Are you a bandsaw owner who is exasperated with the frequent drifting and wandering of the blade? Have a look at this guide to help you Why Does My Bandsaw Blade Wander!
If you’re viewing this article, possibilities are that you have purchased a modern band saw or a standard saw that’s acting up; don’t fret, this is a widespread problem. Getting your band saw and band saw fence to coincide on a path, no matter how hard you try, can seem unattainable.
Most people who choose a second barrier to prevent drifting do not achieve better results. If you have the question, why does my bandsaw blade wander so often in mind, keep reading, as we discuss the reasons and possible cures for this problem.
Some Reasons for your bandsaw blade wandering
Band saw blades have a slight camber inclination compared to the vertical axis of the wheel because they sit on capped wheels. This induces the blade to tip slightly to the side, causing the incision to pull to the side. Even when you get it just perfect, the rubber tires on the wheels will probably vary over time, causing your meticulous adjustments to be thrown off. Let’s dive into the details of this error.
Blade is Installed Incorrectly
If you are thinking that why does my bandsaw not cut straight, then you should most likely check the installation and fitment of your blades. If the blade teeth are facing in the right direction with most blades, it is clear.
The hooks or tip of a standard wooden or metal cutting blade should always be hanging down for a vertically bladed bandsaw, or the hooks of the teeth should be oriented so that they contact the workpiece first when the blade advances for a lateral blade saw.
The blade is not sharp
Another reason for your bandsaw blade wandering when cutting is the sharpness and intensity of it. You’d think a dull blade might cut slower, but it’s much more inclined to cut crookedly.
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When the bandsaw blade is keen and sharp, pushing the material against the blade and getting a cut does not require much force from the user. If the bandsaw blade is monotonous, the controller must use more power to feed the object into the blade.
Identifying the perfect blade tension has always seemed a bit of an enigma to hobbyists. Bandsaw blades, particularly in strong or dense stock, require a huge amount of strain to reliably create straight, regular cuts. If the tension is not accurate, your band saw blade may wander.
For a standard carbon-steel blade, most industries prefer 15,000 psi to 20,000 psi. If you have multiple equipment or are dealing with an application that requires precise blade tension, you should invest in a gauge.
A pressure regulator lever is used to set the blade tension in pneumatic or hydraulic devices. The manufacturer will usually give a chart or table that shows how much pressure to apply to various blade diameters to obtain the required blade strain for the bandsaw.
Blade wobble and noise can be caused by incorrect blade tension. Breaking will occur if the stress is applied incorrectly or excessively. Extreme tension is only required for the most challenging cuts, such as sawing dense woods or material that is the thickest that can fit beneath a saw’s rails. You can ease up on the strain in less stressful situations.
Wheels of a bandsaw are worn out
If your bandsaw blade wanders when resawing, the condition of the wheels could be a probable cause for it. Band wheels help in tracking the bandsaw blade strain and maintain it. The wheel acts as a backbone for the blade, allowing it to cut the material properly.
Cutting process problems may occur if the band wheel is used incorrectly. The blade is held in place by the crown of the bandsaw tires. The blade would always aim to reach the wheel’s tallest peak, the crown’s apex. If the wheels are damaged and the crown does not have a defined top, the blade would not understand where to go and will drift.
This can result in poor cut performance and trouble in adjusting the guides. Prior to attempting to set the directions, you should examine refinishing the blade wheels if they are extremely deteriorated. Accurate blade tracking is another important function of the wheels.
If the blade is not perfectly calibrated, it will distort or bend as it passes over the wheels. A properly oriented blade produces a straighter, smoother cut while also extending the blade’s life.
Some Remedies To Fix a Bandsaw Drift
Blade drift on a band saw occurs when the blade diverts to the right or left when cutting with the rip fence. It can show up as the blade straying from the transect line or the hardwood appearing to be dragged away from the fence while you are executing the cut.
The level of drift varies from severe to slight, but most band saws suffer from it to a certain degree. Only while utilizing a rip fence does blade drift happen. While you’ll have to compensate for drift each time you switch the blade, it’s a relatively simple and painless operation, provided that your fence has flexibility. Let’s have a look at some tips and tricks to follow if you want your blade to stop drifting.
It’s critical that your blade runs as cool as possible. Using ceramic guide plates and cleaning the blade with a blade lubrication stick on a regular basis will assist to decrease heat buildup generated by friction. It’s also crucial to keep your saw’s blade fresh and properly positioned.
Using a vortex tube with your saw enables you to blast cold air across the front of the blade while it’s operating. The outcome is a reduction of the heat-prone front of your saw, which prevents it from expanding and wandering.
There are a few more options for dealing with a bandsaw blade that has wandered. One of them is to construct your personal fence, which consists of two pieces of plywood placed perpendicularly to one another. Perform a few test cuts on junk to see which direction the blade wanders and what degree you need to drive the work through to compensate.
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Modify the fence so that the surface of the fence fits the degree finder’s blade. Secure that adjustment in place, then double-check that the fence is still aligned with the angle finder blade. You’re done if they matched. Or else, continue the fence modification until the angle finder’s face equals the fences.
Frequently Asked Questions
How to keep a bandsaw blade from wandering?
Drift occurs when the blade collapses under the force of the load. You may easily bend a ribbon sideways by extending it between two points and putting pressure to one of the ends. A keen blade with a fast blade velocity, as well as a personal fence, will help a great deal when your bandsaw blade wanders when resawing and cutting.
Why does my bandsaw blade keep breaking?
Even the greatest blades can malfunction if your bandsaw has other issues, and even a minor imbalance of rollers or guides can cause the blade to distort as it rotates. As a result, tension is exerted in all the wrong places, leading to premature breaking.
The bandsaw is unquestionably one of the most effective tools in any woodshop. It’s also the one that’s perhaps the most misinterpreted. Many woodworkers encounter drift while using a bandsaw which has been improperly set up.
Most hobbyists believe that because there is no real cure for wandering, they should just embrace it and operate around it. The underlying cause of the issue must be determined before the problem can be solved. These problems can be solved by inventiveness, competent workmanship, or blade repair.
I’m Thomas Steven with more than 12 years of experience in woodworking. I did my woodworking degree from University of Cincinnati. It has always been my passion to become a successful woodworker. I have completed hundreds of successful projects in Florida, Miami. I write about woodworking by being an associate with Amazon and I earn a little commission from every qualifying purchase.