Reply by jimintx

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Posted on Bandsaws: 14" and 18" w/ same resaw capacity?

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916 posts in 1972 days

#1 posted 02-17-2017 06:01 PM

You began the question by saying you could not wrap your head around the bandsaw size and capacity topic. To answer that specifically, rather than telling you why you might want one versus another, or adding other considerations in the selection process, you have to think about the geometry of these saws.

As a historical convention, the “SIZE” of the saw is the diameter of the wheels in the saw. You can then readily see that the maximum width of the cut, the throat size, is limited to the diameter of the wheels, commonly less a little to accommodate the frame of the saw.

(It is outside this topic, but note that a three-wheel saw can use small wheels because the extra wheel is placed further back in the saw frame, and routes the blade away from the vertical cutting side of the moving blade.)

The “RESAW” capacity, being a vertical measurement, is very simply governed by the distance between the wheels. In the older design, cast frame saws, when you add a riser block you are simply spreading the wheels further apart by raising the upper wheel.

The steel frame saws now offered by Laguna, Rikon, Jet, and so on, are not limited by the structural characteristics of the cast frame, and can be built with the wheels further apart while still maintaining adequate frame rigidity to control the blade.

Hope this helps your thinking.

-- Jim, Houston, TX

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