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All Replies on If you haven't set up your bandsaw the Alex Snodgrass way

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View CharlesA's profile

If you haven't set up your bandsaw the Alex Snodgrass way

by CharlesA
posted 02-05-2017 12:15 AM


30 replies so far

View rhett's profile

rhett

743 posts in 4024 days


#1 posted 02-05-2017 12:29 AM

Agreed. I heard about him/his video on WoodTalk. I too got amazing results from a machine I once hated.

-- Doubt kills more dreams than failure.

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jimintx

913 posts in 1941 days


#2 posted 02-05-2017 12:44 AM

I need to find those videos.

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3381 posts in 2154 days


#3 posted 02-05-2017 12:47 AM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGbZqWac0jU

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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Robert

3367 posts in 1838 days


#4 posted 02-05-2017 12:56 AM

Would some explain to me why drift is such a big deal?

Isn’t drift determined by the relation of the wheel axis to the table? Plus if its a flat wheel, what difference would it make where the gullets lie?

Personally, I’ve tried his technique on both my saws and it did not eliminate drift.

I’ve researched this and found that the PM machines have parallel wheels. Other machines do not as a result drift is built in and there is nothing you can do to eliminate it. I’ve owned probably 5 different bandsaws and every single one of the manual has instructions on adjusting fence for drift.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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bbasiaga

1243 posts in 2352 days


#5 posted 02-05-2017 12:57 AM

I was there today too! I bought that small blade tensioner to try out too. Can’t wait.

Brian

-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3381 posts in 2154 days


#6 posted 02-05-2017 01:02 AM



Plus if its a flat wheel, what difference would it make where the gullets lie? for drift.

- rwe2156

because most bandsaw tires aren’t flat, they’re crowned, as I understand it. Mine are.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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CharlesA

3381 posts in 2154 days


#7 posted 02-05-2017 01:11 AM

I ve researched this and found that the PM machines have parallel wheels. Other machines do not as a result drift is built in and there is nothing you can do to eliminate it. I ve owned probably 5 different bandsaws and every single one of the manual has instructions on adjusting fence for drift.

- rwe2156

I’m not so sure about that. I’m pretty sure the mechanism to adjust the position of the blade on the wheel on bandsaws tilts the upper wheel.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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cracknpop

341 posts in 2706 days


#8 posted 02-05-2017 01:25 AM

Great respect for Alex Snodgrass. I had bought his guides and followed his video but was still having an alignment issue with my band saw. Talked with him at the Indy wood show the next year. A couple days later, I received a call from an engineer at the manufacturer who told me, “Alex Snodgrass asked me to call you”

-- Rick - I know I am not perfect, but I will keep pressing on toward the goal of becoming all I am called to be.

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NormG

6435 posts in 3361 days


#9 posted 02-05-2017 02:09 AM

Alex did us all a great favor when he did that video. Very impressive and helpful

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Matt's profile

Matt

160 posts in 1308 days


#10 posted 02-05-2017 06:23 AM

I’ve got the carter guides on my Jet 16”. World of difference when added with set up per his instructions. (show demonstration) The mag fence and “FAST” set up bars are worth the price of admission. I butterflied a 8”x8”x4” block of 20 Wenge and Mahogany glueups with a 1/4” 3tpi blade. The cut was basically perfect with zero drift.

-- My "projects" always look better with beer goggles.

View coxhaus's profile

coxhaus

112 posts in 1251 days


#11 posted 02-05-2017 06:38 AM

I like the Alex Snodgrass bandsaw way. It works well for me on several different bandsaws with smaller blades. The only problem I see is when you use large blades, the wheels are too small. I have to position the large blades across the whole wheel.

View AHuxley's profile

AHuxley

874 posts in 3678 days


#12 posted 02-06-2017 04:03 AM


Plus if its a flat wheel, what difference would it make where the gullets lie? for drift.

- rwe2156

because most bandsaw tires aren t flat, they re crowned, as I understand it. Mine are.

- CharlesA

The vast majority of European saws have flat tires (Minimax, Felder, Hammer, Laguna and Agazzani for example). His methods are aimed mainly toward small lightweight saws.

View Desert_Woodworker's profile

Desert_Woodworker

1760 posts in 1571 days


#13 posted 02-06-2017 01:43 PM



I like the Alex Snodgrass bandsaw way. It works well for me on several different bandsaws with smaller blades. The only problem I see is when you use large blades, the wheels are too small. I have to position the large blades across the whole wheel.

- coxhaus


I have the same situation with my PM14? If I use and do the Snodgrass method- I am limited to a 5/8” blade.

