‘When in doubt, take left’ – that’s a thing I keep in mind when I’m in a cross-road or trying to get out of a maze. Well, I was thinking about how I can put the efficiency of a ‘Band Saw’ upfront and this was the first thing to cross my mind.
Seems to me that I can lay out a statement about the band saw when it comes to a wood cutting tool. To simply put, it would be like – ‘If you’re in doubt about getting a versatile wood cutting tool, go for the ‘Band Saw’. This might sound exaggerating but you’ll realize the reason for saying this soon enough.
In this article, I’ll be talking about some of the best 14-inch band saws you’ll ever find in the market. Hopefully, by the end of this detailed article, you’ll be able to choose the product that appeals specifically to you.
If you don’t feel like going with my recommendations, don’t. Consider going through the buying guide instead. This will grant you insights into how I did research and came up with my own products. Let’s read on, shall we?
What’s a Band saw and How Does It Work?
A band saw is an exclusive tool when it comes to woodcutting. Though it’s primarily used for woodworking, it’s also used for metalworking and lumbering. The first thing you should know about this machine is its versatility. It’s said that this machine can do the job of two or three specific tools alone.
Let’s see why!
This machine is also used for ripping lumber and crosscutting short pieces of wood. However, the most common use of the band saw is cutting irregular shapes at ease. Then the second most common use of it would be resawing or ripping lumbers to turn them into thinner slabs.
You can also use the band saw to cut curves in thick lumber. Especially when you’re making cabriole legs. A cabriole leg is a kind of curved leg characteristic of Chippendale and Queen Anne furniture. Trust me when I say this, it’s not easy to bring out the shape of a cabriole leg with normal tools!
A band saw is a saw unlike any other you see in general. It’s a power saw made with a long steel belt that has sharp teeth all over its edge. Powered by a motor, this belt moves only downwards from the table keeping the sharp edge on the outside. This continuous downwards movement ensures a clean cut.
The one-way movement of such a long belt is the outcome of a unique mechanism. From the outside, the blade might seem like a long T-shank type. However, it’s more like a rubber ‘timing belt’. You will know what I’m implying here if you’ve seen a timing belt. Let me make it easy for you.
A timing belt is a circle-shaped rubber belt with no free end that can be twisted into a Frisbee shape. The endless belt of the band saw is pretty much the same. The only difference is that it’s made with steel. However, you can also twist it as easily as any timing belt.
If I haven’t told you about the plus points of the one-way motion of the blade, maybe now is the right time. Normally scroll saws move up and down while cutting through the wood. Because of such movement, it creates a lot of vibration. But you wouldn’t have to worry about that with the band saw.
The band saw usually has two or more wheels that rotate by the power of the motor. The steel belt with a serrated edge is stretched between these wheels. The face to face positioned wheels give the long blade stability and enable it for the cutting action.
There is one basic band saw. The sizes of the band saws are derived from the diameter of the wheels in a saw. So, the diameter of the wheels in a ‘14-inch band saw’ is simply 14 inches. Though you’ll find variable diameters, in this article we’ll only focus on 14-inch band saws.
That’s pretty much all the basic information in detail that you should know about band saws. Even if you knew all these already, going through the facts again comes in handy. Hope all this information will help you in choosing the ideal 14-inch band saw for you.
Different Types of Band Saws
Now that we’re done with the basic information of a band saw, it’s time to know about the types. There are several types of band saws based on their purpose and size. Here I’ll tell you about some of them in short. The most common types of band saws are –
- Metal Band Saw: Metal cutting band saws are almost as similar as the usual wood-cutting products. The only specialty seen in a metal-based saw is in its blade. This type of tool has an efficient blade. It’s comparatively stronger and slow-moving than the woodcutting counterparts.
These things can be categorized into two types – horizontal and vertical. Horizontal types are used to cut down comparatively larger stocks or metal into smaller sizes. The vertical ones are used by artisan or craftsman for contour cutting, polishing, and fling.
- Meat Band Saw: These kinds of band saws are usually seen in the butcher’s shop. It’s used for cutting meat and bones and thus the name. With this tool at the helm, you can easily cut through flesh and bones at ease, that too in a short amount of time.
