Bandsaw blades are a consumable item that is measured by its longegevity. High-performance bandsaw's are great, however, if they aren't the right blade, or the set-up isn't quite right, there can be no guarantee that greater performance will be achieved.
Have you had the experience and the frustration of a Bandsaw Blade losing it’s edge or breaking, knowing the Blade should have lasted a lot longer..? Or, perhaps you have the situation of the Blade not cutting straight?
Here’s four simple steps that you will find vital to increasing your Bandsaw Blade life, and performance!
- Tooth Selection – The first step to ensure maximum Band saw Blade life is to select the right Blade for the type of work being performed. Too many teethor too few teeth will cause Blade fatigue and cracking. We recommend an average of 5-7 teeth in the cut, at any one point. If you are cutting a thin-walled product with a coarse toothed Blade, teeth will likely break off. However, if you are cutting a solid section with a fine toothed Blade, the tooth gullets will fill with swarf and also cause the teeth to break off. Click here to view Excision's all-inclusive tooth selection chart.
- Blade Tension – Many have the opinion that backing-off Blade tension will be less strain on the Blade… Wrong! The Dependable Precision method is to keep the Blade tension high – here’s how… Whilst many Bandsaw Machines have a tension guage, the measurements may not relate but can be used as a good comparison tool. Tension the Band saw Blade, with the Machine turned off, place the palm of your hand on the back edge of the Band saw Blade between the guides and try to push the blade vertically out of the guides, pushing just about as hard as you can. The ideal is to get no more than 1-2mm of movement. Anything more than this, you need to increase the Bandsaw Blade tension.
- Running-in your Bandsaw Blade – This is sometimes referred to as ‘Breaking-in’, it is a vital step that many avoid due to work load pressures and the inconvenience. The Dependable Precision method and this explanation will hopefully change these habits – here’s how… The Bi-Metal Bandsaw Blade is made by a fine High-speed Steel wire being welded onto the edge of the backing strip. A grinding process forms the teeth, cutting through the HSS wire and creating a very sharp, cutting edge to each tooth. The initial approach of a new Blade into the cut can destroy a new Blade within seconds. Adjust the down-feed rate to 50% of what you would normally operate at, with Coolant flowing, perform 15 minutes of cutting through a solid section of mild steel. This will ‘hone’ the edges of the teeth and ensure every tooth is aligned, minimizing the risk of teeth breaking off.
- Coolant – This is another vital point to increasing Blade life. Coolant performs 3 tasks, it washes the swarf out of the cut, cools the tooth edge and lubricates the cutting process. Cutting without Coolant will generate heat build up on the tooth and will cause the swarf to weld itself to the tooth.
Following these simple steps will guarantee consistent, accurate cutting and more than double average Bandsaw Blade life!
For further information or technical support, the Team at Excision would love to assist.