Bandsaw advice Laguna 14bx or Jet 15"?


Alan G

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On 10/7/2017 at 1:41 AM, Free Spirit said:

Have you made a final decision, Alan?  I'd be interested in your final / present thoughts (or with your experience with your choice if you now have one sitting in your shop).

 

No worries about the hijack!

I have not bought anything yet but I think that I will just end up getting the 14BX 2.5hp 220v version. Here are my thoughts why.

1) Size

  -My shop (garage) is not that big. If I plop a big tool down it is going to start to be in the way more than it gets used and that will annoy me. Currently, and for the foreseeable future, everything in my shop (minus table saw) needs to be on wheels so it can sit against the walls until needed.

2) Cost

-My wife is great and very supportive of my "hobby". The 14bx is expensive enough. Probably shouldn't push my luck. Especially cause I have other stuff to buy....

3) Use

-I dont have any plans to resaw vast amounts of large lumber. Even though I always desire to purchase the biggest tool I can...I really dont need an 18" band saw. If I really start wanting to get into re-sawing larger lumber and the 14 is just not getting the job done I could probably resell it for a decent amount.

Most everyone here has had a good experience with their Laguna saws so it gives me some level of confidence that I will have a good experience as well.

Thats where I am at right now.

A

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I am also in the market for a new saw to replace my dust spewing Rockwell 14". This time I want to get a bandsaw that I will not be replacing.

I was at Eagle yesterday. They have the 14|bx and 18|bx on display (along with the hefty LT16 HD), but not the new Jet JWBS-15-3 or similar. They did have the slightly older JWBS-14SF-3, so that was an interesting comparison.

They fired up the 18|bx and JWBS-14SF for me. The 18|bx was vibrating a bit too much for a nickel. They acknowledged the excess vibration, but did not know the cause yet. The JWBS-14SF-3 ran much smoother.

The BX series does have several nice features, and would probably be quite serviceable, but I was not overly impressed by the build quality. The fence extrusion was a thinner gauge and had a slight bit of flex, the body sheet metal seemed thinner, and the knobs/levers seemed a bit flimsy. The 18|bx is an attractive price, and it probably has stiffness where it counts, but to me it seemed a bit under built for an 18" saw. The weight of the 18|bx is over 20% lighter than a JWBS-18-3. The JWBS-18-3 is about $300 more expensive, so perhaps that is where the money goes.

Jesse had not seen the newest Jet bandsaws, so he could not comment on the quality. I cannot find any substantial reviews on them anywhere, which is odd. I was very impressed with the JWBS-14SF-3's fence and tool-less guides. Both seemed beefy and super easy to adjust. The micro adjust worked very well. On the JWBS-15-3, it appears as if Jet changed the guides a bit (for better or worse?), have newer wheels that look identical to the Laguna wheels, and redesigned the micro-adjustable fence slightly. Jet may have also replaced the nice machined aluminum knobs of the JWBS-14SF with less fortunate black plastic knobs, which now seem to be the industry standard - even on Jesse's discontinued Aggazani collection.

I am still waiting for an email from Jet to describe any other changes made since the JWBS-14SF. The only negative I have heard about the JWBS-14SF is the tendency for the table to not hold an angle when bevel cutting.

 

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22 hours ago, Alan G said:

-I dont have any plans to resaw vast amounts of large lumber. Even though I always desire to purchase the biggest tool I can...I really dont need an 18" band saw. If I really start wanting to get into re-sawing larger lumber and the 14 is just not getting the job done I could probably resell it for a decent amount.

Most everyone here has had a good experience with their Laguna saws so it gives me some level of confidence that I will have a good experience as well.

The 14 B|X would probably serve you well. Lots of good feedback. I heard Laguna had an issue with the milling of the tri-unions throwing the table out of flat, but they must have resolved that by now.

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30 minutes ago, Tom King said:

I had seriously looked at the MM16. What a great saw. Some people in our local guild/club have them. Beautiful machine.....but $$$$.

That one on ebay for 2K is a good deal. If I was closer I would take a serious look at it.

1 hour ago, rroselavy said:

Jesse had not seen the newest Jet bandsaws, so he could not comment on the quality. I cannot find any substantial reviews on them anywhere, which is odd. 

I agree....Which is why I started this thread. I can not really find any reviews of the new Jet bandsaws. Weird.

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The 15" Jet is very similar mechanically to the Powermatic PM1500.  The Powermatic has a foot brake and magnetic switch along with electronic goodies and a bit different sheet metal but it appears to have all the same mechanical guts.  The Powermatic is about 50 lbs heavier shipping weight and the Jet website says the table height is 35" instead of the 40" on the Powermatic but I find that very hard to believe.  35" is table saw height and I just can't imagine that could possibly be right.

 

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On 9/22/2017 at 3:45 PM, Alan G said:

I am going to be upgrading my current bandsaw (old craftsman) with a new model soon. I have been looking at the Laguna 14bx 2.5hp 220v model. That unit normally sells for 1499. I have read thru lots of reviews / testimonials on this board about the laguna bandsaws and 99% of the time everyone really likes them. The higher end (Italian) models are out of my price range. 

I was pretty much set on the 14bx 2.5HP model and then I saw that Jet came out with a new 15" Model, the JWBS-15-3. That is the 220v 3hp version which normally sells for 1799. I saw the 1.75hp model at my "local" hardwood suppliers showroom. It looks like a nice machine. The fit and finish look pretty nice.

I searched the wood talk boards to try to find anyones opinion on this machine but found none.

Anyone have any experience with the new Jet? Should I just stick with my original choice and go Laguna?

Thanks!

At the price this might be worth the drive

https://pittsburgh.craigslist.org/tls/d/jet-woodworking-bandsaw-18/6316156171.html

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  • 6 years later...
On 9/23/2017 at 5:02 PM, Tom King said:

For the blade speed that size saw runs, and the max size blade it will really tension, I don't see the need for paying extra for 3hp over 1.75.  I doubt a 15" will really tension a 1" blade, but maybe they're talking about a thin one.  I don't see it tensioning a 1" Woodmaster.

The JET 15" is a pretty heavy saw, with little resemblance to a 14" saw. It's really an 18" saw except with a 15" rip capacity. 

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On 9/23/2017 at 6:32 PM, B1rdhunter said:

I have the Laguna 14 SUV and like it a lot.

The SUV and the 14|BX are quite different saws. One is made in Italy by Agazanni, which makes excellent industrial quality saws, and the other is made in Taiwan, where quality is variable at best. I'm actually not impressed with the fit and finish of the Taiwan-made Laguna bandsaws. They're okay, but they are nowhere near what the Agazanni-made saws are, or Powermatics. The foot brake on the BX is a nice to have.

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I guess the supposition is that the contracting company wouldn't contract with an Italian manufacturer if they were looking to have a low cost low quality product made.  This prejudice may not hold true, particularly over time.  When I was in grade school, made in Japan was synonymous with junk.  20 years later and Japan made products were highly respected for their quality.  

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