However, it’s not limited to cutting flesh and bones only. These are also used to cut meat for steaks and lambs. Using this type of machine, you can cut your meat in the perfect size. Sometimes these are used for mincing and spouting as well. Don’t worry about cleaning much. It’s designed for easy cleaning.
- Wood Band Saw: The good news is, this specific type comes with an unattached table. It’s specially designed for woodcutting (duh) with a short reach. These are mostly used by carpenters. Both professional and amateur woodworkers find it useful for its user-friendliness.
Again, there are a few sub-categories within these products as well. Among them the most common three are – double cut, resaw, and the Head saw.
Double cut ones can cut from both sides. Resaw wood band saw is used for cutting larger wood pieces into small ones. The head saws are for cutting hard-wood like that of the Oaktree.
- Benchtop Band Saw: To put it perfectly, the benchtop band saw would be between a jigsaw and a typical table saw. These types of tools have the reputation for producing more power within their short space. It’s used by most home workshop owners.
This type of table saw comes in a compact size. Because of its manageable footprint, you can fit it anywhere at ease. The performance and efficiency of this saw is comparatively higher considering its size. It can take care of both amateur and professional level work.
- Portable Band Saw: The portable band-saws are also known as the handheld band saws. This kind of saw is preferred because of its weight. You can carry it along with you wherever you’re going. It’s really great for those who have to move from one place to another. All you need to do is to be fleetfooted.
However, this particular type is known for other benefits besides portability. They have the potential for cutting through the edges, creating curved lines as well as trickier and irregular cuts. Moreover, they can cut down large timbers into small pieces.
Ultimate List for Affordable 14-Inch Band Saws Based on My Research
Picking the best isn’t really easy when there are so many out there. Let me put things to rest… you don’t have to worry about that at all. I’ve been through the trouble so that you don’t have to. I’ve done a lot of research and a thorough comparison to say the least. Here are some of the products I’ve gathered up.
1. Grizzly G0555 14-Inch Band Saw
What we have at first is the Grizzly G0555. It’s the ultimate 14-inch band saw. This product has secured its position on the list of the best ones quite easily, no doubt about that. Eager to know why? Well, you’re going to find out about it right here.
This efficient machine here… comes in the dimensions of 44×20.75×19.75 inches. It weighs only 195 pounds. 195 pounds is a big enough number when it comes to weight. However, it doesn’t sound so heavy when we weigh the weight with its capability and overall build.
The Grizzly GO555 is designed for heavy-duty work. So, the people at Grizzly hardly had any chance to compromise with the build and structure. The whole frame and table are made with cast iron. Now the question can be what’s a cast iron is it strong enough?
To answer that question, I would say that cast iron is considered to be harder than wrought iron. So yeah, there’s no doubt that it’s durable enough to do the job. This material gives the whole build a sturdy base and enables it to undergo tough jobs. There’s also a heavy gauge steel stand.
Then there comes the blade. The blade is what does the final job. If the blade is efficient, the end result you get is more competent. This machine has a 3/8-inch blade. It has sharp teeth positioned for a clean cut. This blade can cut through any wooden piece that comes in its way.
The two computer-balanced wheels that stretch the blade are made of aluminum. The ball-bearing blade guide system helps the blade to move effectively and with stability. The quick blade tension release feature allows you to tighten and tighten and loosen the blade at ease.
Now it’s time to know about the motor of this machine that generates the whole power. The motor power of Grizzly G0555 is 1 HP. This allows the blade to move at the speed of 3200 FPM. This means 3200 feet per minute. That’s quite impressive for a machine like this.
This saw is perfect for crosscuts and resaws on even thick hardwoods with 12” resaw capacity.
That’s not all! It can also make curves, circles, and decorative scroll cuts. You can tilt the 14” x 14” table 45 degrees at the right and 15 degrees at the left to cut from different angles at ease.
The different neighborhood has separate electric outlets. That’s a problem sometimes. But you don’t have to worry about any of that when you’re using the Grizzly G0555. It’s prewired for the 110 V outlet. However, you can convert it to operate on a 220 V outlet also.
