You dang blade guides!

January 17, 2014

bandsaw blade guides

Wonky blade guides hiding behind the blade guard!

It was bound to happen sometime, I just hate that I didn’t catch it earlier! Thankfully though nothing was messed up that couldn’t be adjusted. “What happened” you’re asking?

Since working on the platform bed project, I’ve been using my bandsaw a lot more than I have in the past. In fact, I’ve probably resawn more material in the past few months than I ever have previously and on top of that I’ve used the bandsaw for a few other things in between.

So it’s not surprising that with as much work as I’ve been throwing at it there might be justification for a little “pre-cut checkup” before my next use. Unfortunately I didn’t and that’s the reason I’m writing this post.

Because of my little oversight I failed to notice that behind the blade guard the blade guides and thrust bearing had loosened and were jostled out of position (the picture above was what I discovered when I removed the blade guard for a closer look).

This now leaves me with a big decision to make. Should I continue to work with the material I cut or do I go back to the beginning and start over? After all it’s not the same exact thickness that I wanted, but it IS still very usable in the same capacity.

Here’s the details of what I’m confronting:
My plan was to resaw 8/4 maple into 2 equally thicknessed boards. I had already jointed one face and edge flat and square and then thicknessed the stock so when I was all done I just had to retouch one face on each board.

It all worked out great, until the cut was complete and I noticed the horrific barrel look to the freshly cut faces. Too late at that point!

In an attempt to salvage the problem, my only solution was to simply remove more material and take it down to a thickness below my desired dimension. And that’s where I am right now.

As I mentioned, this “new” thickness is less than what I desired, but it’ll work without having to start all over. It’ll just appear a little thinner in the end?

Moral of the story, check your tools once in a while. Apparently tool maintenance is required, or at least double check your band saw blade guides before a crucial cut…

The next video is do out very soon, I’ll share my decision then…stay tuned!

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Comments (6)

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  1. Brian Biggs says:

    maintenance? that’s the initial setup you do with a new tool right? or is it supposed to be more regular than once every time you move?

    😉 – thanks for the post!

  2. John Verreault (aka Johnny Vee) says:

    Hey Matt
    I’ve pretty much fallen into the same camp as you (pass me another chilli dog, a brew, and a couple of those s’ mores…oh, and toss another log on that campfire. lo.) when it comes to machine maintenance. That is until this past October when my new job happened! I lept from being deep into my 3rd decade of being IT support dude to running the tool crib for the Fine Furniture program at a local college. This “new” calling has as one of its duties shop “equipment maintenance” and do they have some major equipment! So now that this is in my face daily, I’ve started discovering the deficiencies in my own shop. Yikes! At least now I am up off duff and doing something about it all….grease and oil and paste wax, oh my.

    • Matt says:

      I have definitely let things go…me included…so it’s time to clean some blades and maybe check some bearings while I’m at it.

  3. Kevin says:

    When you resaw something in half it might just cup or twist on you, so you can’t really count on the outside faces still being true. In fact, I think that’s what must have happened here. The wood misbehaved. Nothing you could do about it but adapt and overcome. The thing with the guides was just a bad dream.

    • Matt says:

      Definitely there can be some issues with the wood after resawing, in this situation though the guides probably had a lot to do it with it too.

      They were WAY off alignment, so off in fact that only one was actually touching the blade and the thrust bearing had been pushed away from the blade such that it wasn’t close to engaging.

      This definitely had a fair share of the blame for why it barreled so bad down the length of the board.

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