure that's a problem, as I don't really know if I need more. It weighs 408lbs (450lb. shipping).
er
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What do you want to do with it?
2 weeks ago I returned a Rikon 18" saw after waiting for it for 2 months. That saw was not up to what I think it should be and needed constant tweaking.
IF money is surely no object I suggest you give a serious look at MiniMax or Laguna as Mark has mentioned. With pretty much certainty you will be pleased with your purchase. I am going for one or the other in the heavier 16" model at the end of the month. MiniMax has invited me to come to their sales office and sales guy is telling me to bring my wood to test the saw. He is claiming that with these heavier machines and a good blade that you can resaw veneer with out guides. I am going to make him prove that.
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Leon, If that's true, then you don't need to worry about which guide is best. Let me know how it goes.
Bob
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Well sorta, the sales guy said that guides matter more when using the thinner blades in particular 1/2" wide and smaller. Apparently the 1" and wider blades are stiff enough to track and saw straight on their saw with out a guide. I'll be anxious to see this also. Something to consider also the MiniMax has European type guides and he recommends switching out to CoolBlocks for any blade narrower than 1/2". That could possibly be a pain if switching sizes often. The Laguna ceramic guides apparently are good down to 1/4", smaller and CoolBlocks are needed.
I am still drawn to the Laguna with the ceramic guides.
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That shouldn't be a deal breaker. I added Ceramic guides to my Jet 14".
One word: Iturra
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writes:

For theses sized saws? With 10 contact points?
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Leon wrote:

What do you mean by that, Leon? JP
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I am fairly new to Intura and understand they cater more to the 14" saws. Bruce was answering to me and I forgot the Op was interested in 14" saws. I am looking at 16 and 18" saws mainly. My mistake here if I assumed that the guides are not offered for larger sizes at Intura.
The Laguna upper and lower guides each have 5 ceramic inserts that hold the blade. 2 pair on each guide that are above and below the ceramic thrust.
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Yup.
Ah. I didn't know that. But one can get ceramic guides for 14" as well, but as there are only one pair above and below, that would be, in Leon's term, 6 points of contact on the 14" instead of 10 on the Laguna.
How does double guides improve performance? It seems to me that the ones closest to the wood matter. If there is another set above, how much extra support does the second set provide?
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From how I understand it the extra pair of inserts help to reduce vibration in the blade in the cutting area. Basically the blade is more stable as the blade enters the lower inserts of the upper guide. The ceramic thrust is located between the upper and lower guide inserts.
Or it could be another example of if 2 work good 4 should work 2 times better. ;~) Either way it seems that this guide system works very well by comparison to the competition.
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Leon wrote:

I understand now. I was looking at the subject line and didn't read through that you were looking at 16-18 inchers. Plus, I'm not a BS owner yet, so I haven't gone through the Iturra catalog - although I do have it, just in case!

That's what I was wondering - what you meant about "10 contact points".
JP
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Here is a link to a picture of the Laguna guides.
http://lagunatools.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID &HS=1
The picture only shows the 4 left guides inserts upper and lower. The right 4 are hidden by the blade and then centered on both guides are 2 thrust bearings that you cannot see either.
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: :>I want to buy a new bandsaw. I'm not too worried about the cost but I :> don't think I need a big machine. So, I think a 14" will do me fine, :> maybe with a riser block. I was trying to decide between a Powermatic :> (light, rip fence) or a Delta X5 (mobile base, USA?) or maybe something :> else if you can talk me into it. I like the Powermatic but it is 75 :> pounds lighter than the Delta. :> :> Thanks :>
: What do you want to do with it?
: 2 weeks ago I returned a Rikon 18" saw after waiting for it for 2 months. : That saw was not up to what I think it should be and needed constant : tweaking.
Can you expand? I was thinking of getting one.
    -- Andy Barss
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Andrew Barss wrote:

DAGS google's groups for a recap. He didn't like the roller bearings.
er
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As Enoch rood indicated, I do not like style roller bearings that came with it. They would unadjust as you tightened up the hex bolt. When cutting green wood the dust would stick to the blade and bang against the roller bearings creating more vibration and noise. Oddly the only blades that would track and not move forward and backward were the cheap ones. Timber wolf blades did badly. I think Timberwolf did badly because they were low tension. The upper wheel on the saw would wobble a bit left to right when in operation. This too can cause the problem mentioned. The saw with the 2hp motor could resaw 6" wide Oak and 8 " diameter logs effortlessly but the tracking issue and adjustments not staying put was unacceptable for me. I want to cut veneers and tracking is going to be important. I am plan to go with he Laguna 16HD for about 2 times more money or the Minimax MM16 in the same price range as the Laguna. Had I been able to try the Rikon before the purchase I probably would have not bought it in the first place. For equal comments about the top wheel wobble, the 18" Delta has that problem also, at least the new one at the dealer did. The Rikon looks great and the fit and finish is almost perfect but I am looking for a better saw.
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I cannot address the Powermatic, but I bought the Delta X5 last May at a woodworking show and it has been a lot of trouble to get working right. Nothing was aligned when I go it home, the drive wheel set screw was not tight from the factory and it has taken hours of tweaking to get it to cut. Having said that, with the riser block installed and a sharp blade I am splitting 11 inch logs with it. Still no amount of adjusting has allowed the covers (doors) to latch. The quaility just is not there as far as I can tell. Laguna and MinMax both make Delta look like something from the Craftsman line and at the show they were both resawing veeners like butter. If I could do it over it would be the Powermatic for 14" or just suck it up and get the job done with one of the high end machines, of course that would have made me a suddenly single woodworker. YMMV
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