I use the Lee Valley kit to weld bandsaw blades. It's simple and
quick, but you have to be careful to keep all surfaces flush.
Basically, you grind a bevel on both ends of the band (about 3/16")
and then clamp them in the jig making sure that the back of the band
is in alignment. If the bevel faces aren't pressing against each other
then you have to put a bit of a bend in one side or the other. Put
flux of both faces then cut off a small piece of silver solder using
scissors. Put the solder between the two bevel faces and once more
check that everything is in alignment. Using a MAPP torch, heat the
joint until red then quench with a damp towel. Use a file or sandpaper
to true up any irregularities on the back and the two faces. Make sure
the band is right way around and put back in saw.
(remove all letters after y in the alphabet)
I have a Delta 16" 3-wheel bandsaw so the blades break long before
they go dull (Timberwolf/Viking blades -- they always break at the
factory weld). If my weld is good then it lasts as long as the Viking
factory weld, but I haven't measured how long that is. A rough guess
is that I do 5 or 6 welds before the blade is dull.
(remove all letters after y in the alphabet)
No, it's a real pain to do well. If you must join your own, make or buy
a suitable clamp and then use silver solder. Silver solder itself
doesn't last as long as welded steel, but it lasts an awful lot longer
than a weld where the heat control wasn't perfect. I'm a pretty fair gas
welder, but it's just not a good idea for blades.
The only people I know who weld bandsaw blades are doing it
commercially, either factories or blade sellers. I buy mine from them.
They also have resistance butt welders to do it, with built-in timers.
I too am fairly good in TIG and silver solder, I remember vividly in my earlier
career the metals bandsaw have a butt welder and it's a real pain to get a good
weld. However, I am debating should buy a bandsaw's solder jigs from Lee Valley
or a bandsaw welder from Habour Freight. I do not use a lot of bandsaw blade,
but question the wisdom of buying finished blades and not being satisfied with
the commercial products. I guess there are only a handful of such bandsaw blades
manufactures here and oversea. The few well-known brand blades are finished
downstream companies, welded the roll of bandsaw blades and pack them for retail
How long did the your solder blade last, five, ten resaw on hardwood?
I have on occassion welded bandsaw blades, but
the ancient metal cutting beast here at the work
has a built-in welder. It is common practice to
make internal cuts which start with an unwelded
strand of blade pushed through a drilled hole
which is then welded and installed. The welded
makes butt welds by resistive heating. The unit
can anneal the weld and includes a blade cutter
and a grinder. Once I figure out the controls, it
does just fine.
I hear you, Roger. My previous comment was directed at WD's contention
(at least that's the way that I took it) that there are no good blades
on the market. Of course cutting/welding is required for internal cuts
that aren't practical on a scroll saw due to size.
My first 4 Timber Wolf blades really disappointment. I try Lee Valley's Viking
(so-so and my guts feeling it's from the same factory, other than the name
change). I also try Olson Pro and I feel it's not worth the $20 to $36 plus
shipping and handling. If I move onto Woodslicer, Starrett and Lenox, by than I
would have a whole bunch of blades. I am thinking why not Invest $250 +/- $50 on
a used TIG welder and bandsaw jigs? Don't you think I MIGHT save a hell a lot
down the road with three or four rolls the common sizes of blades and a gain a
TIG welder? I feel very confident in soldering and TIG welding, earlier in my
careers I taught TIG welding and certification on repairing gas turbines' blades
and casting with Hastelloy-X and other exotic SS alloys..
A good site you might be interested:
Thanks again with your suggestion.
After some scratching round, I found a source of good quality blades, in
a wide range of tooth profiles, with good quality welds. Why should I
waste my own time fooling around to do a worse job ? If your local
blades are bad, find a better supplier. Anywhere that sells bulk bandsaw
will also sell them welded to order - I usually phone ahead and an hour
or two later there's a bunch waiting for me at the right length.
Most blades last until you break them. A mishap that might put a minor
repairable or ignorable kink into a welded blade seems to snap soldered
blades. Ideally a blade should break from fatigue around the same time
the teeth are worn out (or else you could use higher tension on it).
Soldered blades seemed to break when they still had plenty of life left,
enough to make them worth re-soldering at least once. They certainly
weren't failing every time I looked at them.
Wood bandsaws run at higher tensions than metal cutting bandsaws (which
I also use). IMHO soldering your own might be worthwhile for metal chop
saws, but not for wood.
I have welded many blades for my grandfather's friends. Here is what I do
in our shop. First of all I ignore the comments directed to my youth by
Grandpa's friends. I use a simple set up - an Oxy/MAPP to torch to do the
brazing. I grind a bevel on both of the edges to make a good lap joint. I
use jig that I made that has a cut out flange in the middle to hold
everything nice and tight and straight. I then use c clamps to put the
joint over the cut out. It is not too hard to judge the overlap. A good
overlap will cut down on the amount of grinding you might have to do. I
then just braze the blade together. I finish it off by annealing the blade.
None of my welds have failed, the blades have come back broken in other
The way Xopher does it was the way my old shop teacher used to do it 35
years ago. I am not that proficient with welding or silver soldering,
but I know many that are. We are looking at a blade welder from a
couple of different places, one that we can all pitch in on to buy.
One of our merry band swears by his welding efforts, and we are
thinking that if we had a machine that would butt weld we could all do
You can find 100' coils of blades, and all kinds of quality cut for
lenght blades like Lenox, Olson, etc, on EBAY (look here for example...
all the time. All sizes, widths, types, everything is there.
You can get a welder for about $175, and anneal with a torch. NOW you
are saving some serious dough. The blades you find may not be
Woodslicers, but not on that example above there are 5 Lenox 3/4" X
3tpi blades in this group... do the math.. how much would those blades
alone cost you? And as the man says, buy 'em, and cut the size you
need out of what you get.
However, that being said, if these guys back out I will not buy a
welder and coil stock for myself. I don't do enough resawing at this
point to make it worthwhile.
I've been doing my own for a couple of years now using the silver
solder method others have suggested. I made my own jig using a piece of
angle steel and a few screws and washers to clamp the blade.
Before going this route broken blades got thrown out. Now I just
re-splice them until they dull.
Coil stock can be had from a numbe of sources. I use silicon steel from
R&D Bandsaws (www.tufftooth.com). They also sell the supplies you will
need for splicing.
On 10 Jan 2006 09:47:59 -0800, email@example.com wrote:
Thanks for the above link, I might buy a few to try before I
embark on to soldering or weld my own blades. R&D Bandsaw
might be Lee Valley (Viking) bandsaw supplier. Can you
estimate the S&H to the States to make it worthwhile?
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