What to use to cut blanks to length

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flarud

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Jun 18, 2020
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Just wondering what everyone uses to cut non wood blanks to length. I have used my band saw since I started making pens earlier this year. I had a 3/16" blade on it that But now I have someone wanting to place an order for some Adirondack style chairs that I make. I am curious how much damage the acrylics, mica, etc. blanks have done to my band saw blade. Anyone use a scroll saw to cut the blanks? If so, which blade do you find works the best?

Thanks for any help,
Barry
 
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magpens

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I don't think that cutting acrylic blanks with your band saw blade will do much (if any) damage to your blade.

Of course, I am not familiar with Adirondack chairs, or what part of them is "critical" and could be adversely affected by your saw blade.
 

Dalecamino

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I've used my band saw for 10 years now. It works so well for cutting blanks of all kinds, I wouldn't/won't even consider using anything else. Especially a scroll saw. But that's me.
 

jttheclockman

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I use whatever saw I see first. Have cut many blanks of all types on my bandsaw but I usually have a carbide blade on it or a metal blade on it. Unless I am doing a woodworking project. but those are few in between these days. I also use my scrollsaw alot. I do that when I want to trim the blank down after I inserted the tube. Instead of sanding all that extra blank I cut some off. I usually have a #5 double tooth skip reverse blade in it That is always my go to blade when I am scrolling. No problems If the blank fuses back together I just run it through again. Those cuts are not critical and that is why I never understand people making jigs and other fancy things to cut pen blanks. The final work should be the sanding the ends to true them up. Just my thoughts.
 

dgsearle

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I have an old and unreliable Craftsman band saw that I started off using, but I could not get it to cut straight without major refurbishment that exceeded the machines worth. To get straighter cuts I started using my miter saw. The problem with that of course is the kerf of the miter blade.
It's working OK for now until I get my new band saw.
 

flarud

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Jun 18, 2020
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Thanks everyone. The blade that I have had on my band saw since cutting blanks says that it's for wood, plastics, composites, MDF, and non ferrous metals. But like any blade, they all wear out at some point. I was just wondering if the non wood blanks wears them out faster. I will run some scraps of wood thru it before I start making some chairs.
Thanks again.
 

EricRN

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May 16, 2019
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I got a hacksaw that I use. 18 or 24 tpi for solid blanks. 32 tpi for hollow blanks and tubes.
 

mark james

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I currently use my band saw to get the blank close to tube size, then use a sanding jig on my mini lathe or a jig on my disk sander to refine. I always use the lathe sanding jig/Rick Herrell for final touch-ups. This is before and after finishing.

Many ways to do these chores, but the final ends are important to get flush with the components.
 

howsitwork

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to cut to cross section I use table or band saw , usually the latter. but for cross cutting to length I generally use a japanese pull saw , bearsaw brand , just looked.
 
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To make my blanks the same length and each end square I use my table saw with my miter gauge trued to cut square. There is a technique I use to make sure the blanks are all the same length if someone's interested. Once the tubes are glued in I use a home made depth gauge to determine where the tube is in the blank, mark that spot less a bit and, again, use my table saw to remove the excess using the mite gauge. Then to the offset sanding disc for true squaring. Never had a problem doing this so I just keep using it. Hope this helps.
 

jrich7970

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Jun 13, 2020
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I was using my miter saw, but with those pieces of wood being so small, I didn't feel safe. Same with my table saw (although I might make soe type of sled for it some day). Anyway, I got my self an inexpensive band saw and it works perfectly.
 

RussBerg

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Oct 6, 2018
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Wi. summer-Az. winter
Just wondering what everyone uses to cut non wood blanks to length. I have used my band saw since I started making pens earlier this year. I had a 3/16" blade on it that But now I have someone wanting to place an order for some Adirondack style chairs that I make. I am curious how much damage the acrylics, mica, etc. blanks have done to my band saw blade. Anyone use a scroll saw to cut the blanks? If so, which blade do you find works the best?

Thanks for any help,
Barry
I am not a woodworker, I just make pens. I don't have much room in my shop so I use a cheap chop saw I bought at Harbor Freight. It has a small kerf and cuts through wood and acrylic with no trouble.
 
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