I’ve been in Nashville, Tenn., for the last 24 hours at an event for Jet Tools and Powermatic. The companies hosted a nice dinner for us on Tuesday evening before turning us loose on a downtown that has more country music bars than one could check out in weeks.
Wednesday we hopped a bus for Ft. Houston, a member-based type co-op for creative professionals and hobbyists in Nashville. After a few presentations we were shown new tools and introduced to the hosts’ new philosophy of industrial design plus clear delineation between the two brands. (More on that in another blog entry.)
One of the new tools we were shown was a 14″ steel frame band saw (model # 714500). This is a nice machine. Yes the upper and lower wheels are solid and well-balanced and you can use from an 1/8″- to 3/4″-wide blades, but what stands out are the details.
The table is set at 39″ off the floor which is 3″ higher than on most band saws. Of course the table tilts (just twist the handle to raise or lower), and Jet has scored big with a retractable stop which makes for quick resets when you tip the tilt to the left; fold the stop down to access the full-tilt ability, then flip it back up to level the table square to the blade. Even the insert around the blade is industrial in design. It’s red anodized and has three set screws to dial in a perfect fit.
Another great feature is the fence – specifically, the fine-tune adjustment. While the aluminum fence can be set 6″ tall for resawing or laid flat so you can get up close to the blade, it also can be adjusted to .01″. That works great if you’re cutting veneer.
The new 14″ band saw was released just today, so I’ll have a few more details once we get one into the Popular Woodworking Magazine shop and get more of a look, including four-sided blade guards, a quick-release handle that has three positions and two 4″ dust ports.