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  • bandsaw tension rod strips

    When I got my new Ridgid bandsaw a few months ago, I promised myself to release the blade tension after every use. Well, I managed about every third use. But it's getting more difficult to keep this promise. The problem is that the tension rod keeps stripping. I noticed an old post where someone else was having this problem and Ridgid said it was due to a faulty batch of rods which was supposedly fixed back in 2002. But I bought my saw in 2009.

    Ironically, the rod strips while releasing the tension. It tightens up fine, then when I release the tension, it gets harder and harder to turn, eventually freezing up after about five revolutions. The first time it happened, I called Ridgid and they sent out a new rod and nut. That fixed the problem. But after three rounds of tensioning and releasing the tension, it's happened again. Incidentally, I've installed a resaw extension and a Timber Wolf resaw blade, which doesn't require all that much tension to begin with.

    It's a real pain, because there's no easy way to remove the rod once it freezes up. Plus I'm getting tired of setting the blade tension from scratch.

    So I'm reluctant to order another replacement from Ridgid. Has anyone else found an alternative that works well and doesn't cost an arm and a leg? [Please don't tell me about the Carter quick release. For $160 I could sell the Ridgid and buy a Grizzly with a quick release already installed and still come out ahead.]

  • #2
    Re: bandsaw tension rod strips

    Got a pic of the part?

    Could you look at some place like mcmaster.com for a threaded rod that might work the same?

    My saw has a tension release so I dont know exactly what you are looking for in this instance.

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    • #3
      Re: bandsaw tension rod strips

      Sorry, I don't have a pick. But it's the same rod found on just about every 14-inch bandsaw, whether or not you've got a tension release lever. It's got a knob at the top for adjusting the tension and passes through a square nut that sits in the spring housing. I tried to find a replacement nut a while back. But, not only is it metric, but it has to be square and of the same dimensions to fit in the housing without turning. I know others have substituted a 3/8 threaded rod and nut in other brands of saw, but the standard 3/8 threaded rod isn't a particularly high quality steel either.

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      • #4
        Re: bandsaw tension rod strips

        Ill take a look at my Delta when I get home.

        If standard threaded rod will work, you can get heavier duty stuff at McMaster.

        Ill check out what mine looks like (I know the knobbed rod you are speaking of, Ill look closer and see if I can source some parts)

        Surprised others havent come up with better replacements if there really is that much trouble with it (and, I can see there being that much trouble with it....my Delta tenoning jig is the same way....the threaded rod on the adjuster feels like it binds every now and then, just a matter of time before it destroys its own threads)

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        • #5
          Re: bandsaw tension rod strips

          Hello
          I had the same problem!! I got tired of calling Ridgid and getting new ones (total of 3!!!!).
          I then call Itturra and got his crank/rod and nut. It has the threads cut like a woodworking vise (square) and the bronze nut is beefier as opposed to the Ridgid nut that was just a regular nut that allowed it to move around and that is why I think they had problems.
          Anyway, here is a link where you can get the crank/rod and nut for less than I paid. Well worth the investment. Ron

          http://www.highlandwoodworking.com/b...ing-Crank.HTML
          Last edited by Ronald; 01-21-2010, 05:53 PM. Reason: spelling

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          • #6
            Re: bandsaw tension rod strips

            Thanks for the link Ron. Actually, I saw this in the Highland catalog a while back. But the $45 price tag turned me off. I guess it's a psychological thing. My reasoning goes something like this: Why bother to ask Ridgid to send me a new one when I can purchase a 3/8 threaded rod for less than $10. But if I'm going to spend $10 for something that might be just as bad, why not spend $45 for something a lot better and save myself future problems. Then again, if I'm going to spend $45, maybe it's worth it to spend the $160 for the Carter tension release system. But then I'd have $530 invested in the saw, when I could have just spent $450 to begin with and purchased the Grizzly G0555 which comes with a tension release system.

            This is what separates us from the animals.

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            • #7
              Re: bandsaw tension rod strips

              I hear you. I am like you. Hind sight, I would have and should have gotten the Grizzly.

              I paid 77.00 for mine! I would have gladly paid 45.00.
              I used to detension (is that a word?) mine but stopped and have not had any problems. I guess if I have the quick release maybe I would use it. Either way, hope everthing works out. Ron

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