How to Use a Bandsaw: Essential Tips & Tricks

It is pretty easy to quickly learn how to cut simple curves from a bandsaw. However, anyone who understands what a powerful tool a bandsaw is might want to maximize its use. In this post, we give you some of the best tips from a seasoned DIY bandsaw expert to help you gain a quick edge with this awesome tool!

Let’s dig in for every top tip.

Cut on the Outside Edge of the Marked Line

Before you make cuts with a bandsaw, you will need to mark a straight line on where to follow up with your cut. This is important. However, when cutting the wood, it is advisable to cut on the outside edge of the line.

Band saws often leave saw marks when you cut on wood. It is therefore very important that you allow some extra material that you can work on to smooth the plank. It gives you enough time to get the wood in exact measurement without eating into it.

Harden the Teeth of the Band Saw Always

How to Use a Bandsaw

In case you are working on hardwood or non-ferrous metals including brass, copper, and aluminum, it is important to use hardened teeth for your band saw. This will help you to cut for long and also prevent you from using too much effort too.

Watch Out for Clogged or Dull Blades Too

In case you realize slower speeds, increased difficulty when following the line, or sudden burning and increased temperature, it might mean the blade is dull or clogged up with resinous wood including pine.

Replacing a sharp blade or cleaning up the clogged blade will be the only solution. To clean your band saw blade, simply coil it and then soak it in the main blade cleaner that is often used for your table saw blades.

Always Release Tension on an Idle Blade

If your band saw blade sits idle for slightly over three days, keeping it on the tension in the band saw will be a de-service. It will cause metal fatigue that, will eventually lead to the premature breakage of the blade.

How to Use a Bandsaw

In addition to that, it can also cause tracking problems as in many occasions it flattens the crowns on the main rubber tires of the saw. Therefore, make sure to use the saws quick-release mechanism or the tension knob to release the tension.

Always Upgrade the Original Saw Blade

To improve the performance of your saw, our advice to you is simple; always replace the blade that you first bought your band saw machine with. Look for blades with hardened “cut” teeth and not pressed teeth. Apart from this, also consider these two essential blade features too.

Blade Width Size:

  • Wider blades will work well for thicker wood planks. They will also do well with straight cuts. They wonder much less compared to narrower blades.
  • Narrow blades on the other side are good for curves. The narrower the band saw blade the tighter it can easily turn. Narrowest blades to ball point curves.
How to Use a Bandsaw

Teeth Per Inch (TPI)

  • Thicker stocks will do well with lower TPI blades. Higher TPI blades on the other hand often cut quite slowly. However, they will leave you with smoother surfaces and lesser sanding work after a cut.

NOTE: These two types of blades are good to have. But if you want the best of both worlds, you might choose to go with mid-sized blades instead. These ones will give you the most bang for your money.

Start Contoured Cuts from Shallow Angles

When starting on a contoured cut, make sure that you start out from the shallowest angle as you approach the larger angles. Doing the opposite can easily result into rugged edges; this is quite common because a wider angle can easily cause the blade to veer off its line and possibly pop out of place.

In case you have a plank with shallow angles at both end, it is advisable that you begin your cut from each end and meet both cuts in the middle.

Bring in a Larger Bandsaw Work Table

How to Use a Bandsaw

Larger tables will give more working space and possibly leave you with easy cuts and highly controlled band saw experience. You can always scout for a few larger tables and ask an expert to help you fix it before you start using your band saw.

Always Follow the User Manual

More importantly, the manufacturer’s manual is the cardinal rule. In case you want the best experience with your band saw, make sure that you follow it always.


It doesn’t matter really. So whether you are out there curving patterns or turning your logs into lumber, a bandsaw will make up for a great tool. More importantly, these tips will help you to fine tune your results easily.

Simply ensure that you counter to check your band-saw before you start making cuts so that you ensure the equipment is set.

Abigail Jones

Hi, I'm Abigail. I like spending time tearing my house apart and putting it together back again. Join me on home improvement tutorials, tips on my blog.

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