All things considered; this little product surely seems like it could be the most competent 14-inch band saw for the money. It’s a complete package having the potential to serve all your purposes.
2. JET JWBS-14DXPRO 14″ Bandsaw
Want experience and efficiency by your side? Try JET JWBS. It’s been serving its customer for more than six decades. It’s earned a reputation over the ages and still keeping up to it. This JWBS-14DXPRO 14″ band saw from JET is yet another worthy contender in this list of best 14-inch band saw.
This band saw is primarily designed for woodworking. In woodworking, you generally have to work with large pieces of wood which are heavy at the same time. Keeping that in mind the people at JET have provided a super tough cast iron frame for this machine. It’s necessary to have a sturdy build.
The dimensions of this product are 29 x 28 x 77 inches (Length x Width x Height). The weight of this machine is 247 pounds. This clearly heavier than the Grizzly G0555 that we talked about before. However, that’s not an issue if you’re not looking for a portable band saw.
This band saw renders high-quality performance with the motor power of 1.25 HP (Horsepower). This motor power allows the blade speed of 1500/3200 SFPM. With this speed, the blade can cut through materials very quickly and easily.
Speaking of the blade, the blade length of the JET JWBS-14DXPRO 14″ band saw is 105 inches. This blade works efficiently with the help of ball-bearing guides. This feature helps to reduce the friction of this saw. As a result, the blade lasts for a long time.
The quick blade tension release feature is also a reason behind longer blade life. Keeping the blade tight for a long time reduces the strength of the blade as time passes. With this feature, you can easily loosen the blade’s tension when not in use. Again, you can tighten it as soon as you’re ready to work again.
The 15 x 15-inch work table gives you the opportunity for a wide range of work. You can tilt this table 10 degrees to the left and 45 degrees to the right. It also has 43.5 inches in height that ensure a great range of head-on woodworking jobs for you.
This band saw can meet your anticipated results when comes to performance. It offers a 13.5-inch cutting capacity widthwise and 12 inches in height. Whether you’re up for resawing, crosscutting, or irregular shape cutting this band saw has it all covered.
The retractable blade guard does a great job as a safety feature. It allows you to use the necessary portion of the blade while guarding the rest of the portion that’s not in use. Also, there is a 4-inch dust port under the table for collecting the dust.
To sum it up altogether, this one is well designed to get all the basic works done. No matter whether you’re an amateur or professional, this could be a great deal for you at this price range.
3. Shop Fox W1706 14″ Band Saw
In case you didn’t know, ShopFox is a separate product line of Grizzly. As it happens, both lineups of products are virtually identical. Naturally, it matches the reputation that old Grizzly has bit by bit.
When it comes to build structure and strength, I didn’t have to worry too much about the W1706. The frame, wheels, and the table are made of cast iron. Cast iron offers durability in the long run. It allows the product to withstand the rough environment of the workplace.
The weight of this machine is 250 pounds and the dimensions are 45.5 x 39.5 x 19 inches. Because of all the features and a strong build, the weight of this machine couldn’t be any less. As soon as you see it running, you’ll see what I’m talking about.
It has a standard TEFC motor that generates 1 HP (Horsepower). TEFC motor means ‘Totally Enclosed Fan Cooled’ electric motor. This type of motor doesn’t let the outside air to enter inside. These motors are of great service for outdoor locations and places with high moisture count.
The motor’s power allows the blade a speed of 1725 RPM. Meaning, this long blade with serrated edge can move with the speed of 1725 revolution per minute. At this speed the 3/8″ blade can cut through the materials at ease.
The upper and lower ball-bearing guides ensures efficient movement of the blade. It also has the quick tension release feature for the item. You can fix the tightness of the blade according to your work with this feature. It proves to be a great help when working with different projects.
It has a 14″ x 14″ x 1-1/2″ precision-ground cast-iron table. This table can tilt 45 degree to the right and 10 degree to the left. This tilting feature increases versatility of this band saw, allowing you to work from different angles. People don’t have to move the work-piece using blocks for unusual cuts.
