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Bandsaw Table Losing Parallel

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Ewan C

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Hi, I have a small Record Power BS250 bandsaw, and the table seems to have a problem staying parallel with the blade, by this I mean that when the fence is attached it’s not parallel to the blade.

I have a bandsaw buddy, which I use to get the fence parallel, but then after I’ve finished with the bandsaw and leave it for a day or two, the fence is un-parallel the next time I use it.

So I have to un-tighten the bolts on the bottom of the table again and get it back to being parallel again.

Anyone know if there is a way to fix this, as I can’t imagine it’s meant to be like this?

Thanks in advance.
 

MARK.B.

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Not sure from what you have said but is your fence alignment the problem and not the table:unsure:?.
 

Jacob

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Band saws often don't cut parallel to the fence after a new blade has worn in a bit. Just a fact of life. You have to work to a line instead.
You might try cleaning the wheels and checking the tension etc.
 

dzj

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Perhaps the tires are worn, or your blade is dull or its set is off...
I'd try setting up the fence with a new blade and see how it goes.
 

Ewan C

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Not sure from what you have said but is your fence alignment the problem and not the table:unsure:?.
Sorry for any ambiguity in my post, I thought this might’ve been the problem myself but it’s parallel to the mitre guide slot so I think the fence should be fine?
 

Ewan C

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Band saws often don't cut parallel to the fence after a new blade has worn in a bit. Just a fact of life. You have to work to a line instead.
You might try cleaning the wheels and checking the tension etc.
Thanks, I may have been expecting too much from a bandsaw then, although now I think about it I wouldn’t imagine that a thin bendy blade could be very accurate.The tension and the wheels are fine I think.
 

Ewan C

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Perhaps the tires are worn, or your blade is dull or its set is off...
I'd try setting up the fence with a new blade and see how it goes.
I’ll order a new blade and give that a go, the one I’m using at the moment is the included one, so I’m not sure that they would be the highest quality. Thanks.
 

Jacob

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Thanks, I may have been expecting too much from a bandsaw then, although now I think about it I wouldn’t imagine that a thin bendy blade could be very accurate.The tension and the wheels are fine I think.
Higher tension can make it cut straighter but shortens blade life.
 

mikej460

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Do you untension the blade when not in use? I realise that there are contentious views on this but it made be that the tyres are being distorted by the tensioned blade. Try un-tensioning the blade over night and try again.
 

JSW

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I have the BS250 also, and had the same problem.
If you're using the stock fence then just bin it and make your own, I did that with mine within 24 hrs of buying it 5 years ago. Incorporate a + or - 5 degree adjustable angle, then match the homemade fence to the Bandsaw buddy. I can take a pic of mine tomorrow if any help, but it's really crude, works though!
And get rid of the stock blade, it's junk, buy a decent one from Tuffsaws and you'll be good to go. Mine is currently running a 1/2" 3TPI SuperTuff Sabrecut as I do a lot of resawing, damn that thing just cleaves it's way through, and parallel every time.
 

Ewan C

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Do you untension the blade when not in use? I realise that there are contentious views on this but it made be that the tyres are being distorted by the tensioned blade. Try un-tensioning the blade over night and try again.
Thanks for replying, I do un-tension the blade overnight so should be good there.
 

Ewan C

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I have the BS250 also, and had the same problem.
If you're using the stock fence then just bin it and make your own, I did that with mine within 24 hrs of buying it 5 years ago. Incorporate a + or - 5 degree adjustable angle, then match the homemade fence to the Bandsaw buddy. I can take a pic of mine tomorrow if any help, but it's really crude, works though!
And get rid of the stock blade, it's junk, buy a decent one from Tuffsaws and you'll be good to go. Mine is currently running a 1/2" 3TPI SuperTuff Sabrecut as I do a lot of resawing, damn that thing just cleaves it's way through, and parallel every time.
I think I’ll remake the fence then, and the mitre guide seems terrible too, so I could remake that while I’m at it. I’ll definitely be buying a new blade. Pictures of the guide would be great if possible, thanks.
 

JSW

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Well, I said it was crude and it really is! Originally it had a 50mm upstand to the fence, but I found that just got in the way for narrow cuts, so I removed it.

IMG_20210913_124026210.jpg


The Fence locks in place with the aid of a Cross Dowel in the table slot.

IMG_20210913_124120818.jpg


The pic below shows the bolt and washer removed from the left hand side to reveal the slot for adjusting the angle of the fence. The pivot point is a bit of ali tube hammered through a reasonably tight hole so there's some friction to hold it firm.
I spun the pointy bit of Walnut around also, so you can see it's function.

IMG_20210913_124301526_HDR.jpg


I really should get around to making a (much!) better version, but it works just fine as is, and there is absolutely zero play in the far end of the fence once locked, which surprised me.
 

Ewan C

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Well, I said it was crude and it really is! Originally it had a 50mm upstand to the fence, but I found that just got in the way for narrow cuts, so I removed it.

