How can you stop bad bandsaw vibration?
I just bought a 14" bandsaw that works beautifully and is accurate, but it has a vibration—a pulse every half-second or so. The pulleys line up correctly and the belt is tight, so I pushed a wooden wedge between the motor and the saw to tension the belt. That stopped the vibration, but did I do something horrible that will cause problems down the road?
—Cary Chapman, Hemet, California
Horrible? No, but tensioning the belt with that wedge could stress the motor bearings, Cary, so you'll need another solution.
Belts can develop a kink from being tightly coiled in the saw's shipping carton, just as they can from being left looped around a small pulley wheel for long periods. Because it's a new saw, you could solve the problem by writing the manufacturer for a replacement belt. But if the problem returns, switch to a link belt, like the one shown above, that doesn't develop such kinks when left in one position. (Order link belt no. 52233, $15 per foot, from Rockler Woodworking and Hardware (800-279-4441)
To install it, just loosen the motor-mounting bracket to remove the old belt. Then shorten the link belt to equal the length of the original belt. Match the direction of travel stamped on the belt links, shown below, to the direction the saw pulleys turn, and tension the belt according to the saw manufacturer's instructions.