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So here's the lodown. I bought a new Laguna 1412 bandsaw maybe a year ago and have used it lightly. Most of what I was doing was making circular cuts in wood up to about an inch but then tried my hand at resawing. My first attempts were dismal and I quickly learned a few important lessons. One of the first things I learned was my saw, equipped with the factory wheels, is easily tipped. It hasn't fallen over but it could easily happen if you're not aware. The second thing I learned is that the ceramic guides can dull a blade very quickly if you haven't set the blade correctly, both situations are the operators fault of course. So I took a hard look at every piece of literature and video I could find on setting up the saw properly and found two distinctly different approaches. The data wasn't saw specific so there is that but the biggest difference was the method of mounting and positioning the blade itself. One camp is adamant about the blade being centered on the tire while another has the gullet of the blade being centered. There is a big difference especially depending on the size of the blade. The 1412 can use a 3/4" blade but just barely in my opinion. I finally opted on using 1/2" resawing blades. My 1st gut kicking lesson was wetting the blade and then the ceramic guides which personally I find a bit difficult, especially the set below the table. My table is not a smooth operation to tilt like they show in the videos. I took pictures and sent emails and calls to try to see what the problem was. They were sending me warranty parts but the first attempt went to someone in California while I was waiting in Virginia. It took me 3 -4 months to finally get the parts, trunnions and  slide blocks, from Laguna to try to repair this problem. By then I had shoulder replacement surgery so I haven't tried installing those parts yet. But in order to adjust the lower ceramic guides the table needs to tilt, at least for me. 

 

And I quickly learned that a bad adjustment is the same as taking a perfectly good blade and throwing it away. I can't speak for the bearing type guides but ceramic will destroy the teeth in a very short order if the blade teeth are hitting the ceramics. I reread and re-adjusted so the gullet of the blade is where the ceramics are positioned, away from the teeth. But it's also important to check after any blade positioning is made as this affects both the location on the tires as well as their position with the guides. After these hard learned lessons and destroying a 3/4" Timberwolf resaw blade I got disgusted with myself and went looking for alternative guides for this bandsaw when I found Carter Products and these. I did get the ceramics to work with some difficulty but have to wonder if the Carter guides wouldn't be a better alternative. Will they be easier on the blades should the adjustment get off or not be properly set? From the videos I've seen they appear to be easier to adjust but then again those doing the adjustments are experts, maybe the ceramics are just as easy. Point being I am planning on going to The Woodworking Show in Chantilly on the 23rd in Northern Virginia (Chantilly, Va) and will have  chance to see these in person and ask them questions. Hopefully they will be familiar with the Laguna and can offer honest advice. From all I've heard they appear to be a good company to deal with and come highly recommended. 

 

What I can say is that Timberwolf was contacted when I discovered that one of the teeth on my 3/4" resaw blade was missing and it didn't appear to have been "broken" on site. It was actually clean and straight. I was told regardless they would send a replacement even after I had told them it may well have been my fault and true to his word it showed up on my doorstep about a week later. Shortly after I installed the blade and checked for runout, found none, and attempted to resaw a piece of treated 2x6 scrap I had laying around. I checked my tensioning, blade positioning both on the tires and guides, set the high side of the stock fence, set my thickness of cut, and proceed. It wasn't a bad cut but seemed a bit slow. I had two chucks of 16/4 poplar about 30" long and 6" tall that had been given to me by my local mill. These were scraps they had laying around and had no use for. I tried making a thin 1/4" cut and it too was fairly slow. So I switched blades to a 1/2" Wood Slicer blade I had gotten from Highland Woodworking after watching a side by side comparison and was impressed. It was easily twice as fast at the same cut. In all fairness I didn't try my Wolverine 1/2" resaw blade so it may well have performed better as well.

 

So the bottom line, I really like the Laguna 1412 although I'll probably change the mobile base out for something more stable. I need to find a better way to move the saw as they say the worst way to move it is by pulling the table which may take it out of square with the blade. And then there's the question of the guides. Should I replace those with the almost $300 Carter guides or find a better way to adjust the ceramics guides. Will the bearing guides do the same damage as the ceramic if you mess up? I'm way to green to know this but I'm interested in your thoughts.

 

Thanks for listening.

 

-Steve

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Steve, the Carter guides are fantastic on my little Shopsmith band saw. Get both sets, though.

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16 minutes ago, Gene Howe said:

Steve, the Carter guides are fantastic on my little Shopsmith band saw. Get both sets, though.

