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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Hobart
    Posts
    5

    Default The lamentable state of bandsaw choice/availability in Australia

    I want a bandsaw with the following specs:

    • Power 2-2.5HP
    • 10A plug
    • cutting depth >= 250mm
    • blade >= 19mm
    • available in Australia in the forseeable future


    Astoundingly, I cannot find such a thing.
    My summary of contenders is below, with "strikes" against my ideals marked with ***.
    There are also some bewildering inconsistencies:

    • Laguna has a 2.5HP machine with a 10A plug
    • Sherwood has two 2HP machines, one with a 10A plug, the other with a 15A plug

    Am I missing anything?
    Am I being too harsh?
    My main purpose will be building acoustic guitars (hence the resawing requirements).

    The machine I feel most suits me is the Laguna 14BX

    Laguna 14BX CE
    2.5HP
    10A plug
    Good cutting height 330
    Takes 19mm width blade (Resaw King available)
    Ceramic guides
    123 KG
    $2899
    *** Near impossible to obtain, Gregory Machinery have stopped selling them, Carbatec can't get stock

    Laguna 14|12 CE
    *** 1.75HP
    10A plug
    Good cutting height 330
    Takes 19mm width blade (Resaw King available)
    Ceramic guides
    117 KG
    $2499
    *** Near impossible to obtain, Gregory Machinery have stopped selling them, Carbatec can't get stock

    Hare & Forbes BP-430-A
    2HP
    10A plug
    Good cutting height 310
    *** Only takes 16mm width blade (not enough for resawing)
    Bearing guides
    181 KG
    $2585

    Hare & Forbes BP-480-A
    2HP
    *** 15A plug
    Good cutting height 310
    Takes 19mm width blade
    Bearing guides
    214 KG
    $2959

    Leda BS-400
    3HP
    *** (assume 15A plug)
    Adequate cutting height 250
    Takes 37mm width blade
    Ceramic guides
    126 KG
    $1947

    Sherwood SBSCL-350 (14in Plus)
    2HP (1500W) (6.2A rated) Max 1500W
    10A plug
    Good cutting height 305
    Takes 19mm width blade
    Bearing guides
    110 KG
    $1699
    *** Preorder only (Timbecon)

    Sherwood SBSHD-350 (14in Heavy Duty)
    "2HP" (1500W) (8A rated) Max 1900W
    *** 15A plug (for an 8A-rated, 2HP motor...)
    Good cutting height 335
    Takes 25mm width blade
    Ceramic guides
    105 KG
    $2799

    Harvey Ambassador C14
    3HP
    *** (assume 15A plug)
    Good cutting height 350
    Takes 25mm width blade
    Bearing guides
    159 KG
    $2899
    *** Available for preorder only (Gregory Machinery)

    Rikon 10-326
    *
    **1.5 HP
    Assume 10A
    Good cutting height 330
    Takes 19mm width blade
    ??? Guides
    129 KG
    $1999

    Rikon 10-353
    3HP
    *** 15A plug
    Good cutting height 330
    Takes 25mm width blade
    ??? Guides
    142 KG
    $2499

    Woodfast BS350OD 14"
    2HP
    ??? plug
    Good cutting height 330
    Takes 19mm width blade
    ??? Guides
    126 KG
    $1726

    Woodfast BS450A 18"
    3HP
    *** Assume 15A
    Good cutting height 330
    Takes 19mm width blade
    ??? Guides
    129 KG
    $2362

    Hammer N3800
    (assume) 10A plug
    2HP
    Good cutting height 310mm
    Takes 20mm blade
    Bearing guides (ceramic option)
    150 KG
    $???

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Éire
    Age
    36
    Posts
    138

    Default

    I was in the same boat, guessing rented place you are in.
    A very sensible option may be to go the 3 phase second hand route.
    I'm going to pretend this may be your only option, just for some encouragement.

    I run a 24" Italian machine , it's got near solid cast iron wheels (not some questionable alloy) and a 3 horsepower/2.2kW motor.

    You can buy a VFD/inverter for around 110 euro's/100 pounds sterling (whatever that equates to in the great down under)
    or you can go fancier if you like, for motor protection.
    Play by the rules of not bogging the machine down, which you should never do for any induction motor, and you will be fine.

