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15 November 2012

18" Bandsaw Project part 1

My small Jet bandsaw really isn't up to the task of making deep cuts, for example when ripping my own wide veneer. Five inches seems to be it's comfortable limit in wood such as beech, and the guides only allow for a six inch depth anyway. So, what to do? Save up a grand or two for a light trade machine, or improvise?

I've been a follower of, the wonderfull site of Matthias Wandel, for some time now. Matthias is what I would call a engineer who works primarily in wood. His inventive mind has lead him to create many wooden marvels, amongst which his wooden woodworking machines are a joy behold. Anyway, Matthias had built a largish bandsaw from wood, and it seemed to work remarkably well. This inspired me to set about building, rather than buying, the larger bandsaw I desired. Having got about two thirds of the way to date, I think I should have just purchased Matthias's bandsaw plans, rather than design my own from scratch! However, I like a challenge and will be pleased to have my own design when it's all finished. Much respect and thanks to Matthias though, for it was his success at building a bandsaw that gave me confidence that it was a feasible idea. Also, having purchased Matthias's BigPrint software, I could easily produce full size paper templates for any of the parts I needed.

So, how is the project going? The saw is currently running and tracks really well. I still need to build guards and a table for it, most likely upgrade the old motor that I've been using and enclose it, and devise some good dust collection/extraction.