I have a bunch of brass hex cutoffs that are about 4" long and 3 to 4 inches from flat to opposing flat.
The old Grizzly portaband was used in my old panel shop and I still use it for hobby work but the vise always left room for improvement when using the saw with short pieces.
Fix 1 was the vise lead screw handle. Plastic thing that broke a while back so I just used my extra handle from my xy table that is now in grinder service. One handle was removed for the power feed on the grinder table.
Fix 2 is the replacement fixed jaw made from a chunk of 1018 steel that was in my stock. Drill mounting holes, clearance slots and the holes for the vise equalizer rod as I call it. Three holes tapped 1/2-13 because that is the rod that I had in my stock and it seemed big enough. Made the fixed jaw higher and longer than the original. It now goes out to the blade and over hangs the outside of the base by about an inch.
Fix 2.5 is the moveable jaw that was made from some HRS that was in my stock. I did have to put it on the surface grinder to flatten it a bit and then drill 2 mounting holes tapped 1/4-20. These match up to the existing holes in the moveable jaw plate that was reused from the original setup. Three 1/2 inch holes were drilled in line with the threaded holes in the fixed jaw for the vise equalizer rod.
Fix 3 added two more 1/2" holes and two more 1/4-20 threaded holes that were needed in order to shift left the moveable jaw to obtain maximum capacity from the vise. I prefer to use it in the original position which reduces capacity by about 1/2". Not shown in any of the pictures is a single 1/2-13 nut that fits on the vise equalizer rod at the inside of the moveable jaw to keep the jaws parallel.
Fix 4 was the addition of the "out feed support". That is the aluminum block with the red marker on the surface and the shallow cut from the band saw. This prevents the small pieces from racking downward when cutting them.
Cut off some brass chuncks and find that it fills the bill. Good mod and easy to do.
Last edited by jjr2001; 11-30-2016 at 05:23 PM.
BANDSAWS. One favorite of machine tools, in all their different variations. That and blade welders built empires before anyone dreamed of wire EDM.
I can't find a copy, but once I had access to a certain text of bandsaw techniques; even showed a tilted table manual used to rough out conical turbine blades! About 30" diameter! No fooling!
...we'll learn more by wandering than searching...
Yep, a very versatile machine tool. I find that almost every project needs the band saw at some point. I think it wastes less material than any other way I have to cut steel, aluminum and wood. Very efficient cutting tool. My vertical band saw and this little portaband do 90 percent of my steel cutting and a lot of wood,plastic and aluminum.
I made mine for functionality and not speed since I only have 4" to move the vise jaw at max.
One other thought was using a scrap of a 1/2 x 10 tpi ACME lead screw and adding a 3" handle to that but I did not have a tap for 1/2-10 ACME so I just went with the 1/2-13 piece of all thread. Works great in the home shop where I am not trying to make a buck but just have a little fun.
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