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Bazza

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Reply with quote  #1 
Hi all, firstly im new here and from downunder, as I have just started to get into woodworking after 56 years I would like to know if I should purchase a scroll saw or a band saw they both seem very similar to me , my first project is a rocking horse for our first grandchild so any advice would be appreciated.


Thank you In advance ..Bazza
BadBob

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Reply with quote  #2 
A scroll saw and a band saw are very different. A scroll saw is a more precise tool that will cut very small and delicate parts or toy car parts out of a 2x4. If your very skilled and take your time you can cut out parts that require little or no sanding. You can turn a scroll saw in the width of the blade. A scroll saw will also allow you to make internal cuts. You can't do that with a band saw. Scroll saws are safer. You are very unlikely to cut off a finger on a scroll saw. Band saws are used to cut cows into steaks. Bones and all.

A band saw will cut curves but not really tight radius turns since the smallest blade you can get is 1/8 inch. For most band saws, 1/4 inch is the smallest practical size blade. On the other hand a band saw doesn't have much problem sawing a log into boards or resawing thick boards into thin ones,

They both have their place and there is some overlap. The question you need to ask yourself is: Which one is best suited to the task at hand. Were I to be building a rocking horse the band saw would be my tool of choice. You could do it with a scroll saw, but it would take longer and I would not recommend cutting out a rocking horse as your first scroll saw project.


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Dalboy

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Reply with quote  #3 
I agree with BadBob. personally I would get a bandsaw first as it is my go to tool more times than my scrollsaw. Like most things it is a case of what type of work you will be wanting to use it on, in the case of the rocking horse then bandsaw.
Something to remember is the bandsaw is the larger outlay so once brought the scroll saw is a cheaper thing to buy later on

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ed357sw

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Reply with quote  #4 
I have both. I use my band saw for a lot of rough cut stuff mostly.
Having said that I can cut out 2x4 toy's fairly quickly and throw them on the sander and be done with it.

If you get into band saw boxes which is some I want to try you can't go wrong with a good solid band saw.

On my toy's that require inside work the scroll saw is the tool of choice for all things curvy LOL

Having said this you can build a fine rocking horse with just a JIG saw. If you look at the video John did He used a Drill and a jig saw and a a few other hand tools. 
Just my 2 cents worth...

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phantom scroller

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Reply with quote  #5 
I would get both, bandsaw for cutting up the wood and making bandsaw boxes, large rockers etc and scrollsaw for small toy making and ornaments collapsable scrolled basket etc.
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Plantagenon

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Reply with quote  #6 
Also from Australia - Brisbane.

When making larger toys like a rocking horse, a band saw is definitely the way to go.  I take off the rough edges with a bench top band sander and finishing sander.  Once you get used to it a router with a straight bit with bearing top is fast to use if you have templates.  Ryobi make a good medium range bandsaw at a reasonable cost, however their blades are not the best.  I have blades made for mine at Peacock Saws at Durack in Brisbane.  They give a much better cut and no blade twist.

Using a scroll saw to cut out something as large as a rocking horse will not work as some of the pieces will be too long for the scroll saw plate.  Also, it will take forever.

If you don't want to spend a lot of money then a jig saw will do the tirck as previously mentioned.

Bazza

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Reply with quote  #7 
Cheers all , I have good jigsaw so I thought that may do for now and I do use my router table with a trim bit to trim to the template . so much gear to buy from scratch [smile]  so  I will still prob go band saw....... thinking ebay but not sure yet  wife is going nuts at what im spending all of a sudden I told her its the grandchilds fault my job now is to spoil her [smile]
Hambone

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Reply with quote  #8 
I started woodworking with a scroll saw and do most of my work with it.   I purchased a band saw for the reasons already mentioned but, other than straight cuts, I struggle with it.  Also setting the bearings is a pain for me.  Also I would like to ask members how fast they My comfort zone seems to be 3.5 to 4 tightness and moderate speed.  Am I missing something?

Hambone

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Hambone
ed357sw

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Reply with quote  #9 
Hambone,

I set my scroll saw tension to 3.5 for me that gives the nice tone everyone says your supposed to get when you flick the blade with a fingernail. As for speed typically mine stays around 5-7 this seems to be the sweet spot for the lowest vibration. It has others but that speed does not tend to burn and the biggest boards I cut are 2x4's down to 1/8". The thing for me is making sure I use the appropriate blade for the stock...

this is just my 2 cents worth. Of course others may have vastly different settings etc....

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Hambone

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Reply with quote  #10 
Thanks.  I rarely pay attention to speed except when I just "feel" it should be increased, probably in the range you mentioned.  Also I have given up on cutting 2X4's with the scroll saw.  Instead I cut two 3/4's and glue them together for toys.  For toys, I use a regular skip tooth blade based on the advice of the Lewman's. this blade does help staying on the line.
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BadBob

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Reply with quote  #11 
I don't have any problems cutting 2x4 material on any of my scrollsaws. If I do glue ups from 3/4 I find it much easier to glue them first and then cut. I have lots less sanding to do that way. If I do my part right and I have good quality wood to work with there is practically no sanding to do. I have some puzzles that are made from pine 2x that are so smooth they are shiny. 
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