I apologize in advance for the length of this post, but I figured it
was better to provide as much information up front so that anyone who
replies won't have to spend time asking for info I should have included
to begin with.
Background: I've considered purchasing a band saw for about two years.
It's the last big piece of woodworking equipment I need to round out my
shop. For the past year I've been doing some research on and off here
at the 'Wreck, on the Web, and several WW mags (the Oct 04 American
Woodworker in particular). I decided the Delta 14" closed-base saw
(28-206) with a riser block was best suited to my needs and my wallet.
My Needs: Mainly resawing 2" to 8" wide hardwood (10" max, as that is
the max width my jointer/planer will handle). Secondary uses will be
cutting the occasional arch for Mission/Craftsman Style furniture and
possibly the side faces on tenons - very simple stuff. I know that
resawing 8-10" boards with a 1hp motor is pushing its limit, but I'm a
patient man. I don't have to resaw 100 feet of wood a day (more like
20 feet every 3 or 4 months), so I don't mind a slower feed rate. I
don't mind spending a couple of days tweaking the saw or performing
upgrades, but I also didn't want to make it my full-time hobby for six
weeks either. (Video Doctor's "Fettling a Delta 14" Chinese Bandsaw"
page is a great tweaking resource -
My Wallet: I wanted to come in at the $650 range with
(In case anyone was wondering, I've ruled out any Jet equipment
altogether. In short, I had a minor problem with one of my two Jet
machines, and Jet's Customer Service department treated me like a
vagrant. But that's a story for another thread. End result: I'll
never buy another piece of Jet equipment again.)
I found the 28-206 on sale about two weeks ago for $475 + $90 for the
riser block. That leaves me about $85 for upgrades. After doing my
research, these were the upgrades I was planning to install in order of
· Timberwolf 1/2 x 3tpi Blade - $25. I used the same blade, shorter
length, on another band saw and was pleased with the results. Since
this will be the saw's primary function, I wanted to set it up for
success. This is also a low tension blade.
· Mobile Base - $0. I have a "universal" Delta mobile base I can use.
· Cool Blocks - $12. Phenolic blocks appear to be the best value when
replacing the factory guides. At first, the Delta factory guide blocks
looked like they might be plastic, but a quick test with a magnet
showed me they weren't. The AWW article provided some helpful
comparisons for guide replacements. I have also been eyeing some cheap
roller-bearing guides (~$16) on eBay.
· PowerTwist V-Link Belt - $22. Should decrease vibration by
mitigating whatever misalignment is left between the pulleys and the
effect of v-belt shape "memory". I decided to go with the PowerTwist
versus the cheaper Accu-Link; the Accu-Link looked like it would
disintegrate faster. Jim Wilson's Link Belt Page
(http://www.paragoncode.com/shop/link_belts /) was an invaluable source
of information on these.
· Urethane Band Saw Tires - $22. I'm not entirely sure these are
necessary as I have yet to measure the runout on the factory tires.
The factory tires look VERY similar to the urethane tires Rockler is
selling (http://www.rockler.com/findit.cfm?page=5838 ). Does anyone
know if Delta has recently started shipping their band saws with
URETHANE tires installed?!?!
Other upgrades I've considered but am not planning to buy:
· Iturra High Tension Spring - $17. I didn't see this as necessary,
particularly since the Timberwolf blade is of the low tension variety.
Then again, the riser block takes the blade length to 105" so I may
have to bite the bullet on this one.
· Zero-Clearance Inserts - $10 for 4. I'm not sure tearout is going
to be a big problem with resawing.
So far, my upgrade total comes to $81, so I'm still within my budget.
Now, for the questions:
1. Of the upgrades I've listed, are there any I should reconsider
(priority, brand, type, etc.)?
2. Are there any other upgrades I missed and should consider?
TIA for the replies, guys. Being relatively new to this band saw gig,
I definitely appreciate any help or guidance you can offer.