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Old Bandsaw wheel wobble advice

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lee66

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Hi sorry if I put this in the wrong section, was abit unsure where to put it but please move if needed.

A couple of years ago I bought my first bandsaw - an old Walker Turner 16" (1939 to 1948). It's had occasional but very little use since I have had it, but it has been working fine with no problems.
There has always been abit of a noise to it but I just put it down to being an old machine.
When I bought the saw it needed new tyres (top wheel had no tyre at all and the bottom wheel was cracked and worn) but it ran and the blade stayed tracked no problem, so I ran it as it was up until quite recently when the blade snapped on me so I took it as a abit of an oppertunity to try get the saw sorted out. I ordered a pair of new tyres (pre-crowned orange urethane) and a couple of new blades, all of which has now arrived.
I have also tried getting local metalworkers to come out and take a look at the locking handle thingy for the tilting table as the one that I have at the moment the handle is snapped and there is no thread on it, but been let down with no show's 3 times now, so hopefully I can find somebody else who can do it or I might have to try making one myself. I think my main problem is because I need somebody to have a look and because I have no van and don't want to rent one out to try and move it (its very heavy!) just to take it to them to look and say they can't do it or bring it back in a few weeks etc. I don't even mind to rent a van and drop it off if needed if they are able to do the work.
I have not had much time but over the past few days I have been trying to do little bits on and off with the bandsaw, mostly trying to remove the old tyre from the bottom wheel. I had to do this whilst in situation because I couldn't find my gear puller 😭 using both a wallpaper scraper and an old chisel 😭 😭 .
Once finished however, I powered the machine on to help speed up the sanding process but noticed how bad the wobble/vibration is on the bottom wheel. I have uploaded a video to show how bad and noisey it is.

















I have never noticed the wobble before but never had it apart and inspected it either, so im not quite sure if it was there before or not... however im not happy putting it back together and just leaving it, so im just after some advice really. Anybody any clues where to start??

I have also posted on owwm.org but not had much response and because they are mostly an American bunch I thought I would also post here because somebody may recommend someone more local who may be able to help etc. or recommend something that is more available to me.

Sorry for the longish post.
Cheers, Lee.
 

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Gordon Tarling

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The obvious thing to check first is the bearings. With the saw switched off and safe, can you wobble the wheel on its axis? If more than a little wobble, then it would seem that new bearings are in order.

G.
 

Ttrees

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Looks like your jacking bolts are loose, that's a whole lot of wobble.
Don't run the saw like that ever, as you will likely make the hole for the shaft out of round, and it would need work then.
It could even toast your motor bearings also.

It could be the case that a bush is missing, or an issue with poured lead babbitt bearings if it has those.
If so and you happen to get it solid again
You likely need to align the bottom wheel with the top, and depending on if the top one is adjustable, the machine will need be plummed.

Bandsaws are simple but testy, and they need looking after, and frequent inspection.
You need to go over some things regarding the rules as that looks really dangerous/negligent to both yourself and the machine.

I suggest you look at something equivalently priced on the new market, and actually try and find an honest review where you can see someone rip/resaw a plank start to finish.
It would likely highlight to you how good of a machine you have, and might encourage one to go studying all things bandsaw, and in turn make one into a bandsaw fanatic.

I suggest the OWWM is likely to be a fantastic place to find info on your machine.
If you have described all you've said over there already, I suspect those folk might be a bit reluctant to say something stern to a newcomer.

Not seeing a good tutorial or much in regards to wheel alignment, I made a wee video on this recently, as Marc Spagnuolo had mentioned using a straight edge with blocking before.
It was clear to me there was something to what he was saying, simple as it is, it took me some time to figure out how to use it.
It might give some tips, although you might be better finding specific info
on your saw.

You might get the impression that it's often not just a walk in the park to set one up.

Ps there's another "bandsaws"Auzzie place elsewhere which someone recently acquired a machine similar to yours, which might be worth a look.

Good luck
Tom
 
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Ttrees

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@wallace of this Parish would be one who's posts I'd be searching, as he's not afraid of old machines like these.

