Im looking to replce my 20 year old Craftsman 12" bandsaw. I will use it
primarily for resawing, cuting dovetails and joints and some bandsaw boxes.
I am trying to make my mind up between the Rinkon 10-325, Powermatic
PWBS-14CS and the Jet JWBS-14DX.
-1 1/2 hp motor
-16X20 cast table
-13 inch resaw capacity
-ball bearing blade guide
-quick relase lever
-$749.99 with resaw fence
-1 1/2 hp motor
-15X20 2 piece cast table
-12 inch resaw capacity
-Carter ball bearing blade guides
-Carter Quick Release Lever
-9 spoke cast wheels
-Halogen work light
-cut line chip blower
-$799.99 with resaw fence and 6" riser after a $100.00 rebate
-1 1/4 hp motor
-15X15 Cast Table
-12 inch resaw capacity
-9 Spoke cast wheels
-Jet Quick Release
-$759.97 with Resaw fence and 6" riser
All are within my price after adding delivery and a mobile base. I am
familure with the Jet and have found good info on the Powermatic, but info
on the Rikon is scarce. Anybody have any experience with these and any
recommendations on what to buy?
I bought a used Jet a couple years ago, and have been pleased with it. I wish
it had a little
bigger motor though.
If you are in the Houston area, I know a guy with a 3hp Minimax he needs to
sell. I wish I could
afford to buy it. Low hours on it plus extras.
The thing you don't mention is that the Rikon is 2 speed. 2950 and 1450,
IIRC. That was the deciding factor for me. I think the low speed gave it
the torque required to be the resaw champ in the Popular Woodworking article.
I haven't used mine a lot yet, but it seems to be put together as well as any
other and I found little or no drift with the factory supplied blade.
As I read it, the Powermatic is only $50 more and you get
Carter quick release (insead of the Jet)
Carter Ball Bearing guides
I have the JWBS-14DX, but I wish I saved up for the PowerMatic when it
was $200 more. For $50 more it's a no-brainer.
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It seemed that way to me especially as I am looking for high quality, low
vibration, quiet and smooth operation. My old craftsman is 20 years old and
I expect this one to last 20 or more years. As I see it, instead of
upgrading this saw (once I buy it) I will add a 18" or larger saw when I am
able to grow my shop.
But, that said, as I browsed the web and this board, I did find some very
conflicting remarks. It seemed that in general, that the Powermatic was all
I was asking for, yet some reported that they were nothing more than a Jet
with a different paint. It does not look that way to me, but I am not a
machinist. It is good to know that you have the Jet, which I understand is a
quality saw in itself, and would prefer the Powermatic.
Thanks for all your feedback. I believe that the Powermatic will be coming
home with me next weekend. And if anyone else is looking, The sale at
Woodcraft is good through 03 March.
Neil, I use a 12" Craftsman for several years also, about 20 years.
Because the 18" Rikon got the best reviews I ordered the 18" model to
replace my Craftsman.
As far as I was concerned I got too little for what I was expecting.
The biggest problem was with tracking and with 2 weeks of use learned to
hate roller bearings in general.
If you are truly looking to upgrade to an enjoyable saw for resawing I
suggest you wait and save more money.
Most of these models truly are a good value but IMHO for a first BS.
Again IMHO you need to look at older units or something like a MiniMax or
Laguna to make a significant move up in ability.
You mean 14" bandsaws?
Especially since you mention resawing, take a hard look at Grizzly and
Delta- Grizzly sells a riser block kit that will give you some extra
cutting depth, and as far as I'm aware, it is 100% compatable with a
Delta (except for color, of course)
Those Grizzly bandsaws are really worth a look. I've had the pleasure
of using and looking over several, and they're a lot of tool for the
(a bit long...)
Sold my 3-1/2 yrs Grizzly G0555 for $350 at craigslist complete with 14" riser,
cool block/ball bearing guide and several blades before I moved. I patiently
waited at craigslist. Three weeks ago I bought a used Delta 28-262 platinum
edition (made in USA) complete with mobile base and Carter ball-bearing guides
for $275 (the guide and mobile base cost more than $200). Drove about 90 miles
to pick up from a cabinet maker who gave up. After clean it up, the bandsaw
almost unused, except the tires with slight score marks. I presume the cabinet
maker does not know how to use a bandsaw as the adjustment/alignment were
completely screw up.
