In a recent thread the statement was made 'In the shop the table saw is
king' and was latter amended to 'in the cabinet shop the TS is king, in the
furniture shop the Band Saw is king'.
No body but you can decide whether you can justify a purchase, I can tell
you some of the things I do with a bandsaw, cut tenons for mortices, clean
out waste on dovetails, cut curves down to 1" radius and of course resaw, I
also cut aluminum for subsequent maching operations.
I can get the Delta BS220LS brand new for $297 at Lowes. It's a 14" bandsaw
with a 6" resaw capacity, which is just what I need. It seems to be
ruggedly built, but then I know next to nothing about bandsaws. That's why
I was hoping to read a little feedback on it...
I rechecked the specs at
http://www.deltawoodworking.com/index.asp?e 6&pF51 and you are correct.
I don't know where I came up with the 14" size.
In any case, the important spec to me is the "6 inch capacity (Height under
Guide)". That's the size of the wood I would like to resaw, so I'm assuming
this saw would allow me to do it?
On the other hand, I'm still not sure how much I would use the bandsaw.
I've always wanted one, but I've gotten by without one so far.
Planing down a $30 board to the 1/4" thickness I need is wasteful and
expensive, but I could buy 10 of them for the cost of that bandsaw.
Another poster hinted at the "roughness" of tenons cut on the bandsaw, and
that is something I was concerned about. I tend to think I would revert to
my router to cut tenons.
Several posters have mentioned the bandsaws ability to cut curves, but
again, I think I would use my Jigsaw or scrollsaw for those.
Dovetails? Never done them, but I would probably use a router jig.
Resawing is about the only operation that I can really justify the bandsaw
for, as I don't really have any good alternatives. Although, I can foresee
cutting a 4x4 in half diagonally for some projects (i.e. a gazebo), and I
think the bandsaw would work well for that.
I'm obviously rather unsure about the bandsaw purchase. I was hoping for
some real "gotta have it" recommendations to convince me... Ha. Ha. Gonna
have to think this one over more I guess...
I have a crappy jigsaw and much prefer the bandsaw. It will also depends on
the particular cut.
See, the uses are creeping up on you.
I can't think of a single one, but I sure do use it a lot. Handy for
cutting a dozen pieces of dowel an inch long. Trimming a small piece that
is not comfortable to hold on the tablesaw. There is no ONE application
that is a killer (aside from re-saw), but collectively, it is a very useful
tool. I'd not be without one now that I have it.
Try to cut a curve in thick stock (1.5" or greater) and either of those will
have trouble cutting perpendicular to the surface of the board. 3/4" stock..
Sure, no problem.
One more: Stopped cuts. You can do them on a table saw and finish up by
hand, but like most things, there are 6 ways to do them, just not all six
ways are as quick/easy/accurate.
As for resawing... If you need 6" today.... some day you will want more.
Always buy a little more tool than you need today, or you might be replacing
it sooner than you would like. A riser block will solve that problem for
about $50 plus the cost of new blades on most 14" saws.
Thank you. That's the kind of experience I was looking for. I don't know if
I would use it for dovetails (never actually done one), but I can forsee
cutting tenons with it. Seems like it would be easier to set up than a
router, and wouldn't require a special jig like a tablesaw.
My most likely use would be resawing, but who knows... I'll have to think
=================While my Tablesaw is by far the most used saw in my shop I have had a
bandsaw in my shop for over 30 years ...
I really do not know how I could do without it... and I very very
rarely use it to resaw.... I make most tables and desks so that might
explain the fact that the Tablesaw get a workout but my bandsaw is
find out the price to have someone do it for you, multiply it out to equal
the cost of the bandsaw, and decide if you can justify it. better yet, find
the price discrepency between just buying wood closer to your needs, and
compare that with the cost of stuff you need to resaw (or its immediate
resell value if its free to you).
if youve gotten by fine without one until now you could probably continue to
do so. otoh, if you have one you will probably find no shortage of uses for
Yup...the Griz G0555 was just delivered 2 weeks ago. However, I have used
my neighbors for quite awhile now. It was a breeze to set up (put the stand
together, mount the saw, put the table & fence on), and even easier to set
the guides. In retrospect, I would have had them put a better blade on the
order, but the stock one is good for getting the hang of the saw for a
beginner. I've used the Jet equiv., and really could not tell the
Like my BS for resawing. Can't beat it for curves either. Dovetails
& Tenons, yeah, but I think other tools will leave a better cut
surface. Particularly those tenons. I made a pair of tenoning jigs
for my TS to cut both the cheeks and the short way. They work like a
charm giving me smooth ready to glue surfaces.
