The bandsaw is a very innovative and helpful tool to have in the garage or in the warehouse. Bandsaws are almost a necessity for woodworkers because of its versatility. These tools are mainly used to make curving cuts and for re-sawing. This is something that is needed quite frequently while making furniture, crafts and other goods. Like all tools today there are so many brands out there to chose from that it can become tiresome, stressful and down right boring to chose the right one. To make it a bit easier for you, we have reviewed some recommended bandsaws at the bottom of this page.
First you should figure out which type of bandsaw is suited for your needs:
Bench-top band saws are for individuals that will need portability. Most bench-top band saws have anywhere from 8-12″ wheels depending on the brand you chose. The benchtop bandsaw is also the least expensive out of all the other saws which will be mentioned. Benchtop bandsaws are arguably the best band saw to chose because of portability and weight, however it likely depends on the work you will be doing.
Best Suited for: Light usage; home handyman, hobby woodworker
Pros: Cheapest, lightest, portable
Cons: Cannot be used for internal cutting, small cutting capacity, limited cutting space
- Stand Mounted
Stand mounted saws are typically sold in a 14″ diameter configuration. Usually stand mounted tools are mounted on cast iron stands for safety or on top of metal cabinets. The stand mounted band saw is the medium price range band saw on the market.
Best Suited for: Most curve cutting, small wood shops, most to all wood working tasks
Pros: Very inexpensive compared to floor-standing models, versatile, small work shop footprint
Cons: Limited cut capacity, small motor so limited on board thickness
- Floor Standing
This is the biggest type of bandsaw that you can purchase typically coming with a 14-18″ diameter blade. Floor-standing band saws have the largest motors of the three types. These are the preferred type to professionals due to the rugged frame construction and versatility.
Best Suited for: Professional use, heavy woodworking, good for very thick board stock
Pros: stable, powerful, and very consistent
Cons: The most expensive of the three, large shop footprint
The points are things you must consider when determining the right fit for you. These features can make woodworking easier and some may even make your profession harder.
- Throat Size:
The throat size is easily explained as the cutting width of the saw. For example, if there is a 17″ tool, that saw will have a cutting width of 17 inches. Some higher priced models of band saws have the option to switch out blades for narrower cutting width. It should be carefully noted that the narrower the blade, the less life you will get out of a blade.
- Motor Power:
This is the amount of power that the tool will have. It is recommended as a general rule of thumb to get a 2HP motor on a bandsaw to prevent binding. For lighter usage, a 1HP motor may suffice. You will also get a longer life out of a larger motor running at a lower work load than a smaller motor running at a full work load. A smaller motor may burn up quickly if ran under a heavy work load for a considerable amount of time.
- Wheel Size:
Wheel size is one of the more important things to consider when deciding which tool to purchase. It is recommended that the bigger the wheel size the better. Smaller wheels perform worse than larger wheels because of the smaller blades having a high tendency to bend.
- Blade Width:
When selecting blade width you must decide on what kind of projects you will be dealing with. If you will be making intricate curves or fine cuts, you will want an 1/8″ wide blade, whereas if you are ripping lumber you may want to get a wider blade for greater cutting efficiency.
Top Bandsaws Reviewed:
Blade Speed: 80, 130, 180, 235 SFPM
Floor footprint: 20.5″ x 49.5″ x 38″
There are very few bench top saws that are more effective and efficient than the JET HVBS-7MW. This saw is backed by a 3/4Hp motor and a 7-12″ cutting capacity. Due to the tiltable stand, this saw is good cutting horizontally and vertically. Jet set out with only 3 things in mind while creating this saw, quality, comfort, and safety. This saw meets and exceeds in all three categories.
To ensure accidents are kept to a minimal, a key safety that the saw has is that it switches off after every single cut. This keeps the blade from being at idle for a prolonged period of time. Another special feature about this bench-top band saw is the coolant system that is incorporated. The Jet 414459 has a built is cooling system to ensure that the blade does not overheat therefore resulting in smooth cuts every time.
