November 18, 2021
Quick question: How can you replace your bandsaw tires when they get busted? If you answer I have no idea, you’re not alone because many bandsaw users also find themselves at a loss when the tires of their bandsaw become worn out. If you are the type of bandsaw user who does not tinker with your bandsaw, you might not be aware of the present condition of your bandsaw tires. You might also get surprised when one day, your bandsaw will not work well due to worn-out bandsaw tires.
Below the bandsaw covers, the wheels that contain the tires are constantly tugging on the saw blade. This continual tugging creates enormous frictions and wear and tear on the tires. Over time, the tires will exhibit stress cracks and must be replaced. You will notice a remarkable reduction in the performance of your bandsaw once the tires are already worn out and need replacement.
Urethane vs. Rubber
You should not panic when the tires become glazed and slick, for replacing them is not that difficult as it may seem. However, you should know how to do it. First, you should know your replacement options and the best material for your choice. Bandsaw tires come in two types: urethane and rubber. Each of these options has its pros and cons. So, as a first-timer in bandsaw tire replacement, it will be best for you to know these pros and cons.
The rubber tire, for example, is cheaper than the urethane type. It also wears out fast and chips off easily. Besides, it is a challenge to install. It also produces glue residue. This glue residue might affect the bandsaw.
The Urethane tires, however, are more expensive than the rubber ones. But they are more durable. Moreover, they are easy to install.
You can choose between any of these two options. But when choosing a tire, you should go for the bright-colored ones. The bright-colored ones allow you to easily detect the tires on the wheels compared to those of the black ones.
At the onset, it will be best to choose the best replacement tire for your bandsaw. Between these two types of tires, you will hardly notice any difference in their performance. Yet, if you are desirous of a durable one, you should go for the urethane tires.
Why Should You Replace the Bandsaw Tires?
The inexpensive part of the bandsaw might be the tire. Yet, despite being the cheapest part, it plays a critical role in the well-functioning of the bandsaw. The wheels and the saw blades can’t function well without the tires. The tires provide the saw blade with enough cushioning against the wheels. Thus, the tires help secondarily in the proper alignment of the saw blade.
The tires enable the saw blade to run smoothly sans wobbling. They also prolong the usefulness of the saw blade and the wheels. Thus, when the tires become worn out, you must replace them to ensure the well-functioning and efficiency of the bandsaw.
Measuring the Size of the Band Saw Wheel
You may know the size of your bandsaw, but you might get confused as to which size of bandsaw tires you should buy as replacements to your worn-out bandsaw tires. At the onset, it will help to know that the tire’s size doesn’t depend on the bandsaw size. Instead, you should figure out the size of the bandsaw wheels for the tire’s size depends on the wheel’s size.
So, before buying the replacement tires, you should measure the wheel’s diameter. Use the English System when measuring. Measure from edge to edge of the wheel. As a rule, if you got a 12-inch wheel, you should buy a tire around 10 inches in diameter to ensure that it will snugly fit into the wheel.
Remember that the tire should be two inches shorter than the wheel’s diameter, whatever the size of the wheel is. The tire’s size range is from ten to twenty inches.
How Would You Replace Rubber Bandsaw Tires?
You can install the rubber tire by sliding part of the rubber tire onto the rim of the wheel. Make sure that the rough side of the tire is set against the edge of the rim. You can then clamp it onto a small C-clamp along with a 1/4″ thick scrap piece.
Afterward, you can stretch the tire along the opposite side of the wheel and clamp it in. You should stretch the tire over the wheel’s rim using the steel or wood lever if needed.
You can slip between the wheel and the tire a 3/4-inch diameter pipe or rod. Afterward, you can move the pipe around the rim to force the tire to stretch until it fits around the rim. In this way, you can equalize the elasticity of the tires of the tire.
Afterward, you can squeeze in a small amount of rubber adhesive onto the applicator. Then, apply the adhesive onto the tire and wheel surface. Allow the adhesive to dry for a day before you start using the bandsaw.
Replacing Urethane Bandsaw Tire
As you purchase urethane bandsaw tires, you will notice that these tires are a bit undersized. Thus, they can be installed without using adhesive because they fit around the rim well. However, if you have a weak hand, it will help to soak the tires in hot water with 120° F temperature. Soak the tires for five to ten minutes. In this way, you can make them a bit pliable for easy stretching over the wheel’s rim. Below are the succinct steps you can follow when installing a new tire on your bandsaw wheel:
- Before replacing the old tire, you need to remove it from the rim. To pry it off the wheel, you can slip a screwdriver (flathead) underneath the urethane bandsaw tire. You should take extra care not to ding up your bandsaw wheel.
- Dip the new tire in hot water as mentioned above. Let it soak for ten minutes before installing it. This is one of the tricks you won’t learn from the non-expert. So, you should employ this trick to ensure that you can install the tire properly onto the wheel. Yet, you can also install some tire models sans undergoing this step.
- Hold the tire after soaking it for ten minutes and begin stretching it around the rim of the wheel. Use two spring clamps whenever you cannot position the tire onto a rim part. Stretch the tire further. Slowly but surely, you can make progress by stretching the tire further onto the correct position.
- You can complete the installation using a screwdriver. Slip carefully the screwdriver underneath the new tire and leverage the tire onto the proper position. Then, uninstall the clamp, and let the screwdriver finish the installation process.
- Once you’ve installed the new tire, you can now balance the tire’s tension around the wheel. Make sure that there is even tension. You can ensure even tension by sliding the screwdriver around the wheel several times. Afterward, you can remove your screwdriver.
- Once the tire is already installed and got even tension around, you can install the wheel back onto the bandsaw. Let the tire cool off and adjust itself around the wheel for a while before you install the bandsaw blade.
- Once you’ve mounted the wheels, you can mount the bandsaw blade over the newly installed tires. You need to adjust the bearings of the saw blade. Remember that the new tire will be tougher and thicker. Moreover, it will be stiffer.
- When installing the saw blade, the blade will be further away from the center of the wheel. Thus, the saw blade will push against the bearing or block. Therefore, it will be necessary to pull back the four bearings. Then, readjust them to allow the saw blade to touch these bearings barely. It will help, likewise, to check the squareness of the saw blade with the bandsaw table. You can adjust to get the right squareness.
Frequently Asked Questions
Aside from knowing the abovementioned steps for installing the new bandsaw tires, it will likewise help if you’re cognizant of the following FAQs about bandsaw tires:
What is the Function of Bandsaw Tire?
The bandsaw tire functions like the tire of the car. It reduces friction between the bandsaw wheel and the blade. Moreover, it provides the wheel with enough grip to drive the saw blade. You will find urethane and rubber bandsaw tires. These tires are mounted around the wheels.
Why Should the Bandsaw Wheels Get Fitted With Rubber Tires?
Tires are made of rubber to allow them to stretch when needed. Rubber tires allow for greater versatility and fit.
Why Does Your Bandsaw Blade Come Off?
If your bandsaw blade doesn’t get enough tension, it will often come off. Thus, you must check if there is enough tension to keep the bandsaw tight. If there is not enough tension, you can tighten it to provide it with the necessary tension.
To check on the bandsaw tires, you can pop open the hood of the bandsaw and remove its blade. Afterward, inspect the tire for any missing chunks and visible cracks. If the tires show cracks and missing chunks, it will be best to replace them with new tires.
Do not be daunted by the idea of replacing the old tires. As long as you follow the abovementioned tips and the necessary steps on replacing the tires, you can breeze through the process without any problem.
Liam is a 37-year-old woodworker and interior designer who loves to make every furniture project an art piece. He is very experienced in furniture design and woodworking project planning.