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Having trouble with blade tension

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Ives

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Sorry, I have lots of questions I've been storing up!

I've had my scroll saw only a couple months, so I'm just getting the hang of putting in these pinless blades. Are you supposed to be able to sort of push them from side to side a bit? I thought that meant it was too loose, so I tighten it with about one turn of the tightening thing, and bam, the blade snaps. Or it snaps when I try to cut. So now I leave it like that, where I can push it from side to side a bit, and it works fine, but I'm always so scared it's going to break. And when I'm changing the blade and tightening it again, I'm half closing my eyes, clenching my jaw, and so scared it's going to break. I don't know how tight is going to be too tight, or not tight enough. People have said ping the blade and it will make a musical note sound. Well, even if it's totally loose it makes a sound, just different pitches! Will I just get this in time?
 

Gill

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Ives":ednhkvhj said:
Will I just get this in time?
Errrrrr..... yes!

:)

Setting blade tension is one of those things scrollers have to work out for themselves. Generally speaking, a blade should have 1mm play (or marginally more) when pressed sideways by a finger but much depends on the thickness of the blade itself. If the blade breaks when it is being tensioned... well, you learn not to tension your next blade quite so tightly.

Sometimes when you're cutting it might feel as if you're not making as much progress as you would expect to be making. It can often be worthwhile checking the blade's tension because they can slacken off after a few minutes of use.
 

artanddecco

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I find that the quality of blades used are important, I myself find the Olson blades acceptable, but when I bought my scrollsaw from a reputable dealer, they sold me Blades which I discovered were only suitable for manual fretwork, and they easily broke. Also, when you tension the blade, give it a flick with your nail at each turn, you will know its about right after you get a high pitch 'ping'. Also, a blunt blade will break, I find that if you get 50 minutes out of a blade its about normal.
John
 
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