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Bandsaw advice

Looking to upgrade

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Christopher Archer31/03/2015 07:36:40
2 forum posts

Hi all, am looking to upgrade from my hobby type bandsaw to a new machine.

I have been looking at the Hammer N4400 or the minimal S45N. Has any one used either of these machines or can help with the selection between the two.

I live in France in a wooded area with the availability of some large pieces of timber to make use of.

Eugene Anderson03/04/2015 19:35:15
47 forum posts
21 photos

Seems a bit of an overkill to me seeing as you are rating yourself as a 'hobbyist', any decent bandsaw which will take a three-quarter inch (20mm) blade will do e.g. Record BS400, unless you can get one second hand which would be the way I would go.


phillip meyers10/04/2015 08:52:00
4 forum posts

it is always best to spend what you can afford rather than what you can get away with if it is a machine you plan to use regularly. As the previous contributor said depends on your usage.

The mini max is made in Italy but the tension mechanism is very light, it has light weight ally wheels. The fence is not good, fixed on a piece of rolled hollow section and not high enough. Most mini max machines have 100% duty cycle motors so I would guess this does.

The hammer believe it or not, is made exclusively for felder in china. A copy of an Italian machine with quite a few corners cut. It has a good fence solid bandwheels but a 40% duty cycle motor, I think. felder have a permenent presence in china so unlike other importers quality control is ok. The latest ones have a version of a ceramic guide but these are new and un tested, have the Chinese got this right ?

all in all I think the hammer is better, neither are full blown commercial machines, but the record 400 is not in the same league as either, trust me.

Ryan Davenport AWGB Membership Secretary21/04/2015 10:54:22
40 forum posts
14 photos

It's more about the blade that's used than the actual bandsaw 9 times out of 10, as a professional turner I get asked the same question many times a week.

May I recommend getting a vari tooth blade, Ian at tuffsaws sells the best blades, also only buy HSS or M42 blades too, Axminster and Charnwood to the best bandsaw for decent cost,

Feel free to contact me for further information

phillip meyers26/05/2015 14:34:30
4 forum posts

Firstly the blade is very important but the machine is important in selection of blade and of course the longevity and consistent performance of machine.

Th M42 is an HSS tooth welded to a flexable carbon back and was made to cut steel. Yes they are more resistant to abrasion, heat and for professional use ok. But for example a 112" carbon blade £16 an M42 £35. (axminster)

solid HSS are to my knowledge no longer available, they were 40 years ago, before they had the technology to weld hss to carbon back.

then it comes to carbon blades, most of the brand suppliers buy toothed coil from one source in the uk, Axminster buy hakinson and a few buy outside this. Consistency of welding (straight) annealing etc are the difference..

buy a good band saw, it will last a lifetime, buy cheap buy twice, and no I do not work for felder, there are a few proper machines out there. But I would also say if you use the machine 4 hours a month do not waste your money on a proper saw.

prologus06/06/2015 17:29:27
3 forum posts

The topic has moved from machine to blades. Going back to machines, I recently bought an Axminster HBS350N and I am impressed. It is at the upper end of hobbist, and I expect it to see me out! If it is outwith your budget they have the 310N as an option.

phillip meyers07/06/2015 09:23:23
4 forum posts

you are probably right with light usage it will out last you unless you are 25. There are a number of 350mm and 300mm bandsaws axminster, record, charnwood etc all made in China to a target price for the hobby market. They all have features and drawbacks, some that I would find particularly irksome, like the record fence bar having to be un bolted and re positioned to the right of the blade to use table tilt safely. But you may not ever tilt the table and it will not be an issue. But really not a lot to choose between them apart from price, they are what they are. How long will they last depends on usage, some companies give 3 or 5 year guarantees because the real usage time ie real cutting time of a hobby user is very low and they can sleep easy doing this. A professional machine could be 6 hours a day 5 days a week and performance is on another level but that is a whole different story.

All in all if I wanted a small machine for my garage I would buy one of the Chinese hobby machines it would last me.

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