Best Bandsaw for Resawing 6

Best Bandsaw for Resawing

A bandsaw is a must have tool for any well-equipped shop. Bandsaws aren’t just safer to use than table saws, but they also happen to be super versatile.  

Speaking of versatility, what tasks can a bandsaw handle? Everything from cutting circles and curves, to expertly managing exact stop cuts and notches. There is no better and safer tool for truing up an edge on a live slab, making your own rough sawn lumber from a log, or even resawing custom veneers.

While all basic bandsaws have similar features, there are huge differences between the performance of different models. With so many makes and models on the market, how do you find the best bandsaw for your needs?

I’ll do my best to make this search easier for you by reviewing some of the best bandsaws for resawing available today and we’ll go over some of the features and important components to consider.

Let’s get to it!

*I hope you’ll love the products I recommend! Just so you know, Plumb and Lined may collect a share of sales or other compensation from some of the links on this page. 

My Top Pick

JET JWBS-14SFX

Best Overall

My Rating
5/5

BEST BANDSAW for RESAWING - COMPARISON TABLE

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Product

My Rating

Buy

#1. Best Overall Pick

JET JWBS-14SFX

My Rating
5/5

If you are looking for a professional quality bandsaw at an affordable price, Jet’s newest model might be the one for you.

The JWBS-14SFX’s 1.75 horsepower motor comes pre wired for 115-volt operation with a standard 3 prong plug. It can easily be converted to 230-volt operation.  

Its oversized cast iron table provides a stable work surface to support the heaviest of work pieces, and the aluminum fence is equipped with a micro adjust feature that comes in handy when cutting veneers.

The JWBS-14SFX has a 13” resaw capacity and comes with dual 4” dust ports for efficient dust collection. Heavy duty tubular steel frame, oversized lower bearing bolt pattern and indepentently adjustable ball bearing blade guides- all premium features usually not found in bandsaws in this price point.  

Pros

  • 13” resaw capacity
  • 5-year warranty

Cons

  • None

#2. 2nd Best Overall

RIKON 10-326

My Rating
4.5/5

The Rikon 10-326 has the best spring loaded blade guides that require no tools during setup or changing the 111 5/8” blade.

It comes with an extra tall rip fence can be quickly and easily adjusted for drift when resawing. A 13” resaw capacity and 13 5/8” cutting width capacity make the 10-326 a great all around performer.

A truly professional saw with a bevy of innovative features, the Rikon 10-326 would be my top pick if not for the slightly more expensive price than the Jet 14SFX.

Pros

  • Innovative tool less features, 2 blade speeds
  • 13” resaw capacity

Cons

  • Price

#3. Best Value

GRIZZLY G0513ANV

My Rating
4.5/5

The 35th anniversary edition of Grizzly’s G0513 bandsaw is an incredible value. Its 2 HP motor comes pre wired for 220-volts. Keep in mind that if you rewire it for 110-volt operation, you’ll need to plug it in to a circuit with a minimum 20-amp breaker.

The tool’s 16-1/4-inch throat is wide enough for larger workspaces. When it comes to quality and performance, it rivals costlier bandsaws with features such as European-style blade guides, micro-adjusting geared table, dual 4’’ dust ports and a heavy-duty miter gauge.

I love the machine’s design, smooth and quiet operation, quick-change blade release, and micro-adjusting geared table tilt. An easy pick for best value.

Pros

  • 2 HP motor
  • Price

Cons

  • Fence too short for resawing

#4. Best For Pros

LAGUNA LT14BX

My Rating
4.5/5

Laguna Tools is leading the evolution of bandsaws. I love this particular model for many reasons. For starters, it boasts world-class finish and design. A 1 ¾ horsepower motor powers this tool. That power combined with a 12-inch resawing capacity means you can effortlessly handle any size of wood.

The fence has two settings, high and low, to support large boards when resawing or ripping. For additional strength when handling heavy lumber, the machine has a steel frame with a pyramid spine and a solid cast-iron table. The steel frame construction guarantees the durability of the machine.

The table’s surface is micro-polished and can tilt 45 degrees to the right and 7 degrees to the left. Its 115-inch long blade makes your work easy.

A rip fence vouches for your security when performing complex cuts. This tool has an illuminated off/on switch that enables you to shut it down within seconds in case you have an emergency.

Pros

  • Excellent fit and finish

Cons

  • None

#5. Best Budget

JET JWBS-14CS

My Rating
3.5/5

You might be surprised to see the Jet 14CS on my list of best bandsaws for resawing. While not specifically a great resawing bandsaw, it is a great starter saw for beginners not looking to spend a ton of money.

The 1 HP motor rotates the blade at 3000 sfpm, cutting stock and boards up to 6” in height and 13 ½” inches wide. The cast iron frame is the traditional design that does a great job of reducing vibration.  

A quality bandsaw that would be at home in anyone’s shop, the Jet 14CS is backed by Jet’s 5 year warranty.

