Bought the Rikon 14" Delux BandSaw

Nice price at WoodCraft ($750). Looked at the Powermatic and the Delta as well. Powermatic was $800 after rebate. Still would have had to buy the height attachment for either the P-matic or the Delta and the warranty was longer on the Rikon.
And the Rikon is extremely well-received. Not that those others aren't great machines.
First thing I am doing is a buncha re-sawing on 1/4 sawn white oak. Bought a WoodSlicer 1/2" resaw blade from Highland to round out the saw.
Assembly, first impressions, and re-sawing report after I get it (backordered) and get it going.
D'ohBoy
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Bought one a couple of weeks before Christmas. Haven't done too much as yet, but so far I am impressed. Resawing on it seems as easy and as good as that 18" Leguna demo'ed at the Phoenix woodworking show in Novenber. And I'm using the blade that came on mine. No regrets. Popular Woodworking rated it tops of the 14 inchers they tested.

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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

A possible hint.. I have the 18" Rikon bandsaw.. I got quite a bit of vibration on it because the cement on my basement floor isn't very level. Shimming the base helped, but the ultimate solution was to put it on a mobile base. The mobile base effectively put it on 4 "legs", and I was able to adjust 2 of the legs to get it level. It seems counter-intuitive, but the mobile base actually made the bandsaw much more stable.
I'm assuming that since the 14" is a marketed as a scaled down version of the 18", that this tip might help you as well (unless your shop floor is very level).
I used this base.. http://www.woodcraft.com/family.aspx?familyidQ14
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bf wrote:

I have had my Rikon 325 since October and for the most part it's a good machine EXCEPT --> 1. I bought a 3/16 blade and tried to set it up ---> on my saw can't adjust the lower bearing guides they get in the way of the carriage bolt for the table trunion. MAJOR design flaw that required me to grind out the set screws and holder to get enought clearance to set the side roller bearing to fit behind the blade teeth. I have pictures in case anyone want's to fix the design flaw. 2. had to adjust the tracking on the lower wheel it was not tracking coplaner thereby causing more blade stress. After adjusting the lower wheel and modifying the lower bearing guides I now have a quiet well running saw. 3. Wish I could have ordered the saw without their fence assembly. It's not worth the effort and I'll replace it soon. The "brass" looking jam locking piece keeps falling out when I try to move the fence to the end of it's range which is 2" from the pillar. All in all it has the best potiental for what I'll use it for since I prefer a bandsaw to a table saw for most of my cutting.
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wyzarddoc wrote:

The fence on the 18" Rikon Bandsaw model is pure crap too. The little plastic circle with the red line on it which is used to correspond to the ruler on the fence rail fell out the first time I attempted to put the fence on. It also flexes way to much.
Another problem with the 18" model is that the plastic throat insert sinks. Thus it will need shimming to avoid small pieces from getting caught on the cast iron around the cutout circle. (This has happened to me many times).
I primarily got this saw for cutting bowl blanks and other non precision stuff. If I was rebuying today, I'd seriously look at the 18" Steel City model. It has a foot brake, and the fence appeared to be a lot better when I did a quick look at it. I think it's only about $200ish more (maybe it was 300).. All in all, I think Rikon is a good value, especially if like me you don't resaw. Maybe it's good for that as well, I've heard mixed things and haven't tried it myself..
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I've got the 18" saw and it resaws quite nicely (compared to my 14" Delta....YMMV). My only complaint is that the upper bearings can't be adjusted out far enough for large resaw blades. The bearing mount bottoms out against the blade guard before the bearings can be positioned properly on the 1" blade I'm using. So far it hasn't been an issue but with a wider blade it might.
Gary
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wrote:

