Bandsaw issue

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Established Member
23 Aug 2011
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sevenoaks, kent
I would appreciate anyone's advice with the following as i have played around quite a lot with the adjustment and not really got anywhere...

I have a Startrite 352 E bandsaw that takes a blade up to 1 inch. I have been having an issue recently with blade tracking when performing rip cuts, with the blade going off by up to 5mm on relatively short cuts. The saw is currently set up with a 5/8 blade which hasn't had much use and is still sharp (cross cuts are smooth and fine).

I have checked that the fence and blade are aligned with each other and adjusted the bandsaw guide blocks so they are appropriately close to the blade. I haven't got a tension tester, but have set the tension according to the guide built in to the saw.
It is a 3 or 4 tpi i think, i would have to check and get back to you as it was a replacement for another blade that i had a problem with.

It has been used mostly for straight cuts with probable a few curved cuts that weren't a particularly tight radius
I am pretty sure the blade isn't blunt - it still cuts easily on cross cuts.

How easily does the set go out on band saw blades? For instance, would cutting a single fairly tight circle on a 5/8 blade (as opposed to changing to say a 1/2 or 3/8) through the set out?

I use reasonably good blades from a manufacturer who is well regarded so i don't think it is a manufacturing problem...
I had the same thing with my 352 and a newish blade, swapped blades and it was fine.

How long is the cut roughly, and how thick is the timber being cut ?

Can often be caused by too few teeth for the thickness being cut, not enough blade tension, too fast a feed rate, tooth set being affected by tight curve cuts as a quick brain dump :)
The curved cuts that i have made (I rarely cut curves so can remember them) were both in 25mm (ish) thick oak, one was around 250mm long but not far off straight, the other was only 90mm but tighter - probably a 150mm radius circle.
Have you tried the freehand cut test?
get some scrap, draw a straight line down the centre. cut it freehand and see if you can stay on the line. If you cant stay on the line without swerving left and right, its operator error and you are pushing too hard causing the blade to flex. Let the blade do the cutting, youre there just to guide the wood.
If that fails, then for whatever reason your blade needs re sharpening.
altennis":3dc8ypym said:
a 150mm radius circle.

That with a 5/8" blade and 3 or 4 tpi would pretty much affect the set of the teeth I would expect, surprised you managed to get such a tight radius with that blade !

Keep that blade for curved cuts and get a new one for straight ripping.
I keep my blades strictly separated between blades for curves and blades for rips as once you’ve done curves on a blade, it never quite rips the same (in my experience). I don’t keep a huge stock of blades so know what they’ve been used for. Try a fresh blade I’d say.

PS - I also have a 352 and I thought that the widest blade they could take was 3/4”?
You may be right i haven't had anything bigger than a 3/4 on it, but when i was righting the post 1 inch popped in to my mind... Thanks will get a new blade and keep this one separate...

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