-- Desert_Woodworker

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3381 posts in 2154 days


#14 posted 02-06-2017 01:45 PM

Isn’t that because Snodgrass (and a lot of other folks) say that you shouldn’t use larger than a 1/2” blade on a 14’ bandsaw?

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View jmartel's profile

jmartel

8435 posts in 2507 days


#15 posted 02-06-2017 03:11 PM



Isn t that because Snodgrass (and a lot of other folks) say that you shouldn t use larger than a 1/2” blade on a 14 bandsaw?

- CharlesA

Correct. A 14” saw cannot tension a 3/4” blade enough, despite the manufacturer’s claims that the saw can handle it. A 1/2” is fine for resawing anyway. I’ve gotten the same results with the snodgrass setup and a 1/2” Olson blade (and a Woodslicer worked even better) on my Grizzly 14”er.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

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TheGreatJon

344 posts in 1590 days


#16 posted 02-06-2017 03:26 PM



Plus if its a flat wheel, what difference would it make where the gullets lie? for drift.

- rwe2156

because most bandsaw tires aren t flat, they re crowned, as I understand it. Mine are.

- CharlesA

The vast majority of European saws have flat tires (Minimax, Felder, Hammer, Laguna and Agazzani for example). His methods are aimed mainly toward small lightweight saws.

- AHuxley

Really? I can’t say I’ve inspected the tires of many European saws, but that would seem… ill advised. I would wonder what the design rational is. The crown is pretty important unless we are talking about metal-cutting saws (which spin MUCH slower), .

The crown ensures that the blade stays in position when it is spinning at high speed. It’s all about centrifugal force. When you swing a bucket of water up and over your head, it doesn’t spill on your head because the force is pushing it away from the center of rotation and is overcoming gravity. With a bandsaw blade, the blade will stick to the crown because it is trying to move as far from center as it can. It is being subjected to a significant amount of centrifugal force because it is being spun around your wheel.

-- This is not the signature line you are looking for.

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CharlesA

3381 posts in 2154 days


#17 posted 02-06-2017 03:58 PM

Highland woodworking finally came out with a 3/4” woodslicer, due to demand, but they still recommend the 1/2”, I believe. For years they maintained that a 3/4” was inferior.

Isn t that because Snodgrass (and a lot of other folks) say that you shouldn t use larger than a 1/2” blade on a 14 bandsaw?

- CharlesA

Correct. A 14” saw cannot tension a 3/4” blade enough, despite the manufacturer s claims that the saw can handle it. A 1/2” is fine for resawing anyway. I ve gotten the same results with the snodgrass setup and a 1/2” Olson blade (and a Woodslicer worked even better) on my Grizzly 14”er.

- jmartel


-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View coxhaus's profile

coxhaus

112 posts in 1251 days


#18 posted 02-06-2017 06:12 PM


Isn t that because Snodgrass (and a lot of other folks) say that you shouldn t use larger than a 1/2” blade on a 14 bandsaw?

- CharlesA

I am on a 18 inch Minimax now. The method does not work with big blades. So are you saying only use the Alex’s method with small bandsaws? with a crown?

Plus the Minimax does not have a crown.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3381 posts in 2154 days


#19 posted 02-06-2017 06:31 PM

I don’t know.

I know his target is the 14” bandsaw, since it is, by far, the most common. He did reference a 17” bandsaw and said it worked for it, but I don’t know enough to say beyond that.

He said he answers questions on social media. Would be interesting to see what he says.

Charles

Isn t that because Snodgrass (and a lot of other folks) say that you shouldn t use larger than a 1/2” blade on a 14 bandsaw?

- CharlesA

I am on a 18 inch Minimax now. The method does not work with big blades. So are you saying only use the Alex s method with small bandsaws? with a crown?

Plus the Minimax does not have a crown.

- coxhaus


-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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splintergroup

2632 posts in 1579 days


#20 posted 02-06-2017 06:33 PM


I am on a 18 inch Minimax now. The method does not work with big blades. So are you saying only use the Alex s method with small bandsaws? with a crown?

Plus the Minimax does not have a crown.

- coxhaus

I have a MM 16. The tires are indeed flat, but the wheels have a slight crown profile. You can’t really see it unless you put an indicator on it.

With regard to setup. I just square everything up. blade orthogonal to the table top, table top miter slot parallel to the blade, fence parallel to the miter slot, guide bar parallel to the blade.

No drift compensation.

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Skatergirl46

17 posts in 954 days


#21 posted 02-06-2017 09:40 PM

I have a 1/2” wood slicer on my 14” Jet and it’s great. I have no reason to want a 3/4” blade at this point.

-- I'm happiest when I have wheels on my feet or sawdust in my hair.

