Band saw

Discussion in 'Tools' started by wesley, Oct 22, 2017.

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  1. Oct 22, 2017 #1

    wesley

    wesley

    wesley

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    Hi all ,have been thinking about getting hold of a cheap wood band and fit it with a bi metal blade as l need to cut some small shaped parts,has any of you had any luck with this ,my main concern is getting it to run slower,unless l can find a varable speed type,but will se what you experts think .
     
  2. Oct 22, 2017 #2

    Rudy

    Rudy

    Rudy

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    I was looking down that route my selves Wesley. However, I did not find any reliable information on using a wood band saw for metal. So I upped the stakes and went for a horizontal/vertical metal band saw. It's a low cost Chinese type, but I'm impressed with it. It cuts trough massive steel up to whatever you can get in that wise. Today I cut a big steel lump in no time. The cut is clean, not very noisy, runs slowly and cuts very efficiently.
    It is quickly transformed between vertical band saw and horizontal table saw. At least after the mods I did to it. I find my selves use both functions very often.
    Before I bought it I thought I would get away with the cheapest alternative. I did buy a grinder type cutting saw with a big cutting wheel. This machine is the worst thing I have ever had in my shop. The noise is out of this world. The dust mess it makes contaminates your whole shop forever. You smell like steel the rest of the day. The wheel is down in no time. The work gets hot and hardened. A friend of mine wanted it, but I didn't give it to him. After all, he's my friend.. I should have gone for the band saw I had wanted for years right the way and sawed some money.
    Unfortunately I can't help you out with the original question, but I can say you won't regret it if you somehow get the opportunity to acquire one of these combo band saws.
    Se my post "Band saw upgrade".
     
  3. Oct 22, 2017 #3

    bazmak

    bazmak

    bazmak

    BAZMAK

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    I have reposted an old thread on this particular question.The mod was successful.The high speed cut wood plasti alum and brass and the slow speed did cut steel successfully but is too time consuming to swap pullys/speeds
    so i only use on fast speed .If i had more room i would buy one of the
    horiz/vertical cheap chinese band saws.There is a current thread on mods
    to make it more user friendly
     
  4. Oct 23, 2017 #4

    Wizard69

    Wizard69

    Wizard69

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    If you intend to cut steel and some other metals you will need a low speed operation, for aluminum you might get away with a machine running at wood working speeds.

    The biggest problem with retro fits is that you need a relatively large reduction in speed from the 3000 to 5000 SFM of wood working machines to something in the range of about 100 to 300 SFM. How difficult this is to accomplish depends a great deal upon the structure of the machine and of course the resources you have. Ideally you would design a shifting mechanism to support a range of speeds. In a nut shel you won't know if the "upgrade" is worth while until you have the machine on hand to see how it is built. On some machines you might as well start over and build one from the ground up.

    Here is the thing, many consumer grade wood working machines can barely handle wood working so going the metal working route probably isn't advised. If you find one that has a frame that doesn't twist out of alignment when the blade is tensioned you might be OK. A machine with a decent frame isn't cheap even on the used market.
     
  5. Oct 23, 2017 #5

    Barnbikes

    Barnbikes

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    Easier to replace the motor with a variable speed DC treadmill motor then to replace pulleys.
     
  6. Oct 23, 2017 #6

    RM-MN

    RM-MN

    RM-MN

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    I have successfully used my wood working bandsaw to cut aluminum but cutting steel definitely needs slower speed. I have ruined a couple blades before I finally bought a metal cutting bandsaw. The advantage of the woodworking bandsaw is the ability to saw odd shapes which can be done on the metal cutting ones with the addition of a table for upright use. The advantage of the metal cutting bandsaw is that it cuts pretty straight without needing you there constantly to monitor the cut. I often clamp a bigger piece of steel in mine, start it, and walk away to do other projects while it slowly works its way through the cut.
     
  7. Oct 23, 2017 #7

    wesley

    wesley

    wesley

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    Many thanks on the info,l do have a band saw ,but it only works in the horizontal position ,am now thinking to look out for an old band saw that l can cut up an mount the way l want it ,l need to be able to sit on a stool an feed the work in to get the shapes l need,will keep thinking ,again thanks for your help.
     
  8. Oct 23, 2017 #8

    velocette

    velocette

    velocette

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    Hi Wesley
    It is not to difficult to Convert a vertical Wood Cutting Band Saw to cut metal you will need to reduce the speed of the blade to around 30 to 60 metres a minute.
    Have one sat in my workshop 1.5 hp DC Motor, AC To DC speed Controller, Poly Vee Belt Drive that copes with what I want from it using a Bi-Metal Blade and the speed dialed down.
    Change the saw blade for a woodcutting blade and crank the speed and it cuts timber very well
    Eric

    DSCF2348.jpg

    DSCF2347.jpg
     
  9. Oct 23, 2017 #9

    john_reese

    john_reese

    john_reese

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    If you want to use the bandsaw for metals other than aluminum you will need a reduction of 10:1 to 20:1. My Delta has back gears for metal cutting. It cuts aluminum in direct drive, 2000 fpm. In back gear the top speed is about 200 fpm. A variable speed motor is not a great choice that wide a speed range. You have to greatly oversize the motor to get 1/2 horsepower at 1/20 rated speed.
     
  10. Oct 24, 2017 #10

    Wizard69

    Wizard69

    Wizard69

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    This is an important point, you might not have the power needed by going to a variable speed motor solution. However given that is ti fairly easy to get a 10- 1 reduction from a single stage belt drive which puts a variable speed motor is a far better position for delivering power.
     
  11. Oct 24, 2017 #11

    john_reese

    john_reese

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    Many years ago my brother and I adapted a Delta wood cutting saw for metal. We modified an old coal stoker gear box as a reduction gear. I believe it gave about 20:1 reduction. That gearbox had its own motor .. We mounted that gearbox and the original motor so we could run the belt to either one depending on what we were cutting. The stoker gearbox had a worm gear reduction followed by a planetary reduction. We eliminated the planetary stage. The stoker gearboxes used to be used to turn the spit on hog roasters. Unfortunately most of those gearboxes were scrapped many years ago. We got lucky and found one in a scrap yard around 1960. A used 20:1 worm drive would work nicely.
     

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