Best Horizontal Band Saws for Metal Cutting

Using horizontal bandsaw to cut metal.

A bandsaw is indeed a powerful tool that you can use to cut various types of materials. It comes with a looped cutting blade, tensioned between two pulleys. As a powerful tool, you can use it to cut metals. Yet, as you search for the perfect bandsaw, you will soon find bandsaws precisely plotted for cutting metal like the horizontal bandsaw. 

A horizontal bandsaw is a versatile tool for cutting metals. It produces excellent and professional cutting results that you would surely appreciate. Besides, it is perfect for cutting down stock to size. You can also use it for trickier cuts. It is a bit pricey, but it is a worthwhile investment.

Best Horizontal Bandsaws for Metal Cutting According to My Experience

As you shop around for the ideal horizontal bandsaw, you will soon find myriads of horizontal bandsaw models and brands in the market. To enable you zero in on the best one, you can narrow down your options to the following best horizontal bandsaws:

1) Grizzly G0613

The Grizzly G0613 is an excellent horizontal bandsaw that you can use for cutting metal. This bandsaw offers high accuracy and outstanding results. Moreover, it offers ease of setup and use. It also provides a cutting range from 0 to 60 degrees instead of the usual coverage from zero to forty-five degrees. 

This horizontal bandsaw comes with a blade guide that you can control using a lever. Its blade guide locks let users adjust the workpiece while supporting the workpiece. This blade guide also comes with ball bearings, and you can fully adjust these ball bearings. Besides, this bandsaw also comes with a swivel base equipped with a degree scale. 

The Grizzly G0613 is easy to use. You can shift from one cut to another with ease using this machine. Furthermore, you can use the lever as well as the stock length stop to move from one cut to another. 

Pros:

  • Maximum adjustment to 60 degrees
  • Easy to transition from one material to another. 
  • User friendly and safe

Cons:

  • Warranty is a bit short
  • Speed adjustment is lacking

2) Grizzly G0561

When it comes to the large tool category, nothing can beat the Grizzly Industrial. This brand has been known for producing the best horizontal bandsaws in the market today. Its Grizzly Industrial G0561 is a perfect example of its sterling products. This bandsaw can cut through wood with maximum dimensions of 7 x 12 inches. You can also use this machine to cut metal. 

The Grizzly Industrial G0561 gets powered by a 1-HP motor. Its blade can move up to 308 FPM, and its steel base suppresses the sound created by this bandsaw. Moreover, it comes with various accessories like adjustable blade guides, vises, and a cutting metal coolant applicator. 

The Grizzly Industrial G0561 has a 3/4″ wide blade. It is one of your best options because it offers consistency and efficiency in cutting materials. Besides, you can use this bandsaw to cut wood and metal. It can also cut at a similar angle without any problem.

Pros:

  • Very powerful
  • Easy to square and cuts very efficiently
  • Sturdy base 
  • Easy to set up and use

Cons:

  • Challenging to adjust its blade speed

3) Jet HVBS-712D

The Jet HVBS-712D is an adjustable bandsaw that you can transition from horizontal to vertical. This bandsaw competes well with other leading bandsaw models like the Grizzly G0561. It features a 3/4″ wide blade and can handle up to 7 by 12 inches workpiece. Moreover, it comes with built-in blade guides. It also comes with a large table that helps you balance your workpieces. 

The Jet HVBS-712D features blade guides that come with ball bearings. Thus, you can adjust the blade guides with ease. Moreover, its chip tray catches chips and burrs, allowing for a clean workplace. Furthermore, it comes with a storage cabinet in its base wherein you can keep your smaller tools. 

Plus, it is equipped with a coolant delivery system to prevent overheating when cutting metal. It is durable and comes with blade wheels that are made of flanged cast iron. Besides, it allows for micro-adjustments for setting up accurately.

Pros:

  • Offers a thinner blade for fine cutting
  • Features a conveniently large table
  • Comes with many added features
  • Easy to adjust

Cons:

  • A bit pricey 
  • Coolant may tend to splash or drip

4) WEN 3975T

The WEN 3975T is a benchtop bandsaw that is relatively affordable and of excellent quality. It likewise offers ease of setup and use. You can adjust its blade from 125 fpm to 260 fpm for cutting various metals. It also comes with a beveling blade to enable you to cut from zero degree to sixty degrees. 