    The VFD/inverter will provide you with an easily adjustable ramp up time, as well as braking time, as it's the split second startup of an induction motor is what is the problem if you're using a household plug, and the machine is not so consumptive thereafter.
    I looked at my meter whilst my machine was running idle, and it used about the same power as my old lap top!
    The heavy wheels won't slow down for any reasonable reason, (I reclaim timber) so should be quite efficient.

    The motor on this machine is what's known as 'dual voltage', and can be run from a household voltage, ie 240 volts (240v delta configuration)
    It is fairly common thing to find machines which have dual voltage motors, just as long as you can see 220 or 240 v, on the motor nameplate which might have a triangle symbol a 'D' for Delta (low voltage configuration) specifying this also.

    Here's my saw
    SAM_0939.jpg
    I was looking for a 20" or if I could preferably find a 540mm machine for some time, this came up for 500 quid.
    A bit bigger, but I like it now compared to the 20" far eastern machine I had previously (a discount one which went back to the shop)
    Why, well apart from the nicer bits of an Italian machine, I like the larger table very much so (sawing tenons), safer IMO, and also the larger cabinet,compared to the very tightly made 20" with small table.

    Both act together to make things much less dusty, in a sort of passive dust collection way.
    More distance standing from machine+space around the wheels=less dusty operator.

    This may be of concern for someone resawing tropical tonewood and not wanting to get themselves as dirty, and breathing as much dust in (see Bill Pentz for wood toxicity chart for that, and Bob Loss which frequents here I believe)
    I'm not saying that you shouldn't have an extractor on, but in my case I'd be wary on my weak supply, and use one afterwards.

    BANDSAW MOTOR.jpg
    Here's an example of a dual voltage motor which can run on household supply.
    Just look for 220/240 delta/D and something up to 3hp and you should be fine.
    I think you might be able to de-rate your motor using the VFD, (one which has this feature)
    should you find a 4hp machine, but beyond 5hp these get expensive.
    I'll let the more educated ones explain this, as I only know the basics being a Joe Soap.

    Easy to install, as its only a few wires, that can be learned easily and folks here can guide you should you have any questions,
    every step of the way, can give you some real good links later on,
    just beware of some folk on youtube, giving out dangerous advice, these things have huge capacitors and take time to drain apter being unplugged (NO GOING NEAR THOSE CABLES UNTIL UNIT POWERED DOWN MAN!)
    Sorry, that might be what some folk have said watching a video or two which is on youtube)

    That's the no 1 rule, and the second being make sure you have the parameters correct (motor commands like speed)
    as some of these are factory set for high speed CNC spindles, possibly 8 or even 16 times the rated speed on an induction motor, so run your parameters by us before switching on.

    Also there must not be a plug in between motor and VFD, as if it gets unplugged the magic smoke comes out.

    And yes make a metal box for the thing, it can be as simple as a bit of sheet metal folded over five times, with a back and a lid.

    Grab a bargain for yourself, second hand will be around half price for a new machine, and 3 phase is half the price again compared to the single phase market , the only thing is the 20" machines are more sought after.

    Have to go now, I will likely edit this thread a good few times later on, especially if i see some mistakes, but more for added info.

    Tom

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Canberra
    Posts
    4,281

    Default

    Why is a 15A plug such a big thing?

    Can you get a sparky in to check it out. From other discussions I've had, plus my limited knowledge, is that the ONLY difference between a 10A and 15A circuit is the 15A has only one socket per circuit (and the plug style, obviously).

    Apart from that, they are the same.

    NOW, my understanding is also that the specification says that its ONE socket ON at a time. As it is almost impossible to be running two machines simultaneously this is hardly an issue. A tame sparky will put two or three point in the circuit if you explain exactly what you are doing and can satisfy them that there is zero chance of two-on-at-once.

    Now, if you are renting, so what. The landlord is hardly going to say no to having an upgrade done. Simply advise them of the free improvements they are receiving. It only makes the home more desirable for future leasing's.

