Band Saw Or Table Saw: Which Should You Buy First?

Bandsaw Or Table Saw

Bandsaw and Table Saw are two of the commonly used saws in woodworking. However, sometimes the price and available space force us to choose between one.  

So, bandsaw or table saw: which one should you buy first? The table saw is most preferred if you are just starting as a woodworker. Because it's relatively cheap, provides cleaner cuts and you can adjust the depth of cuts thus table saw is ideal for doing dados, groove, and tongue. Tilting and changing the blades is also easy in a table saw. However, the choice will mostly depend on the types of cut you will be doing. For a long straight cut, table saw is the best. And if you are looking to cut shapes out of wood, band saw is one of the best in the business. It also allows you to cut different materials. In terms of safety you need to be equally precautios while operating both the saws. 

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Why it's our top pick:
  • The SAFEST Table Saw 
  • Powerful Motor That Can Cut Most Hardwoods.
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We have more to discuss in this article. Let's find out what things you need to consider to decide the ideal one. 

Band Saw V/S Table Saw: 10 Things To Think About To Decide The Perfect One  

Remember, you need to consider some factors before making a decision. These were the things I put into consideration before deciding which one to pick a band saw or table saw -

1. Types Of Materials You Will Cut 

types of material you will cut

If you would be considering the materials that each tool can cut.

Note: Table saws are used for cutting wood, and sheet brass, sheet aluminum, sheet plastics. Whereas, a band saw offers more versatility by installing an appropriate blade.

2. Long Straight Cuts 

table saw long straight cuts

When considering this factor, a table saw is the best fit. To get a long straight cut on a table saw; ensure you set the adjustable fence and turn it on. In contrast, a band saw doesn't come with a guide; you will need some type of jig to achieve a long straight cut. Using a jig on a band saw doesn't even guarantee a good result; it can result in a bit of wobble in the cut. 

Using A Table Saw  For Straight Cuts


3. Depth of Cut 

This is the distance from the table to the upper blade guides. There are instances where you don’t want to cut clean across aboard. Cuts like a dado, a groove, a tongue, and others. A table saw has an adjustable blade that makes it easy and handy to adjust the height of your blade and board. It’s impossible to make this kind of cut on a band saw. 


4. Beveling

I was able to cut 24 bevels on 6 squares of wood with my table saw. All you have to do is to tilt the blade which allows you to make consistent bevel cuts. Why is this possible? A table saw features a guide. Unlike a band saw where you have to tilt the workpiece instead of the blade because it can't make long straight bevel cuts.


5. Scrolling Cuts

For this, you need a band saw because it offers a better option. You can make tighter radius curves and get more precise results with this. A table saw might not be the best option considering this.


6. Kerf 

This is the thickness of the cut a band saw or table saw makes in a workpiece as it cut along. It depends on the saw blade. For instance, if the saw blade is thinner, you will get a smaller kerf. Band saw blade produces less kerf than a table saw blade.


7. Safety 

safety working with band saw

Here’s how it goes: I take more precautions when using a table saw than when using a band saw. A band saw feels safer. However, you need to take precautions while using both saws. Don’t make contact with the moving blade. 


8. Noise 

A table saw makes louder noise while performing woodworking operations. However, you can reduce the noise of a table saw by the use of a rubber-like pad that's designed to absorb vibration. The pad can be cut into strips to make it fit the frame of a motor and the mounting plate. A band saw is quieter than a table saw.


9. Maintenance 

A table saw is easy to maintain. Wheel alignment, blade tensioning, and backstay alignment is easy to set without much expertise on a table case. While the opposite is the case for a band saw. So complicated.


10. Workplace Flexibility

Considering this, a band saw might like to be the preferred option here. The case is different for a table saw, you need to give it more space to place the tool in your workshop.


Can A Band Saw Replace A Table Saw? 

can a bandsaw replace table saw

While there might be small differences in their functions, a band saw cannot completely replace a table saw. For instance, you can't cut dados, grooves or tounge in a bandsaw. Let me say this straight, the answer is NO. But you can use it if you intend to perform smallish operations and have other ways to true up material after it leaves the band saw.

Read More: Otehr Power Saws


Pros and Cons of a Table Saw  

advantages of a table saw

Pros

  • A table saw has a broad range of versatility when compared to a band saw. I jumped at this offer because it can perform repetitive tasks.

  • Its precision and accuracy when cutting lines in wood are high. A table saw can produce a straighter and precise cut.

  • You don’t need to have much expertise before operating a table saw unlike a band saw.

  • Its high-adjustable blade makes it possible to adjust the blade to make accurate cuts such as dado, groove, or tongue.

  • A table saw is faster and capable of cutting wood with lesser efforts.

  • Easy for bevel cut


Cons

  • You need to take extra precautions before operating a table saw. It can be very dangerous. 

  • A table saw is specially made for wood. If your niche as a woodworker requires that you work on various materials, a band saw might be your preferred option.

  • It isn't the best option for those who are allergic to noise. Because it produces more noise when working with hardwood.

  • It can only cut materials with a width up to 3.5". In other words, it can't perform thick jobs.


Pros And Cons Of A Band Saw  


Pros

  • Capable of creating the thicker cut. Their saw blades can be changed and used on different materials such as timber, plastic, metal. 

  • Good for jobs where you need curved edges. All you need to do is to adjust the saw blade to carry out a tighter curve.

  • It operates quietly without noise.

  • It doesn’t emit dust. Health researchers say dust is one of the causes of respiratory disorder.

  • A band saw cut through a range of materials without damaging the saw blade.

  • Using a band saw is dangerous but less dangerous than a table saw.


Cons

  • When compared with the table saw, it leaves your workpiece with rough edges. You need additional time for finishing rough edges, such a huge disadvantage.

  • It doesn’t show versatility with cutting capabilities, because its cutting power is low.


Conclusion

By now you’ll have realized the differences between band saws and table saws.

Of course, it's your money if you want to buy the two. If you are just starting as a woodworker and you need one of these tools. 

Then the table saw will likely be your most preferred option. So go ahead and order a table saw.  

Irrespective of what you choose, ensure you read the users' guide and heed to every precautionary measure. These are power saws you must handle with care