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Bandsaw blade joins, silver solder.

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  • Bandsaw blade joins, silver solder.

    I have recently had a barn find, an old model makers bandsaw, the blade is an obscure size, I've had varied reports on uk forums however I've heard that you can silver solder bandsaw blades, whats the procedure is it just a butt joint, or is there a certain angle or something.
    The band will be about 24" long and 1/2" diameter, theres no makers name on the saw, it looks like it was a 'kit' version.
    Build it, bodge it, but dont buy it.

  • #2
    Ask around at industral supply shops, Many of them will (or can order in) custom built to size bandsaw blades for little less then the retail ones cost.
    You *will* need to know thickness however.
    (check the guides for the last thickness used, or just guestimate based on the wheel radius. Smaller radius wheels = thiner blade required to prevent from cracking)
    Play Brutal Nature, Black Moons free to play highly realistic voxel sandbox game.


    • #3
      A neighbor of yours posted a helpful guide with an illustration
      of a simple fixturing jig here.

      In the guide, a reference is made about preparing a Scarf Joint.
      Wikipedia offers an illustration and description



      • #4
        Sure, you can silver solder bandsaw blades. Grind as much taper as you can on the ends so they overlap a bit, hold in position being careful not to get so much overlap the joint ends up being thicker than the rest of the blade, flux, and solder. A propane torch will work.

        It helps, a lot, to make a simple jig to hold the ends of the blade in position. I made one from a piece of lightweight 1" angle iron. Mill down part of the outside of one leg leaving a ridge the length of the leg about 0.025" high that you can butt the back of the blade against. cut away part of the center leaving a gap that the joint can be over. Drill/tap a couple places on each side of the gap along the ridge and arrange small clamps to hold the blade in place.

        Then you can clamp one end of the unmachined leg in your vise, arrange the blade to suit, and do the soldering.
        Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
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        • #5
          What's the best solder (and flux) to use?

          Doc's Machine. (Probably not what you expect.)


          • #6
            I made a jig to grind the blade in. Simply took one piece of 2" flatstock and milled one side of it to accomodate the blade. Think of a sandwich with the bandsaw blade teeth sticking out from the bread !! I then cut a a large U in the flatstock so I could see the joint.

            In use, you overlap the blade and then take a Dremel cutoff wheel and cut the blade as per the drawing in the post above.

            Now here's where I made my mistake. I clamped the blade in the jig too tight and when the silver solder was cooling off it shrunk and pulled itself apart because I had the darn thing too tight. When you're ready to solder, loosen up at least one of the screws to allow the blade to expand/contract.

            edited to add: This is the type of jig I made for doing my blades.

            Last edited by Your Old Dog; 05-05-2010, 09:25 PM.
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            • #7
              Originally posted by Doc Nickel
              What's the best solder (and flux) to use?

              You can't go wrong with Harris. 40+% silver content and the black flux.





              • #8
                Thanks chaps,
                I thought there would be a way of increasing joint strength, the scarf joint looks the ticket, Ill try that, I've been given a couple of near new high quality blades that have been apprenticed (1 broken, 1 with a big twist) for a bigger machine, each will make a few blades for mine, probably better than the ones you'd normally get for a home machine, unless I had them made.

                I recently bought some lennox blades for my horizontal 6 1/2" saw, and these seem very good, cant even find the joint.
                Last edited by dr pepper; 05-05-2010, 10:22 AM.
                Build it, bodge it, but dont buy it.


                • #9
                  Check this out,

                  Revised band saw blade brazing tutorial.



                  • #10
                    Yeah thats cool, thanks.

                    I dont have a mill yet, so I'm going to think of another way to make the jig.

                    Somewhere further up theres a mention that a propane torch has to be used rather than butane, I didnt know that propane burned hotter than butane, I thought it was just that propane vaporised at a lower temp.
                    Build it, bodge it, but dont buy it.


                    • #11
                      In the 60's I taught shop for a while,and had to silver solder our bandsaw blades,using a scarf joint. The blades were much sturdier than welded blades,and more "boy proof."


                      • #12
                        Here is a way that I haven't used since my gunsmith days 30 odd years ago.

                        I prepared the joint of what ever had to be silver soldered, such as the blades under discussion. Band saw blades are a very good example... then I would take one of two pieces of silver solder an appropriate size and hammer them flat like thick foil paper and place them in the nice clean oil free joint that had been prepared with flux and clamp with a vise grip or C-clamp. Once you hit the joint with a torch, the solder melts and fills the space in the clamped joint. A perfect joint every time. Just let it sit in the clamp until cool and put the parts to work.



                        • #13
                          Originally posted by dr pepper
                          I dont have a mill yet, so I'm going to think of another way
                          to make the jig.
                          Are there perhaps a hacksaw and a file on the premises?

                          From the link provided in post #3
                          "The sketch shows a simple angle-iron jig that I have made
                          up for this purpose, ...

                          To implement SGW's tip in post #4 about providing a shoulder to assist
                          with alignment: if a mill is unavailable, consider attaching a strip of
                          material to one of the legs of the angle with silver solder, fasteners
                          or weldment.



                          • #14
                            Yes I can do that, or the 'butty' method mentioned earlier.
                            I'm looking for a mill, they seem to dissapear as soon as they are advertised, well anything that will fit a small home shop that is.
                            Build it, bodge it, but dont buy it.