    To make it even more affordable, get the cabling from Bunnings, lay it yourself and get the dude to do the plugs and fuses. That will half the cost. Saves them doing the dirty work

    On availability, I'm going out on a limb here, but you may have heard there is a global pandemic going on and that some supply lines are a wee bit squeezed?...... just tell them you want one. Put down the $100 deposit and do something else for a bit. It will come.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Éire
    Age
    36
    Posts
    138

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by woodpixel View Post
    now, if you are renting, so what. The landlord is hardly going to say no to having an upgrade done. Simply advise them of the free improvements they are receiving. It only makes the home more desirable for future leasing's.
    Nailed it in one Woodpixel

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    517

    Default

    Get the biggest / heaviest you can afford with the 3hp motor since availability is the limiting factor on the 'good' machines from Laguna and harvey (i have no experience with either but heard good things of Laguna). Note the leda has cast alloy wheels whereas the woodfast has cast iron wheels. The extra weight in the wheels is a good thing. The downside to most of these off the shelf bandsaws from Leda, H&F, etc is their fence systems are pretty average compared to the up market units. Having a quick look, excluding Laguna Harvey and Hammer, the 18" Woodfast looks decent although it is lighter than some of the smaller saws suggesting it either isn't as rigid or the wheels are cast alloy vs cast iron.

    Maybe called felder to see if they have any of the Hammer bandsaws but i'm not sure what your budget is like.

    I have a jet bandsaw it has an excellent fence system and the bearing guides are good, accurate resaw is easy to achieve over 300mm in thickness it's a shame no one stocks them or Powermatic in Australia any more.

    Portable RCD with 15A to 10A Mains Plug Conversion | Jaycar Electronics
    If you get a 15A saw and you're renting, buy this and you're done.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Hervey Bay
    Age
    43
    Posts
    137

    Default

    The Hammer N3800 can be fitted with a 10amp plug. No idea about current prices or availability though, when I was shopping a couple of years ago it was only 500 cheaper than the N4400.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Berowra Waters
    Posts
    1,409

    Default

    I have a Rikon 3 hp one, ( as well as 3 other different bandsaws) it’s been absolutely brilliant, best guide system I’ve ever seen and used on lots of saws. The sparky on site just made a patch lead with a 15 amp socket and a 10 amp plug and we plugged it into a normal point and it’s done 3 years of hard work without any issues whatsoever. Can’t rate it highly enough.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Éire
    Age
    36
    Posts
    138

    Default

    Not saying that a 3/4" blade is not adequate, but curious why Trevor isn't swayed by the Woodmaster CT,
    presuming you guys can get a hold of a Lennox supplier.
    These need a stout enough frame, and tensioning system to cope with the force which this 1" blade requires.

    I hope it's ok to post this link, which shows a result that might be unbelievable to some.
    For luthiere those results may make the difference, if one can't bear to saw plates on the heavy side,
    but as often said, better to get less stock which you can use, rather than more stock which you can't.

    John TenEyck's pictures you can see without subscription on the creek, and his blog is definitely worth a look,
    if one has gotten ole bandsaw fever
    That wee 17" saw is something like 350kg!

    The Incredible Woodmaster CT

    At the same time I could understand if one is choosing to use those timbers local to you for back and sides,
    A fair bet that some of those species are well underrated in the world of zoot, so might not quite command the same price tag
    as most of the selection what's out there.

    Tom

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Canberra
    Posts
    4,281

    Default

    Yes, Lenox Woodmaster CT are sold by Henry Bros Sydney.

    I've two. They are incredible blades. 100% happy with them, 100% recommend them.

    They are also resharpenable with a simple jig.


    The pictures on that link are accurate. With a tall fence and good form, those results are typical (i.e. perfect).

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    used to live in Sydney, now it's Canada
    Age
    66
    Posts
    11,646

    Default

    Hi Trevor, for what it's worth, I'd go for the bandsaw that takes the wider blade.
    in your list, the only machines that take a blade wider than 19mm are these four

    Leda BS-4003HP
    *** (assume 15A plug)
    Adequate cutting 250
    Takes 37mm width blade
    Ceramic guides
    126 KG
    $1947

    Sherwood SBSHD-350 (14in Heavy Duty)"2HP" (1500W) (8A rated) Max 1900W
    *** 15A plug (for an 8A-rated, 2HP motor...)
    Good cutting 335
    Takes 25mm width blade
    Ceramic guides
    105 KG
    $2799


    Harvey Ambassador C143HP
    *** (assume 15A plug)
    Good cutting 350
    Takes 25mm width blade
    Bearing guides
    159 KG
    $2899
    *** Available for preorder only (Gregory Machinery)

    Rikon 10-3533HP
    *** 15A plug
    Good cutting 330
    Takes 25mm width blade
    ??? Guides
    142 KG
    $2499


