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  • Band saw or chop saw?

    If you could only have one...... what would it be..... band saw or chop saw? And why.

  • #2
    Gonna have to go with chop saw. Unless all I was doing was cutting kelly bar all day; in that case I'd get an overgrown shear instead a the saw. The only band saws I could afford wouldn't cut a straight piece anyhow. Niether does the chop saw half the time but it's quicker and I know how to run a 9'' grinder Ahhhh....don't debate it, just get both

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    • #3
      I agree gotta have both. Band saws are perfect for 99.9% of your cutting but then you might need to cut a chunk of metal thats too hard for a bandsaw...Bob
      Bob Wright

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      • #4
        If it is either-or then a bandsaw. Not a 4" x 6" cheapie but at least a 7" x 12" with coolant; runs all day; cuts straight -- or at a true 45 degrees. No mess, no dross to grind. After I got mine I stopped using my chop say totally. It sat around for two years until I finally sold it.

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        • #5
          Bandsaw for accuracy and cleanliness, hot saw for speed and productivity.
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          • #6
            Ok.... I am leaning toward the band saw. I know a few years ago there was a cheapo that worked pretty good. From Harbor Frieght I believe.

            Can someone suggest a decent band saw thats under say $600?

            On the other hand the new RAGE 2 or 3 bladed chop saws look pretty good. Very little spark and good reviews from what I have found....
            Last edited by cybordolphin; 10-26-2010, 12:01 AM.

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            • #7
              What do you think about this saw? Supposed to cut just about anything with the new RAGE 3 blade, and I could cut angles?

              I like that it is portable. And very little spark.

              http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...1253000P?mv=rr

              Or do you think a chop saw with the same blade technology would be better? The below chop saw is 14"
              http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...tr#reviewsWrap
              Last edited by cybordolphin; 10-25-2010, 11:59 PM.

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              • #8
                You can get both for the money you suggest. The HF is OK, just gotta true and tweak it a little. The chop saw is the same way. Jet and others make a really good quality band still for less than what you were sayin. If you can swing it go for both. Then you have accuracy, and quiet with the band along with hot fast and now with a chop, both under 600.00
                Bob

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                • #9
                  definitely a chop saw.. but you need a good quality belt sander to straighten your pieces.. imo its a lot faster.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by cybordolphin View Post
                    Ok.... I am leaning toward the band saw. I know a few years ago there was a cheapo that worked pretty good. From Harbor Frieght I believe.

                    Can someone suggest a decent band saw thats under say $600?

                    On the other hand the new RAGE 2 or 3 bladed chop saws look pretty good. Very little spark and good reviews from what I have found....
                    I have a Rage 2 multipurpose chop saw.
                    Have not done alot of cutting yet but good so far.
                    Good deal for the money.......

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                    • #11
                      I no longer even own a chop saw. I use either a HF 4x6 bandsaw or a Porta-Band most of the time for the type of cuts that would be done on a chop saw.
                      Larry

                      "I feel for the man who can only spell a word one way"......Mark Twain

                      Lincoln AC225-S (OLD/Copper Wound)
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                      Miller Matic 180 (auto set)
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                      Victor Super Range II

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by cybordolphin View Post
                        What do you think about this saw? Supposed to cut just about anything with the new RAGE 3 blade, and I could cut angles?

                        I like that it is portable. And very little spark.

                        http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...1253000P?mv=rr

                        Or do you think a chop saw with the same blade technology would be better? The below chop saw is 14"
                        http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...tr#reviewsWrap
                        Does this look familiar?



                        $99 on sale. Find a 20% off coupon in the back of Outdoor Life or Field and Stream magazines and walk out with the same $80 saw and a pack of 10" wheels.

                        http://www.harborfreight.com/10-inch...saw-98199.html

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                        • #13
                          For new fab a band saw has its place, for repair work I like abrasive chop saw.
                          Attached Files

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                          • #14
                            I'm very happy to no longer have a chop saw -- and by that I mean a 14" high-rpm saw that uses an abrasive blade.

                            I bought the 4x6 HF band saw and started to learn about the tweaks and time involved in getting it to cut right, and decided it wasn't for me. It went back.

                            I got a Milwaukee 6190-20 dry cut saw, which I got for $279 with no blade. It runs at 1400 rpm, which is essential for metal cutting blades. I use Freud Diablo blades ($40/ea), and have been very happy with how simple it is to cut steel.

                            One of my first projects was a wrought iron style fence for my yard, and making clean, repeatable cuts for the hundreds of pickets was a breeze with the dry cut saw. I set up a simple jig so that every picket was exactly the same length -- no drift through a bundle (like a band saw might produce -- with my limited setup skills), and no clean up on the cuts at all. I've done many projects with the 14" dry cut saw and I'm still on my first blade.

                            I also got a 7-1/4" Freud Diablo blade for a handheld circular saw, which lets me make long cuts in steel sheet.

                            There are a lot of jobs that a good band saw is perfect for, and I guess I'll head back to Harbor Freight if those start coming up for me. But as a weekend-type fabricator, the dry cut saw has been perfect for my needs.
                            Jack Olsen
                            The Garage(And its slideshow)
                            The Car(And its slideshow)

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                            • #15
                              I just bought a real chop saw for portable work. Its a chainsaw engine powered 12" blade. I have wanted one for 30 years...Bob
                              Attached Files
                              Bob Wright

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