Grizzly Band Saws

Our team is being forced from our workshop to another location on campus. We will need to either mount our current chop saw onto a mobile work bench or replace it. We need to be able to move the saw out into the courtyard to cut down on dust/particulates and noise in the room we are going to.

I am leaning towards replacing it with a Grizzly horizontal band saw. If your team has experience here, please recommend a specific model. We cut both aluminum tube and wood to length with our current chop saw.

Thanks.

How much are you willing to spend? My home shop is mostly grizzly, besides my table saw and vertical bandsaw (a powermatic and laguna respectively). They are great tools, but do come in a wide range of prices.

Well I was told to expect about $650 by the person who suggested the grizzly. We can probably spend up to about $1000+/-

I was looking at the G9742 and the G0561, but I have no idea. The larger of the two has a coolant system, is that always on?

Just gonna link to my recommendation for a Grizzly from a bit back

We love our Grizzly Bandsaw, would recommend. (We don’t use the coolant system, it’s attached but not really necessary for FRC applications)

We bought the G0613. It’s one of the only models that will cut a 30 degree angle. We’re happy with it. https://www.amazon.com/Grizzly-G0613-Swivel-Metal-Cutting-Bandsaw/dp/B000M67TK6

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We started with the G9742. It wasn’t great. Slow cuts that were never straight, thrown and broken blades, etc. At one point we stalled it in a cut, and the motor caught fire and literally was toast.

The G0561 you’re considering is a much more substantial saw than the G9742.

We moved up to the G9743 and it’s a much better saw. I think we’ve broken the blade only once in 5 years or so. We got it cutting very straight and consistently. That said, it splashes coolant on the floor, and we’ve had to replace a broken bolt and the hydraulic downfeed cylinder. We also had an issue with chips packing into the hinge causing it to bind. We use our saw almost exclusively for cutting solid bar stock.

I think what you need is a DeWalt 12" Miter saw with an 80T Freud Diablo blade. Unless the noise or safety of that is an issue. For cutting extrusion, I’ll take that any day over a bandsaw.

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We are upgrading from a Miter saw to reduce the noise and increase the safety. Do you have to have coolant system running at all times when using the 9743?

@SCG No, you don’t always have to use coolant. Mainly just for bigger solid bar stock. But I also think the G9743 isn’t the saw for your application. Despite the wheels, it’s big, heavy, and hard to move. The Dewalt DW872 might also be an option for you, but it’s not quiet.

If you’re set on a bandsaw, you might want to check out the HEM saws available from Trick Tools.

On Grizzly, one upside is that parts availability is usually pretty decent.

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Really, given what you’re doing with it, I’d say you should stick with your chop saw and go for a folding saw stand for it. It will be a lot easier to get back and forth to a courtyard (those kind of stands are made to be rolled around construction sites) and are also a heck of a lot cheaper (in the $160-$200 range.) If you’re just cutting aluminum and wood, then that’s the way to go. Any horizontal band saw worth having is a heavy piece of equipment and not really intended to be mobile, except over limited areas of a shop floor.

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When I say move to the courtyard, I just mean outside our classroom door.

Someone also suggested the 1Hp Harbor Freight horizontal band saw. That one’s under $300.

I would almost never recommend Harbor Freight tools, they generally are not the best build quality and will not last you very long.

I’d normally agree, but our Harbor Freight bandsaw has been a core part of our manufacturing process since 2013 and it’s showing no signs of breaking down. We’ve had to make some modifications to the wheels since they didn’t roll well, but it’s honestly pretty good.

Edit: Now that I think about it, the wheel thing might have had something to do with us putting a few miles on the bandsaw when we had to wheel it down a hallway every day to get it into our build space…

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Plus 1 on the Dewalt DW872! Amazing!

Although we don’t have a grizzly band saw we do have 2 little grizzly lathe’s and a grizzly Bridgeport knock off mill and they seem to be decent machines for the price. I certainly wouldn’t hesitate in buying other tools from them.
We have a Ellis band saw and that thing is a beast!

The Harbor Freight vertical/horizontal bandsaw is good enough that it has been the go to tool in the custom knife making community for years including many full time makers. Just be sure to replace the blade with a Lennox bimetal as soon as you get it.

It took several close calls including a repair requiring a three pound hammer, but I never cut aluminum anymore with a power saw meant for wood, even when they’re equipped with blades designed to cut aluminum on them; too much ugly potential*. I’ve had good luck with the Evolution Rage series of cold saws (similar a chop saw, but geared slower) and horizontal band saws. If weight and storage volume is a concern, I’d go with the cold saw. The Evolution Rage is available in various blade diameters (14, 10, and 7-1/4"), in simple chop/miter style and with a sliding/beveling blade, and most are much lighter than a horizontal band saw, though the cuts aren’t QUITE as clean. They’re also easy to put onto a workbench, including a folding one. OBTW, it also cuts wood and mild steel, but earplugs are definitely a good thing (goggles a must, right!) especially if steel is in the mix.

Added: and don’t try to hold aluminum when you cut it no matter what the tool; clamp it tight.

* I’ve seen pieces of aluminum fly in totally unexpected directions, had things jump or stop suddenly, and then there’s that bent chunk of heavy cast aluminum that I wasn’t trying to cut but I’ll never forget having to pound it back into shape so we could use the saw for square cuts again.

Yes, saws meant for wood can cut metal but are not a good idea. Had the C-clamp used to hold the 2 x 1 tube onto the fence of a chop saw vibrate loose then go whizzing by my head once. It also broke a big chunk of the main casting for the saw base. Fortunately, all the students were out in the hallway doing assembly work at that moment.

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