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Scroll Saw or Band Saw
19 replies to this topic
Posted 06 September 2009 - 09:07 PM
I know your guys preference is a band saw but I don't know which one is right for my situation.
I will be making balsa crankbaits for bass.
I'm starting with a limited budget and the two machines I'm looking at are the:
Skil 9" 2.5-Amp Band Saw
Skil 16" Variable Speed Scroll Saw
They're right around $100 and that's what I can afford.
I would go with the band saw but my problem is with the bill slot. The band saw only allows blades down to 1/8 inch and I'm using circuit board which is 1/32. So I'm guessing I can't use the band saw for this.
Should I just get the scroll saw or get the band saw and just buy some kind of hand saw for the bills?
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:27 PM
Hold on Thad - the 1/8" on the band saw blade refers to the longitudinal width of the blade, not the kerf, or how thin the blade is. I happen to use a scroll saw with the thickest blade available to cut bait blanks. It's about 1/32", perfect to cut a slot for a 1/32" circuit board lip (the only thickness I ever use). If all you ever use is balsa, the saw choice is not a biggie - either will cut balsa easily. If you expect to cut hardwood like basswood, cedar, etc, the band saw is much quicker. Cutting 1" thick basswood on a scroll saw is a lesson in patience, believe me, I know!
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:42 PM
Oh, I see. Well, as you can tell I'm kind of new to wood working. Been messing around with repaints for the last year.
So if I can get a blade that cuts 1/32 of an inch for a band saw then isn't that what I want?
Posted 07 September 2009 - 08:33 AM
There are several models of bandsaws out there that would fit your 100.00 budget..You should really reconsider.Like BobP said, cutting Balsa isn't and big deal,but you may want to try another type wood..If you do,you'll be kicking yourself for not buying the Bandsaw..Nathan
Posted 07 September 2009 - 11:22 AM
A band saw is much more versatile, and the longer, loop blade will last a lot longer.
For me, having used both, I vote band saw, hands down.
Posted 07 September 2009 - 11:53 AM
I would take a bandsaw out of anything I have in my shop. You can cut anything with it..... just be careful to keep your fingers out the way. hahaha the blade sure is sharp:drool:
Posted 07 September 2009 - 07:35 PM
Depending on the machine you buy, a 3/16" or 1/4" should be fine.
Generally speaking, the more intricate the cutting you want to do, the smaller you want the blade.
But the drawback to thin is strength. Since a band saw blade is a strip of sawblade welded into a loop, the weakest part is the weld, where all blades finally fail over time.
The wider the blade, the wider, and stronger, the weld.
1/8" blades are best for small, intricate patterns, but they are relatively fragile.
I have a 16" bandsaw in my Garage, and I have a 5/16" blade on it.
Blade tension, along with a sharp blade, is key to getting good results from a bandsaw.
The smaller, table top saws have much smaller wheels and shorter blades, and can't be tensioned as much as a bigger saw, which is another good reason to stay with a relatively thin blade. Thick blades, like 1/2" or 3/4", really need more tension to reach the proper taugtness, when the blade will "sing" when you twang it with your finger because it's stretched. The tension keeps the blade running and tracking true, instead of drifting as it cuts. Thinner blades don't drift as much, because less blade is actually in the wood during the cut.
Just remember to take the tension off every time you turn off the machine, or the rubber bands that line the two wheels will take a set, and have an imprint of the blade on only part of their faces, which makes it difficult to get the blade to track properly.
After a while, tensioning and untensioning the blade will become second nature to you. And leaving the blade tensioned accidentally won't ruin your machine, as long as you don't do it all the time.
One last thing.
I've found cutting small details is best done by hand, with a file, rasp, or Dremel tool with a sanding drum.
Don't ask a bandsaw to do something it's really not designed for.
Edited by mark poulson, 07 September 2009 - 07:40 PM.
Posted 07 September 2009 - 08:19 PM
Two other things to consider when buying a bandsaw:
1.) The availabillity of blades. In other words, is the length of the blade a popular size? Some saws have blades that are uncommon in size and therefore hard to find
2.) Does the saw have two wheels or three that the blades runs on? Three wheels put more stress on the blade causing premature breakage. I would recommend a two wheel saw.
Oh, I own a bandsaw and a scrollsaw. I'll take the bandsaw any day.
Posted 08 September 2009 - 08:33 PM
I have a 14" Grizzly that I have had since 1993. I was surprised to see a former local muskie lure maker, using a table top band saw. Might have been a 3 wheel, dont remember. I use cedar, but have tried balsa and basswood. Get a bandsaw, even a tabletop, you wont be sorry.
Posted 09 September 2009 - 08:32 PM
The only saw I have is a scroll saw and don't get me wrong I love it to death. All I make is small cranks. It cuts balsa great (like butter). I went to cut some popular and it didn't cut like I thought it would takes some time. In all honesty go with the band saw if you intend to cut anything besides balsa go with the band saw.
Posted 10 September 2009 - 07:34 PM
I use a scroll saw all the time for cutting balsa and also polycarbonate (Lexan) lips, and it does a fine job. But if you're going to be cutting any other wood, and can only have one saw, get a bandsaw.
Posted 10 September 2009 - 08:20 PM
Who is this Band Saw anyway.. Are they a new group?... Cause I have never heard of them. I like the first movie Saw but Saw II and Saw III were predictable.
Just use your teeth. If they arent sharp enough chew on a dog biscut. It kinda taste like a CHICKEN COOKIE.
Posted 11 September 2009 - 07:55 AM
This is just an example folks, of what spraying too many clearcoats in a confined area without proper protection, and ventilation can do to you.
You've been warned!
Posted 11 September 2009 - 09:22 AM
A) You'll never catch my mouth around any wood.
I don't know about you but I hate when they use their teeth.
Posted 11 September 2009 - 09:59 AM
A) Slightly off-topic, but luremakers generally do agree that lip splinters are quite painful
Then (obviously), quit feeding them dog biscuits unless you are training them for production work (expect the work to become less inspired, with a resulting loss of quality)
Posted 11 September 2009 - 12:31 PM
Yeah. Be afraid......be very afraid. If you get the urge to run out and buy a squirrel roaster..........well, get some profesional help right away.
PS. my vote is for the bandsaw.
Posted 11 September 2009 - 07:48 PM
If were voting I vote for the KINGSTON TRIO.....
WHERE DOES HE COME UP WITH THIS STUFF...
Posted 11 September 2009 - 07:57 PM
One of the few blessings of getting older is a merging of past, present, and future.
When I was younger, it was called tripping.
Nowadays, it's probably due to global warming.