Pros

  • Great price

Cons

  • 6″ resaw capacity
  • 1 HP motor

BEST BANDSAW for RESAWING - SPECS COMPARISON TABLE

JET

JWBS-14SFX
BEST OVERALL
  • 13" resaw capacity
  • 13.5" throat capacity
  • 1.75 hp motor
  • 15 amp motor
  • 115v or 230v
  • Steel Frame
  • 2. 4" dust ports
  • 300 lbs
  • 5 year warranty

RIKON

10-326
2nd BEST OVERALL
  • 13" resaw capacity
  • 13.6" throat capacity
  • 1.75 hp motor
  • 14 amp motor
  • 115v or 230v
  • Steel Frame
  • 4" dust port
  • 280 lbs
  • 5 year warranty

GRIZZLY

G0513ANV
BEST VALUE
  • 12.2" resaw capacity
  • 16.25" throat capacity
  • 2 hp motor
  • 20 amp motor
  • 110v or 220v
  • Steel Frame
  • 2. 4" dust ports
  • 368 lbs
  • 1 year warranty

LAGUNA

LT14BX
BEST FOR PROS
  • 12" resaw capacity
  • 13.6" throat capacity
  • 1.75 hp motor
  • 14 amp motor
  • 110v
  • Steel Frame
  • 2. 4" dust ports
  • 260 lbs
  • 1 year warranty

JET

JWBS-14CS
BEST BUDGET
  • 6" resaw capacity
  • 13.5" throat capacity
  • 1 hp motor
  • 10 amp motor
  • 110v
  • Cast Iron Frame
  • 4" dust port
  • 200 lbs
  • 5 year warranty
Best Bandsaw for Resawing 1

BUYER’S GUIDE: FEATURES to CONSIDER

Motor Power Rating - Horsepower

The power rating of your prospective bandsaw should inform its performance and in one of those quirky holdovers from yesteryear, we use horsepower to rate the motor’s strength.

The term horsepower was coined by James Watt (1736-1819). There is story that had to do with ponies working in a coal mine and James Watt wanting a way to talk about how much work one of these ponies could do. After careful observation and calculations, he then arbitrarily decided that a horse could do 50% more work than one of his ponies.

Fast forward a couple hundred years, and we are still using his “measurement” of horsepower on everything from car engines to bandsaw motors, that really has very little to do with horses. In case you’re curious, 1 horsepower is equivalent to 746 watts.

Motor Power

The horsepower requirements are going to vary based on what kind of tasks you’ll be performing. Cutting thin stock and minor resawing can be done with a motor as small as 1 HP.

Resawing large timbers and logs will need a minimum of 1.75 HP, and in these instances, more is definitely better. Keep in mind that motors rated at 2 HP or bigger will usually require a 220-volt electrical supply.

Electrical Supply

Speaking of electrical supply, many bandsaws are capable of running on either 110-volts or 220v. It’s a simple procedure to reconfigure them to whichever source you have available.

You might have noticed that some manufacturers list the voltage requirements as 110v/220v or 115v/230v. This might sound confusing but the bottom line is they are referring to the exact same thing.

120v is the AC voltage on a single hot wire in your shop with respect to neutral. The resistance of the wiring in the wall might cause the 120v to drop to 115v by the time it gets to the tool you are powering. At the end of a long extension cord it could even drop to 110v.  This is why you’ll see the different ratings used. 

Many tools will be rated to 110v or 115v which means they have been tested to operate down to a lower voltage.  

Cutting Capacities

Throat capacity is the distance between the blade and the column. This is also the measurement that is used when labeling any bandsaw. A 14” bandsaw will have around 14” of space between the blade and the column.

Resaw capacity is the distance from the table to the highest elevation of the blade guide assembly. This distance will be the maximum width board that can be resawn while on its edge.

Bandsaw Types

Bandsaws are divided into two types based on their construction:

  • Cabinet bandsaws – These are built on a stand that enables freestanding installation. Due to their larger size, they can accommodate longer blades. In addition to that, these saws can cut through thicker and harder materials. They are ideal for professionals and serious DIY-ers.
  • Benchtop bandsaws – A small and compact size characterize this type of bandsaws. You mount them on your worktop. Because of their small size, they only accommodate shorter blades and usually have small motors. Their reasonable price is the main advantage. Benchtop bandsaws are ideal for beginners and amateurs. Benchtop models typically have small resaw capacities.            

Frame Styles

Cast Iron Frames

Cast iron frame bandsaws have been around for generations. They have two large machined castings for the upper and lower assemblies. The cast iron components are heavy and strong and work well to keep everything solidly aligned. My old Delta/ Rockwell bandsaw still performs as well today as it did back in the 1970’s when it was manufactured.       

Steel Frames

Steel frame bandsaws have been popular in the Europe for quite a while and have recently become much more common in the US. These saws have one piece frames made from heavy, welded steel. The big advantage over cast iron is the ability to increase cutting capacities without sacrificing strength or adding additional deflection. 

