Jet 18" Bandsaw News

Everybody,
Was at my town's new Woodcraft's Grand Opening a couple of weeks ago, and ran into the Jet rep who was there. I commented on their low price on the Jet 18" Bandsaw. Woodcraft calls it the JWBS-18, but the official number is 708750B. They want $999 for it, and I think that's before a $100 rebate on a subsequent Jet purchase, although I'm not completely sure. Anyway, he explained to me that the price is because they're coming out with a new version (I think it's on their website as the 710750/JWBS-18X) that has a 12" cutting capacity (improved over the 10 1/4" of the old one). It also has an extra quarter horespower to cut the extra material better; reading the Amazon reviews, lack of power seems to be a criticism of it. He wasn't sure of pricing but guessed it'd be about $1250.
Amazon now has the old one at $999, as well. Just thought I'd let you know - if you've been thinking about one of these, they've just gotten cheaper, or are about to get better. So you might want to think about either running out and getting one or waiting for the new model, depending on whether saving $200 or getting 2" more cutting capacity makes you more excited.
-BAT
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The Jet 18 has never been the equal of any other 18" bandsaw and Jet has recognized it. $999 is about right for what its value is. I'm glad to see Jet upgrading it. It remains to be seen if it will be competitive with the other established performers. I like Jet company and own several of their tools, but their bandsaws have never impressed me.
Bob
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Now if I could only get them to admit the original was a piece of garbage and replace it with a new one...
EJ
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I have the Jet 18". Hopefully they add more than 1/4hp to the new model, it could use at LEAST 2 hp to resaw 10" stock. I wouldn't say it's terribly underpowered as is, currently at 1 1/2 hp, but it's like having a full size truck with a v6 instead of a v8. It gets the job done, just slower. In fact, I've been toying with the idea of buying the Jet 2hp 1200 cfm DC and switching motors with the 1 1/2 hp band saw. My shop usually looks more like a horse stall with all the dust, so a DC is next on the list anyway. I'll follow up if this works. --dave

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Dave Jackson wrote:

On the Amazon reviews page, Eric Davidson says he upgraded his to a 2HP motor after he burned out the stock one:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
He encourages people to email him for details and posts his email address there and encourages people to email for details.
I hadn't realized these things were so underpowered. I'd kinda-sorta had my eye on them, but hadn't done any real research because the purchase for me is quite a ways off. Just moved into my new place, and the shop is still too full of boxes to even use the tools I *already* have...
-BAT
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<snip>> I hadn't realized these things were so underpowered They are not as bad as it sounds. I too wrote as review on amazon and did read about the motor conversion. Recently, i read "Band Saw Handbook" and gave the saw an in depth tune up. Also added the "right" blade, which for me is a 1/2" 3tpi hook tooth for resawing. Since then, I've been able to resaw 7" to 8" thick cherry and QSWO fairly easily and accurately. In fact, the saw now runs how i expected it to when i bought it, and overall I'm very pleased with it, especially the bearing guides. If you are just cutting regular hardwoods a few inches thick, the saw has ample power. My only complaint is if the saw is built to resaw 10" thick material, it should be powered to cut 10" material, not 8" thick material, hence the need for a 2 hp motor. --dave

(Amazon.com product link shortened)
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Well, consider that they call it an 18" saw, yet a Powermatic 14" has a 1.5 hp motor, and a Laguna 14" has a 2hp, etc. I'd say they over rated it rather than underpowered it. If they called it a super 14", it might not look so bad.
Bob
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On Tue, 30 Nov 2004 05:45:53 GMT, "Bob"

the 18" is the wheel size, not the motor HP rating.
my 18" bandsaw has a 2HP motor... which seems about right.
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Dave Jackson wrote:

Uh.... that isn't dust in the bottom of the stall....
--
Mortimer Schnerd, RN

snipped-for-privacy@XXXXcarolina.rr.com
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<snip>Uh.... that isn't dust in the bottom of the stall.... Sure it is, It's the "apples" you have to look out for :) --dave

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DON'T downgrade the motor on their DC 1200 dust collector. There is more than just a motor change difference between their DC 1100 and DC 1200 dust collector. The DC1200 has a large impeller, moves more air and requires more horsepower. You would likely overheat a 1 1/2 motor trying to turn too big an impeller, not to mention voiding the warranty. You might consider just buying a larger motor for the Jet 18 bandsaw.
Bob
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Try the 220 conversion I have experienced the the motor doesn't bog down as easily. Also neoprene tires and add a second dust collection port in the bottom of the lower wheel cabinet at about a 7:00 position as you view it. I also use a 1/2" woodslicer blade and can get reasonable 8" resaw work out of it.
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Knothead wrote:

Does a 220 conversion really do this? I thought the only point of a 220 conversion was to lower the number of amps you needed at the tool (and maybe make it run cooler). But I didn't think a 220 conversion would make better cuts or bog down less. Am I mistaken on that? I've never used a 220 tool, so I'm just leaning on my book learnin' here.
I'm planning on rewiring all my big tools to 220 (because I only have 40 amps for my new shop), but I wasn't expecting to get any performance gains out of that. I'd love to be wrong!
-BAT
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Any performance gains would be due to a lower power loss in the feed lines. Moving to 220v cuts the amperage draw in half. Since the power loss is a function of the square of the amperage ( P = R * I^2 ) your line loss at 220v will be only 1/4 as much as with 110v. (Voltage drop is 1/2 as much with 220 as with 110, Power loss is 1/4 as much.)
Whether you see a noticeable gain at the tool or not will depend on the total amperage draw and the resistance of the line feeding your shop. You will see the greater effect the closer you are to the amperage limit (ampacity) for the gauge of the current feeder line.
Tom Veatch Wichita, KS USA
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