looking for band saw


Hello,
I am considering the purchase of a band saw, I am an amateur beginner woodworker and I am on a limited budget.
Harbor freight (yes, the dreadful ones!) have this one: http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber2208 on sale for $230 at the local store.
I want to use it for resawing, and non linear cutting and general wood preparation. I am a little bit sketchy on the 6" throat size, is that enough?
I wanted to get feedback from more experienced peoples and perhaps suggestions of other product in a sub $350 price range that might be better deals...
thanks, cyrille
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I have the same saw and I use it to re-saw 5-1/2" oak and it works like a charm. Get it but go in knowing that the stock blade is horrible and that you'll have to get a good blade for it.
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Only you know if the capacity is enough. I have a Jet 6" and only twice have I wanted to have a couple more inches. (at least for woodworking purposes).
I'd also get a new blade for it as even the higher priced saw come with cheap blades. I've never seen the HF tool so I cannot comment on the quality. It may be fine for general purpose cutting a few curves, but if I regularly re-sawed exotic wood, I'd look elsewhere.
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Cyrille de Brébisson says...

I've had mine for a month or so now. It is an OK deal at the sale price, but I'm glad I didn't pay full price for it. The one real weak point I have noticed compared to other 14" band saws is that the wheels only have three spokes. Every other bandsaw I have seen has at least six. So far, this hasn't been a problem. I resaw with a 5/8" blade and get satisfactory results. Alignment and fit and finish quality was excellent. Basically, the quality is good, but there are some corners cut compared to other bandsaws and you do get your money's worth if you spend the extra bux on a Delta, Jet, or even the Ridgid. Another place where corners were cut is the wheel access covers. Every other bandsaw I have seen has hinged covers, the HF covers must be removed. This takes longer and then they get in the way. One thing that I really hate is that the table must be removed to adjust the lower thrust bearing. This is a major headache. Assembly was time consuming and the instructions are terrible. The web site has a pdf file with slightly better instructions. I figure by the time I'm done fixing its deficiencies, I'll have the $300+ invested if I had just bought a Ridgid or Jet, because I'm planning to replace the wheels and tires ASAP just for my piece of mind. I've seen Delta and Jet for $400 and the Ridgid is $350. Do yourself a favor and buy one of those.
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Cyrille, You'll be much better off in the long run by save up more money and get a 14" Delta or Jet. Smaller band saws might be okay for small craft stuff, but forget about resawing. Cheap bandsaws are loaded with years and years of frustration and tune-up woes.
On Thu, 28 Apr 2005 14:59:52 GMT, "Cyrille de Brébisson"

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You might also want to look at the Grizzly G0555. More bang for the buck and seriously better than the HF.
V
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Hi cyrille
harbor freight is a crapshoot, some machines are OK but others(a Lot Of others) are pure junk. Do yourself a favor and look for a used machine in your price range or change your range a bit higher.I have hade a few harbor freight machines so I know what I'm taking about.
Len
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Have the same saw, one+ years old now. For the price, it's a good buy. Stock blade is junque. A 6" riser kit is available for $50. Have it on mine. Comes w/ a 105" blade, that blade is ok. With any HF tools, try THAT tool at the store. Quality control isn't one of HF trademarks
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On Thu, 28 Apr 2005 14:59:52 GMT, "Cyrille de Brébisson"

and wait about a year then buy something a little better...
After almost 40 years I just replaced my old 12 inch Craftsman Band saw...with a Powermatic...
The Old craftsman worked fine all these years once I learned to buy Good blades (Timberwolf)...But it just could not handle resawing no matter how much I adjusted it ... and I am not talking about resawing 12-13 inch wide boards...more like 5-6 inch boards... I just have the gut feeling that if you really want to resaw the HF bandsaw will be just a major cause of frustration for you...
May help if you ask around and find some other woodworkers who have different bandsaws and ask them to let you try them out... That is how I made my decision on the Powermatic....
Lots of luck...and we all were beginners at one point... I was 40 years ago when I bought my Craftsman... Unlike most of my other Initial Craftsman purchases the Band saw was satisfactory UNTIL I needed to do some resawing...
Bob Griffiths
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