Saturday, January 17, 2009

Band Saw Heaven

I was talking with someone on the message boards today about bandsaws... So, this is a shot of the kids.

On the right in the foreground, in battleship grey, is our Yates 36" bandsaw. At 9.5 feet tall, it's enormous. It sounds like a turbine spinning up when we turn it on. And it's just awesome.

to the left of that is my 18" Laguna bandsaw. It's a lot shorter, and it's actually not too much bigger than a "regular" bandsaw, but it doesn't sit on a stand or anything like that. As a result, the table actually sits a lot lower than normal, which is great for breaking down rough lumber... and feels a lot safer than dealing with a table saw for the same operation.

Way in the background to the left, is my little 14" powermatic, with a riser block, and a pin guide for doing pattern cutting... which is a new technique to me, and there was a small learning curve, but I'm liking it so far.

In essence, the topic of discussion was how to obtain thinner boards, since they're not usually commercially available... or if they are, they're basically the result of 1 inch boards being run through the planer to get thinner boards for sale. With a bigger bandsaw, or a really tweaked smaller one, it's possible to take 2 or 3 inch beams and saw them down into 1/2" or smaller thickness boards for use as drawer sides and the like.

Truth is, the more I learn about how to use a bandsaw, the more I really like them. I've heard of a few professional furniture makers who started out with just band saws, and no tablesaws... and one in particular (Brian Boggs) stands out as being very accomplished in so many regards as a chair maker. He's very competent, accomplished, well published... and he's the epitome of the self made man, having started with a bag full of hand tools, and working his way into having a huge shop... which doesn't have a tablesaw. But, it does have a huge bandsaw.

I learned a lot with the Laguna about resawing, and general bandsaw work. But I still lusted after something bigger. Now that we have the Yates in teh shop, I've been circling it, not quite sure I'm worthy... but I'm really excited to see what she can do.

All my best to the folks from Woodcentral, if and when they come. I've been quiet over htere lately, I've been wanting to show off what I've been up to. Hope some of you approve...

No comments: