I have a horizontal bandsaw for cutting steel stock to length. It is an amazing time saver and a great asset if you do a lot of metal fabrication.
This type of saw can be used in the upright position to cut metal on a small table. But it is inconvieneient to convert to this position. I wanted an upright metal cutting bandsaw.
But MAN, are they expensive. Way too much $$ for a small home hobby shop. So I bought a small three wheel portable bandsaw and attempted to slow it down with an AC Speed Controller.
BAD IDEA! This thing had very little power and although I could cut thin aluminum and thin sheet metal, anything more and it would bog down. I sold it and bought a floor mounted, 14″ Woodworkers band saw fro Harbor Freight. At the time, with a coupon it cost me around $200.
But even on the lowest of its three speeds, it was too fast for thicker metals and it ate steel cutting blades.
So converting it to a DC motor with variable speed control was the way to go.
A few years ago, Surplus City offered “Tread Mill Motors” with control boards for $39.00 each. I bought a dozen of them and have used them on all kinds of woodworking equipment. They are great for this type of use. I figured I’d addapt one to the band saw also.
It was quite easy to replace the AC motor with this DC Treadmill motor.
I left the pulley system in place so I could manipulate the speed as I wished,
And I mounted the control board nearby:
The potentiometer was mounted on the front of the band saw:
A couple of simple paint brushes were brought into play to keep chips off the drive wheels:
New “Cool Blocks” were used to replace the plastic blade stabilizers
This was the way I used the saw for a number of years. But truth be told, the Tread Mill motor was not up to the task and stalled when cutting anything over 1/8″ steel. It needed ca better, stronger, motor.
I had converted my JET 12 X 36 BD lathe to DC drive using a Dayton, 90volt, 3/4hp motor with an SCR controller and it has been magnificent.
So the search was on for another DC, 90v, 3/4 HP motor.
Best price I could find was AMAZON.COM An AMARINE, 90v, 3/4hp motor was $179 including shipping. I ordered it on Friday and it was at my door on Saturday afternoon!
Permanent Magnet Dc Motor, 3/4hp, 56c, 90v/1750rpm
- Highest quality oriented magnets
- F insulation class
- CE listed, CE file No. DW2011CE0047 01
- 56C face and Removable mounting bases for dual mounting versatility
- Continuous duty; Dynamic balanced armature for smooth operation; Totally Enclosed Non Vent; Double seal ball bearings with permanent grease filling for long life; Long life brushes;
This new motor was even easier to install than the treadmill motor. All the mounting holes lined up perfectly.
I modified the mounting plate with a couple pieces of threaded rod to maintain constant pressure on the drive belt
A new DC controller was needed. I turned to SURPLUS CENTER for a SCR board
This is a great controller that I also used on my lathe conversion
90/180 VDC SPEED CONTROL W/POT
ITEM NUMBER: 11-2269 PRICE: $81.95
Wiring was extremely easy.
This can also be found on the SURPLUS CENTER web site:
Just to be nice, I gave the old gal a new speed control knob;
Here is a video showing the saw cutting metal:
Also on YouTube:
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