Best bandsaw blade for resawing

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Straight-cutting blades that will not allow you to down.

by Dave Munkittrick

Reading: Best bandsaw blade for resawing

A bandsaw is a tremendous machine. It’s able to making extraordinarily exact cuts; from slicing sheets of skinny veneer to reducing intricate curves. But many people consider our bandsaws as being for tough work solely. Why? In all probability as a result of our first makes an attempt at precision work, like resawing, have been thwarted by abnormal blades. It’s in all probability not your noticed or your approach, it’s your blade that’s the issue. Take a premium bandsaw blade for a spin and also you’ll be amazed on the distinction.

Most bandsaws include abnormal carbon-steel or spring-steel blades. These blades are okay for normal bandsaw work however the untreated metallic isn’t designed to face up to the trials of resawing. Resawing wooden is actually rip reducing a board throughout its width (Picture 1). There’s an amazing quantity of wooden to take away and the warmth and abrasion attributable to resawing will rapidly put on out an abnormal blade.

Premium blades have hardened enamel, and so they far outlast abnormal blades. There are three fundamental forms of premium blades; flex-back, hard-back and bi-metal (see Fig. A, beneath).

Looking for bandsaw blades is like making an attempt to choose an extended distance cellphone firm. There are such a lot of variations and complicated terminology its laborious to know what you’re getting. For starters, you’ve received silicon metal, tungsten metal, carbon manganese spring metal, or, my private favourite, cobalt/molybdenum high-speed metal.

The true query is “How do the blades perform?” That’s what we checked out on this check.

The Check

Resawing is by far essentially the most demanding job requested of a bandsaw blade. A straight, even lower that doesn’t require an excessive amount of clear up was our gold normal. We examined all of the premium resaw blades we might discover that may safely be used on a 14-in. bandsaw (see “Blade Thickness,” beneath, for extra on this subject). The check itself was easy. We lower 1/8-in.-thick veneer from 8 in. x 24-in. slabs of 8/4 maple, oak and pine. After every lower we ran the lower face of the slab over a jointer set to take a 1/32-in. lower. If the noticed marks cleaned up in a single cross (Picture 2), the blade was declared a winner and was included in our chart beneath. If at first the blade didn’t succeed, we tried once more; adjusting the strain or altering the feed charge.


In the event you solely resaw occasionally and desire a blade primarily for general-purpose work, a flex-back or hard-back blade is your best option. For hard-core resawing, the hard-back or bi-metal hook-tooth blades with three tpi did one of the best total job. A bi-metal blade is significantly dearer however it should far outlast a hard-back blade due to the extra-hard, high-speed metal used to type the enamel (Fig. A, beneath).

Blade Options

Let’s have a look at the options that make up a premium bandsaw blade (Picture 3).

Blade Thickness

We suggest a most blade thickness of .025-in. to be used on a 14-in. bandsaw (Picture 4). Most 14-in. saws are simply not constructed to correctly rigidity a blade thicker than .025 in. and the thicker the blade the extra rigidity it takes to make it work correctly. Additionally, forcing a thicker blade round a 14-in. wheel at 35 mph can result in metallic fatigue and potential breakage. You’ll be able to display this your self. Take a size of wire from a garments hanger and bend it backwards and forwards a number of instances. It gained’t be lengthy earlier than the metallic fatigues and breaks in two. Bandsaw blades are not any completely different.

Blade Width

For resawing you need to use the widest blade your noticed can deal with. A large blade resists bending as inventory is pushed into it. That is generally known as “beam strength.” One other benefit to vast blades is their skill to dissipate warmth. The additional metallic acts as a warmth sink, drawing extra warmth away from the enamel. Observe: Most 14-in. bandsaws can take a 3/4-in. blade, however watch out! Most 3/4-in. blades are additionally too thick (.032-in. or larger) to your noticed. So, it’s the thickness of the blade that limits how vast a blade you possibly can placed on a 14-in. noticed. For essentially the most half, you might be restricted to 1/2-in.-wide blades to be able to keep throughout the .025-in. thickness limitation. Some notable exceptions are Olson’s All-Professional (AP77105) and Grizzly’s Carbide Embedded blade, that are 5/8-in. vast. The Timber Wolf AS-S sequence is 3/4-in. vast however solely .025-in. thick.

Tooth Per Inch (tpi)

Use a 3 tpi blade for resawing on a 14-in. bandsaw. The bigger enamel on a 3 tpi blade have deeper gullets that assist carry the sawdust by the lower with out binding. A 4 or a six tpi will provide you with a barely smoother lower, however you’ll need to sluggish your feed charge down on vast inventory.

