The advantages of band saw machinery (metal-cutting bandsaw) over conventional hand-operated machines are uniform cutting results because of uniformly distributed rotational tooth loads, the ability to produce irregularly shaped or curved objects, and the ease of use of operating a bandsaw. Many bands machinery manufacturers offer two basic types of equipment: the single-speed, or reciprocating, band saw, and the multi-speed, or linear, band saw. Both types of bands can be operated by hand or powered with an electric motor.
The first benefit of a band saw (rotary or reciprocating) is uniform, consistent cutting performance because the tooth load is distributed across the whole band. The second benefit of a band saw is the ease of operation, which is facilitated by two wheels on each side that are driven by a separate engine. Some single-speed band saws feature two speeds because the larger the load on a single wheel, the slower the machine becomes.
In different applications, these two benefits may be combined to increase the performance of the machine. For example, in heavy-duty applications the use of two speed band saws and an engine that has more horsepower may be desirable.
In a reciprocating band saw, the rotary motion of the teeth and the rollers makes up the “band” and the cutting is achieved by reversing the motion by a lever and counterweight, much like the way a jigsaw works. The most common type of reciprocating band saw is a horizontal band saw that has both stationary rollers, which turn the rollers as the cut is made, and sliding rollers, which change in pitch when they become too tight, thus producing a circular motion. While these machines are very fast, it may take up to 20 minutes to complete a complete round.
Multi-speed machines, which are generally found in woodworking shops, are designed so the band moves at different speeds, allowing the operator to speed up or slow down the cuts to suit the task at hand. Some multi-speed bandsaws are also equipped with variable speed settings, allowing the operator to adjust the speeds according to the task.
Before buying any band saw, you should do some research on available models to find out which are reliable, durable, and easy to use. If you are not sure, consult a local expert who can guide you in choosing the best model for your needs.