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Jonny77

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Hi all,
I've started making and refurbing cricket bats and would like to purchase a bandsaw to cut he splice part of the bat. However I've heard I would need to ensure the blade didn't 'wander' as it needs to be accurate obviously.

On a limited budget is it possible to get something which is up to the job? What would be the least you should expect to spend?

Thanks in advance
 

MikeG.

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I can tell you that every bat factory I've ever been in used a circular saw to cut the splice. Duncan Fearnley told me about a bat he had back after a couple of years........it turned out they'd forgotten to glue the handle in, but it had stayed put for two whole seasons!

Anyway, to answer your question.....almost any bandsaw will do. Willow is so soft that the blade won't wander whilst it's sharp.
 

sunnybob

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A sharp blade and a slow feed rate works with bandsaws.
The vast majority of people who complain about wandering cuts have watched speeded up utube "tutorials" and expect to cut the wood 10 times faster than they should.
The more important aspect of buying a bandsaw is not buying too small, just to save money. Work out the biggest thickest size of wood you are ever likely to cut in the future, and buy accordingly.

remember the very wise old saying; "buy cheap, buy twice"
But having said that, a bandsaw cut will almost always need some final smoothing, wheras a table saw blade cut can very easily be the finished surface.
 

MikeG.

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sunnybob":30yaagwi said:
....... a bandsaw cut will almost always need some final smoothing, wheras a table saw blade cut can very easily be the finished surface.
Exactly. Efficiently doing a final smoothing inside a "V"-shaped splice is not something I can easily imagine. Every extra process in a manufacturing situation is time and money.

To the OP.......There's a reason why almost all bat manufacturing has left Britain and gone to India. Why do you think it would work for you here when it doesn't work for the big boys?
 

Jonny77

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Thanks gents. I've been informed a circular/table saw would be better but I'd need a 450mm blade and that seems a bit overkill/expensive at present, as I'm only just starting out. Unless anyone can advise differently? A few batmakers have advised they use a bandsaw and a jig to cut the splice and the handle, so this seems like the best route. There's numerous videos online showing this also.

I'll bear the above in mind and appreciate the advice. Any suggestions on brand etc?

I appreciate much of the manufacturing for some of the bigger companies is in India but actually there are still many here, GM, Chase, Salix, Keeley, Jedi, Hunts County, Gray Nicolls, H4L, Kippax to name a few. There are also a number of smaller brands making bats too in the UK. Added to that theres the repairs and refurbs side, which obviously wouldn't be sent out to India. I'm not saying this is going to be a huge business and earn me a full time living, but even if it's a hobby which pays for itself I'm good with that.

Really appreciate the advice though fellas.
 

MikeG.

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Jonny77":5os8b40i said:
........Any suggestions on brand etc?........
Definitely buy second hand, and you'll notice that they're all pretty much the same. Brands don't actually matter much until you get to the bigger old cast iron commercial machines. A 14" (350mm) machine is plenty enough for your task. 16" would be nice, but overkill. When you get your machine, take it to bits and clean everything, and replace the bearings (that's an extremely cheap and easy job). Have an early conversation with Ian at Tuffsaws about blades, because willow is an odd timber, being extremely soft and a little fibrous. He'll know the right blade (probably M42, so that they last much longer, and the kerf doesn't matter in your situation).

Are you going to make your own handles? That's where the skill is in bat making.
 

sunnybob

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Just how much wood are you cutting at a time to need a 450 mm blade? :shock:
My 260 mm blade will cut over 80 mm of wood.
There used to be a bat maker at the side of somerset cricket ground, but as always, my knowledge is 15 years out of date now.
 

AndyT

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Personally I've no idea about making cricket bats but I just wanted to point out that MikeG has more hands on experience with one than anyone else on this forum, so his advice will be well worth listening to. I believe he knows a thing or two about woodworking as well. :)
 

MikeG.

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sunnybob":311wl7bk said:
Just how much wood are you cutting at a time to need a 450 mm blade? :shock:
Depth of cut isn't the issue. It's tensioning a big enough blade, and you simply don't get that strength in a smaller machine. I've never been within 6 inches of using the depth of cut my machine is capable of, but consistently reach the machine's limits in other respects.

There used to be a bat maker at the side of somerset cricket ground, but as always, my knowledge is 15 years out of date now.
Millichamp and Hall.
 

MikeG.

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AndyT":2xa3188g said:
Personally I've no idea about making cricket bats but I just wanted to point out that MikeG has more hands on experience with one than anyone else on this forum, so his advice will be well worth listening to. I believe he knows a thing or two about woodworking as well. :)
I adjusted most of my team mates' bats over the years, but worst of all was giving up one of my best ever bats to Salim Malik when he joined Essex, and then having to adjust it to suit him.
 

John Brown

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sunnybob":17nvj1er said:
Just how much wood are you cutting at a time to need a 450 mm blade? :shock:
My 260 mm blade will cut over 80 mm of wood.
There used to be a bat maker at the side of somerset cricket ground, but as always, my knowledge is 15 years out of date now.
I think he was talking about a circular saw at that point, in which case I guess he'd have to have the bat vertical.
 

MikeG.

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John Brown":2q2b11av said:
......I think he was talking about a circular saw at that point, in which case I guess he'd have to have the bat vertical.
No, the bat is fed into the blade horizontally with both a bandsaw and a circular saw.
 

sunnybob

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MikeG.":3vnuwl02 said:
sunnybob":3vnuwl02 said:
Just how much wood are you cutting at a time to need a 450 mm blade? :shock:
Depth of cut isn't the issue. It's tensioning a big enough blade, and you simply don't get that strength in a smaller machine. I've never been within 6 inches of using the depth of cut my machine is capable of, but consistently reach the machine's limits in other respects.

There used to be a bat maker at the side of somerset cricket ground, but as always, my knowledge is 15 years out of date now.
Millichamp and Hall.
Mike, he spoke of a 450 mm Table saw blade. :shock: thats what I replied to regarding my table saw blade.
My 350mm wheeled bandsaw will cut 200 mm.
 

MikeG.

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Oh, OK, I got lost.......

The big blade in the table saw is to get as near a square end on the splice as possible, presumably.
 

Jonny77

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Thanks all. I'm obviously respecting people's opinions, otherwise I wouldn't have asked :D MikeG you seem to know a great about both woodworking and cricket, so really appreciate your advice. M&H are still going inb that neck if the woods, some are still UK made I believe.

I'm not vastly experienced in the field and just starting out, so trying to learn as much as I can as quickly as I can. I was just told the 450mm by a respected batmaker, so was going by his knowledge. I've tried to post some pictures which he sent, but it won't allow me.
 
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