Best Band Saws

Best band saw might look intimidating, but in reality, it’s one of the easiest woodworking tools that you can use. And the safest. There are countless best band saws out there, and that makes it a little daunting when you are narrowing down your search. Asking yourself key questions such as how you’ll be using the tool, what size cuts you want to make, and how much space you have, will help you to get closer to finding the band saw that you need. We’re going to give you a head start by sharing the top rated band saws on the market, while also highlighting the key features and design elements that make some models stand out from the rest.

Grizzly G0513X2BF 2 HP Extreme-Series Bandsaw with Cast-Iron Trunnion and Foot Brake, 17-Inch

I have owned this saw for almost four years now. It has been nothing short of a horse, cutting true, doing big resaw work, and for a while, I even had a 1/8″ blade on it when I had a lot of bandsaw boxes to finish.
It is well designed, easy to change blades, and for those who need the “nickel test”, it passes with flying colors.

The only thing I have had to do in the four years was change out the tires at about the 30 month mark, and occasionally oil the bearing guides since very fine sawdust will get in between the double ball bearings, causing them to not turn properly.

And to be honest, I am SO glad I spent the extra money for the foot/electric brake. Just hit the foot pedal quickly, or the stop button, and the blade is stopped in a little less than three seconds. I don’t know how much of my time has been saved not waiting for a blade on two huge cast iron wheels to stop.
I am so impressed with this saw, (and I do a lot of bandsaw work), now that I am replacing my worn out Porter Cable bandsaw, (my other saw), I am seriously thinking of just getting a twin and buying another one of these. Keep a wide blade on one for resaw, a small blade on the other for tight work.
Only hiccup – it is possible to start the saw, and actually cut a bit with the blade tension arm in the released position since it is on the backside of the saw and out of sight. Would have been nice to lengthen that a bit so you could see where it is. It needs to be just a couple inches longer and have a red knob on it instead of black.
Otherwise, almost a perfect saw for the money.

Grizzly is proud to offer these full-featured Extreme 17″ Heavy-duty Band saws with cast-iron wheels. The 2 HP motor powers through wood at a maximum 12″ cutting capacity and the 16-1/4″ throat is plenty for most applications. Features like the deluxe fence extra-wide cast-iron table heavy-duty miter gauge dual 4″ dust ports micro-adjusting geared table and double ball-bearing blade guides are usually found on machines costing much more. And the ISO 9001 factory designation assures high quality standards. SPECIFICATIONS: • Motor: 2 HP 220V single-phase TEFC capacitor start induction 60 Hz 1725 RPM 10 Amps prewired to 220V • Power transfer: Belt drive • Precision-ground cast-iron table • Table size: 23-5/8″ x 17-1/4″ x 1-1/2″ thick • Table tilt: 5-Degree left 45-Degree right • Floor to table height: 37-1/2″ • Cutting capacity/throat: 16-1/4″ left of blade • Maximum cutting height: 12″ • Blade size: 131-1/2″ long • Blade sizes available: 1/8″ – 1″ wide • 2 blade speeds: 1700 and 3500 FPM • Wheels: computer-balanced cast-iron with polyurethane tires • Wheel covers: pre-formed steel • Blade guides: ball bearing with full enclosure protection • Bearings: sealed and permanently lubricated • Overall size: 73″ H x 32″ W x 32″ D • Approximate shipping weight: 460-Pound.

  • Motor: 2 HP 220V single-phase TEFC capacitor start induction 60 Hz prewired to 220V; Amps: 10; RPM: 1725; Power transfer: Belt drive; Precision gr
  • Power transfer: Belt drive; Precision ground cast iron table;
  • Table size: 23-5/8-Inch x 17-1/4-Inch x 1-1/2-Inch thick; Table tilt: 5-Degree left 45-Degree right
  • Cutting capacity/throat: 16-1/4-Inch left of blade; Maximum cutting height: 12-Inch; Blade size: 131-1/2-Inch long; 2 blade speeds: 1700 and 3500 FPM

Rikon 10-305 Bandsaw With Fence, 10-Inch

 A great addition to your garage/home workshop.
1. Heavy sturdy construction.
2. Tracking adjustments do not require a PhD in Spatial Quantum Mechanics.
3. Dust port allows for the removable of most dust.
4. A cast iron table that in my case was flat and square.
5. Small footprint (compared to its larger sized cousins.)

