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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Bandsaw fence

Brian Parks clued me in to this video of a Universal Bandsaw Fence you can make really easily. I think it's an incredibly simple idea. This is from American Woodworker. Note, the first two minutes of the video are enough to show you how to make it. The rest of the video shows some techniques using the fence.

I've never had much luck using a fence on my band saw. I usually get too much drift and the fence ends up binding the blade. Do you guys use a fence? Is it practical mainly with wide blades? I may try one of these out though.


  1. Steve,

    Its all in the drift! Find the drift in your band saw and you can make smooth cuts with a fence every time!


  2. such a simple concept .. No wonder I didn't think of it.....going to build one tomorrow.................Dr.rock

  3. Hi Steve !

    Yes, I use a fence on my shop-made bandsaw.
    It's a bit more complicated than this one, but I'm really satisfied about it... I should make some pictures of it...
    It can be set for drift, and I should add : it MUST be set for drift !
    Once set, it's a real pleasure to cut for veneer or other rips...

  4. The folks at Carter who make bandsaw blades, upgrades and accessories insist that if a bandsaw is properly tuned there will be no drift and no reason to set the fence to anything but square. I have a Kreg fence on my bandsaw and leave it set square. I don't do much resawing but use it for cutting square notches and as long as I don't feed too fast it works great with no drift.

  5. Health and safety would throw the book at you if you tried to do that kind of cut in front of them (sideways on the bandsaw) the risk of of pushing the blade off the wheels is too great. But in the 'real' world other than using a router its a good way to do it.

    1. "In the real world" the directrions on a box of Q-tips says do not stick product in your ear!!

  6. I use my bandsaw and fence to cut veneers and thin/wide boards for book matching door panels. I've had the most success by going slow and making sure the saw does all the work. I do have some drift that I've had to adjust for, but it has not been to much of a problem.

  7. My Shopsmith bandsaw has a slot in the table specifically for using the miter gauge as a fence. And the miter gauge bar has a slot cut in it with a small tapered screw in the center of that slot that will expand the bar as you screw it in. That will lock the miter bar in place.

  8. I like the use of the bandsaw accept, I would use a sharp chisel to finish the end cuts.

  9. i am going to build myself one of these for my band saw. been looking for some thing and i just found it.thank you very much for this

  10. I also used band saw and fence to cut the surface and than thin boards for book matching door panel. I’ve get success by doing this slowly. And one more thing your design seems good but the soft 2 by cleats will ding very easily and possibly warp with time.

  11. I made the fence and worktop as outlined. It works great. Keep the good ideas coming.

  12. I found this while looking for a band saw fence to purchase. This video saved me
    $100. Think I'll use part of that savings and subscribe to American Woodworker magazine.

  13. Drift free resawing for anyone!
    I saw a video of a guy from Carter saying all badsaws can be drift free. I tried their way of setup, and i works really well. First, forget about setting the wheels coplanar. Then, track your blade such that the bottom of the gullets are exactly senter of your top wheel. Voila, drift free resawing!
    I have tried it with my own saw and several blades from 1/4" to 1", removed my shims that I put in to make the wheels coplanar, and it plan works perfectly. Try it! And search for that video from Carter Products to get the reasoning for doing it this way. In short, if your wheels are coplanar, it is only valid a a certain tension. If you change blade, you must reshim your saw. Every time you change blade! Besides, all you manage to do that way is center track the blade on both wheels. It needs only be centerd on the top wheel (using bottom of gullets for centering). Besides if it is centered on both wheels, it will be unstable, there is less force keeping the blade in the desired place. The saw is setup the way it is for a reason from the manufacturer, and the manufacturer knows a lot more about designing and setting up saws than most woodworkers!