Powermatic 14" bandsaw PWBS-14CS

Please help..... I've been shopping for a new 14" bandsaw and have read all the posts, which I've really found very interesting, but would appreciate any more info any of you have on this new saw. I don't think anyone has done a tool test on it or compared it to the X5 yet? I've already ruled out the lesser saws from Jet and Delta and am contemplating one of these two saws. Amazon has a few reviews of the X5 which range from great to bad so that's no help. It would be nice to have a great tool review website to go to...
I had a chance to see both saws at the WW show last weekend and really had a hard time with what is best. Both sales guys made what appeared to be compelling arguments for their saw. My observations:
I really liked the PM's cast iron wheels versus aluminum (better?), bigger table, included fence/miter gage, light, blower, Carter roller (?) guides & tension release, and pulley/belt. Fit/finish seemed very nice also. I think this is all made in Taiwan?
Delta had their new tensioning mechanism which appeared very nice as well. 100% made in USA (a plus? - I have a newer Delta 6" jointer - from China, and it's already rusting/pitting), new dust extraction setup at bottom of saw seemed like a great idea, free stuff coupons (don't know what), 5 year warranty versus PM's ?? (forgot to ask).
Both had comparable specs. Delta does have 6.5" between the guide and table compared to PM 6" but with the riser block I didn't see that making a huge difference. Both saws were about the same price at the show, $750 or so.
I have several Delta tools and have been happy with my UNISAW and drill press. Not so pleased with the quality of the jointer although it operates very well. I've never owned PM but know they were very high end/quality tools, at least prior to being purchased by JET. Still the case?
Any comments/suggestions/ideas/first hand experience would be very much appreciated....
thanks in advance.
MH
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I've got the PM BS and love it. Had a Delta. hated it and returned it for a refund, as you should already know since you say you've read the bandsaw posts... I love my Unisaw but there's a world of difference IMHO between some Delta equipment. Some is great and some is not so great, to put it politely. I've also got a Delta DP which is fine, and Powermatic 6" jointer which works like a charm. Having owned both bandsaws I'd be remiss if I didn't urge you to go with the Powermatic for vibration free, feature rich performance.
dave
MH wrote:

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Dave - thanks! I was hoping you would chime in. It was your posts that got me leaning towards purchasing the PM over the X5. There's another WW show in March here and I'm buying one or the other then. Deal is too good to pass up. Agree with you on the comment about differences in quality between Delta tools. I love my Unisaw but would be happy to give back the jointer.
Sorry to bother you on this issue (it looks like you're now the defacto expert on this subject) but would you shoot me your thoughts on the following:
- X5 is 275lb, PM is 203lb. Not sure why/how there could be such a big difference when these two tools are almost exactly the same size?
- I've seen some posts complaining about the bearings on offshore machines versus the ones made in the US. Notice anything on your machine? Is the entire thing made in Taiwan - motor, etc..? It was obvious the casting was exactly the same as the $500 Jet (similarities ended there though).
Thanks again.
Mark

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Mark, the manual that came with my powermatic lists the weights as 166 for the body and 84 for the stand. the gross weights are 178 and 87.5 respectively.
The motor appears to be well made and has a Powermatic sticker indicating it's made in Taiwan. It could have been made on the moon for all I care; it's quiet, smooth and robust, plus it has an air pump built in for the dust clearing nozzle.
I've had the wheels off and felt the bearings for smoothness and play. Excellent on both counts.
dave
MH wrote:

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I bought the Powermatic 14" at the Detroit woodworking show..hasn,t arrived yet, said at least 4 wks.....i,m not in a rush...I,m upgrading from a Craftsman 14" so can,t help you on the Delta. The PM had a lot of feature I liked...enclosed motor stand, carter bearing, quick tension release, 1-1/2 h.p.,...blower n light.....i,m gonna get a mobile base when I pick the saw up, that should help in my shop, don,t have one now. My Craftsman is working fine, but I just listed 6 thing it doesn,t have. I post more review after I get it n start using it.......George..

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George, this info may be old hat to you, but: I'm using a Delta adjustable (build your own rails) mobile base on my PM BS. It works very well. No bending down to adjust anything; just push the lever and go. Flip the lever up with your toe to raise the caster. cost around $50.
dave
George Berlinger wrote:

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If you've eliminated the Delta/Jets, don't ignore the General 15". A pal of mine has one, it's built like a tank. The only minus I see is the limited resaw capability (no riser).
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which isn't a trivial matter to many...
Eric Ryder wrote: snip
The only minus I see is the

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Thank you all for your suggestions/comments.

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MH wrote:

Can this be blamed on the manufacturer?
UA100
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I was wondering the same thing. I thought cast iron rusted, no matter where it was made - at least that's what happens in Houston. The only cure is frequent liberal use of some kind of protection like topcote or boeshield.
Bob

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I've been using Boeshield and it helps but hasn't solved the problem. It may be that it was rusing already before I applied it. I also bought their rust remover which they say to use before you use the Boeshield and it did remove rust. It was even taking off rust when it looked like there wasn't any left on the table. Sadly, I think it's the quality of the metal. My unisaw which has received less attention (still gets attention but has NEVER shown any sign of rust) is fine.

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Wow, if Boeshield won't handle it, then it is a big problem.

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I complained earlier about how I purchased the bandsaw on Nov. 19th and was to have the riser blocks drop-shipped to me since the dealer did not have one in stock. Turns out, the earlist commitment Powermatic is quotating as a confirmed delivery date to their warehouse is January 21st.
The reason I have not put mine through the hoops is that I the blades I've ordered are 105" to accomodate the riser blocks. Once you put the riser blocks in, it is not worth the effort to remove them just because you have a 93 1/2" blade.
I did measure the tension spring so I could order a proper replacement from Iturra Designs. My measurements were: spring outside diameter: .724 inches spring inside diameter: .448 inches spring length: 3.180 inches the round bar stock making the spring: .142 " diameter.
As for the housing which the spring resides in: 20 mm square 82 mm tall
Based on these measurements, I determined the appropriate replacement spring from Iturra to be their Catlog # 10021J [which I understand the "J" stands for Jet - now a sibling company to Powermatic]
MH wrote:

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Can you shoot me some comments on why you chose this saw over the X5? If you compared them at all that is.
Also was wonder if anyone has any opinion on blocks versus rolling guides. I just rec'd "The Bandsaw Book" and was reading his opinion. Seems he's a bigger fan of blocks. For whatever reason, I always thought bearings were a better choice? Don't know where I got that from.
Thanks MH

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cool blocks are great for narrow blades like 1/8"
dave
MH wrote:

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PWBS 14 is nice saw, I think (no experience yet). BUT you best be sure that there are no defective parts on the one you buy. I bought one on Nov 22. Found that the table skirt was cracked causing a .040" dish on the front part of the table. So bad that the miter bar would not pass thru the slot. On about Dec 1, Powermatic agreed that the table should be replaced under warrenty. Checked on Dec 29, was informed that they would arrive on Dec 31. Checked on Jan 6, still not in. Checked on Jan 12, they said they would special order from mfgr for air shipment and would arrive in 2 weeks. Checked on Jan 22, no one knew anything about special orders but would check. Received call on Jan 27 that tables would arrive by the end of the week (Jan 31). Checked on Feb 6, informed that tables would arrive on Feb 20 and that tech svc said saw was usable as is. IF IF IF the tables arrive as claimed, I will have had an $800 saw sitting unuseable for 3 months. As Jet says; "A company is only as good as it ablility to service its tools."
On 8 Jan 2004 04:54:30 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (MH) wrote:

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