PROS:

1. It includes a fence that can be adjusted properly at least eight times out of 10.
2. The Miter slot is adequately milled. (Although it is a non-standard size.)
2. Drift has remained almost constant.
3. Overall value versus other 10-inch band saws.
4. The included directions and parts lists DO NOT require the Rosetta Stone to read.

CONS:

1. The included blade – at least in my case. It cut like someone had used it to re-saw cement blocks and afterwards smashed the teeth with a pneumatic jack-hammer for good measure. Do yourself a favor a purchase a POWERTEC 13181X as a replacement.
2. No stand included.
3. Miter gauge not included.

SKIL 3386-01 2.5-Amp 9-Inch Band Saw

 Band saw you can use it almost daily for small wood crafting projects.
It has been fantastic, but there are some things you need to be aware of:Prior to my purchase I had read a negative review stating that this is under powered. It’s certainly NOT under powered, BUT after 2 months of regular use I did experience a significant drop in power. After some troubleshooting I found that the drive belt was loose. Once I tightened that drive belt it had more power than it did when I unboxed it. I was able to rip a 2×4 like a hot knife through butter.It comes with a low quality, 4 TPI blade installed. Depending on what you are using this for and how often, you may want to set that one aside and install a better quality blade while you are putting this together. I use a higher tooth count for the cuts I make.The plastic blade guide in the table broke after about 4 months. It had popped out once or twice while cutting some curves and pieces of plastic.
The last time it popped out, it went sideways, the blade hit it and it shattered into so many pieces I couldn’t even find all of them… SO, when you get yours, you may want to glue that down with some temporary glue or replace it immediately. If you use it frequently, vacuum it out often and make sure you clean the rubber on the drive wheel. I noticed that it can get caked with debris in spite of the wheel brush that rides against it. I used some 400 grit sand paper and gently scrubbed off the caked on debris. Mind you, this is after me using this almost daily to cut wood and plastic for 3 months. If you use this THAT often, you may want to clean it more frequently.In summary, I highly recommend the Skil 9″ bandsaw. This has been fantastic for me and my daily use, but keep in mind it is a 9″ band saw, so it’s for smaller wood working projects. It has PLENTY of power for it’s intended use. The widest thing you can cut will be 9″ wide and I wouldn’t try to rip wood thicker than 4 inches. IF yours seems to lose power over time, check the drive belt. A loose drive belt can cause a loss of power. And keep it clean, and make sure you keep your saw sharp and you will have no problems.

 After setting up and using it for a day , I was panicking that I prematurely threw out the box to return it. But after dozens of you tube videos on properly setting up a bandsaw, the next day was a pleasure. Properly setting up this band saw is a bit of a nightmare, but afterwards it performed like the champ that many other reviewers said it was. Cant understand why these things arent preset at the factory to avoid people thinking that they bought a piece of junk. The few design flaws i found were the light is attached to the back side of the saw, shining more in your face than on the blade. But its on a flexible extension so you can munipulate it a bit. The guide adjustments or hidden and hard to reach with the included allen keys, and the single point guide  is insufficient. So far i love this saw and highly recommend it, but be ready for some long arduous adjusting to get it just right for operation. Forgot to mention that there is no reference point for adjusting the blade tension, you have to figure it out as you go along and make your own reference marks.
  • 3.5 amp motor creates cuts up to six inches deep and 9-3/4 inches wide
  • Uses 72-inch blades anywhere from 1/8 to 1/2 inches in size
  • Spacious 14-1/8 x 12-1/2 inch work table bevels up to 45 degrees
  • Operates at two speeds of either 1520 or 2620 FPM.Dimensions of the stand: 13 3/4 L x 15 3/4 W x 25 1/4H (Inches)
  • Includes a 2-year warranty, a work light, a 3-in-1 dust port, a fence, a miter gauge, and a 3/8-inch blade (6 TPI)