Another man I'd be looking up is Jack Forsberg AKA JackEnglishmachines of the Wadkin temple who is very knowledgeable also.
 

lee66

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The obvious thing to check first is the bearings. With the saw switched off and safe, can you wobble the wheel on its axis? If more than a little wobble, then it would seem that new bearings are in order.

G.
No im pretty certain there is no play in it at all when the machine is turned off. I will double check though when I can get back out to it.
It turns pretty freely also considering its connected to the motor. Turning it by hand you can't really notice the wobble, I didn't notice it at all whilst cleaning the old tyre off it it was only when I turned it on to sand it flat I spotted how bad it was.
I plan to spend an hour on it later on so im hoping I can find the problem out but just wanted a few ideas to check first really :)
 

lee66

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Looks like your jacking bolts are loose, that's a whole lot of wobble.
Don't run the saw like that ever, as you will likely make the hole for the shaft out of round, and it would need work then.
It could even toast your motor bearings also.
I have checked the tightness of the bolts holding the wheel on and everything feels tight.
I don't plan to run it like this though, I only ran it like this for a 30 second video after noticing how bad it was.

It could be the case that a bush is missing, or an issue with poured lead babbitt bearings if it has those.
If so and you happen to get it solid again
You likely need to align the bottom wheel with the top, and depending on if the top one is adjustable, the machine will need be plummed.

Bandsaws are simple but testy, and they need looking after, and frequent inspection.
You need to go over some things regarding the rules as that looks really dangerous/negligent to both yourself and the machine.
I really hope it is something as simple as a bush missing or something like this.
Having never owned a bandsaw before I was really unsure if to get this machine, but ive been into woodworking for a while and over the years I see posts or replies to people saying you won't find better saws than the old ones etc.
Few months later I started saving for a bandsaw and then this popped up for sale 50 miles away. At the time I was saving for a Record Power 350 but saw this and loved the look of it and the weight of it compared to the Record Power.

I suggest you look at something equivalently priced on the new market, and actually try and find an honest review where you can see someone rip/resaw a plank start to finish.
It would likely highlight to you how good of a machine you have, and might encourage one to go studying all things bandsaw, and in turn make one into a bandsaw fanatic.

I suggest the OWWM is likely to be a fantastic place to find info on your machine.
If you have described all you've said over there already, I suspect those folk might be a bit reluctant to say something stern to a newcomer.

Not seeing a good tutorial or much in regards to wheel alignment, I made a wee video on this recently, as Marc Spagnuolo had mentioned using a straight edge with blocking before.
It was clear to me there was something to what he was saying, simple as it is, it took me some time to figure out how to use it.
It might give some tips, although you might be better finding specific info
on your saw.

You might get the impression that it's often not just a walk in the park to set one up.

Ps there's another 'the bandsaw' Auzzie place elsewhere which someone recently acquired a machine similar to yours, which might be worth a look.

Good luck
Tom
Thank you for all the info. That link looks useful to align the wheels will bookmark it for when I have sorted this wobble issue.
Yeah I have found owwm has been pretty amazing to be honest and from the research I done when I got it, it seems I have a pretty nice machine, albeit needing abit of work (which I hoped was just replacing the tires and the locking bolt lol.)
I don't mind to get my hands dirty though if its something im capable to do but I don't really want to be giving it a full strip down either.
 

Ttrees

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It could have been the dressing you done moved something?
Currently dressing my tires on my machine, with a few things to iron out yet.
Doing it wrong will result in a really bad running machine, refusing to cut, and half way sorted likely to make one go through blades fast as it ruins the set, lighter gauge blades more so, and they might not even run well to begin with.


Guessing your saw has the motor bolted onto a plate at the column,
so "seems" there is quite a bit of forgiveness on the bearings, compared to a flange mounted motor which is much less forgiving.
How much it will tolerate is anyone's guess, I suppose?.
I needed to replace the bearings on my saw, with about half that lower wheel movement, but a faster running saw.
So be warned!
 

lee66

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Thanks for the replys so far!

I have not got around to dressing the wheels yet, I have only removed the old deteriorated rubber that was on previously.

