Almost every shop in the metalworking industry has at least one bandsaw. Bandsawing can often be overlooked as an area for improvement and cost reduction. Triumph & Lenox can help.
This blog addresses what we consider are the top 5 challenges with bandsawing.
Challenge #1: Choosing the Right Blade
Bi-Metal vs. Carbide tipped
- Although Bi-Metal is still the predominant type of blade in use in the industry today, Carbide Tipped has come a long way.
- Consider Carbide Tipped for high production cutting and/or difficult to cut materials.
Series of Blade
- There are many different types of blades with varying tooth configurations available, depending on what you may be cutting (solids, vs tubing, vs structural steel, etc.).
- Variable pitch is the way to go in almost all applications (straight pitch is rarely recommended).
- There is a wide range from fine, to coarse, to general purpose to select from.
Challenge #2: Setting the Correct Band Speeds and Feeds
Just like any cutting tool, a bandsaw should be set to cut a given material within an acceptable speed (eg surface feet per minute) range. This may take some math to calculate, but it is worth doing for optimal performance.
Unlike other cutting tools, bandsaw feed is determined by square inches per minute. Again, this may take some math to calculate, but it is worth it.
For recommendations, check out www.sawcalc.com by Lenox Tools.
Challenge #3: Proper Blade Break-In
A new band saw blade has razor sharp teeth. In order to withstand the cutting pressures used in band sawing, bandsaw blades need to be broken in. Failure to do so, may result in reduced blade life.
How to Break in a Blade
Select the proper speed for the material to be cut. Reduce the feed force to achieve a cutting rate of ~ 50% of normal. Begin the first cut at the reduced rate. Make sure the teeth are forming an adequate chip. Small adjustments to the band speed may need to be made in the event of excessive noise/vibration. During the first cut, increase the feed rate slightly once the blade fully enters the workpiece. With each following cut, gradually increase the feed rate until the full rate is reached.
Challenge #4: Bandsaw Maintenance
For optimal bandsawing performance, bandsaw machines have to be properly maintained. There are a number of wear parts on any given machine, including guides to adequately support the bandsaw blade and chip brushes to effectively remove chips from the gullets of the teeth.
Triumph and Lenox can help you identify problem areas and get set up on a Preventive Maintenance program.
Challenge #5: Proper use of Metalworking Fluids
Lubrication is essential for long blade life and optimal cutting performance. Properly applied to the shear zone, metalworking fluid substantially reduces heat and produces good chip flow up.
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding use of the metalworking fluid. And finally, don’t treat your sump like a dump; clean it out regularly.
Triumph & Lenox can help you with tackling these top 5 challenges, improving your overall bandsawing performance. Contact us to learn more.