WEN 3920 16-Inch Two-Direction Variable Speed Scroll Saw

This was my first time ever using this type of saw, so I watched some youtube videos on the subject just to help me understand some of the tricks. That paid off! Since I knew what to expect, I was able to apply what I learned very quickly, and I was able to cut my first project fairly successfully. I know with a little more practice, that I will be a pro! While most of the videos I watched were using machines that were 5-10 times the price, I found that this unit performed just as good. After using this unit for a while, I might try a more expensive unit, but I doubt that there can be THAT much difference to force an upgrade

Remember when you could make artful and intricate cuts in your work pieces? The WEN 16-inch Variable Speed Scroll Saw gives you full control over your designs and creativity. Our unique blade holder accepts both pinned and pinless blades while also allowing users to change the direction of their cut. For pinned blades, simply pop the pin out of the front holder and turn the blade 90 degrees. Now, your cuts are no longer confined by the 16-inch throat of the scroll saw. On top of that, our removable pinless blade holder tightly grips blades to prevent them from coming loose during operation.

The variable speed ranges anywhere from 550 to 1600 strokes per minute and can be easily adjusted by the speed knob located on the front of the machine. The spacious 16-by-11-inch table bevels up to 45 degrees to the left. Easily cut wood up to 1.9 inches thick with the 9/16 inch stroke of the saw’s arm. The tension-release switch is easily accessible right at the top of the machine for quick blade changes. The air pump clears dust from your work area to give you precise cuts with a clear line of vision. This combined with the 1.5-inch dust port work together to keep your station sawdust free. And, because it’s a WEN product, your scroll saw some comes backed by a two-year warranty, a nationwide network of skilled service technicians and a friendly customer help line all to make sure you remember WEN.

What I really wanted was a good 14 inch saw; what I could justify spending right now was around a hundred bucks or so. Some years ago I had a 9 inch Delta-labeled saw that was absolutely worthless and had nothing in common with the better Delta saws, and that made me hesitate- could you even buy a usable saw in that price range? There are at least a half dozen different inexpensive hobbyist bandsaws on the market right now, and I hoped that at least one of them was usable. I spent a lot of time reading reviews here and elsewhere before deciding.

The general consensus seems to be that the Central Machinery 9″ saw, which is sold under various names, is the best of the bunch. It has a tubular steel frame (the cheapest saws have a cast alloy frame), and that alone suggested it would be more solid than the little Delta. It also has a spring blade tensioning system, a 1/2HP motor, belt drive (the cheapest use direct drive), and a lot of adjustability. You can even adjust the lower wheel bearing if necessary, though mine came not needing any tweaking. I looked at the Harbor Freight version, which is currently on sale and would cost less than the Powertec labeled version, but a trip to an HF store and a number of reviews convinced me that Powertec has better quality control.

I ended up buying a used, “Like New” unit, which saved me $15 off the regular price. As far as I can tell, it hasn’t been used at all. It looks like someone opened the box and sealed it back up again. I unpacked the saw and temporarily clamped it to the top of my work bench. It took me about 20 minutes to assemble, mount the blade, adjust the blade guides, and give it a test run, and it cut smoothly in 1″ oak without difficulty. I don’t have a dial indicator to check for runout, but I don’t detect any excessive vibration or wobble in the blade. As one reviewer noted, the blade guides are steel pins, which are not my first choice, but if you take your time and don’t push too hard they shouldn’t be a problem. I certainly wouldn’t try to resaw planks with it, or cut tropical hardwood boards much thicker than a 2″ or so. I also ordered Powertec 3/8″ 6tpi blade along with my saw, as most of my sawing involves long straight cuts on narrow pieces of hardwood. Blade changeover was easy, thanks to the blade tension lever, and the 3/8″ blade cut much straighter and faster. I’d recommned buying one along with this saw.If you understand its limitations, it’s not a bad bandsaw for the money.

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