The Best Bandsaw Reviews 2017: Buying Guide & Comparison
The bandsaw is a innovative and helpful tool to have in the garage or in the warehouse.
Bandsaws offer plenty versatility and has almost become a necessity for any serious woodworker. These tools are mainly used to make curving cuts and for re-sawing.
These cuts are frequently used when making furniture, crafts and other goods. Like most tools today, there are a number of brands out there to chose from. Deciding which band saw brand to buy from, can become tiresome, stressful and down right boring. With this bandsaw buyers guide, I hope to make this decision easier.
The main goal for Sawist is to give you bandsaw reviews for the latest and best band saws on the market in order to help you chose the best tool for the money…without being too awfully tiresome, stressful or boring for that matter.
Scroll down to learn more about the top rated band saws. Or check out our band saw comparison table for the best band saws of 2017.
My top-rated band saw picks for 2017
JET HVBS-7MW Mini Review
Blade Speed: 80, 130, 180, 235 SFPM
Floor footprint: 20.5″ x 49.5″ x 38″
There are very few bench top saws that are more effective and efficient than the JET HVBS-7MW. This saw is backed by a 3/4Hp motor and a 7-12″ cutting capacity. Due to the tiltable stand, this saw is good cutting horizontally and vertically. Jet set out with only 3 things in mind while creating this saw, quality, comfort, and safety. This saw meets and exceeds in all three categories.
To ensure accidents are kept to a minimal, a key safety that the saw has is that it switches off after every single cut. This keeps the blade from being at idle for a prolonged period of time. Another special feature about this bench-top band saw is the coolant system that is incorporated. The Jet 414459 has a built is cooling system to ensure that the blade does not overheat therefore resulting in smooth cuts every time.
The 115V 3/4HP motor also has 4 different cutting speeds depending on the work needing done. The cutting speed can be set to 85, 130, 180, and 285 feet per minute. Add this to the hydraulic down feed and you get a cutting experience that will exceed all expectations.
Click for pricing and any available discounts on the JET HVBS-7MW
Rikon 10-325 Deluxe Edition Mini Review
Blade Speed: 1445/2950 ft/min
Floor Footprint:16″ x 20.5″
The Rikon 10-325 bandsaw (full review here) is an extraordinary tool that has won many awards and is very reliable to get the job done. It is a great tool no matter whether you are ripping, curve-cutting, re-sawing, or cutting in general. This saw outperforms most all stand-mounted saw in its class. A 1-1/2HP motor will ensure that your blade will not bind will cutting the thickest of materials.
The table that is included comes with ball bearing slides and tilt/locks in place for many different cutting angle options. The table also includes a viewing window and a 4-inch dust port. Since the saw is so large, two individuals may be needed for setup. With a shipping weight of 305lbs it is everything but lightweight. The rip fence that is included is made with very heavy construction to ensure it will not break while in use.
A 1-1/2HP motor with 2 speeds allows adjustability depending on what project you are working on. With the tool being the 14″ model, this ensures that you will have enough room for any woodworking or metalworking project.
Click for pricing and any available discounts on the Rikon 10-325
Powermatic PM1800 Mini Review
Blade Speed: 1800/4200 SFPM
Floor Footprint: 38″ x 38″x 81″
Powermatic really hit it out of the ballpark with this tool. The PM1800 is a very large machine which is why it is categorized into the floor standing category. Whether you are a professional construction worker or an individual that wants to open a business, this tool with do exactly what you need. Many professional woodworkers face the challenge of picking a manufacturer that produces a machine that allows an easy transition. The more time that you have to spend on transitioning to a new piece of machinery, the more money you are losing out on.
Since this machine is very large and heavy, it may require two individuals to assemble. However, the instructions that are included are very in depth and provide well put together assembly instructions and ease of operation sections.
Some key features of this model of bandsaw include a two-step pulley system to provide a heavy duty and balanced transmission assembly. This 18 inch saw has the capability of 18 inches of resawing which allows satisfaction to most individuals in the industry. The 5HP motor is built to withstand heavy workloads and will last a greater amount of time due the fact that it is so large.
The 1 year warranty that is included with the Powermatic PM1800 covers manufacturer defects and parts. However, since this saw is so well put together, there is very little chance that you will ever have to put this warranty to use. This is a very fine piece of equipment and will make any individual that purchases one very happy.