be no problem as there is plenty of adjustment.
The auxiliary light that they put on the saw has a design flaw since the goose neck is not long enough to allow the light to shine on the work when the fence is close to the blade. The fence casts a shadow right over the saw cut on thin (less then the height of the blade) material.
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Dream on this is a slightly larger then normal router/table. I just got my shopbot cnc router today. I could not afford the table as it would have been 2000.00 extra including shipping so I will make my own. This is a 4x8 cnc router though the table is larger then that. I also invested in a 3hp spindle. This makes a 3hp hand held router look like a joke. I bet it weights 30# and it actually meets the hp rating. It as a separate motor for the fan and I wish most routers had this as they would be far quieter. You can talk while it is running. The bearings are super accurate the actually have to be run at low rpm before and after use for 10 minutes. This sucker is going to be some work setting up and changing my shop around. Plus getting my landlord to run the wiring. I need a 30 amp 120 and a 20 amp 3 phase. here are the pics http://tinyurl.com/ymke5m
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So Steve - sounds like the plane making business is doing well? A shop refidge -with an in door ice and water dispenser!
You've Come A Long Way Baby!
BTW I didn't see any pics of the router you mentioned.
Sorry to hear of the circumstances that permitted the purchase. You're gonna need to make a plaque for it that says "Thanks Granny!"
Realy glad to know that someone is doing what they love to do - and making a living at it, all be it significantly less than most sports figures - or Ms. Spears (does she actually do anything?).
charlie b
BTW - one of your early wooden scrub planes is trying to tear itself apart. Sometimes Early Adopters have to make adjustments and adaptions.
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FINALLY got my Rikon. Came into the store two weeks ago but I had transportation issues. Got it down the basement stairs - 250 lbs ain't so bad with the help of another. What I am really afraid of is when it comes time to replace my table saw.
Unpacked the saw. Noted that the blade was installed and tensioned (5/8", 3 - 5 tpi, didn't count teeth) . Wonder if this was done to add protection to the saw during shipping? Coupla superficial marfs on the paint, but all-in-all, a very handsome machine. I like the big saw design with welded tubular frame rather than cast.
The base (unassembled) and table were separate and weigh about 100 lbs taken together. Which is good, cuz I think I can build the base and set it on the mobile base I purchased to go with the saw. Then I can lift the saw onto the base by myself and put the table on last.
Really quite a handsome unit. I opened the wheel cover doors and happily noted the tire brush mounted inside the bottom wheel. I had purchased Duginski's book and noted that he had suggested adding one of these if your saw didn't have it. The designers really seems to have tried to have everything on this saw. Well, it does lack the kerf blower on the P-matic but really....
One final note - I don't know if it was here or elsewhere, but someone asserted that the blade tension release lever didn't fully release the blade tension. This is not true. There was another comment that the location/orientation of the tension release lever was inconvenient. I disagree as when the blade is tensioned, the lever is out of the way. When it is not tensioned, the lever is right there at the front side of the saw.
Haven't gotten any further with it. Gonna check that the wheels are coplanar (the blade that is in it runs true now).
D'ohBoy
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Good to hear you got your new toy. Look forward to your final opinion on the saw.
Right now I am going through the "which saw" decision.
- Clayton
On 30 Jan 2007 06:11:00 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

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Interim Rikon Model 325 Report: Assembly
After my freakout over the mis-located hole in the "Bandsaw Recommendations" thread (can you sense my OC disorder yet?) my wife talked me back from the ledge and I looked over the assembly instructions again (good un for me, she is!). As it turns out, the mislocated hole is more of an aesthetic issue than anything.
However, I do have some gripes about the instructions. For example, there is a proper orientation to the vertical portions of the base on the horizontal portion. There is a somewhat subtle difference in the locations of the holes to attach the vertical portions to the horizontal and the proper orientation is based on the location of the door to the cabinet created by the base. One way puts the cabinet offset on the base, the other doesn't, and, of course, there is no mention of this in the manual. And, of course, I had to reverse mine after assembly.
And while the bottom of the saw unit has a lip, this lip doesn't wrap around the base as one would expect. This is not mentioned either. The bolts to attach the saw to the base strike me as undersized too, given the fact that they have to hold the saw together with the base in all axes (that lip thing I mentioned earlier). The assembly drawings have insufficient detail as well. Fit and finish is acceptable to good. Appearance of the unit is good.
One other design issue: the flange around the enclosures for the wheels extend far enough that one cannot get a straightedge on the wheels to check that they are coplanar. I will have to make some sort of tool for this.
D'ohBoy
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Saw Assembly Report
Took some thinking to figure out how to get the saw up on the base - and onto the mobile base - all by myself. Which I did. Here's how: I assembled the cabinet base and then placed it on the mobile base I purchased. The trick to getting the saw up onto the base without someone else's help is to get something else to bear some of the weight. What I did was to place the saw on its back on the floor and then lift the edge of the saw unit bottom up onto the cabinet base. So now the saw is resting on the tip of the tubular frame (on some cardboard from the box) and on the cabinet base (also on cardboard). Then I (with mobile base wheels locked!!) grabbed the top of the frame and lifted it into the proper vertical position. So easy (!), but one has to be VERY careful not to push on the saw, but rather to lift it in a fashion that doesn't cause the base of the saw unit to slide on the cabinet. The cardboard helps to protect the paint and to keep the saw from sliding on the base.
Table tuning was slowed by the lack of instructions/images - two bolts need to be loosened on the trunnion, and then two tiny (3mm) set screws are adjusted to level the table relative to the back of the blade. No pictures, but a pause and some examination of the trunnion provided the answer. And even after setting the set screws, the two main bolts for the trunnion still affected the adjustment of the table so it ended up being an exercise in brute force optimization.
Fired it up after setting the guides - which, BTW, was very easy. The gentleman at Woodcraft said he found them fiddly but I had no issues. Noted that the blade made intermittent contact with the thrust bearing. Is that normal? The blade appears to be tracking well. Is this significant of a certain adjustment out of whack or is the blade just poorly welded?
Cut a 3" piece of white oak like buttah. WHEEEEE!!!
Gonna try some resawing tonight with some red oak I have.
D'ohBoy
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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

I also laid the saw on its back, but with the bottom resting on a 4x4 to hold it off the ground. Then I attached the cabinet and mobile base to it and then tilted the whole thing upright. I thought the base looked stout enough to take that without bending and it was.
-- It's turtles, all the way down
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