The affect of urethane bandsaw tires on the quality of cut

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Forum topic by ThreenailsWoodworks1 posted 11-06-2017 11:52 PM 2074 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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7 posts in 984 days

11-06-2017 11:52 PM

Topic tags/keywords: tires bandsaw cut quality

A couple of months ago I bought a ridgid 14 inch bandsaw off of Craigslist for $125 dollars and love it. I’ve taken the rubber feet off of the motor and had to buy a new blade and it works great but the quality of the cut is not that great. The other day I was changing the blade and thought maybe the bad cuts were the problem the previous owner used it to process deer meat so the tires came all chewed up and I knew I’d have to replace them eventually. I was wondering if anyone knew if changing the tires to new urethane tires would help the quality of cut and what reasonably priced blade I should buy. Thanks in advance.

10 replies so far

View splintergroup's profile


3798 posts in 1999 days

#1 posted 11-07-2017 02:30 PM

In my experience, Urethane tires really don’t do anything to improve cut quality as much as they provide longer service. Since you are replacing the tires, I’d go with the urethane “just because”.

Blades are as much magic as science. Some people swear by brands others hate.

The blade style depends on what/how you want to cut. Resawing takes a wider blade with fewer teeth, general purpose cuts can use more teeth. Cutting curves requires a narrower blade as the radius gets smaller.

There are plenty of blades for a 14” saw in the sub-$20 price range.

Probably more relevant to “which brand blade” in cut quality is blade setup (and cutting technique).

Required viewing is the Snodgrass video:

View ChefHDAN's profile


1656 posts in 3626 days

#2 posted 11-07-2017 02:39 PM

Is it the gray version or the newer Orange one? just curious. I don’t know that you ever get a great cut on a BS, one thing might be if you picked up the new blade at the BORG, you might have one with a raker set which widens the kerf for some dust clearance and leaves a lot of saw marks, I pretty much stick to skip tooth blades.

-- I've decided 1 mistake is really 2 opportunities to learn.. learn how to fix it... and learn how to not repeat it

View jonah's profile


2122 posts in 4075 days

#3 posted 11-07-2017 02:56 PM

The tires do not affect the quality of cut in the slightest, except that really rough, chewed-up tires will make the blade skip around a bit.

I wouldn’t expect much improvement in cut quality from new tires. The Snodgrass video is fantastic for learning how to set the guides up properly. Follow his directions and your cut quality is sure to increase.

View ThreenailsWoodworks1's profile


7 posts in 984 days

#4 posted 11-07-2017 02:57 PM

It’s the gray version. I got a 1/4 inch 5 tpi Bosch blade from lowes just till I could order one from woodcraft. I’m probably going to get the 1/2 3 tpi starett blade then eventually try a timber wolf blade and see which is better.

View TheFridge's profile


10859 posts in 2262 days

#5 posted 11-07-2017 03:03 PM

Bosch suck

I have a 1/2 TW that finally died after I put it through hell. Gonna buy another.

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

View BandsawJeff's profile


52 posts in 977 days

#6 posted 11-07-2017 03:32 PM

I’ve had awesome experience with the timberwolf blades. The only thing I’ve found is through bark they tend not to last as long as some of the less expensive blades. But boy do they cut smooth.

I agree though, urethane def last longer than the rubber but doesnt seem to change the quality of the cut. If you do end up getting a pair try soaking them in warm water before putting them on the saw…makes them much easier to stretch over the tire.

Has anyone here heard of the little ripper? Stockroom just posted a bandsaw “setup” video….blew my mind

View Redoak49's profile


4746 posts in 2765 days

#7 posted 11-07-2017 04:09 PM

It is interesting…..Little Ripper and Track $379 USD

Does anyone have one?

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 4424 days

#8 posted 11-07-2017 05:27 PM

If the tires are out of round you should be
able to observe it by turning them by hand.
The rubber can be scraped to deglaze it if
you want. I have turned band saw tires
round using a wood turning gouge before,
a technique I learned from a Marc Duginske
book on band saws.

View MrUnix's profile


8096 posts in 2975 days

#9 posted 11-07-2017 09:45 PM

As mentioned, the tires won’t effect the cut unless they are really bad off and cause the band to vibrate and jump around. The only thing the tire is there for is to keep the metal blade off the metal tire (and sometimes to provide a crown if the wheel doesn’t already have one). Urethane is, in theory, supposed to be more resilient and last longer, but the debate between rubber and urethane rages on and has forever. I just go with urethane because 1) you don’t have to glue them on, 2) you don’t have to crown them, and 3) the orange looks way cool contrasted to the Delta blue/green/gray :)


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

View ThreenailsWoodworks1's profile


7 posts in 984 days

#10 posted 11-07-2017 09:56 PM

Thanks. I was thinking the same thing about the colors.

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