View attachment 117682

The Fence locks in place with the aid of a Cross Dowel in the table slot.

View attachment 117683

The pic below shows the bolt and washer removed from the left hand side to reveal the slot for adjusting the angle of the fence. The pivot point is a bit of ali tube hammered through a reasonably tight hole so there's some friction to hold it firm.
I spun the pointy bit of Walnut around also, so you can see it's function.

View attachment 117684

I really should get around to making a (much!) better version, but it works just fine as is, and there is absolutely zero play in the far end of the fence once locked, which surprised me.
Thanks, that looks fine! I’ll make a model in CAD for the templates, and I should have some oak off-cuts the right size, hopefully it’ll finished before not too long. Regards, Ewan.
 
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Terry - Somerset

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Reading this makes me wonder on a few issues:
  • I understand a desire to align blade and fence. But provided the difference in blade and fence angle is less than that created by the kerf on the blade, the blade will always sit in the slot cut by the teeth.
  • One could cut parallel to the edge of a piece of wood with a single point guide. The width of the cut would be the distance between the guide and the blade.
  • A fence only ensures that either (a) when cutting parallel to a straight edge the cut is equally straight, and (b) any inconsistences in the edge of the work piece are averaged (to some extent) by bearing against the length of the fence
  • More important is to ensure that the blade is at 90 degrees to the table so that all cuts are square unless intended otherwise.
  • The fence also needs to be at 90 degrees to the table and of sufficient height so that it can be used as a vertical guide. Probably most important if cutting thin veneer etc where a consistent thickness is critical.
Or is my understanding of these things just plain superficial?
 

TRITON

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As I understand it, if I understand it exactly, which is infrequent, but here goes anyway...

The table is mounted to the trunnion by 4 bolts. Far as im aware theres play in there so if you loosen off the four bolts, you can waggle the table about and set it up square to the blade via the miter slots, then holding it there retighten the bolts up
 

JSW

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The table is mounted to the trunnion by 4 bolts. Far as im aware theres play in there so if you loosen off the four bolts, you can waggle the table about and set it up square to the blade via the miter slots, then holding it there retighten the bolts up
I have a bandsaw buddy, which I use to get the fence parallel, but then after I’ve finished with the bandsaw and leave it for a day or two, the fence is un-parallel the next time I use it.

So I have to un-tighten the bolts on the bottom of the table again and get it back to being parallel again.
I do un-tension the blade overnight
As I read it, the OP slackens the tension each night, and RE-tensioning it the next day surely has to alter how parallel the blade is to the fence?
Personally I don't de-tension/un-tension, or whatever the correct term is.

Either way, surely a 10 second adjustment to the fence is far easier than mucking around moving the entire table to suit the blade?
 

Ewan C

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As I understand it, if I understand it exactly, which is infrequent, but here goes anyway...

The table is mounted to the trunnion by 4 bolts. Far as im aware theres play in there so if you loosen off the four bolts, you can waggle the table about and set it up square to the blade via the miter slots, then holding it there retighten the bolts up
Hi Terry, thanks for the reply. The fence is - I believe - parallel to the table. I’ve been loosening the trunnion bolts and realigning the fence but to no avail. The spot guide is something I’ll make for my fence, I’m going to try making one like the one JSW has shared. Regards, Ewan.
 

Ewan C

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Reading this makes me wonder on a few issues:
  • I understand a desire to align blade and fence. But provided the difference in blade and fence angle is less than that created by the kerf on the blade, the blade will always sit in the slot cut by the teeth.
  • One could cut parallel to the edge of a piece of wood with a single point guide. The width of the cut would be the distance between the guide and the blade.
  • A fence only ensures that either (a) when cutting parallel to a straight edge the cut is equally straight, and (b) any inconsistences in the edge of the work piece are averaged (to some extent) by bearing against the length of the fence
  • More important is to ensure that the blade is at 90 degrees to the table so that all cuts are square unless intended otherwise.
  • The fence also needs to be at 90 degrees to the table and of sufficient height so that it can be used as a vertical guide. Probably most important if cutting thin veneer etc where a consistent thickness is critical.
Or is my understanding of these things just plain superficial?
Hi Terry, thanks for the reply. The fence is - I believe - parallel to the table. The blade is 90 degrees to the table, it seems easier to get this part right. Regards, Ewan.
 

Ewan C

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As I read it, the OP slackens the tension each night, and RE-tensioning it the next day surely has to alter how parallel the blade is to the fence?
Personally I don't de-tension/un-tension, or whatever the correct term is.

Either way, surely a 10 second adjustment to the fence is far easier than mucking around moving the entire table to suit the blade?
Thanks, I probably will do that instead of adjusting the table, it would just mean that whenever I want to use the mitre guide I would have to get out the protractor and set it that way, rather than using the angle notches built into the guide, although I’m not sure that’s exactly reliable! At least for the cheap plastic included mitre guide.
 
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