Bandsaw, Jet Bandsaw Renovation, Workshop
Comments 2

Bandsaw Renovation, Part 3

See part 1 here and part 2 here.

YES, THE RENOVATION of my bandsaw took me three blog entries to complete, longer than anticipated. But in the middle of it, I decided to add a shop made fence; something I always wanted for my bandsaw and a project which does nothing to renovate the saw itself. There is a lesson learned from all of this which I’ll get to in a minute, so whipping my bandsaw into shape has been a good experience.

As I began to think about wrapping up this renovation, I went to YouTube to see how others have dealt with the vibration which can occur with such a tool. I looked at a video by Matthias Wandel (here) and one by Gunflint Designs (here). Both good videos – the Wandel video focused on better balanced wheels and with the Gunflint video, I paid special attention to how he replaced the belt (see at 2:33 into the video). In both cases, vibration was too high; seems to be a common problem with bandsaws.

It did not make sense to me that the wheels were out of balance or not round. I could not determine any out of round conditions with the wheels, so the first adjustment I tried was to change the belt on my bandsaw.

Marketing gone wild – note the product name: Power Twist Plus.

I got a new belt, a Power Twist Plus at Woodcraft for a pretty steep $48.00, but it is a hefty belt, so I guess the cost is justified. The first challenge was to get the old belt off which was an exercise in keeping my cool as I contorted my body and hands to loosen the bolts that hold the motor in place.

Old belt about to be removed.

New belt in place.

I can get pretty frustrated with product designs which make routine maintenance a battle. Like a car we once owned in which changing a headlight meant total removal of the headlight assembly and some extremely hard to remove screws. With the Jet JWBS-14DX, access to the motor mounting bolts is only moderately hard so with some patience this process wasn’t too difficult. The new belt can be made smaller than its original size which makes the Power Twist Plus a handy belt, but the original size was perfect – no adjustments needed for my bandsaw. The belt went on easily and then after the motor was repositioned and tightened in place, the bandsaw ran really smooth. See the rare video I made below (sorry for the poor audio)…


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Virtually no vibration – I really couldn’t be happier. All of this set me back a little money…

  • Bandsaw tires (see part 1) – $25.99
  • Bandsaw blade (also part 1) – $17.00
  • Shop made bandsaw fence (see part 2) – UMHW plastic, star knobs, angle iron, etc. – $80.00.
  • Bandsaw belt – $48.00
  • Total – approximately $170.99

Money well spent I think. Instead of a bandsaw which was viewed as a disappointment, I now feel like I have an altogether new tool that works well and is something I look forward to using more often.

Like a new tool.

SO WHAT IS NEXT FOR JBWW?
The work I have just completed on my bandsaw has taught me a lesson which is to stop once in a while and do maintenance on tools. The fact that the upper pulley on my bandsaw was loose without me knowing it only helps make this point. I have one more tool to do a little maintenance on before I begin building my next furniture project.

My Delta 22-580 jointer.

As soon as I finished work on my bandsaw, I turned immediately to my Delta 22-580 13″ planer. I noticed some performance issues with this tool while making my workbench. In the photo above, I’m in the process of changing out the blades and I’ll do a general clean up. I have had this planer for quite a while now and I have done zero maintenance on it.

Then, I have a new woodworking plan underway on a piece I am calling the Sarah Side Table. This design will be the basis for my next furniture project.

It will be good to be working on a piece of furniture after such a long time building things for my workshop. 🙂

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Have a question or comment about this post? Leave me a comment below; but I also like email. Use my contact form to send me an email (click here).

2 Comments

  1. Chuck says

    Those belts make a big difference. I use them on all my belted machines. I also use the machined pulleys to replace the cast metal ones that come from the factory.

    I look forward to seeing how you work on the planer; especially how you handle the adjustment for blades parallel to platen. I have had two different machines over the years.; the first was the Rigid, then came the Rikon. When new, neither of them were accurate enough for me, and neither included instructions on adjusting for parallel. The factory tech support had no idea what I needed to know, so I had to pull the panels off and study the innards to figure out what I had to do.

    You have to get at those castle nuts on the threaded columns. To make calibration more accessible I made a special cabinet riser for the original planer cabinet that I had already made. This allowed me to get at the underside without removing the bolts that hold the machines to the table.

    NOTE: The old Rigid had 2 threaded columns; the Rikon has 4 threaded columns. Four columns makes this much more ticklish. The smallest turn of the nuts makes a big change. Be sure to have lots of THICK, WIDE, and FLAT scrap wood ready for testing each change you make. I can tolerate .001″ difference from side-to-side but not 005″. Use a digital caliper to measure your thickness. Also, run the wood through the machine multiple times from both directions, until almost no sound is made from the cutters; then take your measurements. This minimizes the peaks and valleys that only one pass produces.

    I’m sure you will discover what I mean.

    Good luck and may God bless you!

    Chuck

  2. Hey Chuck, thanks for the tips. I am hopeful that getting the blades adjusted properly won’t be a chore. I’ll refer to your suggestions when I get to it which won’t be until Friday night at the earliest. And, blessings to you.

    Jeff

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