"Tuning" a bandsaw

A serious question:
Some advocate a "pluck" method for tensioning the bandsaw blade. It's supposed to play a clear musical note (an F, if I recall.) I've noted that digital instrument tuners cost somewhere around $20, way less than bandsaw tension meters. Could an instrument tuner be used as a method of accurately tensioning the bandsaw blade?
Puckdropper
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Puckdropper wrote:

Since frequency is a function of string length and tension, and tension is the quantity you want to specify, I have have doubts about using the tone F as a goal. What Does make sense, to my ears :), is that the blade should be both tight enough and loose enough to make a short ringing tone after you kick it with your fingernail. I think that indicates a "healthy" tension--however my usual disclaimer: others with more experience surely know better.
Bill
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On 7/27/2011 9:59 PM, Puckdropper wrote:

The simplest most cost effective, tension and make a test cut. Repeat if necessary. Use the gauge on your saw as a starting point.
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wrote:

And is there some type of measurement to determine that it's properly tensioned or is it just personal satisfaction?
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On 7/28/2011 7:36 AM, Dave wrote:

Typically band saws have a basic tensioner that gets you in the ball park. A properly tensioned blade tracks and cuts better. So if the cut and experience is not what you expect try more or less tension.
Keep in mind that tension will change during extended use. As the blade warms up tension decreases. AND if the guides and or top wheel bevel is not correct no amount of tensioning will make that better.
Also keep in mind that the lessor saws frames will give to the tension on the blade. Basically the saw can loose tension simply by setting still. Hense I was not happy with my upgrade band saw I got a Laguna.
Basically the more robust/ridged the machine the less tweaking you will have to deal with as you use the machine.
Tensioning a BS blade is a lot like setting the drag on your fishing reel.
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On Thu, 28 Jul 2011 10:09:12 -0500, Leon wrote:

A good argument for releasing the tension when not in use.
--
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Half the kids in my area are wannabe guitarists. Most of their parents bought them of the tuners along with the guitar and are sitting unused - either the guitar is unused, they tune by ear, or tuning makes no difference for what they're playing ( :) ) Ask around and borrow one for a few days to play with. Most display the actual frequency in addition to the note. It would be a way duplicate tension once you knew what each blade was when properly tensioned, but I suspect each blade is different and would vary slightly for the cut being made. It's a novel idea, but does it fall in the 'measure with a micrometer - cut it with a chainsaw' class?

is the quantity you want to specify, I have have doubts about using the tone F as a goal. What Does make sense, to my ears :), is that the blade should be both tight enough and loose enough to make a short ringing tone after you kick it with your fingernail. I think that indicates a "healthy" tension--however my usual disclaimer: others with more experience surely know better. Bill
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F below Middle C, I think. I've set it so it makes the sound of an F on the staff in bass clef and gotten good results.
I did notice the other night that the sound was getting clear, and then muddied up somewhat and started to clear again. That's something that the flutter method seems to rely on.
Puckdropper
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In

Those are rules of thumb but they all vary dependng on blade length, distance between wheels where you plunk it, and several other things like belt age, stretched factor and stability of the wheels, the drive wheel ini particular and of course wear on the wheel rubber itself. A belt tensioner is handy, but checking the deflection of the belt at the proper point will bring you right to spec nearly every time. There is no way they will all twang at the same frequency when they are properly set up. Tryng to treat the blade like a piano wire is silly and would work on only that one particular machine if it worked at all. Overtensioning is a chief reason for premature blade breakages.
HTH,
Twayne`
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On 7/27/2011 9:59 PM, Puckdropper wrote:

As a musician who tickles the bottoms of all the females in the audience, I doubt you will find a $20 tuner that will accurately indicate that octave. I have a $300 Peterson that won't do it, I know, because I tried. ;)
Leon is right in that the correct tension is one that gives you the best cut, and the best way to get in that ball park is to use the built-in tension meter.
I actually own a band saw ten$ion meter (I'm not that stupid, it was a gift) and the indicator marks of the few band saws I've tested with it have been close enough to get you where you want to be as long as the tension spring is not completely worn out.
Replacement springs are cheap and easy to change and a new one on an old band saw, along with the built-in marks, should make it a moot point.
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On Thu, 28 Jul 2011 02:59:56 +0000, Puckdropper wrote:

I just heard it should sound like a note, not a dull thud. But it seems to me that that is a minimal condition. The blade needs to be "at least" that tight, but it may need to be tighter. Cut and test.
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On Jul 28, 11:59am, Puckdropper <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote:

Why waste the time? I tension by sight, I cut a 3/4" wide X 6" long piece of polycarbonate in the left-hand Side of the door. If it's just barely flutterin', turn the crank up a bit and yer there. From 1/8" to 2", never a problem :-)
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