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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I would appreciate any recommendations and insight in regard to bandsaw blades.

My shop presently consists of a 10" table saw, a 10" radial arm saw, scroll saw, router & table, as well as a selection of handheld power tools and other items. I am purchasing a bandsaw to increase my capabilities and am now down to finalizing my blade selection. After much research and consideration I have chosen the Laguna 18BX. (Sidenote: At some point in the future I may possibly purchase a 10" Rikon (or perhaps a used 14" saw) for smaller / detail work and to fill the gap between my scroll saw and the 18BX, but until then the 18BX will be my only bandsaw and I have other equipment needs before an additional bandsaw.)

Specifications:
18" bandsaw
Motor - 3hp, 230v
Blade length - 145"
Blade width - 1/8" to 1-1/4"
Resaw capacity - 16"
Throat - 18-7/32"
Guides - Laguna Ceramic
Weight - 410 lbs

My most frequent tasks will be:

General woodworking with a variety of wood ranging in thickness from 3/8" to 3/4", as well as 2" thick stock. Projects will include a multitude of decorative and craft-type projects, furniture making (primitive & simple designs and not so much fine furniture), and similar projects.

Resaw work will include a multitude of full 2" thick boards ranging in width from 5-1/4" - 8". I have a one-room schoolhouse (unfortunately beyond affordable restroation) that has an addition that was used for farm-type purposes, and I will be dismantling the building and repurposing the wood into useful products, requiring some of this wood will be resawn into thinner stock.

I may also do some limited tinkering around with a smaller log sections to create cookies or similar cuts, or to possibly create an occasional small project board. This will be conducted within the capabilities of the saw and my other equipment (chain saw, etc.) will be used where appropriate.

Also, my eventual plans are to obtain a portable sawmill to make use of the many hardwoods on my 103 acre tree farm. This wood will be cut to size, air or solar-kiln dried and used for a variety of projects, occasionally requiring further cutting and resawing on the bandsaw or other equipment.

Bandsaw blade collection I am considering:

Laguna Resaw King (carbide), 1", 3-4 Variable TPI

Lenox Diemaster 2 (bi-metal), 1/2", 4 TPI, Skip Tooth

Lenox Diemaster 2 (bi-metal), 3/8", 10-14 Variable TPI

Lenox Diemaster 2 (bi-metal), 1/4", 6 TPI, Skip Tooth

My intent is to be able to perform a multitude of functions with the saw, and additionally to learn of and refine my personal bandsaw abilities & needs. I have a preference toward quality and longevity, and thus my choice of brand-name carbide and bi-metal blades.

Any thoughts or opinions are welcome and it can be most helpful to hear of real world experience. I have done several hours of research but want to be sure I am on the right path before making a purchase.

Attached are pictures of the school and some of the type of products the saw will be used for. (Note: The school picture is mine, the others were obtained elsewhere.)

Thank you in advance!
 

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John
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Carter products
This company know just about every thing you need to know about band saws
 

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Oliver (Prof. Henry)
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I can't make a blade recommendation but I can tell you how much I like the projects you have done. I love the expressions on all your characters and I particularly like the rabbit.
 

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I have the 1" Resaw King on my 14" Laguna SUV. I've been mighty impressed and highly recommend the blade. I also have a 3/8 Laguna blade which works well, but isn't as impressive.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I've seen several of Alex's videos and the info has been very helpful. Definitely a good resource and a nice demonstration of the set-up and abilities of a bandsaw. I don't think I will be challenging the Snodgrass speed though which is, both impressive and scary. lol

I can only claim credit for the school picture and the others were obtained elsewhere (I edited my post for clarification). The pictures were pretty cool though and are the type of items I am seeking to make. With the amount of wood I have available (and the practically unlimited supply of wood on my property) I have been seeking neat and creative project ideas, of which there can be a wealth of online.
 

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Hi Art. Alex is pretty impressive in person... he's been doing the show circuit for a long time and is really as good as he looks in the video. I've got one of Carter's blades (1/2"x3tpi) and am very happy with it.
 

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I have heard from a lot of people that the Resaw King is about the best. I have a 14" Grizzly and use a 1/2" and 3/16th Timber Wolf blades. The Timber Wolf blades are suposed to one of the best blades and that is all I have ever used. For all things curvey I really like the 3/16" blade. Anything really curvey I have a scrollsaw.
 

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I think your blade size selection is very good. All my research shows very high ratings for the Resaw king. Lennox has an excellent reputation. I have a smaller laguna, and have a 3/16th fine blade instead of the 1/4 inch blade. I like Timber Wolf blades and have them for my small saw. Nice. But I don't think you'll go wrong with your selection.

Those are some very nice pieces. I agree with Gaffboat about the expressions on your character's faces. The offset grin on the snowman is particularly neat.
 

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I like your projects. You might want to start with regular bandsaw blades before you jump into the expensive ones. This would give you a chance to learn to adjust your guides and work with your new tensioning system. You would hate to have a carbide blade hit one of the guides and go bad right off the bat.

I have a Minmax 18 which I am just getting use to adjusting. It took me a while. You may be much better than I am. So this is just my opinion.