The 115V 3/4HP motor also has 4 different cutting speeds depending on the work needing done. The cutting speed can be set to 85, 130, 180, and 285 feet per minute. Add this to the hydraulic down feed and you get a cutting experience that will exceed all expectations.
Check the current price of the JET HVBS-7MW here.
Rikon 10-325 Deluxe Edition
Blade Speed: 1445/2950 ft/min
Floor Footprint:16″ x 20.5″
The Rikon 10-325 bandsaw is an extraordinary tool that has won many awards and is very reliable to get the job done. It is a great tool no matter whether you are ripping, curve-cutting, re-sawing, or cutting in general. This saw outperforms most all stand-mounted saw in its class. A 1-1/2HP motor will ensure that your blade will not bind will cutting the thickest of materials.
The table that is included comes with ball bearing slides and tilt/locks in place for many different cutting angle options. The table also includes a viewing window and a 4-inch dust port. Since the saw is so large, two individuals may be needed for setup. With a shipping weight of 305lbs it is everything but lightweight. The rip fence that is included is made with very heavy construction to ensure it will not break while in use.
A 1-1/2HP motor with 2 speeds allows adjustability depending on what project you are working on. With the tool being the 14″ model, this ensures that you will have enough room for any woodworking or metalworking project.
Dewalt DCS370B Review
This is a superb tool for anyone that needs a portable benchtop bandsaw. This device is designed to be lightweight to carry to certain jobs that may be difficult with heavier saws. The lightweight design is a key feature of this saw. Even though this tool is so lightweight, DEWALT did not cut any corners on the durability. It is made to endure the abuse of being on a job site and will continue to perform over and over again. An easy adjustable blade system keeps the blades fresh and belts working like new.
The DCS370B is designed with a special ergonomical grip to keep your hands and wrist comfortable while working with the tool all day. Many benchtop bandsaw of this size tend to start to feel heavy after using the tool for many hours. With this special designed grip it allows many hours of use.
This tool comes included with a case and manual. However, in order to operate it you will need a Dewalt 18V battery pack and 1-hour charger.This can make it seem more expensive but also expands your tool box with new innovative technology. All Dewalt 18-Volt tools use the same battery to operate therefore you can add drills, impact drivers, reciprocating saws, and many other tools to your work bench that will share the same batteries.
Blade Speed: 1800/4200 SFPM
Floor Footprint: 38″ x 38″x 81″
Powermatic really hit it out of the ballpark with this tool. The PM1800 is a very large machine which is why it is categorized into the floor standing category. Whether you are a professional construction worker or an individual that wants to open a business, this tool with do exactly what you need. Many professional woodworkers face the challenge of picking a manufacturer that produces a machine that allows an easy transition. The more time that you have to spend on transitioning to a new piece of machinery, the more money you are losing out on.
Since this machine is very large and heavy, it may require two individuals to assemble. However, the instructions that are included are very in depth and provide well put together assembly instructions and ease of operation sections.
Some key features of this model of bandsaw include a two-step pulley system to provide a heavy duty and balanced transmission assembly. This 18 inch saw has the capability of 18 inches of resawing which allows satisfaction to most individuals in the industry. The 5HP motor is built to withstand heavy workloads and will last a greater amount of time due the fact that it is so large.
If you are looking for a new bandsaw for your garage, you should go for the JET HVBS-7MW. This is a great bandsaw with great reviews and ratings. The lack of disadvantages and high star rating paired with an abundant amount of information would make me chose this tool. It is hard to ignore other peoples opinions on the product when the praise is so great. The versatility of the JET HVBS-7MW is extensive and overwhelming.
If you are looking for something cheaper and smaller than the Dewalt DCS370B is what you are looking for. It’s not a traditional bench top saw, but that doesn’t really matter: it still is a great tool that gets the small jobs done.