Recent Topics
Service champ filter CUT OPEN
by 53' Stude. 09/25/18 05:05 PM
Pressure washer pump life just 23 hours?
by HawkeyeScott. 09/25/18 05:01 PM
STP S 10590 CUT OPEN
by 53' Stude. 09/25/18 05:00 PM
2003 BMW M5-Unknown oil 2500 mi
by Audios. 09/25/18 04:54 PM
FRAM ULTRA XG 3593A CUT OPEN
by 53' Stude. 09/25/18 04:51 PM
MG 201-7, 7,500 MILES CUT OPEN
by 53' Stude. 09/25/18 04:44 PM
MG 301-1, 10,800 miles CUT OPEN
by 53' Stude. 09/25/18 04:34 PM
Anyone regret their electric OPE?
by dlundblad. 09/25/18 04:21 PM
Which Performance Filter?
by rooflessVW. 09/25/18 03:33 PM
Optimal Compression Ratio for 91 Octane Fuel
by NICAT. 09/25/18 02:01 PM
Anyone used Amsoil DZF 0w40 ?
by ofelas. 09/25/18 01:33 PM
No more Turo - What now?
by dogememe. 09/25/18 01:08 PM
Military small arms ammo
by Camprunner. 09/25/18 12:03 PM
Pennzoil must not be selling , OR ?
by Kjmack. 09/25/18 11:51 AM
New black car, light swirls and water spots
by Redright9. 09/25/18 11:37 AM
Rust Belt vs Sun Belt cars
by ZZman. 09/25/18 11:33 AM
Enginer rebuilder's view of GDI intake issues
by Brigadier. 09/25/18 11:09 AM
Oil for '84 Caddy w/HT-4100
by StillLearning. 09/25/18 10:41 AM
Newest Members
Peppz, Jfa02, ibsfusion, Fearcat707, Perseo
66069 Registered Users
Who's Online Now
94 registered members (Ablebody, 53' Stude, 28oz, ad244, 2002 Maxima SE, AMC, 7 invisible), 1,420 guests, and 31 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Statistics
Forums67
Topics291,006
Posts4,854,189
Members66,069
Most Online3,590
Jan 24th, 2017
Donate to BITOG
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Metal Bandsaw Blade Tension #4598615
12/08/17 11:22 PM
12/08/17 11:22 PM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 157
New Mexico USA
CCI Offline OP
CCI  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 157
New Mexico USA
Bought an old horizontal/vertical metal band saw of unknown make, likely pretty old, seems to run good now. It was a mess, but I took it mostly apart, cleaned and lubed, reassembled, adjusted as best as I could figure out, and it cuts real well, square to well inside of 1/32".

Only problem is on thin wall tube sometimes the blade will stop. It's a fairly fine tooth blade. I suppose it could have something to do with metal wheels on metal blade, maybe this is to be expected. On thicker material it cuts very smooth.

I tensioned the blade as much as seemed prudent with the hand wheel,it used to stop a lot, now it hangs up only on 1/16" material just as it enters the vertical component of the square tube. So now I'm wondering, how tight is tight enough and how tight is too much on that blade?

Re: Metal Bandsaw Blade Tension [Re: CCI] #4598637
12/08/17 11:59 PM
12/08/17 11:59 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 1,376
Flaherty, KY
92saturnsl2 Offline
92saturnsl2  Offline
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 1,376
Flaherty, KY
Tight enough is when the blade won't stop while the saw is running under a normal load/feed. I usually don't need to turn them too tight unless something is wrong with the saw-- I do it by feel, about a good snug plus another half a turn.

All of the ones I worked on had a rubber insulator on the metal drive wheels to grip the blade better. Perhaps this is worn off? Metal on metal might be a rather poor friction combo... Is the tooth pitch/count appropriate for the material being cut-- do you know what it is?


1985 F-250HD 7.5L 4x4 135k- Maxlife 15w-40 HDEO
04 Odyssey EX 182k PUP 0w-40
96 Maxima GLE 250k QS Defy 5w-30
07 Chrysler Pacifica Limited 129k PUP 5w-40
Re: Metal Bandsaw Blade Tension [Re: CCI] #4598801
12/09/17 09:39 AM
12/09/17 09:39 AM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 4,943
Houston, Texas
motor_oil_madman Offline
motor_oil_madman  Offline
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 4,943
Houston, Texas
There should be rubber on the wheels called tires.


2007.5 dodge cummins 6.7 liter. Chevron Delo400 15w40. 7000 mile or 250-300hr intervals.

Re: Metal Bandsaw Blade Tension [Re: CCI] #4598951
12/09/17 01:10 PM
12/09/17 01:10 PM
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 297
Greenville SC
George Bynum Offline
George Bynum  Offline
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 297
Greenville SC
Originally Posted By: CCI
Only problem is on thin wall tube sometimes the blade will stop. It's a fairly fine tooth blade. I suppose it could have something to do with metal wheels on metal blade, maybe this is to be expected. On thicker material it cuts very smooth.

