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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,
I've been thinking about getting a bandsaw and I've been finding out a bit about them. I now have two books on bandsaws that people seem to rate quite a lot. The Bandsaw Book by Lonnie Bird and The New Complete Guide To the Bandsaw by Mark Duginske.

I want to make hardwood doors, with carving on them and put my own stained glass designs in them. The bandsaw in my price range is the 14 inch wheel,
SIP 01548 14 inch Bandsaw this has a 2 hp motor which I understand is enough poke for resawing rough cut timber. Not found out yet if I can fit a riser block into it.

Resawing seems a good idea, to help keep hardwood timber costs down.... Um, that said, I've Googled timber merchants and rough sawn hardwoods, I only seem to be able to find hardwoods that are pretty much fully dressed boards and ready to go.
Am I being realistic about saving money on resawing rough sawn hardwood?
Or, wait for it guys...... am I barking up the wrong tree?
Couldn't resist that :)
Pete.
 

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Pete,
When it comes to economics in regard to the band saw. If it were me trying to make the decision I'd have to take into consideration what I will sell the doors, how many can I sell, what the cost of material and marketing will be, how much time it will it take to make a door, what the taxes on the income will be. This would get me to a net profit figure. Then I'd work back and see what I would save in materials by buying rough cut lumber comparted to material that is already milled. I'd need to add in the time required to mill the timber to my specifications. Once I had all of that figured out, I would figure out how long it would take to pay for the saw from the net profit and if you like the final numbers you can make your decision. Also, I'd want to throw in the "I sure would like to have a nice band saw" factor just to be honst with myself.

Now all of this is in regard to running a business and making a profit, but if you make the doors just as a side line and/or a hobby, then throw all of that stuff out the window and just buy a nice saw and have fun with your work like of us do. Best of luck with your decision.

Jerry
Colorado City, TX
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Pete,
When it comes to economics in regard to the band saw. If it were me trying to make the decision I'd have to take into consideration what I will sell the doors, how many can I sell, what the cost of material and marketing will be, how much time it will it take to make a door, what the taxes on the income will be. This would get me to a net profit figure. Then I'd work back and see what I would save in materials by buying rough cut lumber comparted to material that is already milled. I'd need to add in the time required to mill the timber to my specifications. Once I had all of that figured out, I would figure out how long it would take to pay for the saw from the net profit and if you like the final numbers you can make your decision. Also, I'd want to throw in the "I sure would like to have a nice band saw" factor just to be honst with myself.

Now all of this is in regard to running a business and making a profit, but if you make the doors just as a side line and/or a hobby, then throw all of that stuff out the window and just buy a nice saw and have fun with your work like of us do. Best of luck with your decision.

Jerry
Colorado City, TX
Thanks Jerry.
" Also, I'd want to throw in the "I sure would like to have a nice band saw" factor just to be honst with myself. " Oh, I've been aware of that too :)
I've looked around and bargained and been able to get a very good price quote on the bandsaw £460 all in. Is quite a bit more at other retail outlets.
 

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Hi Peter

Am I right to presume that you mean this machine? If so you won't be able to incorporate a riser block because riser blocks are specific to Delta 12in bandsaws and their many clones. Not really available in the UK. For fabricated machines you have to buy the right size for the job right off

I'd have to say that in the UK the economics are only partly with you. My feeling is that 14in is really too small for a resawing machine - you really need to move up to a saw which can properly tension a 1in blade. I once had a Startrite 352 (14in machine) which was great for joints, pattern roughing, etc, but it's maximum blade size was 3/4in (in theory) - and it really couldn't tension much more than a thin gauge 5/8in blade. The lack of power (1.5HP) wasn't really a problem because I was only ripping 2 to 3in deep most of the time and my approach to low power was to use thinner blades and go to skip tooth over hook tooth for the rips. Getting it to run straight was more of a problem because it wouldn't tension the blade sufficiently. I subsequently found that to rip hardwoods efficiently the ability to tension a 1in blade is worth every penny (3/4in at a pinch) - if the saw won't do a straight rip you end up wasting more material than if you were to stick the material across a rip saw (which will cut straight). SIP and others say that their small saws can tension a 3/4in blade, but in reality my feeling is that such claims are marketing hype and manufacturers all tend to over-egg the pudding by at least one blade size. If you are only doing this for home use you will be able to live with the shortcomings of a smallsaw - if you intend doing this for more commercial reasons I'd urge you to consider something like a secondhand 20in (500mm) bandsaw like a Centauro CO500 or Wadkin C5 (or possiblt the older BZB20) which are at the lower end of what is acceptable

Other than that the idea is fundamentally sound, so long as you can find a supplier of sawn hardwoods and providing you have the gear to dress it to dimension. Might I recommend John Boddy and English Hardwoods, both of whom deliver all over the UK?

Regards

Phil
 

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I live in a region that has local sawmills. Roughsawn material can be had much cheaper than retail 50% savings. But a bandsaw is not needed A joiner and planer are. Most roughsawn lumber is 4/4 not often do I find it over 10/4 A 10" TS wll rip that. On long boards I use a Jig to rip straight edge instead of joiner.

