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Band saw wheel alignment

Dennis02's picture

I very much like my 14" 3/4hp Delta bandsaw with riser block installed. Everything was hunkey-dorey until I installed a 3/4" blade to do some heavy sawing of some thick walnut.


Adjusting the blade so it tracked in the middle of the top wheel causes it to rub on the bottom end of the blade guard between the upper and lower wheel assemblies. This blade guard is an extension furnished with the riser block.


To track the blade to where it doesn't rub, the teeth have to be almost flush with the outside (side nearest the door) and even then there's a slight rub.


Checking the bottom wheel once I got rid of the scraping sound I see the blade is almost in the center of the wheel where (I assume) it's supposed to be. This leads me to believe that the two wheels' faces are not lying in the same plane. (??)


I'm considering placing a thin strip of shim stock under the far side of the riser block thus kicking the top wheel forward, then using the tracking adjustment to bring it back parallel to the bottom wheel. It shouldn't take more than a few thou to do this and would bring the blade out away from the back edge of the blade guard.


Before I look up my hernia brace dealing with the weight of that upper casting and all, does this sound like a reasonable thing to do or should I live with the blade riding so far off center of the top wheel?


 


Dennis
........... From Beautiful Skagit Co. Wa. Dennis
RSRose's picture

(post #82319, reply #1 of 16)

Dennis,

Don't shim the riser. That would destroy the integrity of the mating between the riser and the bandsaw body. Wheel alignment on that saw is accomplished by using shim washers behind the top wheel bearing. Remove the mounting nut and shim the wheel out. Check the alignment with a straightedge against the rims of both wheels.

(Most Taiwanese saws need the bottom wheel shimmed, the top wheel bearing will be damaged if spacers are used there.)

Rich

Dennis02's picture

(post #82319, reply #2 of 16)

> ....Don't shim the riser.


Much appreciate the advice, Rich. I was first gonna shim out the wheel but was told not to mess with it. I agree it's definitely a sounder approach.


Before I tear the thing down to tweak it, do you happen to know the diameter of the shaft in question and a source of suitable shim washers to use in this case?


Sorry to be such a PITA with all the questions.


 


Dennis
........... From Beautiful Skagit Co. Wa. Dennis
RSRose's picture

(post #82319, reply #4 of 16)

Dennis,

Just take the upper cover off and measure the shaft diameter. Get an assortment of thin spacers. The total movement shouldn't be more than a few 16ths.

Rich

riverr1's picture

(post #82319, reply #3 of 16)

Thought I add my question here. I also have the same saw, Delta. I've been waiting a long time to get it and recently finally did. My question is what fence and miter to get with for the saw. Both are available from Delta, but after market products are also available. Any suggestions on which way to go here?


thanks

Dennis02's picture

(post #82319, reply #5 of 16)

> .....what fence and miter to get with for the saw.


I bought the Delta fence. A recent review (FWW?) mentioned it was the only one that had a means to adjust for blade drift.


I used the miter gauge from my old table saw until I sold it a few months ago. Bought just a cheapie thing for the band saw since I don't consider it a cuttoff machine.


 


Dennis
........... From Beautiful Skagit Co. Wa. Dennis
Dennis02's picture

(post #82319, reply #15 of 16)

Rich -

Just wanted to follow up with another thank you for the advise. Got both wheels in near perfect alignment, tossed on the 3/4" blade and now I've got plenty of clearance all the way along the back blade guard; nary a sound out of the beast even when running! Ripped a piece of scrap chechen without hardly any drift.

It's so pretty when it works.


Dennis

........... From Beautiful Skagit Co. Wa. Dennis
RSRose's picture

(post #82319, reply #16 of 16)

Glad it works!

Rich

crashtestdummy's picture

(post #82319, reply #6 of 16)

Dennis, I had the a similar problem on my Delta, without the riser. My blade guides were always having to be adjusted when I raised or lowered the blade guide. I added shims at the joint where the riser block would go. It is a pinned connectin, so the integrity wasn't compromised. I also had to shim behind the upper wheel (use shim washers with the correct id) to get it in plane with the lower wheel. The saw works much better now.


I would rather be mountain biking.

I would rather be mountain biking.
Dennis02's picture

(post #82319, reply #8 of 16)

> ....., I had the a similar problem on my Delta....

 

Checked it last night and found the upper wheel was close to 3/16" back from the bottom one. Picked up some shim washers this morning and will go for the wheel shimming technique this evening. 