I tensioned the blade as much as seemed prudent with the hand wheel,it used to stop a lot, now it hangs up only on 1/16" material just as it enters the vertical component of the square tube.


My question is what "fairly fine tooth blade" means. I was always taught that there should be 2 teeth minimum in the material, so for 1/16 material, 32 tpi of finer. The way around that is with controlled feed where singe point tooling works.

Re: Metal Bandsaw Blade Tension [Re: 92saturnsl2] #4599619
12/10/17 09:04 AM
12/10/17 09:04 AM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 157
New Mexico USA
CCI Offline OP
CCI  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 157
New Mexico USA

Tight enough is when the blade won't stop while the saw is running under a normal load/feed. I usually don't need to turn them too tight unless something is wrong with the saw-- I do it by feel, about a good snug plus another half a turn.

I got it to the point where the blade wouldn't stop, after removing the blade and cleaning everything, it seems tighter than I would have expected but I don't know anything about this anyhow.

Snug plus a little bit. The blade stretched a little after a few uses, another maybe quarter turn did it.

All of the ones I worked on had a rubber insulator on the metal drive wheels to grip the blade better. Perhaps this is worn off? Metal on metal might be a rather poor friction combo...

This is part of the reason why I think it might be really old. The wheels in their present state don't look like they are missing any rubber, they look like it was never there. The depth of the flanges that retain the blade from sliding up off of the wheels are just a little more than the blade thickness. If there was ever any rubber there, the flanges would have been ineffective. This thing also has a little gearbox that requires gear oil. It leaks, needs a new gasket, which I will have to make.

Is the tooth pitch/count appropriate for the material being cut-- do you know what it is?


I will get a count. It's pretty fine, probably OK for thinner stock. I don't know if it's fine enough for 1/16" wall square tube, but close.

I can see where this is going. Now I need to figure out where to buy blades. How are the sizes indicated? If it's by circumference, how does one actually measure that? Or center to center on the wheels?

I appreciate the help -- thank you!

Re: Metal Bandsaw Blade Tension [Re: George Bynum] #4599628
12/10/17 09:13 AM
12/10/17 09:13 AM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 223
Reno, Nevada
Langanobob Offline
Langanobob  Offline
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 223
Reno, Nevada

Is there an adjustable hydraulic cylinder to control the feed rate? You might try slowing it down. Like George said you probably need a very fine tooth blade for 1/16Ē material. Coolant makes the wheels slippery and Iíve had some trouble with blades slipping when using coolant and I turn the coolant flow off when sawing difficult material. I mostly use a bandsaw for solid bar stock and it may be that a horizontal bandsaw is just not the right tool for cutting thin wall material, unless maybe that is all youíre cutting and you can keep a fine tooth blade on all the time. Otherwise itís a nuisance changing blades for the tubing.

About rubber tires, they are found on wood cutting bandsaws.

Re: Metal Bandsaw Blade Tension [Re: CCI] #4599665
12/10/17 09:56 AM
12/10/17 09:56 AM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 1,376
Flaherty, KY
92saturnsl2 Offline
92saturnsl2  Offline
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 1,376
Flaherty, KY
Blade is measured in length, width and thickness. Something along the lines of 11' x 1" x 0.035. Most places sell common-size blades, and can create custom ones. Tooth per inch is the other variable-- this can be fixed (6 teeth per inch for example) or variable (e.g. 6-10 teeth per inch). The variable ones handle a greater range of material thicknesses with less performance loss.

I've used primarily Ellis metal-cutting saws that are only air cooled, and these have the rubber "tire" on the wheels to grip the blade. There is no flange to retain the blade-- the proper tension on the blade centers it just fine unless something is damaged on the saw (guides, bearings, etc.)

At shops I've worked in, we cut material of all sizes/thickness and do not change the blade between them, rather change the load/feed so as not to damage the blade when cutting a material size not appropriate for the tooth count.

I my own experience, a 4-6 or 6-10 TPI is acceptable cutting anything over 1/4" thickness. 8-10 and 10-14 can easily handle down to 14 gauge (~ 1/16) provided you have your feed rate set correctly. There is some tables you can look up online that suggest how many teeth should be making contact with the given material. This is not a hard and fast rule, however and you cannot get it perfect for all situations. For example angle has two legs, tube has two walls plus a flat side, so the number of teeth making contact will vary wildly depending on where the blade is in the cut.

If the tension is right and saw is configured/set up correctly, if the blade is mismatched you will either get poor cutting performance or sheared off/dull teeth-- the blade shouldn't actually stop. Too much tension and the blade can snap, and you will shorten the life of the bearings in the saw guides/wheels.

You can literally count the tooth per inch -- if it is not consistent (varies at different places of measurement) you have a variable TPI. Most blades intended for ferrous metal are raked meaning the teeth are slightly offset from center in each direction.


1985 F-250HD 7.5L 4x4 135k- Maxlife 15w-40 HDEO
04 Odyssey EX 182k PUP 0w-40
96 Maxima GLE 250k QS Defy 5w-30
07 Chrysler Pacifica Limited 129k PUP 5w-40

BOB IS THE OIL GUY® Powered by UBB.threads™