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Thread: My Rockwell/Beaver band saw needs attention

  1. #1
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    Question My Rockwell/Beaver band saw needs attention

    I was cutting a straight line in some 3/4" ply with my bandsaw yesterday, when it began to make some thumping noises from inside. I finished the cut I was making, but came back to the saw later and made another small cut, when the machine thumped a couple more times, then jammed, and the fuse blew. SO, I quit for the night, and came back to it today. I took the covers off, looked around for anything that could have caused the saw to jam without finding anything.

    Next, I tried to move the wheels by hand and found them very stiff. I was able to rotate them backwards, however and in a while that freed up the wheels to where I could run the saw without any thumping. As I have taken off the table and the covers, I didn't try to cut anything. The thumping stopped after I removed the lower blade guide, and one of the guide blocks looked pretty beat up.I've turned the blocks around, but I haven't reinstalled the guide, for reasons I will go into below.I vacuumed out any sawdust and crap that was lying around in the saw case, and ran the saw for a few secods to make sure it is running like a new saw at the moment. There is no apparent damage to either of my blades, BTW, in spite of the condition of the block. I am pretty sure I reset the blocks, and certain that I adjusted the lower guide when I installed the 3/8" blade. I was using a 3/16" yesterday and I don't think I moved it when I put the 3/16" blade in.

    So, I am wondering if any part of that could have caused the thumping that I heard, or been related to the reason the saw jammed.

    Some more details. The lower guide block, when I set up the 3/8" blade a year ago, only just reached the back of the blade and it was as far forward as it would go. I adjusted the blade on the upper wheel and came up with a compromise between having the blade run between the blocks, and cutting at a 45 angle because of the blade drift. The upper guide is OK for position and gap. When I installed the 3/16" blade, the blade actually sat forward of the lower guide, and I couldn't move it, so I left it alone. It has done a fair bit of cutting with this blade since I put it in so I didn't worry much.

    Next, if you look at the photos below, you will see that the blade runs about the centre of the upper wheel, but within " of the front of the lower wheel. With the 3/8" blade in place, the blade was almost on the edge of the lower wheel. This will be an issue if I try to put a " blade on it, and I want to do some resawing. So, what do I need to adjust, and how, to get the blade in the right position on the lower wheel?

    Thank you in advance for your experience, perspicacity and erudition.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Uplowwheel.jpg   Upwheel.jpg  
    Last edited by Roger Tulk; 05-10-2012 at 04:01 AM.
    Cheers,
    Roger


    The other member of Mensa, but not the NRA

    Everyone is a self-made person.

    "The thing about quotes on the internet is that you cannot confirm their veracity" -Abraham Lincoln

  2. #2
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    Since you've noticed the lower guide is 'beat up,' you should check your blade. It sounds like your blade may have a bad weld, or one that's not completely ground flush. There might also be a kink in the blade itself.

    Other than that, it might be a bearing problem, but my bet is on the blade, and the guide adjustment.

    Regarding the blade not tracking in the middle of the lower wheel: Are there any washers/shims behind the upper wheel? There sometimes are, and if you have them, remove them until you get centered tracking. The other alternative is to put washers/shims behind the lower wheel to bring it out. Truthfully though, unless you're gonna be using wide blades a lot, I wouldn't mess with it. If it's running well (once you locate and fix the 'thump') then I'd leave it alone. Having the teeth of a wide blade protrude slightly shouldn't cause any problem.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim DeLaney View Post
    Since you've noticed the lower guide is 'beat up,' you should check your blade. It sounds like your blade may have a bad weld, or one that's not completely ground flush. There might also be a kink in the blade itself.

    Other than that, it might be a bearing problem, but my bet is on the blade, and the guide adjustment.

    Regarding the blade not tracking in the middle of the lower wheel: Are there any washers/shims behind the upper wheel? There sometimes are, and if you have them, remove them until you get centered tracking. The other alternative is to put washers/shims behind the lower wheel to bring it out. Truthfully though, unless you're gonna be using wide blades a lot, I wouldn't mess with it. If it's running well (once you locate and fix the 'thump') then I'd leave it alone. Having the teeth of a wide blade protrude slightly shouldn't cause any problem.
    OK, I examined the blade microscopically, and there are no kinks or other malformations, and the weld is nice and smooth. I have been using this blade for about a month without issues.

    I took the top wheel off, and there are no shims behind it. The sleeve bearing appears in perfect condition, and the wheel spins freely when I put it back on.

    The lower wheel was more difficult to examine. It is attached differently, and when I took the nut and washer off, I was unable to get the wheel to budge. I didn't want to apply a lot of force, as it's made of plastic, but a reasonable amount of force wouldn't move it. I'll need some instruction on how to remove it to put shims behind it. I am going to regrind the ends of the guide blocks for the bottom guide, and am considering making wooden ones, considering my ability to mess things up. If I put everything back together at this point, and as long as the thumping I heard had something to do with the lower guide (it stopped when I removed the lower guide ) Then I should be no worse off than I was.

    When I have it all back together, can I use my 3/16", 10 tpi regular tooth blade to cut aluminum channel?

    TIA
    Cheers,
    Roger


    The other member of Mensa, but not the NRA

    Everyone is a self-made person.

    "The thing about quotes on the internet is that you cannot confirm their veracity" -Abraham Lincoln

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Tulk View Post
    ...When I have it all back together, can I use my 3/16", 10 tpi regular tooth blade to cut aluminum channel?
    Yeah, you can, but the aluminum will probably clog the teeth. I've cut a small amount like that from time to time, and never really had a problem. Just remember that those aluminum chips are HOT when they come off the saw. Also, eye protection is more important than ever when doing this!
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

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