Bandsaw Basics

Bandsaws are generally associated with workshops but a bandsaw can be useful at home as well. If you are into woodworking, a bandsaw can save you a lot of time. Here is a short article about bandsaw basics.

Bandsaws are large and powerful. By using the right blade, you can cut a number of materials. The bandsaw is a relatively old invention, already in the first half the 19th century powerful bandsaws were used in workshops. Nowadays, bandsaws are still powerful but they have become smaller and cheaper.

The bandsaw is a simple power tool, a continuous loop of metal, the blade, is used to cut the material. The blade rides on two or more wheels. Most bandsaws have a vertical design but some horizontal models are also available.

Bandsaws are popular in workshops, they waste less material than circular saws. They can be used to cut a number of materials. Bandsaws are versatile, wood can be cut into straight pieces or curved shapes. A skillful operator can create detailed and irregular shapes of wood and other materials.

Unfortunately, most bandsaws are expensive. But if you are into woodworking, a bandsaw can be a good investment. You can use cheaper tools instead of a bandsaw but the bandsaw will get the job done quicker, often much quicker.

Woodturners use bandsaws to prepare blanks, it is very easy and saves a lot of time. A bandsaw is the quickest way of cutting curves and wedges. It is easy to use but requires some practice before you can do precision work. Resawing is done best with a bandsaw.

You need to use the right blade, a wide range of blades are available. The blade tension is very important, the right tension will produce a straight uniform cut. Too much tension will decrease the lifespan of the blade. Using the right feed rate is very important. Unfortunately, the correct rate depends on the material and the blade, experience is the key.

As mentioned earlier, you can cut a lot of different materials with a bandsaw. But you need to use the right blades. Pitch is the number of teeth per inch. As a rule of thumb, cutting thinner sections requires a finer pitch, i.e. more teeth per inch.

Too high band tension can cause blade breakage. Always check the operator’s manual for the recommended tension. Using excessive feed pressure can also break the blade. But often too high speed or feed will dull the teeth rather than breaking the blade. Dull blades produce rough cuts and you need to replace the blade.

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