This bandsaw can cut cylindrical workpieces with a maximum diameter of five inches. It can also cut workpieces with dimensions of 5 by 4-7/8”. Besides, its low price is very appealing, and its portability is perfect for those who move their bandsaw from one place to another.

Pros:

  • Relatively affordable than other models
  • Compact and portable
  • Offers decent beveling capacity
  • Comes with a two-year warranty

Cons:

  • Blades may wear fast
  • Noisy when operating

5) SHOP FOX W1715

If you want to buy something that you can use to cut metal, you can check out the SHOP FOX W1715. It is a versatile bandsaw. This saw is relatively cheaper than other models. Yet, it is reliable and of quality. It comes with a dial with variable speed. You can adjust its speed by simply altering its V-belt placement. Thus, you can use this bandsaw to cut various types of materials with a variable speed rate.

The SHOP FOX W1715 comes with a 3/4HP motor that spins at a maximum speed of 1725 RPM. It is a compact saw that comes with a sturdy base for the solid support of the machine. It also features solid wheels for increasing the portability of this bandsaw significantly. 

Using this bandsaw, you can make bevel cuts up from 0 to 60 degrees with its beveling vise. This beveling vise keeps the material in place for accurate angular cuts. Of course, this bandsaw is reasonably priced.

Pros:

  • Offers excellent functionality
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Allows you to cut different materials
  • Its beveling vise allows for angular cuts
  • Compact and portable

Cons:

  • Doesn’t have a cooling system

Factors to Consider When Selecting a Horizontal Bandsaw for Cutting Metal

Once you know the most recommended horizontal bandsaws in the market today, you can quickly narrow down your options to the best options. Yet, it will likewise help if you are cognizant of the essential factors to consider when selecting a horizontal bandsaw for cutting metal:

Size

The horizontal and vertical metal-cutting bandsaws come in various sizes. You can find these bandsaws in the benchtop, portable, floor-standing, and stationary forms. But when choosing a horizontal bandsaw, you should also consider the size of the horizontal bandsaw. 

Check if the bandsaw’s table size is enough for supporting longer pieces. Furthermore, you should check if the height, throat size, cutting depth are perfect for whatever you often cut. Plus, it will be best to choose a bandsaw that comes with the sizing appropriate for your projects.

Variable Speeds

The conventional bandsaws usually have two to three-speed settings. However, the newer bandsaws come with variable speeds. They come with a variable speed dial that allows you to select different cutting speeds. 

You can cut various sizes of metals using less speed. However, cutting some other metals requires a higher speed rate. For example, you will only need 100 FTM to cut steel, while you will need 1,000 FTM to cut aluminum. So, it will be best to select bandsaws that come with variable speed settings.

Portability

If you are an itinerant professional worker, you will surely need something portable. Hence, it will help consider the weight of the bandsaw. Moreover, it will be best to choose something with casters or wheels with a locking mechanism. In this way, you can safely move your bandsaw from one place to another without any problem.

Angles of Cuts

The ideal horizontal bandsaws will let you cut at different angles. Most bandsaws, of course, will allow you to cut between 0 to 45 degrees. However, some bandsaws will let you go up to 60 degrees. Such a capability may not be necessary for most of your projects, but this expanded capability can also expand the potential of your bandsaw. 

Moreover, aside from choosing a bandsaw with the expanded angular cutting capability, it will also help choose something that allows easy angle setting change. Your choice of bandsaw should also have quick-release vises to let you perform various angular cuts and transition from cutting one material to another. 

Motor Power

Another crucial factor when choosing a bandsaw is its motor. The motor determines how powerful a bandsaw will be. The usual range of power of bandsaws is from one-half horsepower to three horsepower. So, if you would engage in heavy-duty tasks, you should go for more powerful bandsaws. 

Check its maximum speed capacity likewise. Most bandsaws can rip through boards and thin sheets. But if you intend to use your bandsaw in cutting metals, you need a more powerful motor. 

