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View nipponese's profile

Why does my bandsaw blade track towards the front of the wheel?

by nipponese
posted 06-23-2017 12:10 PM


23 replies so far

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10859 posts in 1965 days


#1 posted 06-23-2017 01:14 PM

Don’t worry about coplanar. Let the blade sit where it wants.

Edit: after adjusting tracking of course. Don’t worry about spinning the blade in the opposite direction.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5224 posts in 4439 days


#2 posted 06-23-2017 01:15 PM

What saw, what width blade, what kind of tires, what kind of guides? Ya gotta give us more to work with before we can help.
Bill

-- [email protected]

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

4140 posts in 2467 days


#3 posted 06-23-2017 01:23 PM

Why adjust to be coplanar? I have never done that. Did you check to see how it tracked before you “adjusted” it.

You need to watch the Alex Snodgrass video on setting up a bandsaw. Sorry no link but just Google it.

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

3125 posts in 2651 days


#4 posted 06-23-2017 01:46 PM

Coplanarity is not necessary. If you adjust wheels for coplanar as soon as you readjust your tracking you are out of coplanar. Adjust so the gullet is approximately centered and forget about coplanar.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View Bill Berklich's profile

Bill Berklich

890 posts in 867 days


#5 posted 06-23-2017 02:23 PM

Ditch the “co-planar” WORST advice ever. Think castor/camber like the front tires on your car. You will apply both by tipping/twisting the wheel resulting in moving the blade track – just like your front tires.

-- Bill - Rochester MI

View GR8HUNTER's profile

GR8HUNTER

6369 posts in 1191 days


#6 posted 06-23-2017 02:27 PM

as you know by now forget coplanar watch THIS

:<))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

5659 posts in 3722 days


#7 posted 06-23-2017 06:10 PM

A band saw’s wheels are supposed to be co-planar once it leaves the factory. Tilting the upper wheel is the only way to adjust tracking. In order to adjust for co-planar wheels is to add shims to the upper arbor. This will take care of any slight deviation from factory setting. Usually the factory setting is close enough to not be a problem, but if the wheels are off by a big amount, say 1/8” or more, then the wheels should be re-aligned for a co-planar condition.

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 4126 days


#8 posted 06-23-2017 07:01 PM

That’s a wider blade, looks like the back is
riding on the crest of the tire. I don’t see
any problem with that setup. If the saw
starts throwing the blade off, then you’d
have a problem.

View bbasiaga's profile

bbasiaga

1243 posts in 2474 days


#9 posted 06-23-2017 07:18 PM

The wisdom I have always heard is that you should have the gullet of the blade centered on the crest of the wheel. Your blade would have to move back a lot to get there. Don’t worry about coplanar….it is not a requirement.

If the gullet is not on the center of the crest the blade will want to wander as it cuts.

If your saw is a large saw that has a completely flat face to the wheel, then where the blade sits matters less, assuming the guides can still reach it.

Brian

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

View MrUnix's profile (online now)

MrUnix

7468 posts in 2677 days


#10 posted 06-23-2017 07:53 PM

Tilting the top wheel does walk it back a little, but I would like to maintain coplanarity. Any suggestions out there?

Tilting the wheel? I’m guessing that you are doing that via the tracking mechanism… which is what it is for.
Here is the obligatory band saw tune up video… watch it, do it, make sawdust….

Band Saw Clinic with Alex Snodgrass

Only other suggestion is to be careful using wide blades. It is very easy to over tension the blade and cause damage to the tilting bracket – which will make tracking the blade almost impossible and usually results in having to replace broken/bent parts to correct.

Cheers,
Brad

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

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

1437 posts in 3239 days


#11 posted 06-24-2017 12:46 PM

Every blade finds a position on the wheels it likes. Just live with it as long as it works. The trick to setting up blades and guides is to (1) find this blade position and (2) THEN move the guides into position to the blade! Never try to position the blade to fit the guide. This will drive you crazy as the blade will always move back to the position on the wheels it likes.

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View jonah's profile

jonah

2075 posts in 3777 days


#12 posted 06-24-2017 01:05 PM

The amount of questionable band saw advice is kind of amazing. Just watch the Snodgrass video and do what he does. Forget about coplanarity.

View Robert's profile

Robert

3516 posts in 1959 days


#13 posted 06-24-2017 03:18 PM

Check on this, but I think I’ve read some brands of saws are designed with non coplanar wheels. IMO what he says will not work on every machine especially ones with non-crowned or very low crown tires. I was advised not to change the factory settings, only if replacing the bearings.

Jonah, its not that simple. Lots of people advocate the Snodgrass video. No intention to start a debate, but be forewarned what he says re: drift has never worked for me (and not just me).

To me, its a whole lot easier and quicker to live with drift. 2 minutes to adjust the fence and I’m back to work. I’ve talked to tech I think at Powermatic and he said some bandsaws are actually designed for drift. I believe this is true because the manuals for both my saws (Rikon and Jet) have instructions on adjusting fence.

I suggest you call tech support for your saw and run it past them.

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

View Kelly's profile

Kelly

2413 posts in 3423 days


#14 posted 06-24-2017 10:04 PM

It’s difficult to believe band saw manufacturers haven’t figured out how to send their machines out the door with co-planer wheels after decades of building theme, in the course of competing with each other for sales.

My PM wheels aren’t co-planer and never will be, unless whoever gets it after me tampers with it.

My fence will not adjust for drift without a lot of work. It locks at the front and back. If I had to tweak the fence each time I swapped blades, it, probably, wouldn’t get used for anything other than scroll work.