    In my limited experience, bandsaws which say they accommodate a 19mm wide blade can only fully tension a narrower blade (typically 5.8" or 16mm maximum width). Tensioning 19 mm blades becomes very much "if you're really lucky".
    I understand your desire for a 10 amp plug. Assuming you are working in leased accommodation, the garage's power supply might be limited to a single 15 Amp protected combined lighting and power circuit. It would be worth checking this before you commit to a saw that draws too much juice. If you can upgrade the wire size, a heavier fuse might be an option.
    regards from Canada

    ian

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Whangarei, New Zealand
    Age
    67
    Posts
    282

    Default

    I guess I am an iconoclast. I have a 18" Jet bandsaw, and I do all my resawing with a 6mm blade
    with hardened teeth.
    The saw 'only' has 1.5 hp or thereabouts; I don't seem to have a problem cutting 200m purpleheart
    or saligna or blackbutt. Just go slow, that also gives the blade time to cut rather than being pushed
    out of alignment by the hardwood grain.

    Does anyone know why Carbatec seems to have abandoned Jet? I've seen the latest model of
    this saw online, and oh boy, it looks yummy (mine is between 10 and 15 years old by now and rather
    pedestrian by comparison).

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    used to live in Sydney, now it's Canada
    Age
    66
    Posts
    11,646

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TrevorMag View Post
    I want a bandsaw with the following specs:

    • Power 2-2.5HP
    • 10A plug
    • cutting depth >= 250mm
    • blade >= 19mm
    • available in Australia in the forseeable future


    Astoundingly, I cannot find such a thing.
    My summary of contenders is below, with "strikes" against my ideals marked with ***.
    There are also some bewildering inconsistencies:

    • Laguna has a 2.5HP machine with a 10A plug
    • Sherwood has two 2HP machines, one with a 10A plug, the other with a 15A plug

    Am I missing anything?
    Am I being too harsh?
    My main purpose will be building acoustic guitars (hence the resawing requirements).

    The machine I feel most suits me is the Laguna 14BX
    Trevor,

    You may not realise that the Laguna 14BX CE andLaguna 14|12 CE are both rebadged Harvey bandsaws, I'm not totally across all the specs (and know very little about which tool company makes which brands of tool), but you will almost certainly find that the Hare & Forbes and Sherwood saws are also rebadged Chinese imports.
    I don't know who makes the Leda and Rikon saws, but it you are looking for reassurance, in Canada, Lee Valley stocks Rikon lathes, bandsaws and combination jointer/thicknessers, plus SawStop table saws.


    But as as P.W.H. observes, do you really need the ability to hold a blade wider than 19 mm? He apparently is having success slicing veneers with a 6 mm (1/4") wide blade.
    1.5 Hp should be more than ample power to slice a veneer wider than than 250 mm (your required spec). So almost any of the 14" bandsaws with the appropriate cutting depth should work for you.
    I'd be looking at how much vibration each saw has. and vibration wise, heavier is usually better.
    regards from Canada

    ian

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Éire
    Age
    36
    Posts
    138

    Default

    Another factor to take into account is whether you have a tableware (ha ha predictive text) ...tablesaw, or not.

    Even though I have a good cabinet saw, I try not to use it if I can help it, due to the irritant dust.
    I can use my machine as a tool for ripping instead, as I am frugal and don't have to plan ahead with the bandsaw.
    It's a lot quieter too, which is important for some.

    I wouldn't want to do that sort of thing with a point fence, as I'm guessing that is what you need with a blade like that,
    and imagine it's tough going on the thrust guides and noisy buisness making veneers that way.
    Interesting why one wouldn't just swap out the blade for the sake of the thrust guides.
    Is there a chunk missing from the tires?


    Tom

  15. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Perth
    Posts
    25,946

    Default

    Several years ago I upgraded my 19" 2HP to 3HP, and added an ammeter and a VFD.

    Provided I use a sharp blade to cut wood have yet to see it draw more than about 7A which equates to about 2HP.

    I only used a 3HP motor because to add the VFD I had to use a 3P motor and already had that 3HP on hand.

  16. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Canberra
    Posts
    4,281

    Default

    I might ad, my excellent (now old) Laguna SUV14 with a carbide blade is an absolute champion.

    Its ability to cut veneers is bang on.

    Why not try second hand?

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