A powerful motor will allow you to cut through harder materials with ease. Aside from a powerful motor, your bandsaw should also have a sharp saw blade. It should also come with other accessories like a clamping system, cooling system, quick lock vise, blade guards, and smooth guide rollers.

Mechanism

Bandsaws also come with different mechanisms. You will find manual, semi-automatic, hydraulic, and automatic bandsaws. The automatic bandsaws are your best option because they work like robots. They would also lift themselves once it completes the cut. However, they are expensive and will surely dent your savings.

Design 

The designs of bandsaws vary. Yet, you can categorize them into two: mobile and immobile. The mobile ones, of course, are movable. They are lightweight and may be compact. Moreover, they come with casters or wheels for easy mobility.

On the other hand, the immobile bandsaws are fixed in one place. They remain in one place and are called floor band saw. The immobile one is sturdier and perfect for cutting straight and for meticulous cutting of curves. It is also perfect for thinning materials down. Besides, the immobile bandsaws are powerful and massive, and they are ideal for use by professionals.

Safety 

Another important factor is the safety level afforded by the bandsaw. Some bandsaws are riskier to operate than other bandsaws. So, when you buy a horizontal bandsaw, you should check the safety features that come with it. Check if it comes with an interlocking mechanism. It should also come with an auto-shut-off feature.

Moreover, it will help to consider the noise level it produces. It should not be loud to damage your hearing. Plus, it should come with blade guards. In this way, you can get your fingers protected from injuries. Moreover, it should have a cooling system to keep the motor, gear, and blade cool during extended operations.


Frequently Asked Questions

Aside from knowing the most recommended horizontal bandsaws and the factors you should consider when buying one, it will also help to know the FAQs about horizontal bandsaws:

Should I Buy a Horizontal Bandsaw?

Your needs may dictate whether you would need a horizontal bandsaw or not. If you would often cut straight, you might be needing a horizontal bandsaw. Moreover, if you need to cut dense metals, you might as well buy a horizontal bandsaw. 

Nevertheless, if you will not use the horizontal bandsaw more often, you would be better off buying a battery-powered one. The battery-powered ones are portable and more affordable. 

Metal-cutting Bandsaw and Wood-cutting Bandsaw: What is the Difference?

The main differences between these two are the blades and speed. You will notice that most wood-cutting bandsaws use skip-toothed blades. On the other hand, metal-cutting bandsaw uses blades with aggressive metal hook teeth. 

The wood-cutting bandsaws also run at a faster speed, while metal-cutting bandsaws use a slower speed rate. This is because the friction between metal and the blade is intense and generates much heat during the cutting process. So, you need to go slower with the cutting process. Hence, most metal-cutting bandsaws also come with adjustable speed dials, a powerful drive mechanism, and broader and thicker blades. 

Wood, however, doesn’t make intense heat. So, you can go faster with the cutting rate. Hence, wood-cutting bandsaws mostly do not have variable speed dials. 

Do I Need Both Vertical & Horizontal Bandsaws?

Well, if you got the money, you can always go for both vertical and horizontal bandsaws. Yet, having both bandsaw types might be superfluous and might only crowd your workshop. So, it will be best select hybrid products that allow you to make vertical and horizontal cuts.

How Much Horsepower is Needed for a Horizontal Bandsaw? 

Most horizontal bandsaws do not require much power to cut and operate. So, if you plan to use your bandsaw to cut only thin metals, you can settle for a horizontal bandsaw not higher than .75HP. Nevertheless, if you intend to cut more rigid and thicker metals, you might also look for a horizontal bandsaw with increased horsepower.


Conclusion

The horizontal bandsaw is a perfect choice for cutting metals, and it can take more abuse than other bandsaws. They offer excellent dependability and don’t give you much issue when cutting metals. Yet, it doesn’t mean that you should not meticulously choose the horizontal bandsaws that you would buy. 

Given the myriads of horizontal bandsaw brands and models, you need to select the one you should buy carefully. As mentioned above, you can narrow down your choices to the most recommended options while considering the crucial factors when buying one. In this way, you can ensure you are making an intelligent purchase and a good investment.

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