A Bandsaw Buyer’s Guide

With advances in bandsaw machines and blade technology, what were once considered cold sawing applications are now routinely accomplished with bandsaws. From structural beams to large solids, bandsaws are now a widley accepted method for efficiently cutting to close tolerances. Higher end bandsaws now come equipped with productivity enhancing features such as CNC controls, vibration dampening devices, blade deviation monitors, ballscrew material feeders, variable frequency drives and more. When looking to purchase a bandsaw, consider the following:

  • Am I buying a machine with proper capacity? If you’re maxing out your machine’s capacity on a somewhat regular basis you most likely need a larger saw. A larger machine with a wider blade and more horse power generally will allow you to cut faster and straighter resulting in better efficiency.
  • Do I need to bundle cut? Horizontal bandsaws with wider blades and bundle clamps allow for efficient bundle cutting of solid and structural materials.
  • Vertical Bandsaw
    Horizontal Bandsaw

  • Do I need to miter cut? Tilt frame vertical bandsaws are ideal for miter cutting applications especially where opposite hand miters are required on the same part. Many tilt frame bandsaws are capable of miter cuts to 30 degrees. If your application calls for miters in only one direction a “swing head” horizontal bandsaw can be more economical solution in many cases.
  • Do I need to cut solid material? When cutting large solid round or square material a horizontal bandsaw is typically recommended due to their robust design and capability of utilizing wider blades. Also, larger horizontal bandsaws are typically designed with heavy duty saw beds and larger material clamps that are built to withstand larger and heavier work pieces.
  • Does the dealer utilize an extensive process that includes the inspection and adjustment or replacement of nearly every common wear part on the saw? If common wear parts such as blade guides, band blade wheels, variable speed pulleys, control switches and vise wear plates are not thoroughly inspected and routinely repaired or replaced, chances are the saw will not perform to your expectations. If the saw is not carefully tested and run off to close length and squareness tolerances, or if the saw’s feed rate is not properly calibrated, you may not be happy with your purchase.

Are you in the market for a high quality used bandsaw? Contact the bandsaw experts at Westbrook Engineering and be sure to ask about our 20 point bandsaw inspection and repair process. View our entire used metal fabricating machinery inventory.
Westbrook Engineering Company
Written by Martin Szarek of Westbrook Engineering Company Inc.
About the Author:
Martin Szarek is the owner of the Westbrook Engineering Co. – a family owned company specializing in used metal fabricating machinery sales. Other Westbrook services include auction and liquidation services. Westbrook Engineering is in their 57th year of business.