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Woodworking Tips & Tricks Bandsaws

Bandsaw Features to Look For

By Willie Sandry on February, 28 2022

There are lots of great features on new bandsaws these days, and it’s always exciting to go shopping for new tools. But what are the key features to look for in a new bandsaw? The new breed of steel frame bandsaws allow massive resaw capacity and have the power to get the job done.
*Laguna 1412 bandsaw shown with optional and custom add-ons.


Bandsaw Features2

I like to switch between a ¼” and ½” ProForce blade for day-to-day jobs in the shop. A quick-release lever makes blade changes simple and easy. Just pull the long lever down to de-tension the blade. Once you’ve swapped blades, just raise the lever and confirm blade tracking. This system sure beats the hand crank knob to tediously tension the blade on my old saw.

Also, make sure the saw you’re considering can handle a ¾” wide blade like the carbide tipped Resaw King.


Bandsaw Features3

Ceramic 5 + 5 Guides. There’s an old adage that says “Power is nothing without control.” Bandsaws are great machines, but the long flexible blade needs rigid guides to maintain control. This Laguna 1412 bandsaw has 5 points of contact above the table, and five points of contact below. Most bandsaws only have three points of contact. The extra guides keep the blade tracking straight and true, even in hardwoods.


Bandsaw Features4

Adjustable throat plate. Just like a tablesaw, a good bandsaw should have a large adjustable throat plate. Small set screws let you dial in the plate height so it’s perfectly flush with the cast iron table. This means no more hang-ups as you pass lumber through the saw. The large size helps get a good look at the lower ceramic guides when changing blades.


Bandsaw Features5

Heavy Duty Cabinet and Wheels. When car shopping, you open the hood. It’s the same when shopping for bandsaws. Open the upper and lower doors. Quality components should be immediately apparent.
*Laguna 1412 shown with custom dust collection modifications.


Bandsaw Features6

Safety Key. Look for a safety key, or other mechanism to disable power for routine maintenance and blade changes. Pull the yellow key out of the power switch to disable power to the motor.


Bandsaw Features7

Once you find a bandsaw you’re happy with, you’ll be amazed how often it gets used in the shop. Roughing out a mallet for a turning project becomes a pleasant job with a finely tuned tool.


Bandsaw Features8

Laser-straight cuts with a ½” ProForce blade. I used to think a tablesaw was the only good option for making long angled cuts. With the right bandsaw, you’ll have more good options to make the cut.


Bandsaw Features9

Look at the whole package to decide what’s right for you. Here, a rack and pinion upper blade guard assembly raises and lowers with ease. An optional LED snake light makes it easy to see your cut line.


Bandsaw Features10

Heavy duty trunions are a sign of quality. Pull the table off the machine to get a good look at the trunnion assembly. This 1412 bandsaw locks down solidly with two knobs, and has a smart feature that allows tilting the table left or right – all without adjusting the stop bolt. In other words, you can angle the table either way, and return to 90 degree cuts without any adjustments.


See the whole lineup of Laguna bandsaws here…

Or focus on the 1412 bandsaw…

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