New tool - Benchtop Bandsaw

Good morning. I’ve decided it is time to add a new tool to my garage workshop. I’m finding it difficult to cut smaller and thinner pieces with my jig saw and circular saw, so I’m thinking a benchtop bandsaw instead of a portable tablesaw.

Has anyone purchased or used a newer version bandsaw lately that they really like? I do not have the floor space for full sized saw. I’m probably willing to spend about $200 on it.

Edit - looks like anything with a cast iron table and a fence starts at $400. At that point, it’s got me re-considering getting a tablesaw…would still like y’alls thoughts.

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Food for thought - here’s a review of the Harbor Freight benchtop.
HF saw

(edit) website price is $139. Not an endorsement, just info

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I’ve been happy with the JET 14” bandsaw I purchased off Craigslist last year. Vertical, floor model. Changing speeds is pretty easy if/when I want to change it over for wood cutting/re-sawing.

As it is, for the limit wood cuts I do on it i usually just use the metal blade and cut very slowly - still faster than a blade and speed swap.

I bought a mobile base for it - good investment.

So, I ended up buying a Delta Cruzer…no, it’s not a band saw :wink:

As I am fitting out my garage, what should be the next tool? Band Saw, Table Saw, Track Saw, Jointer or Planer? I own a small (crappy) router, drill press and circular saws.

My goal is box building, then eventually basic furniture.

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You mean like these:

If so, a precise way to put good miters in some boards is key. A really good miter saw will do this. But a well tuned table saw should be considered de rigeur.

If you are planning to mill your own wood from rough lumber (as opposed to using pre-milled stock, say from Lowes Depot), a thickness planer would be quickly be required as well. You can use a table saw with a good ripping blade to do a “quick-n-dirty” face jointing and thickness planing process, but height of stock quickly becomes limiting factor.

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Ideally, I’d like to build small humidors with cool electronics in them, has pressured wine dispensers, and eventually a coffee table. But in the interim, I’ll settle for producing a few basic 6 sided boxes for practice.

All that said, if I can only buy one or two tools a year, and I can’t buy my next tool until Christmas, which would y’all recommend? It only to support box building, but for general use across various hobbies and projects?

Can’t buy tools unless the cars fit in the garage (hence why I choose the delta over a traditional sliding saw). My Christmas purchased will be either contractor sized table saw, floor based band saw, Dewalt style planer or a jointer that is no wider than 18” overall dimensions. It’s a purchase decision to maximize utility even if it doesn’t allow me to achieve all my “wants”.

Radial arm saw. Easier to use, more versitle, and more accurate than a miter saw. You can get them used cheap. Craftsman and Delta. Under $100. Lots of documentation on set up.

If you do get one, spend the time aligning and tuning. It pays off.

Don’t think of using it for ripping.

On the other hand, HF has a great sliding compound miter saw that I’m enjoying. Gifted from a friend.

Some ideas:

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I think you missed the opening post…my delta cruzer arrived today :wink: not certain a radial saw or another saw from HF would add value :wink:

I wanted the Hercules from HF, but my workbench spacing did not allow for a sliding miter saw with rails.

So really the next tool decision is to maximize utility around Christmas time.

I’ve got the spacing all worked out. But, because I have to space the purchases for all the large tools over a few years, I’m looking for opinions on utility to prioritize my purchases…I am not a well-seasoned wood worker. I’m a guy who makes a few things now and then and has delusions of making really nice stuff.

Next week’s project is fountain two of 3 for the backyard. It’s covered by the miter saw…