How long does a bandsaw blade last?

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I am cutting some walnut lumber. Using the advice I got here, and a new Timberwolf 3tpi blade, things have been going reasonably well. The first 40 cuts (4' long, averaging 5" thick) were perfectly straight, but the last few have developed a significant drift angle; the ends have become too thin to be used and the wood is getting curved. I readjusted everything, but it doesn't help. All I can think is that the blade is getting dull, but I would expect a blade to last much longer than this. Frankly though, I am a complete beginner with a band saw (14" Delta 1hp) and really don't know. It was actually getting easier as I picked up a little skill in feeding the wood, but I can't continue like this.
Could the blade be getting dull after 160' of 5" thick fresh walnut, or is there another possibility I am over looking. Thanks.
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Toller - I'm no bandsaw guy (gave mine to my son since I never used it), so my thinking on this is really quite baseless, but I might ask if you are working your way up the tree and getting into pieces that have a more knarley grain? Is it possible that the wood itself is contributing to your drift problem?
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-Mike-
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I would think you may have a few contributing factors. Blade tension may be to low. As the blade is being used it will stretch, you may need to adjust. Double check you guides, upper and lower. Some drift is normal, and if using a fence, adjust the fence for the drift.
Changing grain in the material will also contribute to drift.
Have you cleaned the rubber on the wheels? This problem shows itself by the blade not tracking true. Working green wood would leave residue on the blade and be deposited on the wheels.
Do you have another blade? Try it. Could you have cut through a nail that might have contributed to premature failure? I've not done much re-sawing, but this has happened to me. This was not noticed when cutting on the bandsaw, but did show itself on my jointer with chipped cutters
-nick
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I think it was probably the guides. When I pulled them out, I found the faces weren't square anymore. Resurfaced them, and it is much better now.

That can't be helping matters.
How do I clean the blade? Plastic wool did nothing at all. Thanks.
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I think your wander may be running into dullness of the blade - 160' is a fair amount for a carbon steel edge. I touch up my bands with a dremel and chainsaw stone - just a quick touch on the underside of each tooth/gullet.
The way I clean off the sappy compacted sawdust residue from green wood cutting is to run the saw and carefully, using a scrap piece of dry wood in a sharp wedge shape, scrape the sides of the blade. If it's really bad, I'll occasionally stop the saw and rotating the top wheel backwards by hand will use the same scraping action. Call me foolhardy, but I even use the scraper wedge on the tires as it's running - just make sure you have a good grip so it's not pulled out of your hand and between the blade and tire.
Having roller guides on my saw really packs the wet saw dust on the blade - I have a metal scraper that I keep magnet-ed to the saw and very carefully and gingerly (though I prefer Mary Ann) scrape the blade body but keep back of the gullets. This is more risky of dulling the teeth real quick if you slip onto the tooth area...
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The Fly-by-Night Copper Company
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Fly-by-Night CC wrote:

Toller's using bimetal blades, iirc.
er
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In article

You are foolhardy!
*shuddering at the thought*
And you are right...Mary Ann.... hands down...down her shirt, pants, I digress....*slaps self*
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Washing soda. 1/4 cup in a quart of warm water. Soak blade for 5-10 minutes. Rinse gunk off.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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I haven't heard of anyone using washing soda for many years, but will give it a try if I can find it.
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No. Not the WalMart stores here, anyway (Indianapolis).

Your best bet is a grocery store, on the same aisle as laundry detergent. If you find the borax, the washing soda is probably close by. Arm & Hammer brand. Big yellow box -- looks like their baking soda box, only bigger. Here in Indy, Kroger and Safeway grocery stores have it, and I believe Ace Hardware, too.
If you can't find any, email me for my PayPal address, and I'll send you a box at cost (approx. $2.50 plus shipping).
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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snipped-for-privacy@milmac.com (Doug Miller) wrote:

You gotta be careful, though. The big yellow box of Arm & Hammer Detergent looks very much like the big yellow box of Arm & Hammer Cat Litter. DAMHIKT.
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Hah! there are *worse* mistakes you can make.
Like making gravy, deciding it needs a little thickening, reaching in the cupboard for the _yellow_ box of Argo Corn Starch, and getting the A&H box instead.
All things considered, it was amazing that that particular disaster had never happened before. those boxes had lived side-b-side for *years*. However, from that day on, I took the raven's advice. "Nevermore". :)
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On Sat, 29 Apr 2006 22:23:53 -0000, snipped-for-privacy@host122.r-bonomi.com (Robert Bonomi) wrote:

Mac
https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis/wood_stuff.htm
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So didja put detergent in the cat box, or dump kitty litter into the washer?
Not much of an issue in the grocery store, I wouldn't think: not on the same aisle.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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snipped-for-privacy@milmac.com (Doug Miller) writes:

He told you not to ask that. [ Don't Ask Me How I Know That ]
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Tried mineral spirits, did nothing. Found washing soda at the grocery. It took off 95% of the crude Saw cut much better afterwards also; thanks.
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You're welcome. I use it on table saw blades, too --works great.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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bowl blanks)
I've never cleaned one as it would not be worth my time or money..
Mac
https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis/wood_stuff.htm
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Don't know what you're cutting, but green, corrosive woods will eat the sharpness off a blade real fast. Not to mention that a bit of lube helps turn the corners, too.
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do that... I spend about $10 a month on blades, which I can live with.. Mac
https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis/wood_stuff.htm
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