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Band saw problem: narrow blade tracking at the very edge of lower wheel

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Forum topic by ultradianguy posted 05-10-2021 11:05 AM 672 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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ultradianguy

4 posts in 1022 days


05-10-2021 11:05 AM

Topic tags/keywords: bandsaw tracking narrow blades question

Hi folks -

So I have a 9” grizzly 0803 bandsaw. Have been using it with a 3/8” blade for some time, but got a larger BS, so wanted to switch the 9” to a narrow blade.
I’ve tried putting on a 1/4” and a 1/8” blade, and I’m having the same problem with both.

I can get the blade to track in the center on the top wheel, but it ends up on the very forward edge of the lower wheel – with the teeth actually starting to go past the edge – so it looks like it could fall off in a second.

I checked the alignment – I can get both wheels parallel but the bottom one seems to be about 1/8” farther out. I tried shimming the top wheel to get it coplanar – that seemed to make things worse. I tried shimming the bottom wheel even more – reasoning that since the blade was at the forward edge, moving it forward might put it closer to center. What’s weird is that depending on how much I shimmed it – it either stayed at the front edge or went to the back edge. Nothing I did seemed to put anywhere close to center. I couldn’t even get it so it was entirely on the tire.

I’ve tried it with different amounts of tension on the blades, in case that made a difference – but it didn’t.

I’m not entirely sure I ever checked tracking on the bottom with the 3/8” – but it never fell off for sure.

The other thing – which may or may not be related – is that the quick release tension lever has always been a little flaky. Sometimes it does exactly what it should. Other times, moving it to the release position seems to do almost nothing. It seems worst when there is the most tension. Using the deflection method on these blades, I ended up having to turn the tension up almost to the max – and when I tried to use the release bar, there’s almost no change. Since the plate that angles the top wheel is part of the same mechanism, I wondered if there could be any relationship.

One last thing—with no blade on there, the plate that angles the top wheel is floppy. It rests against the tracking screw but there is no force pulling it back against the screw. Maybe that’s normal, but I wondered.

I’ve been doing lots of reading but so far, haven’t gotten any clues. I know there are some bandsaw experts out there, so any help would be appreciated.

Thanks!


4 replies so far

View Kudzupatch's profile

Kudzupatch

297 posts in 2450 days


#1 posted 05-10-2021 12:54 PM

The main thing that determines tracking is the crown on the tire. The blade wants to run uphill and will try to stay on the high spot of wheel. Assuming that the there is nothing else wrong and the wheels are inline I am guessing your tire has no crown.

It will be very slight and may not be able to see it just looking. But lay a straight edge on the wheel and see if there is has a crown.

-- Jeff Horton * Kudzu Craft skin boats* www.kudzucraft.com

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

8772 posts in 3441 days


#2 posted 05-10-2021 01:32 PM

Makes no difference where it runs on the lower wheel, as long as it’s not falling off. Can’t help with the tension bar issue, but it sounds like you are applying way too much tension for those narrow blades. And yes, without a blade exerting force on the upper tension/tracking mechanism, it will flop around like a fish out of water… it is completely normal.

Cheers,
Brad

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

View ultradianguy's profile

ultradianguy

4 posts in 1022 days


#3 posted 05-10-2021 10:29 PM

Thanks – so I think I’ve determined that the spring is shot – just ordered a new one. (with no blade on, the tension release lever does what it should – but with a blade on there, going from released to normal barely moves the wheel – so it seems not able to apply enough tension to move the wheel up when a blade is on). That might explain why I’ve had to turn it up to max to get the blade tight enough. Once I get that, I’ll start from scratch and see if I can’t get this working right.

View Bstrom's profile

Bstrom

360 posts in 415 days


#4 posted 05-11-2021 12:14 AM



Thanks – so I think I ve determined that the spring is shot – just ordered a new one. (with no blade on, the tension release lever does what it should – but with a blade on there, going from released to normal barely moves the wheel – so it seems not able to apply enough tension to move the wheel up when a blade is on). That might explain why I ve had to turn it up to max to get the blade tight enough. Once I get that, I ll start from scratch and see if I can t get this working right.

- ultradianguy


May as well check your tires while you’re at it to see if they have worn excessively. Get it all worked out at one time…

-- Bstrom

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