A band saw is a reliable power tool that allows you to cut straight lines, a curve, and other irregular shapes. You can easily change the blade of the saw to cut through different types of materials. They are used to cut metal, plastic, plywood, and other materials. Almost every woodworker has invested in a band saw at some stage, as they are one of the best additions to a woodshop. The majority of carpenters find themselves using a band saw over and over again.
If you know what blade to use, you should be able to use the tool for almost every job in your workshop. A bandsaw has a continuously moving blade and two blade-bearing wheels. It also comes with a table where you can place the different materials you want to cut. Once you get used to operating a bandsaw, you will be able to make precise cuts.
1. Meat Cutting
A lot of people assume the tool is used just for cutting wood and metal, but don’t be surprised if your local butcher has a band saw too. Because the tool is so powerful, butchers use it to cut through bones, and it helps them cut the exact proportion of meat they want to cut. Butchers have been using band saws for several years because it allows them to reduce the amount of waste when cutting. To make a clean cut of meat, they must equip the saw with a blade specifically designed for cutting meat. People working in a slaughterhouse would use a band saw on a regular basis. Without it, butchers would find it very difficult to neatly cut through bones.
The sharp blade works on strong bones, and even on frozen meat. Although standard wood band saws are similar to those designed for cutting meat, those who manufacture the tool keep sanitization in mind. However, some people convert a wood band saw into a meat band saw.
2. Woodwork: Cutting Straight Lines
The main reason why people invest in a band saw is for woodcutting. You should have no issues cutting a straight line through wood with the tool. A band saw is easy to use and it is efficient. Although other tools are readily available that will help you cut a straight line, band saws will allow you to produce a clean cut every time you use it. When cutting a straight line through wood, follow these steps.
- Mark the piece of the wood you will want to cut: Most people use a pencil, but you can use a pen if you like.
- After marking the cut area, check to see if the mark is straight. You can do so by using a protractor to measure the different angels.
- Hold the grip firmly to make sure that the cut is accurate. If you don’t hold it with a firm grip, you can expect the cut to be slightly off. If you are finding it difficult to hold the saw, use the fence to hold the piece of wood in place. Most band saws come with a fence.
If you are looking for a new band saw, trying to find the best one can take a little time. With so many band saws on the market, you might find the process slightly overwhelming. But remember, you can change the blades of the saw for different materials. It might be worth your while investing in plenty of different blades if you plan on cutting through different materials. If you are new to using a band saw, then make sure that it comes with a fence. It can be used to guide the wood while you are cutting to get an accurate cut, even if you are struggling to get a firm grip on the tool.
3. Woodwork: Cutting Curves
Cutting complex curves can prove tricky, even for experienced woodworkers. But after plenty of practice with a reliable bandsaw, you should have no problems mastering the different techniques.
To get started cutting curves, you will need a bandsaw with a thin blade. Most carpenters use a ¼” blade, but this depends on the type of wood you are using. A drawing of the cut lines (or a printed copy), and material used to transfer the drawings of the curves on the wood. To transfer the drawing onto the piece of wood you can use a soft pencil, and draw through the backside of the drawing, while others use a spray adhesive. This spray will come off after you have completed the job, so you don’t need to worry about the paper damaging your material. Some DIY enthusiasts have a vinyl stick printing machine. You will be able to print your drawings onto sticky paper which you can apply to the material. Once you have finished, you can peel away the sticker with ease.
However, if you are trying to cut a large piece of wood with a bandsaw, you might find it difficult to get the piece onto the bandsaw. A lot of band saws have a small throat and a tiny bed, which can make the task even more challenging. If your band saw is too small, you might first think about using a jigsaw to cut a big piece of wood into smaller pieces before you start working with the bandsaw.
4. Cutting Metal
Cutting metal is not an easy task, especially if you are planning on making angled or curved cuts. It is a lot harder than cutting most pieces of wood. Although a band saw is a handy tool for cutting wood, many people use it to cut through metal too. Just like cutting meat, you will need a blade designed to cut metal equipped on your band saw. It is a popular tool used in metal fabrication, which can shape and cut different types of steel and metal.
However, if you are looking for a tool that allows you to cut through heavy sheets of metal, you might have to find a different tool. Although it is great for cutting thin sheets, it will struggle with heavy sheets. However, it is still used by those working on metal and steel regularly.
Making accurate cuts on thin pieces of wood is not that easy, especially if you don’t have a band saw on hand. If you are using the tool for lamination, you will want a band saw so that you can cut different shapes. You will want to be able to glue each piece of wood together, so each cut must be accurate. If you don’t use a bandsaw, it is highly unlikely that you will get the shape you need. It has to hold together properly for it to feel and look good.
Just like any other power tool in your workshop, you have to be careful using it. The versatile tool can be dangerous, especially if you don’t wear the proper safety equipment when operating it. Before you begin, make sure that you put on safety glasses or a face shield, earplugs or earmuffs, and protective gloves. Also, if you have long hair make sure that you tie it up before you start the machine. If your hair or any of your loose clothing was to get caught in the machine, you could sustain a serious injury. Make sure you examine the saw thoroughly before using it. Make sure that the blade you are using is securely installed into the machine, and that each guard is locked into the proper position.