I managed to get out and have a little look at it again, spent more time trying to clear space to get to it properly!
Anyway, what I managed to find I think it has something to do with the noise but not really sure how to sort it yet;


















Also I checked the condition the belt was in and im suprised it has not already snapped! I will need to get a replacement for it asap, hopefully I should be able to find one for this machine.

Whilst rotating the lower pulley you can hear the clunking noise as in this next video;
















Whilst out there I also grabbed a couple of pictures of the saw;

2.jpg1.jpg3.jpg

Fingers crossed can get it sorted anyway. Will keep an update how I get on and hopefully who may have had this issue in the past see's this and knows my problem..
 

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clogs

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Prob need to find a model engineer to make the odd part......
I would be happy to make the parts but have moved outta the UK now.....
see if u can find "Men in a Shed" near u as they will know where to get a little things machined....prob best look thru facebook.....
perhaps theres even an experienced chap used to old machines involved there....
Ur b/saw is quite an asset......wish it were mine......
good luck.....
 

Inspector

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Slip the belt off the pulley and run it. If it is quiet then your noise is some or all in the pulley on the wheel shaft. There should be a set screw to stop it from moving. Grab the lower wheel and give it a little twist and shake. If it isn't loose then you have three potential problems. First is the wheel itself is not flat (hardest thing to fix). Second is the shaft bearing is bent a touch, the effect being magnified by the distance to the wheel rim (new shaft). Third might be the shaft bearing is worn. With the belt off if the wheel when spun by hand, it spins for a while quietly the bearings are good. If noisy or slows quickly the bearings could be worn.

Pete

Second should read "shaft" and not "shaft bearing".
 
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lee66

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Brilliant thank you I will try get the belt off in the morning and see what it's doing but thats great thank you. Will post back my findings tomorrow.

Regarding the men in shed groups unfortunatly the one near me was only round the corner but it closed down a short while ago but it is something I have thought about joining just never got around to tbh, there is another one about 6-7 miles away may be not a bad idea to look into it again :)(y)
 

Inspector

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You might aw well take the belt to an automotive parts supplier or garage while it is still in one piece. They can match it up to a new one and off you go. See how much travel the motor mount has to loosen and tighten the belt and decide if a touch shorter/ longer belt will be better. You want it in the middle range of the mount travel when tight.

Pete
 

wallace

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That is one impressive wobble, I wonder if the old blade was keeping it running true. Or something happened which caused the blade to break. I'd take the wheel off the shaft and check it independently, and check the shaft also for runout.
 

deema

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I’m not familiar with the machine, however I have restored a few machines including a few bandsaws.
I suspect the pulley is moving back and forth due to a grub screw(s) missing or loose. There is normally one, or one on top of another located in one of the grooves of the pulley directly over the key. This enabled alignment of the two pulleys to be achieved. It will need a set of imperial Allen keys.

I think your wheel wobble is due to a worn bearing. When the blade was on, the tension would reduced the wobble so it wasn’t noticeable. This would strongly suggest either white metal (Babbitt) bearings or a bronze bearing. Chances are the shaft is also worn as well. A Babbit bearing needs casting in situe and you will hard pressed to find anyone who will do it commercially. A bronze bearing will need machining to size and is far easier.
Have a look for some form of oilers near where you would think a bearing might be. These could look like grease nipples that are often misunderstood and filled with grease instead of oil.
Old machines often also used open ball bearings that also needed lubricant and have grease nipples that need grease. Your machine could have open bearings which have frozen and started to rotate either on the shaft or in the body that they are seated; often the latter as it will be cast iron that acts as a lubricant. If this is the case it’s a new shaft and bearing or the hole for the bearing boring out for the next size of bearing or boring and lining for the same size and often a new shaft as well as bearing. However, I don’t think it’s a ball bearing as when they seize / fail the machine is most often unusable.
 

deema

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You should never leave a machine for a while with tension on a belt. Where it’s not realistic to remove the tension the driven parts should be turned 1/4 turn each week. This stops the belt taking a ‘set’ which wrecks bearings. It also stops ball bearings creating microscopic indents in the race that when run creates gauling and premature failure.
Any belt that is starting to wear should be replaced as it creates vibration which prematurely wears out any sort of bearing.
 

