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Forum topic by Kelly posted 01-17-2021 05:41 AM 1209 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Kelly

3372 posts in 3951 days


01-17-2021 05:41 AM

Topic tags/keywords: bandsaw band saw guide guides adjustment allen screw allen screw cap cap screw cap adjustable jig allen head allen head screw thumb screws jig knobs

Got my Grizzly 531 bandsaw a couple weeks back. Adjusting blade guides results in the usual “oh hell no, I don’t wanna” thing. More so because I have to grab one of the two or three Allen wrenches and loosen the locks to move the wheels in or out.

Did I mention I don’t like having to find ANY wrench to adjust a bandsaw? Did I mention I am not alone in this and after market vendors sell thousands of dollars in guide kits that allow the likes of me and thousands of others to avoid tools?

ANYWAY, I bought a couple bags of special caps that press on to Allen screw heads to covert them into thumb screws for some projects I worked on. I’d only used a few, so had MANY left. I lost a few fighting the conversion to metric, but, so far they have allowed me to set bearing guides without seeking out the assistance of wrenches. The pressure they allow me to put on the screws have, thus far, shown sufficient.

Give these handy creatures a try.


16 replies so far

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Kelly

3372 posts in 3951 days


#1 posted 01-17-2021 05:43 AM

P.S. The ones in the photo are not the ones I got. Their photo is offered as a jumping off place for those considering making their screws more “usable.”

The ones I bought have ridges around the edges and offer a very good grip.

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AMZ

285 posts in 396 days


#2 posted 01-17-2021 11:14 AM

Thanks! I’ve never seen those before!

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jbmaine

156 posts in 476 days


#3 posted 01-17-2021 02:34 PM

Just a tip. When installing the plastic knobs on cap screws, pressing them on ( as in a vise) works better than tapping them on with a hammer. I’ve broken them before tapping them on.

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SMP

3426 posts in 912 days


#4 posted 01-17-2021 03:57 PM

So they have them for Allen head screws too?

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Kelly

3372 posts in 3951 days


#5 posted 01-17-2021 05:18 PM

Yep. First saw them about forty years ago when a machinist used them for the locking screws on a tool I asked him to make me. Much prettier than wing or other types.

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Kelly

3372 posts in 3951 days


#6 posted 01-17-2021 05:19 PM

Thanks for the tip, JB.

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Foghorn

1030 posts in 393 days


#7 posted 01-17-2021 08:26 PM

Those look pretty cool. Mine uses only one size of wrench, stuck to a magnet on the side of the saw. Works for me.

-- Darrel

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SMP

3426 posts in 912 days


#8 posted 01-17-2021 08:39 PM



Yep. First saw them about forty years ago when a machinist used them for the locking screws on a tool I asked him to make me. Much prettier than wing or other types.

- Kelly

Very cool, thanks for this tip. I literally have a drawer full of allen wrenches and always have to try 10 or so different sizes before I stumble on the right size. Or worse, think its right, but its metric and then strips.

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therealSteveN

7222 posts in 1581 days


#9 posted 01-18-2021 04:00 AM


Did I mention I don t like having to find ANY wrench to adjust a bandsaw? Did I mention I am not alone in this and after market vendors sell thousands of dollars in guide kits that allow the likes of me and thousands of others to avoid tools?

- Kelly

I can’t take any credit for the idea, but on my 18” Rikon, all of the allen wrenches are housed in a rubberized tool holder attached to the saw. No rattling away, always right there and waiting.

Lots of similar are available from HF up to high end wrenches, Super glue, and never spend a minute looking again.

Life’s too short….... :-)

-- Think safe, be safe

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tomd

2222 posts in 4777 days


#10 posted 01-18-2021 05:04 AM

I also have the Rikon with the tool holder.

-- Tom D

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Kelly

3372 posts in 3951 days


#11 posted 01-18-2021 06:09 AM

I just sold a Rikon I bought from my buddy and upgraded to a bigger saw. It had the holder too.

For my little Powermatic, I use rare earth magnets to hold not just Allen wrenches, but, also, the stock guides (I’m running a Carter Stabilizer) and for pliers and open end wrenches too.

I had a couple flat rare earth magnets on the new saw, but, with the caps on the Allen screws, I haven’t had to touch a wrench, which is far handier than a wrench holder.

Did I mention I don t like having to find ANY wrench to adjust a bandsaw? Did I mention I am not alone in this and after market vendors sell thousands of dollars in guide kits that allow the likes of me and thousands of others to avoid tools?

- Kelly

I can t take any credit for the idea, but on my 18” Rikon, all of the allen wrenches are housed in a rubberized tool holder attached to the saw. No rattling away, always right there and waiting.

Lots of similar are available from HF up to high end wrenches, Super glue, and never spend a minute looking again.

Life s too short….... :-)

- therealSteveN


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Foghorn

1030 posts in 393 days


#12 posted 01-18-2021 04:47 PM



I just sold a Rikon I bought from my buddy and upgraded to a bigger saw. It had the holder too.

For my little Powermatic, I use rare earth magnets to hold not just Allen wrenches, but, also, the stock guides (I m running a Carter Stabilizer) and for pliers and open end wrenches too.

I had a couple flat rare earth magnets on the new saw, but, with the caps on the Allen screws, I haven t had to touch a wrench, which is far handier than a wrench holder.

- Kelly


So the press on knurled ones like these? https://www.mcmaster.com/thumb-screw-caps/mount-type~press-fit/grip-style~knurled/

-- Darrel

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Kelly

3372 posts in 3951 days


#13 posted 01-18-2021 06:04 PM

That’d be the ones, Darrel. I was going to loads some pictures, but I forgot to bring the phone-camera back in from the shop.

I’ll get to that today and add them to the initial post.

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therealSteveN

7222 posts in 1581 days


#14 posted 01-18-2021 07:32 PM

I could see that the knurled, or knobby thumb hold knobs that would allow for easy grip, no slip, and may be a step up from dinkering around with an Allen wrench.

The ones in the initial pic looked smooth, and for my fingers might prove frustrating.

Old arthritic fangers kinda suck…..

-- Think safe, be safe

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Kelly

3372 posts in 3951 days


#15 posted 01-18-2021 09:22 PM

Photos of the Allen head screw caps at work were added to the initial post.

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