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Thread: Steel vs. Cast Iron trunnions on bandsaw

  1. #1
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    Steel vs. Cast Iron trunnions on bandsaw

    So i am getting set to purchase a bandsaw for mainly resawing and i have a question. I was looking really hard at the griz g0514xf. It has everything i seem to need, but i just noticed it has the steel trunnions. Is that going to be that big of a deal? I know i can just order it with the cast iron but i am trying to keep the cost down as much as possible. I looked at droppung down to the g0513 with all the bells and whistles, but i would really prefer the 3hp motor of the 0514 over the 2hp of the 0513.

    I have looked at what else is out there and these seem to be the winner for cost vs performance. I have been looking daily for used but i am growing impatient with that.

    Thanks,

  2. #2
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    I think my MiniMax has steel trunnions. I never gave it any thought but I think I would prefer the steel trunnions over cast.
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  3. #3
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    For resawing in general I like power, my rule of thumb is 4 inches per HP so a 3hp saw with 12" of resaw is about perfect, this is a conservative number and you can get away with less but I like a resonably fast feedrate which for me results in smoother cut faces. If you plan to cut logs I would suggest the cast iron, if you don't plan to resaw logs or large heavy boards you will probably never notice the steel trunnions, you can always add them if you like. Unless you plan on the heavy stuff I would use the money to put toward a good resaw blade.
    Of all the laws Brandolini's may be the most universally true.

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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Page View Post
    I think my MiniMax has steel trunnions. I never gave it any thought but I think I would prefer the steel trunnions over cast.

    The MM bandsaws have a rather unusual table support arguably not even a trunnion for their design I agree steel is a much better choice, the Grizzly has a more tradition trunnion design and cast iron is probably a better choice but one has to balance cost benefit.
    Of all the laws Brandolini's may be the most universally true.

    Deep thought for the day:

    Your bandsaw weighs more when you leave the spring compressed instead of relieving the tension.

  5. #5
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    Wheel mass and frame design are bigger deals when resawing than trunnion design. You want a stout frame to tension the blade and a heavy wheel helps dampen the vibration that is transmitted through the steel. If the resaw height is similar on two machines I would look at the heavier saw and judge whether that weight is where it will help you. Dave

  6. #6
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    You probably won't need the cast iron trunnion. It will be easier down the road to replace the trunnion($90, part H8193) if you find it not up to the task then replacing the 2hp motor for a 3 if the power is not up to the task.

  7. #7
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    I have the "tweener" G0513X (replaced by the G0513X2). The only differences in mine and the X2 are that I have steel trunnions (which use the same hardened teeth as the CI trunnions) and don't have the cute bear's head cutouts in my CI wheels. I have never had any deviation or flex in the table issues. Unless you plan to regularly cut boards that weight as much as I do, I see no issue. If you do, the CI trunnions are available for a reasonable price as an after purchase upgrade.
    She said “How many woodworking tools do you need?”
    I said “Why? Do you know someone who is selling some?”


  8. #8
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    The 514XF has the cast iron wheels, 3hp, bigger table and a foot brake along with several other goodies. I think thats the way im going. Mostly ill be thinning out spanish cedar for humidors and a little shop sawn veneers. No logs or anything real heavy.

  9. #9
    If it makes any difference, I have steel in my G0513P, and I've had no issue at all with them. Had the saw about 18 months.

  10. #10
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    For those with the 513, has the 2hp been enough for most resaws? Say 6-8" high? I have jet now with a 1 1/2 hp and i can stop the blade on 6" spanish cedar, which isnt that hard of a wood. I want to be able to turn 4/4 spanish cedar into 2 3/8" panels. Is the 2 hp 0513 strong enough? For that matter, anyone with the 0514, is the 3hp saw capable?

    I cant afford a 5hp MM or Laguna and frankly will be using this pretty lightly and couldnt justify their cost anyways.

  11. #11
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    Barring the devil being buried somewhere in the details it's hard to figure how there would be a significant performance difference.

    Cast iron is a better vibration absorber, but the sort of vibration that causes issues on a band saw doesn't seem very likely to be an issue with a small and rigid part like a trunnion.

    Cast iron is likewise a better (more slippery/probably slower wearing/less likely to gall bearing material), but how often and how fast is anybody likely to tip the table?

    Steel is tougher if you're in the habit of hitting your saw with a hammer....

    Maybe i'm missing something???

    ian

  12. #12
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    has the 2hp been enough for most resaws? Say 6-8" high?
    The most I've resawn on my 513X2 is about 8-9 inches - all hardwood, including white oak and similar.

    With a sharp resaw blade - just push it through. It has plenty of power for my needs.
    Stan

  13. #13
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    I guess i have fallen victim to marketing hype. I assusmed as the cast iton trunnions were an upgrade as you went up ther bandsaw line with Griz, that it was a perormance issue. And i guess i can see it, with trying to throw a 200lb log on the table, but otherwise, i am guessing it wont matter.

    I suppose power is the main concern now. I would love to be able to save some cash and get the 0513 as i need to buy a new jointer as well, but I just dont know if the smaller motor would cut it. I assume t he 3hp will be sufficient, but it seems many are happy with the 2hp. Ill have to think about this?

  14. #14
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    2hp is right in my rule of thumb for an 8" resaw so you should be fine. For your use I would get one of the 513 varients AND get a Laguna Resaw King or a Lenox Tri-Master either in 3/4".
    Of all the laws Brandolini's may be the most universally true.

    Deep thought for the day:

    Your bandsaw weighs more when you leave the spring compressed instead of relieving the tension.

  15. #15
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    Agree the 2HP has been adequate. I wouldn't pass up another pony though.
    She said “How many woodworking tools do you need?”
    I said “Why? Do you know someone who is selling some?”


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