Fitting a Bandsaw Tire
A bandsaw tire is vital. Its purpose is to protect the wheel from making contact with the blade and causing damage.
Tires come in several sizes depending on the material they’re manufactured from and the size or width of the blade. It can be made out of rubber or urethane. A rubber bandsaw tire requires glue to keep it in place.
Urethane tires are the best and the easiest to install, but your bandsaw wheel must be 10, 12, 14, 15, 18, or 20″ or the tires will not fit correctly. The urethane tire will generally outlast a rubber tire and it doesn’t require additional glue to stick to the wheel.
Changing Bandsaw Tires
Check for worn tires in need of replacement. Worn tires will be crumbly, with cracks at different places. You can also tell if your tire is worn by paying attention to how your machine operates. Excess vibration that impacts precision probably means the tires need replacing.
Remove the existing tire using a razor knife to pull it apart from the wheel. If you’re working with a rubber tire, the process is a bit more complicated and lacquer thinner will need to be applied to carefully pull it away — inch by inch.
Use a wedge of wood to widen the gap at each step and add more thinner until you’ve successfully removed it from the wheel.
If working with a urethane tire, thinner isn’t required, and pulling the tire apart from the wheel is easy.
Before installing a new bandsaw tire, make sure to properly clean the wheel and remove the epoxy from the rim. A stiff wire brush will help. We don’t recommend using water or a cleaning solvent as these will damage the saw.
Installing Rubber Tires
Rubber bandsaw tire installation requires the following steps: measure the wheels and use tires that are two inches smaller than the wheel. Prior to installation, make sure to clean the wheels with solvent. Use a soft cloth and apply a fair amount of glue or adhesive. Stretch the tire and place it around the wheel. Use a screwdriver for leverage if needed to hold the tire in place.
Installing Urethane Tires
Installation of urethane tires is a little less challenging. Urethane, while being less pliable than rubber, will become just as flexible after having soaked them in hot, soapy water for about ten minutes. By doing this, the tire should stretch right onto the wheel(s).
Place the tire on the wheel and clamp it securely. Stretch it halfway around and add another clamp. Then continue to stretch the tire until it fits well. An extra pair of hands comes in handy. After the tires are secured to the entire wheel, the machine is good to go.
Re-Balance the Wheels
With every new tire replaced, you need to make sure to re-balance your wheels, especially on bigger bandsaws and high-speed models.
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