Click for pricing and any available discounts on the Powermatic PM1800
More about band saws
Throughout this article you will find advantages of certain models over others and as well as the disadvantages. I have set up this easy 2017 Band Saw Comparison Table which will help make your choice easier. Hopefully by the time you leave this site you will have a good understanding of which tool may be right for you.
Crosscutting an inlay with a band saw
To start off, there are three main types of band saws: bench-top, stand mounted, and floor standing. Each one of these has certain advantages and disadvantages that make it the best for a specific task. It all depends on how often you will be using the saw, the size of work pieces, your budget, and to a certain extent, your personal preference.
Comparison of Band Saw Types
This is a summary of advantages and disadvantages of each bandsaw type to help you decide which band saw to buy.
Bench-top band saws are for individuals that will need portability. Most bench-top band saws have anywhere from 8-12″ wheels depending on the brand you chose. The benchtop bandsaw is also the least expensive out of all the saws mentioned here. Benchtop bandsaws are arguably the best band saw to choose because of portability and weight, but the type of work you do might mean you have to consider one of the other types.
Best Suited for: Light usage; home handyman, hobby woodworker
Pros: Cheapest, lightest, portable
Cons: Cannot be used for internal cutting, small cutting capacity, limited cutting space
Stand mounted saws are typically sold in a 14″ diameter configuration. These saws are mounted on cast iron stands for safety or on top of metal cabinets. The stand mounted band saw falls in the medium price range band saw on the market.
Best Suited for: Most curve cutting, small wood shops, most to all wood working tasks
Pros: Very inexpensive compared to floor-standing models, versatile, small work shop footprint
Cons: Limited cut capacity, small motor so limited on board thickness
This is the biggest type of bandsaw that you can purchase, typically coming with a 14-18″ diameter blade. Floor-standing band saws have the largest motors of the three types. The rugged frame construction and versatility make these saws the preferred choice of most woodworking professionals.
Best Suited for: Professional use, heavy woodworking, good for very thick board stock
Pros: stable, powerful, and very consistent
Cons: The most expensive of the three, large shop footprint
These are much smaller than the typical band saw, but has become quite popular with some users.
Check out my Dewalt DWM120 review here
Buying Guide: What to look for in a top-rated band saw
Now that we have discussed the three different types of band saws, we will discuss the main features that you should factor in when deciding which band saw to purchase. These features can make woodworking easier and some may even make your profession harder. These are things you must consider when determining the right fit for you.
The throat size is easily explained as the cutting width of the saw. For example, if there is a 17″ tool, that saw will have a cutting width of 17 inches. Some higher priced models of band saws have the option to switch out blades for narrower cutting width. It should be carefully noted that the narrower the blade, the less life you will get out of a blade.
This is the amount of power that the tool will have. It is recommended as a general rule of thumb to get a 2HP motor on a bandsaw to prevent binding. For lighter usage, a 1HP motor may suffice. You will also get a longer life out of a larger motor running at a lower work load than a smaller motor running at a full work load. A smaller motor may burn up quickly if ran under a heavy work load for a considerable amount of time.
Wheel size is one of the more important things to consider when deciding which tool to purchase. It is recommended that the bigger the wheel size the better. Smaller wheels perform worse than larger wheels because of the smaller blades having a high tendency to bend.
When selecting blade width you must decide on what kind of projects you will be dealing with. If you will be making intricate curves or fine cuts, you will want an 1/8″ wide blade, whereas if you are ripping lumber you may want to get a wider blade for greater cutting efficiency.
When looking for a good table for your bandsaw you want to find a table that is very sturdy and does not flex. Most good tables are made of cast iron or heavy duty aluminum. A lot of individuals cut some spending on buying a sheetmetal table, however these tables bend and flex therefore do not last very long.
Type Of Use
Whether you are looking for a band saw to use everyday or to use once a month, all of these factors come into play. You also will want to factory in warranty and manufacturer reputation when choosing the right tool for the money.
If I were looking for a new bandsaw for my garage, I would have to choose the JET HVBS-7MW. This is a great bandsaw with great reviews and ratings. The lack of disadvantages and high star rating paired with an abundant amount of information would make me chose this tool. It is hard to ignore other peoples opinions on the product when the praise is so great. The versatility of the JET HVBS-7MW is extensive and overwhelming. The best band saw for the money would most definitely be this saw.
The other products reviewed under the Top-Rated section above will also point you towards very exceptional tools, however for my amount of work and needs, the best band saw for me is the JET. With so many great reviews, the JET is miles ahead of many others in it’s class.
In my opinion, the Jet HVBS-7MW gets a 10 out of 10 across the board.