 

Do you have the 1hp or 3/4hp saw? Mine's the 3/4hp with open stand. I've been considering upgrading the motor with the understanding that the two saws are identical except for the motor and closed stand option.

 

Dennis

........... From Beautiful Skagit Co. Wa. Dennis
Jack_Pine's picture

(post #82319, reply #10 of 16)

Hi.


I have exactly the same saw, had exactly the same problem.  It's an easy fix but if yours is as far out as mine you might have a little problem getting the wheel nut back on.  And yes the saws are identical except for the motors and the bases. (which don't affect performance)


Once I got my top wheel shimmed out (I believe co-planer is the term for when the wheels are "straight") my saw works perfect.

Dennis02's picture

(post #82319, reply #11 of 16)

> ....if yours is as far out as mine you might have a little problem getting the wheel nut back on.


Yeah, I noticed that there weren't many threads exposed on the nut before I took it off. Glad to hear that I'm on the right track. Hate that scraping sound of the blade rubbing on the guard! (grin)


 


Dennis
........... From Beautiful Skagit Co. Wa. Dennis
EdwardW4's picture

(post #82319, reply #7 of 16)

Mark Dukinske's bandsaw book talks a great deal about aligning the wheels, showing the Delta as one example. My memory is that the "shims" behind the top wheel are standard washers, though I might be mistaken. You might try to find his book, it has much more complete discussion on the subject than you will be able to get from a forum.

I have the Delta fence, never use it because my saw has too much lead. I have not adjusted my fence for the lead, which is also discussed in the book, but I got the book recently.

riverr1's picture

(post #82319, reply #9 of 16)

Hi Ed,


 


Thanks for the response. Could you explain what you mean by lead? Also I was asking about the fence because I had been told that some do a better job of resawing then the Delta fence. I realize the saw is not intended for resawing, but show me a bandsaw owner who had never given it a shot! ;^)


 


PS...Was it just my bad luck or is it typical that the saw came with no guide for adjustments. There was just a schematic of the saw and assembley instructions along with the CYA safty sheet.


Edited 8/15/2002 12:01:09 PM ET by Don C.

EdwardW4's picture

(post #82319, reply #12 of 16)

By lead I mean the tendancy the saw has to cut off to one side when I'm trying to cut straight. This has been a problem I've had resawing. There is a proceedure that I've read about to adjust the fence to compensate for this. I have not tried it.

I am not particularly skilled with a bandsaw, but I am trying to improve. I am in the process of setting up a larger more powerful bandsaw and I bought Mark Duzinske's book to help. Hopefully a year from now I will be able to talk about what I've done instead of what I read.

riverr1's picture

(post #82319, reply #13 of 16)

 


Ed,


haha, Isn't that the case. Most the time where I end up began with what I read or saw. There have been some interesting journeys along the way. Often things turn out to be a piece of cake, but too often at some point I'm asking myself what have I gotten myself into!


I'm new to the bandsaw also. I have the 9 inch delta bench saw, but this bigger saw is a whole different animal. I've read about adjusting the fence to compensate for lead also and like you I've never tried it. For those that have gone through it think anyone can share their experiences with us?


Don

RSRose's picture

(post #82319, reply #14 of 16)

Don,


Almost all bandsaws, when cutting with a blade narrower than 1 inch do not cut parallel to the fence. That, is, if you hold the piece firmly against the fence, the blade will pull to or away from the fence as you feed.


There are a number of reasons, including the fact that it's hard to actually adjust the blade to be parallel to the fence and other forces are at play during the cut. Each saw/and blade combination has its own particular deviation angle away from "straight." To find the angle, take a piece of plywood or solid wood about 12" x 12", mark a line at a right angle to the mid point of one face and saw that line, free hand, (with the fence off to the side out of the way) staying on the line as carefully as possible until about 2" from the end of the cut.


The board will be at a slight angle to the fence. Stop the saw, being careful not to disturb the position of the board and note the angle by drawing it on the table or adjusting the fence (if you can) to the angle. That's the angle at which the saw cuts "straight." The fence at that angle will guide a workpiece so that the blade stays at a right angle to the lead edge and parallel to the edge held against the fence.


This compensation usually is not needed with a 1" or wider blade.


There's another way. Put Timberwolf blades on your saw. Since putting 1/2" and 1/4" Timberwolf blades on my 14" Grizzly, it cuts parallel to the fence with no adjustment.


Rich


Edited 8/15/2002 7:31:30 PM ET by Rich Rose