I was talking to the Woodcraft guy about their work shop where they teach classes. He said they quit using carbide bandsaw blades because they rarely last a month do to the students not knowing and screwing up the bandsaw blades.
 

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Forgot to mention I have the 3/4 Resaw King. It is a sweet blade indeed. Make sure your table is 90 to the blade! Produces a slightly rough finish so you'll want to joint and plane it after sawing.

I would also get a scanning wand just to make sure there's no metal in the material you're resawing, particularly anything that still has bark on it, or especially on any repurposed wood. See pix.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I appreciate the input and am continuing to digest the info.

I am strongly leaning toward the 1" Resaw King blade for resaw and such and feel it should suit my needs well, both now and in my future plans.

I am also looking at the options in regard to less expensive blades. While I still have a preference toward quality, a cheaper blade could be useful in evaluating what overall blades work best for my needs, and just as importantly, with the amount of reclaimed wood I will be working with, having a less expensive blade available could be beneficial when working with questionable pieces and save a good blade from inadvertent contact with metal. A metal detector is on my wish list and I have done some cursory research but still have more to do.

I am purchasing the saw tomorrow so will need to be making a move on blade selection soon.

Thank you for everything.
 

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I purchased a 17" grizzle a couple years back. Had every intention of getting a "quality" 1" resaw blade for the machine. I explained this to the salesman. Without hesitation he suggested I give the 3/4" Grizzly blade a try. He assured me I'd be pleasantly surprised. I do alot of resawing, so I figured at the very least it be a good way to get used to the machine and setting it up and so on.....I've gone thru 10" Honduran Mahogany, 8" Hard maple, cherry, walnut and white oak. I'm now on my second blade and will in all likelyhood get another when the time comes. Don't have a problem spending good money on quality equipment, but this is one case where I can't imagine the difference in the cut would justify the difference in the cost. Anywhere from 1 to 4 light passes under the drum sander and the boards are ready to go...

131-1/2" x 3/4" x .032" x 3 TPI Hook Bandsaw Blade | Grizzly Industrial
 

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I think you're wise to use a cheaper blade for rough material, as you described it. Nice deal on the saw. I'm recalling the posts about using the 3/4 resaw blade rather than 1 inch. Seems to me someone mentioned that the extra quarter inch adds stiffness that results in extra stress on the blade and earlier failure. On my 14 inch, I was able to do a pretty good resaw with a half inch blade. I imagine you could find a 3/4 skip tooth, 3TPI blade suitable for resawing rough stock. Probably have to special order it.

Congratulations on your choice. That is one sweet saw. I went down to Laguna with an engineer friend who bought the 18 inch Laguna. He was struck by the quality of the engineering and manufacturing, in particular the heavy duty bearings and the finish machining and polish of the wheels.

I know that Laguna has an automatic sharpening machine (saw it working) and they can repair their blades as well.

Thought you might also like to see the light I put on my 14 inch saw. Used the existing mounting holes so I didn't have to drill a new saw. The little LED bulb is extremely bright, and the lamp cost about $10.

One last item, I use the gadget in the picture to slightly round over the back edges of the blades. Makes them run smoother, and makes it just a bit earier to make a turning cut. Takes about 30-45 seconds, particularly with a really long blade--don't over do it. Costs a couple of bucks.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I made my final choice and placed the orders for new blades last night - the 1" Laguna Resaw King, & the bi-metal Lenox Diemaster 2 in both a 1/2" 4 tpi and 1/4" 6 tpi size.

Wood Werks in Columbus has 10% off machines this weekend and without the $75 shipping charge that other dealers require this made the saw the cheapest I have found it. My Chief Financial Officer (wifey) and I made the 80 mile trip to Columbus on Friday and purchased the saw (which is now sitting in the back of my pickup).

While in Columbus, we also went to 'The Woodworking Shows' which is at the state fairgrounds this weekend where (among other things) we had the opportunity to see Alex Snodgrass and his bandsaw clinic. While I have seen many of his videos online, it was a true pleasure to see him in person and to have the opportunity to speak with him after the clinic, and additionally to speak with his father and meet Alex's wife. They are truly a class act with a wealth of helpful information and knowledge.

Thank you to all who responded and I very much appreciate the insight and the multitude of perspectives. In some ways it can be mind boggling, but it allowed me the opportunity to dig deeper into the individual aspects. I am looking forward to putting the saw to use and with my three-blade beginning, I should be able to get a good idea of what works best for my individual needs and for my various projects, where I can further adjust and refine in the future if needed.

I didn't see any of the stones mounted on wood yesterday, but picked up a stone at The Woodworking Shows for a dollar and figure that it should be easy enough to make a board and affix it with adhesive.

I also cleared the spot for the bandsaw and spent a few minutes looking at the lighting. The lighting is pretty good but I think I'd like it a little better and am planning on installing two additional LED strips in the area (I had originally intended to only use the spot for storage, but have since decided to use it for woodwork projects). I can see that having lighting on the front side of the saw could be helpful so once I get things set up will likely look at that option.
 

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I found the stone at Rockler. But gluing a stone on a stick should be fine. I think you will really like an LED light mounted on the saw. Nice that the LED light doesn't get hot.

You sound pretty excited.
 
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