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Making Bandsaw Blades

A bandsaw blade consists of a continuous band of metal with teeth along one edge and used to cut a variety of materials. The band usually rides on two wheels that rotate along the same plane. Some bandsaws may have three or four wheels, depending on the model.

The required length of band is cut from a coil and then welded together at both ends. Most weld centers follow the same procedure in creating bandsaw blades. Oil or grease is applied to metals, preventing surface rust. Before the blades are welded, they need to be cleaned using a degreaser agent. The band is then made to set for about ten minutes, and then the agent is removed with a lightly damp cloth.

Blades from the manufacturer often arrive in boxes with clearly labeled blade dimensions and typically hold 250′ of coiled bandsaw stock material. Once the proper blade length is cut, it is transferred onto the welding machine.

The ends of the bandsaw blade are placed together in a welding machine so that both ends meet, making sure they are tightly compressed yet not overlapping. The tig welder or bandsaw welding machine works to weld the two pieces together.

It is important to assure that the two bands are tightly joined. If not, the weld won’t be strong enough to withstand the forces of any cutting process. Some bandsaw welding machines have an Infrared Spectral Pyrometer temperature indicator: a device that  provides automatic, precise adjustment of annealing temperature for a stronger weld.

After the welding process, the blade is left to cool completely. Using a grinder, the welded area is then leveled as flat as the rest of the blade surface. This process is then repeated on the other side of the welded area.

A proper weld process helps prevent blade break at the weld.

The gullet at the point of the weld is then cleaned out, making sure that the blade is turned back out into the proper outside in configuration versus inside out when turned to grind the inside blade weld.

Tools needed to perform this process in a shop:

  • Tig Welder or bandsaw blade welding machine
  • Vise
  • Grinder
  • Welding gloves
  • Welding visor
  • Degreaser
  • Damp cloth

There are many reasons why bandsaw blades fail. Many that are not in the distributor’s control. What can be controlled is blade quality prior to its leaving the weld center.

A bandsaw blade shouldn’t have to fail due to a poor job of production process at the weld center.

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