Is Your Bandsaw Not Cutting Straight? Here Are the Fixes You Need to Bring
The bandsaw is one of the most popular members of the saw family people use for cutting metal, foam, wood etc. Generally, woodworkers don’t use the bandsaw to get an even and straight cut on their materials. Rather it is very useful to make various zigzag cuts for making designs.
However, like the table saw is not cutting straight problem, anytime you may face the problem where the bandsaw is not cutting straight.
Well, if you are already going through this annoying situation, you have landed right place.
Just hold on a moment. After finishing the intro, in this conversation, I will go through all the process you need to follow to get rid of this specific bandsaw problem.
So, without spending any further words, let’s kick on the butt of bandsaw not cutting straight problem.
What Are The Reasons Behind a BandSaw not Cutting Straight Problem?
As I am a professional woodworker and have years of experience working with saws, I have a clear idea of various saw issues. And below I am listing the possible causes of a bandsaw straight cutting crux.
- Dull bandsaw blade.
- Incorrectly installed blade
- Wrong wiring.
- Inexact blade tension.
- Worn out bandsaw wheel.
- Misaligned blade guide.
Yet you have just got the name, but you don’t have any details about those villains. So, let’s deep down to them in the next.
As it is important to have a correct blade on a saw for cutting metal, it is equally important to have a sharp blade. Because it is obvious that a dull blade will not cut smoothly as the sharp blade does.
Some of the DIY woodworkers think that a dull blade can cut more slowly and can deliver a smooth cutting. Rather it leaves the wood with a crooked cut.
As an example, let’s assume you are cutting meat with a knife. If you are having a sharp knife your cut will be perfect as you are cutting butter. Otherwise, if you attempt to cut the meat with a dull knife, it will tear down the meat and you won’t get the straight line as you thought of.
It is similar when you have a dull knife on your bandsaw. In this case, it can also boot you with a saw kickback.
So, if you want to make perfectly straight cuts on bandsaw, obviously get a sharp blade. And if you find out your bandsaw doesn’t have a sharp knife, don’t think too much to replace it with the new sharp one.
Note: To cut down the production cost, some companies are making saw blades from the cheap material which are worn out so quickly. So try to pick up the high-quality bandsaw blades from the market.
Are you struggling with your bandsaw blades finding? Check out the link below, it will help you to pick up the best bandsaw blade for cutting different kinds of materials.
Incorrectly Installed Blade
After checking the blade’s sharpness, now it is time to check the blade installation. Actually, it is one of the bandsaw basics.
In the case of a vertical bandsaw, the blade tips point downwards. And when it comes talking about the horizontal bandsaw, tip points as it can enter the workpiece first during cutting.
You can easily flip the bandsaw blade for changing its direction. So, if you have noticed that your saw blade is having an incorrectly installed blade, change it.
Note: Some special kinds of bandsaw blade is designed for appears as if it is running backward when cutting. Honeycomb design bandsaw blades are common which have such a feature.
And this time, don’t attempt to change the blade direction.
Now, make sure your bandsaw blade is running the right direction. Bandsaw machine is a power tool and it requires three phases of power to run it.
So, it is common to make mistakes with the wiring. And this time, your saw blade will move opposite direction than it needs to if you are running the saw with wrong wiring.
In a vertical bandsaw, the blade will definitely need to go down to make cuts. This force helps the blade to hold down the workpiece on the saw table. Otherwise, it will jump on and can spurn you with the workpiece.
And the blade’s edge will go towards the motor wheel for the horizontal bandsaw.
If you find out that your saw blade is not doing so, it is wise to call a professional electrician who can take the necessary steps needed to make it right.
Inexact Blade Tension
If your saw doesn’t have a properly tensioned blade, it can resonate during the operation and can deliver you a meandering cutting line. So, it is important to have a properly tensioned blade to get the desired straight cut with a bandsaw.
Generally, industrial bandsaws have two different types of bandsaw blade tensioning mechanism. And they are
- Screw over spring mechanism
- Pneumatic mechanism.
Note: You can also find some bandsaw with the hydraulic mechanism for the blade tensioning.
Basically, it is quite similar to the pneumatic system. Though pneumatic and hydraulic are the same from different perspectives, the hydraulic system is messy with their oil leakage.
Generally, a pressure regulator valve helps them both to fix their blade tension.
On the other hand, to get the proper blade tension on a screw over spring mechanism you need a gauge. And to get the proper tension you can definitely rely on this.
If you have plenty of machines that need to be tensioned, I will recommend you to have one band saw blade tensioning gauge from the market.
Starrett has a reputation to make precise bandsaw gauge on the market, so you can check them.
Worn Out Bandsaw Wheel
If you already have gone through all the process described above, it is time you have to check the bandsaw wheel.
Like other high-speed machines, a bandsaw also has a crown to support its blade.
Generally, the blade runs at the center of the crown. And it is not a problem at all, if it stays between ¼-inch to ⅛-inch far from the center.
If you find that the blade is struggling to hold its position, you need to adjust the bandsaw wheel immediately.
Note: Hold on a second. Before you go for adjusting the wheel check out the blade holding guide. An improperly adjusted bandsaw blade guide can be the causes of blade vibration.
However, most of the time, it is not the poorly adjusted guide which is making the blade shakey and it is delivering an improper cutting line. Rather it is the worn out wheel.
Remember, sometimes you need crowning your bandsaw wheel, if you find boob in it. Otherwise, it can make a bandsaw issue also when you will get the devious cutting line.
So, if your bandsaw has an outdated wheel, change it ASAP. And I think it will make your work done.
Misaligned Blade Guide
For a guide fitting, it is idle you set as it has a close but free space ( about the thickness of a dollar) between the blade and it.
If your bandsaw blade guide stays more close to the blade or far from it, you have to consider it as the poorly adjusted. And in both cases, you won’t get a straight cut you need.
When the guide stays far from the blade, it cannot support it and will leave you with a shakey blade. And we all know, an unstable blade is the main culprit behind the improper cut.
And if you overtightened the blade guide, you will pass a hard time to feed your workpiece into the saw. Scenario: A zigzag cut.
So, rearrange the guide this time also.
We are at the end and these were the bandsaw maintenance you need for this specific issue. Go through all the process to restore your saw cutting power. But if you want to prevent this problem in the near future don’t forget to follow the steps given below.
- Use a high-quality sharp bandsaw blade.
- Install the blade properly.
- Get proper wiring.
- Align the blade guide properly and
- Finally, check the alignment of the bandsaw wheel from time to time, if it is loose or not.