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Thread: Beaver 16 Band Saw

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007

    Beaver 16 Band Saw

    I have a Beaver 16" 3 wheel band saw. It seems to run OK. I changed the wheels and belt and was wondering if anybody has any experience with these units? I kinda want a new Rikon or Grizzly , but the one thing that keeps me from looking into replacing it is that it is very well suited to cutting metal when you remove the drive wheel and run a smaller belt of the drive spindle. In terms of accuracy I can't say it seems all that good with wood. What do you think it's resaw capabilities are and limitations? ANy suggestions for a good blade? Thanks

  2. #2
    Bob... I looked around a little and I have a question. Is the Beaver a benchtop? It appears that it is a Rockwell/Delta clone made for Canada. If this is correct, then I have some comments. If you like it for cutting metal, by all means, keep it for that. If you are going to try to use it to resaw wood, you arent going to get very good results because it probably isnt powerful enough, nor have the ability to make the high enough tension nedded for resawing. Most people dont like a 3 wheel bandsaw because the blades break more than a 2 wheel bandsaw because of the odd stress that the blade is subjected to. As far as blades go... you should be able to get blades from any of the bandsaw blade manufacturers, Suffolk Machinery and Supercut are 2 that come to mind. Also, a local saw sharpening shop that makes bandsaw blades will be able to make you blades. Its simply a process of cutting to proper length and welding.

    Now, If you are in the mood for a new woodworking bandsaw, and you are in Canada, General, Jet, Shop Fox, Delta/Rockwell are probably your best choices for a reasonably priced bandsaw. I dont think Grizzly is an option for you because Grizzly doesnt sell to Canada. There are others that are more money like Laguna, Agazzani, MiniMax.

    There are many woodworkers who have 2 bandsaws, I actually have 3, 2 for woodworking and a small 3 wheeler that I keep just for thin metals. So like I said above, keep the Beaver for metals and get a bandsaw that is up to the performance needed for woodworking. If you decide to get a woodworking bandsaw, search here at the Creek, or post a new thread asking for recomendations. HTH.
    Last edited by Lance Norris; 03-20-2008 at 2:17 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Sun Peaks, BC Canada
    Bob, if your Beaver is an old one with the logo of an actual beaver, then you probably have a winner and should keep it. The original Beavers were top quality tools.

    It would have been made by the Callander Foundry in Guelph Ontario.

    Rockwell bought Beaver in about 1953 and the Beaver name eventually disappeared but they were never a "clone".

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Basil Rathbone View Post

    Rockwell bought Beaver in about 1953 and the Beaver name eventually disappeared but they were never a "clone".
    Thanks Basil for pointing that out. I guess the Rockwell/Delta 16" 3 wheelers are the clone. Doesnt really matter eh?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    It's a newer Beaver. Judging by the fonts and labels on it, I would say it is from the mid 70's. I was at a surplus shop today and saw another tempting bandsaw for sale. This one was a Rockwell Delta two wheel unit. . On the cover it said it Cuts, MEtal, Wood in the circular logo. It appeared to be very ruggedly built and in really good shape. It had several pulleys under a nice door at the back to change speeds. It was quite compact, but the castings looked great. Under the table were two chromed knobs for adjusting tilt. Again, everything holding the blade looked beefy. The motor was larger than my 3 wheel one. If I had to guess, I would say it was older than my Beaver by ten years or so. Does this unit ring any bells? The only downside was that it was small. They wanted $350 for it. I was told by someone that no belt driven bandsaws are any good for metal. maybe aluminum, but not steel, due to the blade speed being too fast. This one sawed through aluminum effortlessly. they wanted $350 for it. I do like the idea of North American made tools, just for their good looks and honest design.

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