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What type of blade guide is best for small blades on a bandsaw ? Answered

I have a new powermatic 14" bandsaw with roller guides and a 3/8" blade. I would like to use a 3/16" or 1/8" blade but have heard something about "rolling out" the teeth on the blade if I use roller bearing blade guides. I assume this is due to the small size of the blade and it winding up between the rollers ( the teeth that is). Would block type guides be better or will the "carter" type roller bearing guides, properly adjusted, be OK ?


If you can't adjust the rollers to land on the solid part of the blade then your saw is not mean to use such a small blade. Indeed rollers hitting the toothed portion of the blade will destroy the blade.

If you can switch to a solid guide even if you can't clear the teeth, they will just groove the guide and not damage the blade.

Thanks for the answers ! I have found that adjusting the roller guides to just behind the "gusset" of the blade and having the tension set properly does indeed keep the teeth from winding up between the rollers on the blade guides. The saw supports the 1/8" blade according to the saw specs, but it does take the proper feed speed for the material and not binding the blade in the material to prevent this from happening. Thanks again from all those who responded :)

You should be able to adjust the guide rollers so they are always just behind the teeth - If not possible then you have exceeded the design of the machine.

Some small band saws have solid guided each side of the blade again just behind the teeth - Even hard wood would do.


6 years ago

You know more then I do.  I assume the 1/8" blade is for small radius cuts.
I would be wary, that even under strong tension such a blade could track
grain even with hard rubber rollers to survive the teeth.

Still the best blade guide is hand eye coordination wielded by a skilled craftsman :-)