Guide Wheels – Steel vs. Aluminum

The wheels that drive your tool’s blade can be made of steel or aluminum. Aluminum is lighter. They are popular in cheaper saws. Steel wheels, on the other hand, are heavier and are present in higher quality machines. When in the market for the best bandsaw for resawing, always choose the one with steel wheels. The heavier the wheel that drives the blade, the more momentum, and inertia meaning the easier it will cut.

Blade Guides

Blade guides ensure your blade remains square to the table. They also prevent it from drifting. Sitting on either side of the blade, they guarantee true and straight movement. Thrust support that presses against the blade’s back prevents it from moving backwards during a cut.

High-quality bandsaws for resawing usually have two sets of blade guides – one under the table and another one above. Low-end tools lack the bottom blade guide set.

In the market today, two types of guides are available; ceramic guides and sealed bearing guides. The latter is an older invention while the former are a more recent development. While both perform great, ceramic is less durable and harder to replace. The conventional sealed bearing guides generally provide a better proposition, are easily replaceable and more durable.

Blades

The width, length and sharpness of a blade will determine the performance you will get while making different cuts. Here are some general things to consider in regards to your saw’s blade:

  • Teeth per inch – Teeth per inch (TPI) tells you the number of teeth in a blade. Of great importance to note is that the ideal TPI is different between cutting and ripping blades. Cutting blades have higher TPI compared to ripping blades. While ripping blades work faster, they provide rugged results. Cutting blades, on the other hand, provide more precise and cleaner cuts. However, they cut slower.
  • Width – The wideness of a blade determines its durability and performance. Most bandsaws accept different widths. Blades typically vary from 1/8 to ¾” inches. For resawing, the widest blade will usually offer the best performance. For curved and circular cuts, a narrower blade will have the ability to navigate the curves.

In the market today, two types of guides are available; ceramic guides and sealed bearing guides. The latter is an older invention while the former are a more recent development. While both perform great, ceramic is less durable and harder to replace. The conventional sealed bearing guides generally provide a better proposition, are easily replaceable and more durable.

Variable Speed

When resawing, a major plus is your ability to vary your bandsaw’s cutting speed. Slower cutting speeds are the best. Reduced speeds produce a slow and steady cut. A slow cutting method prevents your saw from binding as it removes material with every pass. For the more intricate cuts, all you need to do is switch to higher speeds to produce more accurate, faster, and cleaner cuts.

Fence System

Although you can make plenty of bandsaw cuts freehand, resawing with a fence is a necessity. The perfect bandsaw fence should be stable, strong, sit square to the blade and be tall enough to solidly support the work piece. It is common to experience a small amount of blade drift while resawing. Small adjustments to keep the fence parallel to the blade can be done on a great fence system like the one on the Rikon 10-326, or the more common method of using homemade shims.

Dust Extraction

The inclusion of dust collection ports enables you to hook up your dust extractor or shop vac to limit the amount of airborne dust in your shop.

Best Bandsaw for Resawing 6

RESAWING TIPS

Start Big

Rule number one is to always leave it a little big. When resawing any board, it’s impossible to make a perfect finished cut. Depending on how well your bandsaw is tuned up and how sharp your blade is, will determine how big you should cut it. I usually leave an extra 1/8” and finish up on the planer to make the freshly cut side perfectly parallel with the other face of the board.

Use the Right Blade

There are a two schools of thought here. All things equal, a wider blade with less teeth (3 TPI) will usually outperform a narrower blade with more teeth (8TPI). Many people swear by the first choice. The one caveat is the sharpness of the blade. I tend to just go with whatever blade is the sharpest, and that is usually the one that is on the saw. It’s possible to get excellent results that way.

Tension the Blade for Optimal Performance

Proper blade tension is critical. Too little tension can cause fluttering of the blade under thrust or excessive blade drift. So how do you set an adequate amount of tension? I usually set mine to about 1/8” of deflection like in this video:

Keep the Blade Clean

Some timber species can cause debris buildup on the blade. Wood material and/ or sap crusted on your blade’s teeth makes it hard to operate optimally. Accumulation of material affects the lead angle of the blade. Quick scrubbing with a scotch-brite pad that is laced with mineral spirits should do the trick.

The Fence and the Cut

The fence should be tall enough to support the work piece and make sure to fine tune the angle to match the amount of blade drift on the saw. When making the cut, keep the wood firmly against the fence and feed it at a rate that doesn’t bog the saw down. Slower is always better than faster on a band saw. If you feed the wood into the blade too fast, you can easily cause the blade to wander and an overly fast feed rate can generate heat that will damage the blade itself. Take your time and let the blade do its work.

Steve Wright

Steve Wright is a general contractor who over the last 30 plus years has built hundreds of new homes, ranging from first time affordable homes to multi-million dollar custom homes and everything in between.

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