Gene the upgrade kit includes the upper and lower set. What about adjustments, are they as critical as they seem to be with the ceramic guides?

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There is another set for "scroll work". The instructions for set up are fairly specific and, yeah it's critical to get it right on. But, it's a pretty simple change over.

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4 hours ago, sreilly24590 said:

Point being I am planning on going to The Woodworking Show in Chantilly on the 23rd in Northern Virginia (Chantilly, Va) and will have  chance to see these in person and ask them questions.

Steve, Looks like Alex Snodgrass will be in attendance? Make sure you catch one of his how-to presentations to quickly, easily and accurately adjust a BS for peak performance. There is no additional cost but arrive early to get a seat on the front row. I've stood and watched from behind seats until that one ended, then sat down and waited for the next. He'll be set-up next to the Carter booth. Hopefully you can get some chat time in with him prior to or after one of the presentations. Additionally you can speak with the Carter folks.

 

Until then, if you haven't already Alex has his basic presentation HERE.   (bold blue are links)

 

Sounds like you've already done this, but if not, do a search in You-tube Laguna 14/12. Lot's of thoughts, ideas, etc. on tuning one for peak performance. It'll take me a few days, but I'll try to get you some PDF links from another site that will be helpful setting the 14/12 also. I'm hoping to pull the plug (well actually plugging one in:P) on a 14/12 sometime this summer.

 

Thanks for your experiences with the 14/12. Laguna is a proud and active sponsor of TPW. Great company overall.

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Thanks for the response Dave. I have indeed seen Alex's video and that was my basis for the routine I now use. What I had failed to mention was I was very successful in resawing that poplar after setting up as Alex instructed in the video. It would be very pleasing if I could have a quick chat with Alan while there. I was ready to buy the 1412 Carter set when I finally had success with the resawing and even better when using the 1/2" Wood Slicer blade. Hopefully the information and discount will be enough.

 

Good to know they are a sponsor as I also have a 19-38 SuperMax.

 

-Steve

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2 minutes ago, sreilly24590 said:

It would be very pleasing if I could have a quick chat with Alan while there.

He is very approachable, personable and makes every effort to talk with as many as he can. I've sat in on his presentations at the show in Indy a few times. Fastest 35-40 minutes of the day.

Appreciate your experience with the Wood Slicer too. I've considered one for my old 12" Craftsman BS...just haven't got a round-2-it yet. It seems to be highly rated across BS users.

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I was given an old (Delta?) BS that had ceramic guides and a rather strange back bearing that was mounted 90 deg from the conventional (BS blade rode on the face of the wheel...very strange).  I struggled with it for several years, avoided BS'ing at all, then bought a Rikon/Craftsman, and what a HUGE difference the "proper" rollers made.  I suspect if you really know what you're doing (I don't), you can make the ceramics work, but (etc).  Snodgrass' approach sure seems to work well.  I remember seeing videos where the host advocated "lots and lots of tension" on the blade, but I never liked that idea.  Tuning the blade tension with vibration seems to do the trick.  FWIW.

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I mostly always have a resaw blade on my saw.  The Olsen Cool Blocks have done the job for me over the years.  They will not ruin a blade if they come in contact with it.  The bearing guides I believe are more suited to the smaller blades when cutting tight curves etc. 

 

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I've had my Shopsmith band saw since '75. I went through several different guides of several different compositions. Before the Carter guides, my best guides were ones I made of used oil soaked white oak. 2nd best were those cool blocks Dan pictured. Both the wood and the cool blocks could be run right against the blade. In fact, a 1/8 or 3/16 blade could be buried in them. made for excellent control.

Bear in mind, I'm only speaking to my experience with the Shopsmith saw but, those Carter guides are eons beyond the others in effectiveness. 

 

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I like it when the owner operator of a band saw knows its the guy who is setting up that saw is the reason it will not perform like he wants it to.

  I have different band saws for different styles of sawing...The biggest saw I keep a resaw blade on it and it only cuts in a straight line. No curve sawing with it ever... I don't even want to chance getting it un set if that is a word...Too much time goes into getting one set...

  My smaller saws a 12" and a 10" are for every things else. No 10" bandsaw that is being sold now is  worth having in a shop...even if one is given to you. Not worth the space it will take up in your shop.. 

Too much plastic in these saws where nothing is ridged enough to stay set. A person will have better cuts using a scroll saw than a 10" band saw. 

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