Ttrees

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Thanks for those tips Deema
I must double check if my motor was just snagging on something, but
I think not, and those v belts can stretch a lot and revert to the same size again.

Will a new belt stretch over a short time, as the new identical one seems a lot tighter than the old one on my machine?

I suppose I may actually have some old belt from another machine which was used, as I found the same brand locally!, (unusual for me in Eire)

I'll warn again about tight belts and misalignment being instantly fatal on motor bearings on a machine which has a shorter belt!
i.e less distance, like on modern bandsaws which have a large hub
at the back of the lower wheel.

With that in mind...regarding belt tensioning.
I've heard rules of no tighter than a half inch of deflection either way,
and also another of not being easily able to twist it beyond 90 degrees.


I'll be playing it safe more than likely, and try seek an inch shorter belt if possible locally.
Do belts come in inch increments, and if so guessing bringing the new belt will make it easy for the fella to know the next size up?

Sorry if a bit of derailment Lee, but should be interesting none the less.
Seems to me the wheels need to be aligned first and doing a good check like Wallace has mentioned would be a good idea.
He's a lot more knowledgeable about these old machines
That pulley being loose seems a secondary consequential issue to me,
Seems like the whole mounting can be adjusted easily.
Is there any signs or witness marks of an older jacking or motor location/changed motor?

Might also be worth looking to see if the top wheel can be adjusted, if not a simpler affair to be sure where the lower wheel should be.
Take measurements of everything beforehand, if you do decide to go moving anything.
If it's as simple as that.
All the best

Tom
 

deema

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Wedge belts stretch and when there are more than one belt on a pulley all must be replaced at the same time even if only one is showing wear. Otherwise you end up with belt slap that creates vibration and the power is being transmitted by only one belt. Replace a belt (tighten) check again 24 hrs and 48 hrs later adjusting tension as required.

Belts come in lots of standard lengths, and quite small increments. Just beware that some are specified as Li length internal or other methods such as outside length. There is a difference.

Depending on the flavour of belt SPZ SPA etc etc depends on the tension required. They all have different cross sections . There are tables / formulas for tensioning a belt.
 
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Davey44

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I expect you've already had plenty of guidance, but for my half-pennuth, I'd say that there are a few possibilities:

1), the 'axle' on which the wheel runs is loose on the body of the saw - I experienced this once on a saw brought to me. It wasn't an 'obvious' problem, since the securing nut seemed tight.

2). the bearing within the wheel is worn badly.
And/or
3). a spacing washer on the axle has failed and dropped out.

I would simply add that all the checks you carry out should be conducted with the tension on the bandsaw blade and the drive belt released, or you are likely to get false results.

BTW, I love the look of the saw. A real keeper once the wobble is fixed!


Good luck.
 

bob543

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Feel your pain i bought its baby brother a few years back ,only a 12" version, but it often drives me mad with one wobbly wheel . I totally restored mine which had proper bearing in the wheels but still wobbles probably due to a slightly deformed wheel (they are a cast alloy type). They look very nice though. I keep meaning to try and get sorted but never find the time (have a 18" Jet as well). Yours looks like one of the the more heavy duty ones.
Heres a photo of ine when id almost finished restoring it.
Bob
 

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Fergie 307

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I always replace ordinary plain v belts with the notched v type. They grip better so you can use less tension. The size should be marked on it. Never buy them from the manufacturer, they tend to charge the earth. Go to a specialist drive belt supplier, they will be much cheaper, and probably better quality. I always use Gates products for what it's worth. And if you have multiple belts they will sell you a matched set from the same batch, so you can be sure they are exactly the same. As to the wheel wobble, have you checked that the wheel itself is actually true. You seem to have had a bit of a fight getting the tyre off, and then noticed a wobble that you hadn't noticed before. It's perfectly possible that you have bent it. You really want to mount it, ideally in a lathe, if you can find someone with a machine big enough to handle the diameter. Alternatively find a proper bicycle repair man and put it in a wheel building stand. If it is out of true it shouldn't be too difficult to persuade it back into shape. You may have to make up a short spindle to mount it but we'll worth the effort as if the wheel itself is out of true then anything else you do is a waste of time.
 
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