My fence is nothing to write home about, but it will give me veneer or whatever I ask of it. All I have to do is get the gullet on center and the tension right.

View Aj2's profile

Aj2

2422 posts in 2276 days


#15 posted 06-24-2017 11:33 PM

I like this guys video on bandsaw tips and safety.Ive found a lot of truth in what he says.The beginning is very noisy but it gets quieter.https://youtu.be/W7B-PGON9w8

Alan snodgrass videos are pretty good too.But Sometime I feel like I’m watching a salesman at a county fair.

-- Aj

View jonah's profile

jonah

2075 posts in 3777 days


#16 posted 06-25-2017 12:03 AM



Check on this, but I think I ve read some brands of saws are designed with non coplanar wheels. IMO what he says will not work on every machine especially ones with non-crowned or very low crown tires. I was advised not to change the factory settings, only if replacing the bearings.

Jonah, its not that simple. Lots of people advocate the Snodgrass video. No intention to start a debate, but be forewarned what he says re: drift has never worked for me (and not just me).

To me, its a whole lot easier and quicker to live with drift. 2 minutes to adjust the fence and I m back to work. I ve talked to tech I think at Powermatic and he said some bandsaws are actually designed for drift. I believe this is true because the manuals for both my saws (Rikon and Jet) have instructions on adjusting fence.

I suggest you call tech support for your saw and run it past them.

- rwe2156


Thinking about the physics of a band saw, coplanarity has no place in the thing. It couldn’t matter less whether or not the wheels are coplanar. All that matters is what happens when the blade meets wood. If the wheel is crowned and the gullet isn’t centered on the crown, the blade will deflect to the side. If the gullet is centered on the crown it will stay straight. The only wheel that matters is the top one. The bottom wheel is just power delivery. The top wheel affects how the blade enters the guides and how supported it is. Who cares about the part of the blade that’s not going to be cutting until it comes all the way back around again?

I’ve never used a band saw without crowned wheels, so I can’t speak to how that affects things. I will say that both band saws I have and the few others I have used have not had any blade drift once I got them adjusted properly.

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

117711 posts in 4056 days


#17 posted 06-25-2017 12:43 AM

Welcome to LJs nipponese
I”m another guy that agrees with Snodgrass approach coplanarity can mess your band saws tracking up because they are manufactured to have offset wheels. another issue is like Snodgrass’s suggestion I’ve found that tracking the blade.s gullet on the center of the top wheel has always worked for me as long as the guides are set up properly.
.

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

5659 posts in 3722 days


#18 posted 06-25-2017 06:07 PM


A band saw s wheels are supposed to be co-planar once it leaves the factory. Tilting the upper wheel is the only way to adjust tracking. In order to adjust for co-planar wheels is to add shims to the upper arbor. This will take care of any slight deviation from factory setting. Usually the factory setting is close enough to not be a problem, but if the wheels are off by a big amount, say 1/8” or more, then the wheels should be re-aligned for a co-planar condition.

- MrRon


I still stand by my previous statement (see above), but a book written by Mark Duginske presents a very compelling reason to have band saw wheels co-planar. The following is taken from his book:

“Coplanar wheels greatly improve band-saw performance by improving its efficiency. The wheels work together rather than competing with each other.The blade can track itself without any unneeded interference. Thus, when wheels are coplanar, there is less vibration, more accuracy, more power, and less lead and wandering. It will be easier to get good results without having to overtension the blade. There is better performance from blades larger than 1/4 inch. You will notice this when you are resawing and making straight cuts.”

Mark is a respected practitioner of the band saw and I can’t dismiss his most convincing treatise on band saws

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

1437 posts in 3239 days


#19 posted 06-25-2017 06:45 PM

Interesting thread. It goes to show how diverse opinions are. Reminds me of the old saying “Opinions are like—-——-, everybody has one”! ; )

(lets see if this passes the administrator’s hammer)

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

117711 posts in 4056 days


#20 posted 06-25-2017 06:53 PM

nipponese
I suggest you call the manufacturer of your saw and see what they say about the Coplanar idea to sort things out.

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

4140 posts in 2467 days


#21 posted 06-25-2017 07:51 PM

Yes, lots of opinions on bandsaw setup.

I have a Jet 16” bandsaw and had problems with resaw and did two things.

First, I used the Snodgrass method for setting it up.

Second, I measured and set the tension of the blade using a digital caliper attached to the blade. I was using a 1/2” Woodslicer.

The saw does great with resaw now…what can I say. Also, no vibration. While having the wheels coplanar sounds great, I am uncertain what is meant by being more efficient and if that makes any real difference.

But, like many things in Woodworking, there are several ways to get to the same point.

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10859 posts in 1965 days


#22 posted 06-25-2017 08:03 PM

While some may fight their saw to get their wheels coplanar.

I will be using mine.

Get it close if you want for peace of mind and let it roll.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Kelly's profile

Kelly

2413 posts in 3423 days


#23 posted 06-25-2017 08:10 PM

The problem with saying band saw wheels are supposed to be coplanar is:

1) it presumes the three high end, 14” saws I’ve seen that are like mine, and including mine, do not have coplanar wheels and were built years apart, so the statement indicates Powermatic has been building defective saws for decades;

2) it would only take seconds to set the saws to coplaner, with the upper wheel at a given tilt, since manufacturing techniques are such that thousands of machines would be built to the same tolerances (think in terms of nails, for nail guns), so the same shims could be used on each one to get to where you want it;

3) as I noted, above, it’s not likely companies like Powermatic (and Jet), Grizzley, Laguan and so on are going to ignore the problem at the expense of sales; and,

4) as many of us indicate, we cut without drift using non-coplanar wheels.

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