Band Saw or Ring Saw?
- November 28, 2008 at 4:34 pm #9226Bill_EParticipant
I’ve been doing stained glass for a couple of years and recently took a fusing class. I enjoyed it so much I decided to take the plunge. My first purchase was a Paragon Fusion 8 kiln. Now, I’m looking for a good saw that will allow me to make clean straight cuts that won’t require a lot of grinding to get smooth. I’d also like the ability to make curved freehand cuts. On the one hand, I like the idea of a band saw like the Diamond Laser 3000 or 5000 but I’ve heard good things about the Titan saw. I know the 5000 is expensive but I’d rather buy a really capable but expensive tool once than a cheaper one only to have to upgrade to the better tool later. I’m also not adverse to the possibility of 2 less expensive different saws, one for straight and one for complex curves. I would like the saw to be capable of cutting between ½” and ¾” at a time. Your suggestions are very appreciated.
Thanks, Bill_ENovember 28, 2008 at 6:51 pm #11012LauraJoParticipant
This past summer I purchased a tile saw from Home Depot for $88. It worked just ok – had to go very slowly to reduce chipping and I sure did get soggy and messy. My slabs were only about 5/8″ thick. I was not happy with the amount of and degree of chipping that I got on my glass with the tile saw no matter how slowly I moved the glass. Would a different type of blade work better on that?
The tile saw was considered because my T3 didn’t work very well on the 5/8″ slabs. It cut too slowly. I ended up putting too much pressure on the blade and stretched out the belt which caused the blade to continually come off during use. Not good.
I just got a Gemini Titan XT which is supposed to work with thicker slabs. I used it for the first time this morning and I’m on the fence about it. The slabs I cut were about 5/8″ or 3/4″. On the favorable side, the Titan XT cuts quite nicely with limited chipping – the glass was smooth after sawing. The blade is much more heavy-duty vs the T3. There is a slide top (much like the tile saw from Home Depot) which I like alot. It helped me keep the glass straighter for cutting, etc. On the down side, I got quite wet and full of glass chips and there was water all over the place – dripping on the floor, etc. I don’t like the water system – it is closed and requires the removal of 4 screws to access it and refill. Also, there really isn’t any place for the water to go to during use – the blade carries it up to the cutting surface, then it flows/sprays down the front and ends up all over the front of me, my table and onto the floor.
No perfect and affordable solution just yet.November 28, 2008 at 6:53 pm #11013LauraJoParticipant
I posted the previous comment in the wrong forum area. It’s relevant, but not an answer to your query, Bill.December 2, 2008 at 5:18 am #11014VetrocaldoParticipant
Coming from someone who has 4 saws, it a matter of what your trying to do with each project. Hence why we now have 4 saws. (we’re not right in the head).
We started out with a Taurus 3, then got a Gryphon C-40, then another Taurus 3, (which we keep it only for the Mega Blade, changing blades takes time away from playing) and finally we got the Taurus Revolution XT with the carriage kit. And yes, it does make a mess but the 45 degree cuts….oh so nice. We started playing around with laminating and this seems to be the best saw for that project. I guess I really didn’t answer your question, but I do have a recommendation see if your glass supplier has whatever saw your interested in and see if you can get face time with it, try it out before you buy it. If your supplier won’t do that, then look for ones that do. I used to be a food broker and we had a old saying, “you can’t sell it (food) if you don’t get it in their mouth”. Same principal applies here. You wouldn’t buy a car without a test drive. Why not these, a good supplier knows that. Find the one that fills his customers needs. And remember your needs change too, with each project you see something different that you want to change or try differently. Again, this is why we now have 4 saws. Hope this helps. Happy hunting.December 18, 2009 at 5:17 am #11015katkramerParticipant
I really prefer the band saw…I have the Diamond Laser 3000 XL now, and put the Taurus on eBay. I think the Titan looks intriguing, but because it is a ring saw, I don’t think you have the same flexibility as the band saw because the back part of the ring is in the way…anybody know?
I’ve been happy with the 3000, but wish it had been in my budget to purchase the 5000. However, I really don’t use it that often. In my mind…when I was new to fusing…I wanted to cut out shapes and thought that the band saw was easier. For the amount of time that I use it, I think the 3000 was a better choice for me.
I wrote in another area that any of these will leave a rough finish, and you’ll still have to fire polish. If you full fuse an item cut on one of these saws, you may end up with a “scummy” edge with a funky haze on it.
I did like that the Titan was a thinner blade than the Taurus.
I think you would have less of a problem with the more powerful saw if you’re cutting really thick things.
However, for the price of the larger one, you could actually buy a nice tile saw…I end up cutting most of my straight cuts on my tile saw. My 24″ contractor tile saw cost me about $450…only problem is it takes up room in my garage!
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