Bundled with other things, this band saw comes with a deluxe “Meter” gauge. It’s useful for achieving precise angles and clean cross-cuts. This precision ground cast iron gauge has an easy-to-read scale that can be adjusted to 30-degrees (give or take a few).
This machine’s cutting capacity in throat is 13-1/2″, maximum cutting height 6″, table height above the floor is 43″, and Footprint 18″W x 15-1/2″D. It has a 4” dust port under the table and an integrated storage cabinet at the bottom.
This saw can run both on 110-volt and 220-volt connections but you’ve fix on either 110 V or a 220 V circuit. At 110 V it runs with 14 amps and at 220 V it runs on 7 amps. So, you have nothing to worry in case you’ve to change neighborhood that has different electric circuit.
If you consider all of its feature and performance, it surely is one of a best value 14-inch band saw.
4. Delta 28-400 14 Inch Band Saw
When it comes to reliability, Delta Machinery is the name! As it turns out, the next product on the list is the Delta 28-400 14-inch band saw. The list of the best band saw wouldn’t be perfect if this product wasn’t one among the five. There’s a precise reason for saying that, trust me!
Delta machinery has been in this sector for more than a century now! That’s right, they have been serving the woodworking market for a whole 100 years and still going. Over this long time, the people at Delta haven’t let down their reputation and hopefully serve in the future also.
When it comes to durability and quality, the Delta 28-400 14-inch band saw hasn’t compromised even a little bit. The steel frame of this machine is designed for heavy-duty. Along with the aluminum trunnion table, this ensures a long-lasting and sturdy build.
The dimensions of this band saw are 45 x 18 x 21 inches (L x W x H). However, in terms of weight, it’s comparatively a lot lighter. With its edgy look and ergonomic shape, this machine weighs only 165 pounds. Let me tell you about its motor now.
This one also has a TEFC motor. The motor power of this motor is 1 HP (Horsepower). This motor has the potential to generate two speeds. You see, different speeds give better results in different types of cutting. That’s why it has both 1,620 FPM and 3,340 FPM speed for wood and non-ferrous metal cutting
The ¾ inch blade of this band saw has sharp teeth all over its edge. Guided by five precision ball-bearing upper and lower blades, this blade ensures consistent results. There are also the durable aluminum-made rubber-coated upper and lower 9 spoke wheels for balanced blade tracking.
It also has a two-speed pulley with an easy tensioning system. The easy tensioning system allows you to determine the tension of the blade according to your work. Different types of projects give better results with different blade tension. So, this feature comes in handy a lot.
This blade has a cutting capacity of 13-5/8” wide and 6” high. All together they ensure accurate cutting on the material you’re working on. Whether it’s crosscutting, resawing, ripping lumbers into short pieces, or irregular cutting, you have nothing to worry about.
The oversized 15 3/4-inch x 18 7/8-inch precision ground cast iron table comes with t-slot miter capability. This table can tilt 3 degrees to the left and 45 degrees to the right with a positive stop at 90 degrees. You can easily move your working material in front of the blade from different angles at ease.
The Delta 28-400 14-inch band saw has a corded electric power source. It can run either in 115 V circuit or in 230 V circuit. The machine also has a 4-inch integral dust port. It will help you to keep your workplace cleaner than usual.
So, what do you think? Well, this is the best 14-inch band saw for the money if you ask me.
5. RIKON Power Tools 10-326 14-inch Band Saw
Last of all, what we have here is a band saw from RIKON. It’s the RIKON Power Tools 10-326 14-inch band saw, the final contender in the best 14-inch band saw the list. Honestly speaking, this list wouldn’t be complete without having this product here.
The frame of this band saw is made of steel. The table and the trunnion system are made of cast iron. The wheels that stretch the blade are also made of cast iron. All together they ensure durability and heavy-duty performance in the workplace.
With the 25x30x75 inches (L x W x H) dimensions this machine weighs almost 280 pounds. Considering the rigid built quality, features and performance this weight isn’t much of an issue. Once you’ve placed it in place, it is ready to serve you with great efficiency.
