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Hi all,
I have a problem that I doubt that anyone can help me with, but I need a shoulder to cry on.
About 6 months ago(maybe longer), I purchased a Carter AccuRight Ratchet Rod bandsaw tensioner.
It took me a couple months to get around to opening the package and installing it. I first used it on a 1/4" blade and it worked great, and made tensioning the blade much easier on my Delta 28-203 14" bandsaw.
However, a month or so ago, I put on my brand new 1/2" Woodslicer blade to do some resawing. And it took alot of tensioning to get the blade as tight as needed. The Ratchet Rod made the task much easier than it would have been without it.
Midway through the cut a I heard an incredible noise, BANG!!!, then heard more noise that wouldn't stop until I frantically hit the stop button on the saw.
What had happened was, the bottom of the tension rod slipped off of the semi-rounded frame of the saw and slid down between the back of the frame and the top wheel housing.
It bent the ratchet rod, and trashed my brand new blade, along with the top urethane tire, which I just installed last summer.

I'm so hurt. Not physically, but mentally, and also heartbroken.
I emailed Carter, not to ask for a replacement, but to try to find out if it was something I did wrong, or just the engineering of the way the rod rests on the rounded frame, which I personally feel is a design flaw. Of course, it could be that I applied too much tension, but I don't believe that to be the case, as I only put more tension on the blade until the cuts were satisfactory.
Anyway after two emails to Carter, I have not received a response, not even a "it sucks to be you" response.
What do you all think I did wrong?

Jim
 

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Just replacing the tension rod would not cause what you describe.. sounds like the sliding tension bracket gave out, which may or may not have been defective (but in any case, not Carters fault). You could have very well applied too much tension, which caused it to fail. Post some pictures of what broke so we can see what happened and better determine the cause.

Cheers,
Brad

PS: I'm a bit confused about your comment: "Semi-rounded frame".. there should be a flat section where the tension rod rests, not 'semi-rounded'. Should look like this:

Musical instrument Gas Font Metal Household hardware
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
There is no flat section on my bandsaw frame. It looks pretty much like yours, except no flat. I can't remember offhand if it looks like a flat piece is missing, or if it never had one. I will look and take a pic when I get home from work. After I get a little shuteye. I hate midnight turn.

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The sliding tension bracket did not let loose. The rod slid off of the frame and bent the rod. I had a heck of a time getting it off. Ended up breaking the rod at the bend. I put the OEM tension rod back on and replaced blade and tire and it has been working fine.
 

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Hmmm… I have the exact same saw (well, a 28-207, which is the same saw but with a different stand), so I'm not sure why you would not have that flat area for the tension rod. If it's rounded, allowing the rod to slide forward under enough pressure, that would be a problem.. and would most likely have happened with the stock rod as well I would think, particularly with a large blade where it is about at its maximum tension. The carter thing might have been a weaker steel, but it's hard to say.. plus with the racketing mechanism, you could have over tensioned it without realizing it. Here is a closer shot of the area, just for reference:

Gas Auto part Circle Cleanliness Ceiling


Cheers,
Brad
 

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Strange indeed.. without the flat area, it sure looks like there is the possibility of the rod sliding forward under extreme pressure, and it seems like that is what happened with yours unfortunately. To prevent it from happening in the future, it might be a good idea to grab a dremel tool with a grinding bit and carve out a little dimple where the rod meets the cast iron, making it captive and preventing it from shifting forward.

You can probably still use the ratcheting knob though if you fab up a new rod.. I've seen others who made them out of some all-thread (threaded rod) with a socket on top.. used in conjunction with a standard socket wrench, which is basically what that carter knob is.

Cheers,
Brad
 

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You might be able to use the existing rod if it is long enough. It doesn't have to reach all the way down to the normal bearing surface. You could machine a piece to fit in the gap that would accept the end of the rod. Perhaps a short piece of square steel stock with a shallow hole drilled in the end to accept the rod. It could be epoxied (or JB welded) in place, but I think that just the pressure from the rod should be enough. It all depends on whether or not the Remaining piece of the rod is long enough. Can't tell from the picture.
 

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The rod isn t long enough Kman. Thehandle hits the top of the wheel housing.

- James Gallo
That's a shame. The handle looks like it has a square shaft that fits into the socket on the rod. If it is a standard size a cheap socket extension might get you back in business iff there is space between the rod and the wheel housing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for all your help Kman. I did what you said, dremeled an area for the rod, put on an extension, and I'm back in business. Works great. Had to do a little grinding and filing where the rod broke off, but it works great now.
But I still don't think I will ever buy another Carter product. Not that it was the products fault, but because their CS would not reply to my emails.

Jim
 

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That is great!

Actually, using the Dremel to make a spot to keep the rod from slipping was MrUnix' idea. I will take credit for the cheap socket extension. My work for the day is done. Time to grab a beer and relax :).

If you continue to have problems it could be that there is a problem with the threaded rod itself. It may be too soft and may bend under load. Actually, the point on the end without any corresponding "socket" on the saw seems like a bad design. Even a flat bottomed rod would be better. My concern about the pointed end and a hollowed out spot would be focusing all of the pressure on a small spot on the casting. I would try to spread it out somehow.

It wouldn't be the first time there was a problem with heat treating. I got a brand new camshaft and all bearings in a year old car engine a while back when the manufacturer found that a lot had been improperly heat treated. Increased the engine warranty to 100,000 miles to boot. Closing in on the mileage 12 years later with no problems.

I wouldn't give up on the Carter CS. Keep bugging them. If they want to have good customer relations they should try to help you out and should send you a new rod. Had they done so in the first place you would have been on the LJ site praising them!
 
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