However if you plane to resaw logs the bandsaw is great for saving money. Beats gluing blocks to get a thick chunk. To do so I recommend at minimum a 14" with riser block
 

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Yes you can save money milling rough-sawn wood, but Jerry is right--as a business that is a cost factor. As a hobbyist, my time is not priced into my woodworking so my perspective is different. We've got a mill near here that sells raw lumber, at $x.xx/bf. For something like an extra $0.68/bf they will do S4S (smooth 4 sides) to exact customer specification--regardless of species. In 100 bf quantities, it's still way cheaper than the local store, and you'd have absolute dimensional control. Can you mill it fast enough and with little enough error (when they make a mistake--they eat it!!) to pay for the dimensioning? Generally--let the people with the tools take that on.

While this is US pricing, here's a link so you can see what you're trying to find. The current pricing list is there, but also read through the "Lumber Classifieds" and those items tell some processing tales:
Exotic Hardwood Lumber and Woodworkers Supplies | L.L. Johnson Lumber Manufacturing Co.

Me--i got lucky yesterday. Answered a local ad and ended up with about 1500-1700 bf of rough-sawn cherry, ash, white oak and soft maple. All 8' to 9' long, mostly 9-12" wide, mostly 4/4 with a generous helping of 8/4 mixed in. About 60% cherry, 30% ash--all of which i'd grade at select and better. At $500 for the lot, i have been richly blessed. Those deals come up rarely. Buying from my mill--my guess is $4,000 to $6,000 or more. Milled at a regular store--i don't even want to think about it!! :D
 

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I live in a region that has local sawmills. Roughsawn material can be had much cheaper than retail 50% savings. But a bandsaw is not needed A joiner and planer are. Most roughsawn lumber is 4/4 not often do I find it over 10/4 A 10" TS wll rip that. On long boards I use a Jig to rip straight edge instead of joiner.

However if you plane to resaw logs the bandsaw is great for saving money. Beats gluing blocks to get a thick chunk. To do so I recommend at minimum a 14" with riser block
I tend to agree with you , Bill.

Apart from the business cost factor, the finish with a band saw, using a 1" - 3/4" 3tpi blade, will not that smooth. You will still need a joiner and planer to bring the lumber into final smooth dimensions.
 

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Peter, if you want to resaw you need a height of 12" to make it worth while. I can not speak to buying lumber in the UK but most mills in this country shoot for board widths of 8 - 10" and you need clearance to run it through the saw on edge. A saw with a riser block will work but this introduces two additional alignment's that need to be accurate for good results. The best choice is to get a saw with a solid frame of the height you require. The good news is a router ski jig will let you cut a clean surface that requires next to no sanding on boards you have resawn.
 

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As others have stated, I can't speak for UK prices either, but I can tell you that rough cut HERE, is so much cheaper it's not worth talking about. Finding a mill? I have several "local" supliers, YMMV, but none of them can be googled, ask around, especially other wood workers. Thats how I have found these guys, some far more reasonably priced than others. And then there are the local shops, there is a shop 20 minutes away who will S4S dimension rough lumber for me for 40 cents a bf. I can't touch that price, if I have any large quantity to move, it just makes sense to drop it off there on the way home from a suplier and pick it up the next day finished.
 

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Pete, if you've found timber merchants selling a good range of planed hardwood boards, my bet is they will sell you rough-sawn boards for less money if you call them. They might be advertising finished boards on their web sites because they feel that's what the "internet customer" is looking for.
You might not save that much though. My local hardwood merchant charges separately for machining, and on my last order the machining accounted for only about 20% of the bill if I recall correctly. Though he does get to keep any usable offcuts as well of course.

What area of the country are you in? If you're down south, try Surrey Timbers near Guildford, WL West in Sussex or SL Hardwoods in Croydon.
 

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As others have stated, I can't speak for UK prices either, but I can tell you that rough cut HERE, is so much cheaper it's not worth talking about. Finding a mill? I have several "local" supliers, YMMV, but none of them can be googled, ask around, especially other wood workers. Thats how I have found these guys, some far more reasonably priced than others. And then there are the local shops, there is a shop 20 minutes away who will S4S dimension rough lumber for me for 40 cents a bf. I can't touch that price, if I have any large quantity to move, it just makes sense to drop it off there on the way home from a suplier and pick it up the next day finished.
Wow...40 cents/bf is a deal. And as i mentioned earlier--if i'm off by an 1/8" on thickness i buy new lumber, if they do it they correct it and somebody ends up with a great deal on the "scrap". (i've gotten a few of those deals!!)
 

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I've Googled timber merchants and rough sawn hardwoods, I only seem to be able to find hardwoods that are pretty much fully dressed boards and ready to go.
In the US we've got craigslist, I would think you've got the equivalent in the UK. If you want rough lumber, even whole trees, possibly free just for the moving, I'd start there. And your local bargain papers. And network - ask at your barber, car place, work, and so on - surprising what you can come up with that way, for little or no cost. Anytime I check my local craigslist I can find a lot of free wood - trees cut for whatever reason, and the owner just wants the tree and/or pieces out of his/her yard; that'll usually take at least a sizeable trailer, and possibly helpers. Often the wood needs to be cut, stacked, and seasoned for a year or so, but if you've got the space, the money savings could be well worth it.
 