This machine also has a TEFC (Totally Enclosed Fan Cooled) motor that has increased power of 1-3/4 HP. This motor power can generate two blade speeds of 1,445 / 2,950 FT / MIN. This is more than enough to cut through a different type of materials with the highest efficiency.
It has a 5/8″ × 4 TPI (teeth per inch) regular-tooth blade. This blade is guided by ball-bearing blade guides placed above and below the table. This feature reduces the friction of the blade. It also helps prevent twisting and deflection.
For safety purposes, it has a blade guard assembly that moves smoothly with a rack and pinion system. The blade guard covers the portion of the blade that’s not in use while allowing the free side to cut through materials. Both blades changing and guide bearing adjustments can be done without the use of any tools.
The 21-1/2” x 15-3/4” large cast iron table offers a lot of space for working on different projects. The left and right tilt limits of this table are 7 degrees and 45 degrees. So, you can work on different projects with different angle cuts. This table’s height to the floor is 40-1/2” and the height to the base is 20-7/8”.
This table also has as many as two 3/4” x 3/8” miter gauge “T” Slot. Then there is the rip fence for adjusting your workpiece perfectly on the table. With the help of this tool, you can get an accurate and clean cut with your band saw. Then again, you can keep it aside when it’s not in use.
The RIKON Power Tools 10-326 14-inch band saw can run on both AC and DC power sources. It can also run either on a 115 circuit or a 230 V circuit. Right under the, there is a 4-inch dust port that helps to keep your workplace clean. There’s also a cabinet to store your blades and other accessories.
That’s pretty much all the information I could collect about these 5 hand-picked products. You can have a clear idea about each and every individual feature, specifications, advantages, and disadvantages of these band saws.
A Small Buying Guide Denoting My Research into the Topic
Well, I surely have hand-picked the five best 14-inch band saws for you but there’s still the trouble of choosing between these five. You see, choosing one of the five might sound really easy but it gets troublesome with all these features, characteristics, and differences.
So, in this part, I am going to help with some tricks and tips that I’ve up my sleeve. There are certain things that you need to keep in mind while going for a purchase like this. That’ll save you a lot of time and trouble. Here are things that should help you to make your decision.
Choose a Type of Band Saw for You
Choosing a type is the best way to narrow down a list. There are different types of band saws designed to serve different purposes. Each of the types serves more efficiently in a specific sector than the other ones. So, if you’re willing to get a specific type of band saw then you can easily rule out the other types.
Now the question is based on what you should choose the type, right? Type categorization is usually done based on different factors. Well, I hope you remember the different types we talked about earlier in this article. That categorization was simply based on the factor ‘purpose of use’.
For reminders, there were meat band saw, metal band saw, wood band saw, resawing band saw, etc. You see, in this article, we talked about the ones of wood and thin metal cutting band saws. So, we can’t get much help from that categorization. We need to dig deeper and determine types based on a different factor.
Considering the band saws on this list, we are going to determine types based on whether they stand on a bench like a stand or freely. The ones that stand freely are usually heavier and larger in size. On the contrary, the ones that stand on an extended table/bench are smaller and lighter.
The free-standing ones are heavier, that’s true. But they can take care heavy duty. This kind of band saw is for professional use mostly. Especially if you have a large space to allow it. The bench-top ones on the other hand have limited potential. So, it gets the medium jobs done very easily.
Keep in mind that it’s all up to your choice. No need to think that the bench-top ones can’t perform well. Actually, these are designed for medium jobs and they can do that really well. In case you’re willing to spend more on a heavy-duty machine for medium works then it would be also fine but unnecessary.
Durability Is Important
When you’re talking about a machine like this then you should have durability as a basic. Whether you are working on wood or other material such as steel, both of the materials are heavy and rigid. So, the machine that’s working on it should have the durability to withstand the pressure of these materials.
When it comes to the band saw, the things that should precisely have durability are the table, frame, trunnion system, and of course the wheels. Make sure that these are made of either thick steel or cast iron. The wheels can also be made of aluminum. In band saws, these metals are considered the strong ones.