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coxhaus

112 posts in 1251 days


#22 posted 02-06-2017 10:43 PM

I don’t worry about Alex’s method any more with my Minimax 18 inch bandsaw. When I had my smaller bandsaws in the past I used his method and it work fine for me.

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shipwright

8285 posts in 3155 days


#23 posted 02-06-2017 11:53 PM

Thanks Charles.
I watched the video. I’ve been using bandsaws (mostly really big ones) all my life and had always believed that drift was a function of the blade not the setup. I have always set my saw up to account for the drift and it has always worked for me. However I will give his setup a go. It would be great if I could eliminate the drift setup step.

I’m a pretty old dog but I think I might be able to learn a new trick …..... maybe….

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese! http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

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coxhaus

112 posts in 1251 days


#24 posted 02-07-2017 01:17 AM

I would like to know if you can eliminate the fence setup everytime there is a blade change. I just figured the bigger saws with bigger tables and longer fences required more adjustment than a small bandsaw. I would be willing to use Alex’s method for smaller blades if I could skip the fence setup. My fence is a Kreg 24 inch fence.

Let us know how it works out. When I change blades I may try again but for right now everything is setup.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3381 posts in 2154 days


#25 posted 02-07-2017 01:47 AM

That’s the idea if it works for you.


I would like to know if you can eliminate the fence setup everytime there is a blade change. I just figured the bigger saws with bigger tables and longer fences required more adjustment than a small bandsaw. I would be willing to use Alex s method for smaller blades if I could skip the fence setup. My fence is a Kreg 24 inch fence.

Let us know how it works out. When I change blades I may try again but for right now everything is setup.

- coxhaus


-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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coxhaus

112 posts in 1251 days


#26 posted 02-07-2017 01:52 AM

I would like to hear from shipwright after he has a chance to try it.

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MrUnix

7356 posts in 2556 days


#27 posted 02-07-2017 02:01 AM

I would be willing to use Alex’s method for smaller blades if I could skip the fence setup.

What fence setup are you referring to? If you watch the video, he even deliberately uses the fence out of whack to show that he still gets a perfect cut (at about 15 min. into the video).

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View coxhaus's profile

coxhaus

112 posts in 1251 days


#28 posted 02-07-2017 02:14 AM

I can’t use my fence out of whack when I cut veneers. The thickness will vary on the veneer.

I should add as of right now I have not figured out a way.

View AHuxley's profile

AHuxley

874 posts in 3678 days


#29 posted 02-07-2017 05:49 AM


Plus if its a flat wheel, what difference would it make where the gullets lie? for drift.

- rwe2156

because most bandsaw tires aren t flat, they re crowned, as I understand it. Mine are.

- CharlesA

The vast majority of European saws have flat tires (Minimax, Felder, Hammer, Laguna and Agazzani for example). His methods are aimed mainly toward small lightweight saws.

- AHuxley

Really? I can t say I ve inspected the tires of many European saws, but that would seem… ill advised. I would wonder what the design rational is. The crown is pretty important unless we are talking about metal-cutting saws (which spin MUCH slower), .

The crown ensures that the blade stays in position when it is spinning at high speed. It s all about centrifugal force. When you swing a bucket of water up and over your head, it doesn t spill on your head because the force is pushing it away from the center of rotation and is overcoming gravity. With a bandsaw blade, the blade will stick to the crown because it is trying to move as far from center as it can. It is being subjected to a significant amount of centrifugal force because it is being spun around your wheel.

- TheGreatJon

Yes, they are flat, I didn’t just make it up. It is not ill advised at all, the saw is engineered to work that way and built to close tolerances it works extremely well and at speeds of 6000+ FPM but I haven’t seen a Euro saw that runs in the 8000-12000 fpm some of the large US saw do/did but it is still faster than the Asian hobby sized saws. The flat wheels are especially good at reducing stress on wide bands and reduce the tendency for them to develop gullet cracks. The setup and tracking of these saws is different from a crowned tire saw but it eliminates a lot of setup issues as well.

View Dustin's profile

Dustin

688 posts in 1097 days


#30 posted 02-07-2017 12:37 PM

Hopefully not too far from the given topic here, but was wondering if anyone has addressed the issue of squaring the blade guard assembly to the blade? I’ve got the Grizzly G0555LANV, and while I know it’s not going to have the fit and finish of a Laguna or a PM, there seems to be a bit of play in the blade guard assembly when it’s moved up/down, making it difficult to align my blade guides. Neither the manual nor Grizzly’s setup videos address this. Any tips, or should I just get used to adjusting the blade guides every time I move the guard?

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

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