Overall, glad I got my BS. It does stuff that the TS can't do, or
beyond my comfort level.
You can still resaw the board on the tablesaw. Set the fence up so
the blade will cut down the center of the board. Try making your
first cut with the blade height at 1.5 inches. Flip the board end for
end, keeping the same face against the fence, and make another cut.
Raise the blade about .75 inch and make two more passes. Repeat until
you've max'd out the blade height.
After you cut as deep as your tablesaw blade will allow, use a hand
saw to finish it, then run thru the planer to get final thickness.
It's not essential, but use a thin-kerf tablesaw blade if you have
one. As for dangers, it can get exciting if the wood starts to twist
or pinch the blade. Keep your body out of the line of fire, don't
raise the blade more than 3/4" per pass. Not sure how long your board
is, but be sure to have some outfeed support if necessary so you're
not required to apply downward pressure to keep the board from lifting
up. If I've given too much detail here it's because I wasn't sure
you'd ever done this before.
Another poster already said it, but if you are on a budget you will
get the most bang for your buck buying used. I buy all of my tools
used at around half the price of new and I have yet to buy a lemon
(six big tools over four years, maybe I'm lucky). If I bought a lemon
tomorrow I would have already saved enough money on the first six
tools to buy a brand new replacement for my lemon twice over. You
would be able to get a saw with more capacity than you need, and there
is a good chance that you could get one with a flatter table,
straighter wheel alignment, and overall better quality. Great used
equipment can be had for half the price of new. I think of it this
way, all other things being equal I would rather have what what used
to be a new $1000 bandsaw over what is today a new $500 bandsaw. I
can't say it enough, used, used, used, used. If you buy it for half
of the new price, you will probably get that much if you sell it again
Well Darn It, I've talked myself out of yet another shop tool...
I was having a hard time deciding whether to buy the bandsaw, when I ran
across the 1x8 clear cedar boards I needed at Lowes today for $20. Weighing
the cost of two boards ($40 total) against the cost of a low end bandsaw
($300 total), the choice was a no-brainer.
I spent about 30 minutes planing the two boards down to the 1/4" thickness
I needed. Turned a half inch of wood in each 10 foot board to a wheelbarrow
load of wood shavings. I hated being so wasteful, but financially it was
the smarter choice. And I wasn't comfortable trying to resaw the boards
using alternative means.
As it turns out, I actually needed the boards to be slightly wider than the
6" anyway, as I needed some extra width for scribing. So, the bandsaw
wouldn't have worked anyway.
After planing the boards down this morning, I very carefully bent them to
fit the arch top window in our new house. They turned out great, so problem
Unfortunately, buying used is a real hit-and-miss opportunity. I can't
remember the last time I saw a used power tool for sale around here. Maybe
I just don't know where to look.
In any case, I managed to talk myself out of both the tablesaw and a
bandsaw for the present time. Maybe sometime in the future, but for now I
have plenty of other things I can spend that money on.
I'm actually thinking of better outfitting some of the tools I currently
own. Maybe get a better router table for my router. That would really come
in handy for the cabinets I'll be building in a few months. I may also
build or buy a better straight edge for my circular saw for cutting plywood
sheets down to size. Little stuff like that.
I figure I'll try to make the most of the tools I have already invested in,
and keep my eyes open for a saw that comes closest to my ideals...
I actually built a portable tool cart that does multiple duty as a
workbench, tablesaw outfeed table, and one end is setup as a crude router
table. It's very "No Frills", but it has worked well for a number of tasks.
I'm thinking of getting a better system for raising and lowering the router
bit from above, and maybe build a better fence. Small improvements that
would make a world of difference...
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