I should also mention that steel, aluminum, and cast iron have their differences. Some of them are stronger than the other in a different perspective. So, you need to decide which one will work best for you according to your needs.
Power and Efficiency are a Big Deal
Imagine you bought something for a purpose but that can’t even serve that purpose properly. Wouldn’t that be a total waste of your money? What I am trying to say is that increase your budget if necessary but do get the product that has the least power and efficiency for your anticipated result.
Efficiency is a bigger standard that actually can be determined with many things together. Power is also a part that determines efficiency. However, I’ve stated it individually because the role it plays in making a band saw efficient is somewhat more important than the others.
The motor power of the band saw is usually stated with horsepower. The more horsepower, the more workforce your band saw has. However, it’s not the only thing. The output of this power should be seen in the blade speed.
As I said, other important things determine efficiency. So, what are they? I guess you can already figure that out yourself by this point. However, those important things are – blade, table, ball bearing guide, wheel, and the wheel. Let’s see what you should look for in these –
- Blade: The blade is responsible for the final outcome. So, definitely, the blade needs to be very efficient. Make sure that the blade is strong enough and it has sharp teeth positioned to get a clean and accurate cut at the same time.
- Table: The table is where you put your workpiece and work on it. First of all the table needs to be big. By big, I mean big enough to place the material you want to work on. Then see its tilting angle limit. In this case, big number isn’t the winner. The one that’s best for you is the winner.
- Ball Bearing Guide: This is one of the important factors to measure efficiency. The ball-bearing guides keep the blades on the right track. Not only that, but they also help the blade to maintain its tension. So, the easier these are to use effectively, the more efficient the machine is.
- Wheels: The wheels might not seem like a great deal but these are really important. The blades stretch over the wheels and the power that the motor generates works on the wheels first. This means, wheels have a clear impact on the efficiency of blade movement, and thus the machine.
Never Compromise with Safety
The safety issue is one of the basic things that you should keep in mind while buying a machine like this. We are talking about sharp blades that can easily cut through wood stocks and other materials. So, it can be harmful to our hands also if we aren’t cautious about the safety issue.
Make sure that the band saw you’re willing to buy has the blade guard system. If it doesn’t have the feature at least it should have the option to add it separately. Accidents for being incautious in the workplace are not a new thing. So, better be safe as much as possible.
Dust-port and Storage Cabinet Helps
Having a dust port and storage cabinet isn’t something you must have but having them helps to a great extent. For example, when you’re working with woods there will be a lot of wood waste around the table. You will have to clean it later but a dust port can save you both the trouble and time.
If you have a storage cabinet in your machine then you can keep the important tools near you and use them when you need them. The tools can be spare parts, extra blades, rip fences, etc. You can keep them in an organized and secure way. I know how it feels if you can’t get something important when you need it.
These are the basic things that you should look for while buying a band saw. I hope that keeping these little things in mind will come in handy for choosing the best deal.
Few Words before Putting the Full-stop
At this point I don’t have much to say. I’ve given all the information and tips that can prove to be helpful to you. Still there is something I would like to say before we call it a day. It’s more like an advice that I like to give everyone and I believe it’s really a useful one.
‘In the end, always choose the one that’s best for you considering everything’ – that’s my advice for you. You need to understand what it means to get the essence of it. Unless you won’t be make anything out of you. Let me explain this to you in a better way.
Suppose, you’ve only 100$ budget for a band saw. So, the best band saw for you is definitely the one that’s best within the range. Again, suppose you have no budget limit but your job can have your anticipated result with a 50$ band saw. So, in this case, this is the best for you.
What I am trying to imply here is that you should set your priorities first. Not every feature will be as important to you as the other one. Setting your priorities, the one that matches most will be your best 14-inch band saw.
This is me Sonnet. I manage a full-time workshop for my clients’ woodworking projects. From a very young age, I’ve been always passionate about DIY projects. And that’s the reason I’m amicable with the woodworking tools. I’m regularly handling a couple of projects like cabinets, furniture, boats, and many more using wood, veneers, and laminates.