Tooth Type

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Tooth type describes the form of the tooth. A hook tooth is one of the best tooth type for resawing. The hook angle cuts aggressively and has a self-feeding motion that reduces feed stress (Fig. B, beneath).


In the event you do plenty of resawing, you could discover bi-metal blades value the additional cash as a result of the extra-hard enamel are designed to outlast hardened carbon-steel blades.

Our Suggestions

There have been two blades we thought-about to be firsts amongst equals. Highland {Hardware}’s Wooden Slicer blade and the Timber Wolf AS-S gave the smoothest cuts of all of the blades we examined.

We didn’t select a Greatest Purchase as a result of there are such a lot of good blades on the decrease finish of the value vary (lower than $15).

Picture 1: Resawing wooden is hard on bandsaw blades. Solely premium bandsaw blades with hardened enamel can maintain their edge and produce straight, {smooth} cuts in vast inventory like this.

TIP: Maintain a brand new premium resaw blade available to make use of when most efficiency is important. Like that finest swimsuit in your closet, use it just for particular events.

Picture 2: We resawed 1/8-in. veneer from 8/4 slabs of maple to check the blades. The sawn floor of the slab was then handed over a jointer set for a 1/32-in.-deep lower. If a single cross cleaned up all of the noticed marks, the blade made it onto our chart beneath.

Picture 3: The options we preferred for resaw bandsaw blades are listed proper on the field. 1. Amount of blades. 2. Blade size. 3. Blade width. 4. Blade thickness in thousandths of an inch. 5. Variety of enamel per inch (tpi). 6. Tooth type (H = hook tooth). 7. Blade kind (HEF = hard-edge flex-back).

Picture 4: A .025-in.-thick blade is finest for 14-in. bandsaws. Thicker blades can’t be tensioned correctly on a small noticed and will develop metallic fatigue from bending stresses attributable to the small-diameter wheels.

Picture 5: Elevated sturdiness is the large profit you get from bi-metal blades. They value twice as a lot, however will doubtless final two to 3 instances longer than flex-back or hard-back blades.

Tip: Hold onto these resaw blades that not carry out at their peak. They nonetheless work nice for general-purpose reducing.

Carbide blades are the last word in sturdiness. Manufacturing outlets and individuals who lower plenty of unique hardwood that accommodates abrasive chemical extractives love these long-lasting blades.The Lennox carbide blade we tried made fantastically {smooth} cuts. However, the $120 price ticket retains it out of attain for many store homeowners.

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The Timber Wolf 1203AS is a specifically designed moist resaw blade. The additional-wide kerf is designed to assist clear the moist, stringy fibers in inexperienced wooden. The blade is thicker than we suggest (.030-in.) for a 14-in. noticed, however the Timber Wolf has a blade physique fabricated from versatile silicon metal that may deal with the small-diameter wheels with out fatigue. In the event you lower plenty of inexperienced wooden, you could need to give one in all these blades a spin.

Highland {Hardware}’s Wooden Slicer is a singular blade amongst our picks. It made extra-smooth cuts with much less noise. A part of the reason being the Wooden Slicer’s distinctive variable tpi design. The tpi varies from three to 4, which helps cut back vibration and produces a smoother lower. Diminished vibration additionally leads to lowered noise. Most bandsaw blades sound like a catfight as they’re reducing by vast inventory. The Wooden Slicer is noticeably quieter.

The Wooden Slicer additionally has the thinnest blade of the bunch at .020-in. thick, with an exceptionally slim kerf (about 1/32 in.). The skinny kerf leads to elevated yield with much less horsepower required out of your noticed (1/2-hp noticed homeowners, take observe). On the draw back, the kerf is so slim that the blade won’t lower curves very nicely. As soon as the Wooden Slicer has misplaced its edge, it will probably’t be retired to general-purpose responsibility as readily as the opposite blades.

For icing on the cake, the again of the Wooden Slicer blade is rounded and polished on the manufacturing unit to eradicate any supply for fatigue cracks within the physique.

Suffolk Equipment’s Timber Wolf AS-Sis particularly designed for straight-line slicing veneer. It’s the one blade that’s a full 3/4-in. vast however solely .025 thick. This blade was designed for instrument makers who make a dwelling slicing up blocks of wooden which are value their weight in gold. They will’t afford any reducing issues and demand the smoothest potential cuts.

This story initially appeared in American Woodworker December 2001, situation #91.

Supply info could have modified for the reason that authentic publication date.

December 2001, situation #91

Buy this again situation.

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