I have to change the blade on my Wells 8M 8 x 16 horizontal bandsaw. Currently it has a 3/4" blade, 11'6" long. The drive wheel flanges are 3/4" deep. Is a 1" blade more appropriate for this bandsaw? It seems like it would clear everything but I haven't been able to find any original specs.
Usually the cutoff bandsaws are designed for one particular blade width and thickness, they aren't meant to be replacements for more general purpose DoAlls or Powermatics. For example, the little 4x6s can't tension anything wider than what they come with, can barely get adequate tension on the blade they're designed for, I'm not sure how well your Wells is designed. In the absence of factory docs, I'd replace what you have with the same width and thickness blade, presumably it's been giving you good service, right? Just get name-brand blades or blade stock, the cheap stuff isn't cheap enough, usually you'll get 10x the blade life from something like a Lenox bimetal blade over a cheap import carbon steel blade and the difference in price isn't 10x, either. Matching TPI with material thickness is a good idea, too, I have three different TPI blade types that I use depending on what I cut.
It's a well made saw, but probably over 50 years old and has seen a lot of use.
In the absence of factory docs, I'd
I picked up a decent 5/8 tooth 1" blade from Sag Supply, the existing blade was too fine for cutting really thick pieces. I'm trying to cut 6" 6061 rod, cutting speed is fine but the tracking at the bottom 1/3 of the cut veers into the saw side. I had to do way too much milling on the faces of the rod sections I cut. I think the blade guides are going to need some rebuilding, they are already adjusted all the way in one direction and not quite doing the job. For the typical stuff I cut, 1 to 2 inch steel rod, it works fine.
The optimum cut a 6" billet (rod?) requires a blade of 2 to 3 teeth to the inch at a blade speed of about 400 sfpm. Cutting time about two minutes. All other factors being correct, you should be within about
0.025" of parallel. For a kinder, gentler cut, go to about a 5 tpi/8 tpi blade at about 200 sfpm. Time goes to about 5 minutes. Of course good coolant is required. Lennox bi-metal is the only way to go. Paul