You really cannot compare a Grizzly or Delta unless you have use and own both
bandsaw. For a start, the guide rod, blade guards, bearings or cool block's
setup in the Grizzly is flimsy, while the Delta's Carter guides are solid as a
rock. Both bandsaw's are 1HP, but the Grizzly motor start clicking after the
warranty expired. The motor cannot be upgrade as Grizzly doesn't have 1-1/2 or 2
hp motor available (check with them). The Grizzly motor's shaft is longer than
the aftermarket motor. Therefore, forgets increasing the motor size. Delta has
been around for ages and you can get almost any replacement parts including the
motor. If you are serious in cutting precision tenon joints, don't even
consideration Grizzly attractive looking the fence. Delta comes without a fence
and I make my own fence after watching Mark Duginske's video. Both dust vacuum
connectors are useless, but Delta have an edge. Delta finishing is better.
Grizzly's cast iron table warped after a few months, while the Delta's cast-iron
still maintains its flatness after spending a few lonely years in the cabinet
maker workshop. I believe the cast aluminum wheels on the Delta (1-3/16") are
wider I cannot be sure. Grizzly do have a quick blade tension release, while
Delta doesn't. Adjustment on the Grizzly guide is faster and it takes longer
with Carter ball-bearing guides. Lastly, I like Delta's lower square enclosure,
seem more rigid and sound absorbing. Overall, Delta is a far better machine for
a miserable $275 or even at $800.
I visited estate and garage sales including craigslist. An old Delta 14" bandsaw
go for $13 and over. In craigslist, someone beat me to a Perfomax 24/48
thickness sander for $220, a brand-new still in boxed Perfomax 5hp for $2275, a
vintage Delta/Rockwell drill press $75 (just like the one in David Marks wood
Working shows in DIY). However, I bought an almost new Delta 8" 1/2hp disk
sander for $65, a Delta 1-1/2hp Dust collector for $165.
You might wanna call Iturr toll-free phone - 888-72207078 and wait for a month
or two for the catalog or buy something and have the catalog send immediately.
Disclaimer.. I have no relation with Iturr.
Thanks for the review- I'm going to be upgrading soon, and I had the
Delta in mind, but this re-enforces that. Most of the folks I've met
with Grizzlys were very happy with them, and they appeared to be very
solid machines- but all of them I've encountered were pretty new and
not heavily used, so there wasn't much information on how they hold up
on a longer time scale.
OTHO, you're right about the Deltas- at least the older models. I had
the priviledge of using one that was about 50 years old to cut rafter
beams for a curved roof a couple of years ago, and after I cleaned it
up a little (and knocked the rust off,) it still worked like new.
Here's to hoping the newer models are still at that level of quality!
If you have use and own both bandsaw's, you will know the differences.
I brought the 14" Grizzly, b'cuz everyone here praises the Grizzly. I found
many pitfalls after using use for 3 yrs.
I prefer to buy a used American-made Delta and upgrade it with replacement
parts from Iturra, than a Grizzly. Take your time, at garage, estate sales or
craigslist for one less than $300. You may be just as lucky as me. I have found
very old ones for $120. Get an Iturra catalog, learn what to look for and to
avoid. I lurk daily at craigslist and still finds many Deltas out there.
Thanks to all who responded. The question was wether to buy the Rikon, Jet
or the Powermatic. I did not mention Grizzly or Delta because I had already
eliminated them. Grizzly because there are VERY mixed reviews out there, you
seem to either get a good one or you never get yours right. And Delta
primarily because IMHO it is almost EXACTLY the same as the Jet but more
Now before the Delta lovers start clamering for my hide, I have a Delta
Contractors saw that I have had for 10 years and a Delta Planer, a Delta
Drill Press and a Delta Sharpening station. I do like Delta tools, but I
believe that their bandsaws live on the reputation of their table saws and
really are no better than Jet.
The Powermatic is the choice I have made. I probably would have gone that
way even if the sale did not include the riser, $100..00 off and $100.00
mail in rebate. I got good recommendations on the Jet and a few on the
Rikon, though for some reason, as hinted at above, I got more on why I
should be looking at a Delta or Grizzly.
Again, thanks for all your assistance, After I get the Powermatic in,
deliverd and installed, Ill let yall know how it runs and cuts.
I bought my Rikon 325 last October and had to contact Rikon they had a
supplier problem with the lower ball bearing guide assemble. A few
days after contacting them a complete new lower guide assemble arrived
by mail and it works great. Then I went to Sears in search of a Table
Saw and what do I see --> a modified to sears spec Rikon band saw for
sale. It was only a regular 14" without the extra resaw capicity. I
did buy the hybird table saw which looks very much like the Steel City
hybird saw. Very pleased with both after taking the time to align
them. I will be very interested in how the powermatic works out. It
was my 2nd choice because of a higher price at the time and the
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