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Jerry could be right, Pete. But f you really like woodworking and at the same time earn some cash, have fun with woodworking and profit will come after it. Don’t waste resources so please don’t throw those stuff out of the window. If you like what you’re doing, results should show.
 

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Please don't forget the kiln dried or air dry factor in door making. The last thing you want is for the material to be to wet. I try to use lumber that is at least 12% and 7% seems to be easiy to find due to the low humidity here in Clolrado where we are blessed with 12-20% humidith as a general rule. Anyway you look at it, dryer the better and often that is difficult to attain with local timber since most folks don't want to wait for the drying process. I've dropped black walnut trees locally and taken the timber to a buddies mill to be slabbed, stickered the 8/4 slabs for a year or so, then milled them in my shop. I must say that there was no economic benifit to it only a sentimential value to the finished project that was usually given to the person that I dropped the tree for and my own use. Seems that by bandsawing in my shop I've only been able to cut smaller timber successfully. Resawing is another matter. This, a bandsaw would work well for since most likely you'll not be dealing with large timber for this process. Yes and don't forget the "I just want a bandsaw" quote from a previous post. Excellent insight as that's my usual driving feeling. After that I find a use for the tool so it can earn it's square footage in my shop!! What ever you do, have fun in your shop.
 

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Earl, sounds to me like you might just be guilty of having committed grand larceny mmmm...

Jerry
Almost felt like it--but he's moving to an apartment and no where to store. He showed me a stack of 4/4 walnut that he couldn't find a buyer for last fall that ended up outside all winter--he cut it into 16" sections for firewood. I brought a few scraps of that home and it planed nicely, so when i go back to pick up the rest tomorrow i'm going to try to buy a trunk load--would make beautiful small boxes with a little work--beats burning it!!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Pete,
When it comes to economics in regard to the band saw. If it were me trying to make the decision I'd have to take into consideration what I will sell the doors, how many can I sell, what the cost of material and marketing will be, how much time it will it take to make a door, what the taxes on the income will be. This would get me to a net profit figure. Then I'd work back and see what I would save in materials by buying rough cut lumber comparted to material that is already milled. I'd need to add in the time required to mill the timber to my specifications. Once I had all of that figured out, I would figure out how long it would take to pay for the saw from the net profit and if you like the final numbers you can make your decision. Also, I'd want to throw in the "I sure would like to have a nice band saw" factor just to be honst with myself.

Now all of this is in regard to running a business and making a profit, but if you make the doors just as a side line and/or a hobby, then throw all of that stuff out the window and just buy a nice saw and have fun with your work like of us do. Best of luck with your decision.

Jerry
Colorado City, TX
Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
In the US we've got craigslist, I would think you've got the equivalent in the UK. If you want rough lumber, even whole trees, possibly free just for the moving, I'd start there. And your local bargain papers. And network - ask at your barber, car place, work, and so on - surprising what you can come up with that way, for little or no cost. Anytime I check my local craigslist I can find a lot of free wood - trees cut for whatever reason, and the owner just wants the tree and/or pieces out of his/her yard; that'll usually take at least a sizeable trailer, and possibly helpers. Often the wood needs to be cut, stacked, and seasoned for a year or so, but if you've got the space, the money savings could be well worth it.
Yeah, if I went down that route I could save a bundle.
Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
I live in a region that has local sawmills. Roughsawn material can be had much cheaper than retail 50% savings. But a bandsaw is not needed A joiner and planer are. Most roughsawn lumber is 4/4 not often do I find it over 10/4 A 10" TS wll rip that. On long boards I use a Jig to rip straight edge instead of joiner.

However if you plane to resaw logs the bandsaw is great for saving money. Beats gluing blocks to get a thick chunk. To do so I recommend at minimum a 14" with riser block
Um, " Most roughsawn lumber is 4/4 not often do I find it over 10/4 A 10" TS wll rip that. " That was going through my head even when I was looking into getting a bandsaw.I thought things might work out like that. I have a Dewalt 733 thicknesser/planer, not a jointer, a good long one for door stiles would be quite expensive. As you know the edge can be squared on the TS. I've seen jigs for jointing using router cutters and a jointing jig to make to fit the thicknesser/planer.
So a bandsaw to resaw big logs that would make sense, but then have to store and dry out correctly, space to stack drying boards, not so practical for me I think.
Starting to think, might send my bandsaw books back for a refund :) As regards bandsaw and veneer flitches can buy them already done.
Cheers.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Peter, if you want to resaw you need a height of 12" to make it worth while. I can not speak to buying lumber in the UK but most mills in this country shoot for board widths of 8 - 10" and you need clearance to run it through the saw on edge. A saw with a riser block will work but this introduces two additional alignment's that need to be accurate for good results. The best choice is to get a saw with a solid frame of the height you require. The good news is a router ski jig will let you cut a clean surface that requires next to no sanding on boards you have resawn.
Ok thanks for the good advice Mike.
 
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