I want to make furniture. Therefore, whether I'm cutting a roughly cut piece of plywood or cutting a "solid wood" piece made from a gluing up smaller boards, I will certainly need to make wood panels with final dimensions around:
- Width: 12-24 inch
- Length: 12-36 inch
I have seen two popular approaches for cutting wood panels:
- Table saw
- Hand-held saws (track saw, circular saw, jigsaw, hand saw)
These approaches have their strengths and weaknesses in regards to accuracy, repeatability, safety, and physical effort. The details are for another discussion.
However, it seems that the bandsaw has limited usefulness here due to its somewhat small cutting capacity (9-14 inch for models below $600). In fact, it seems that one would need to spend more than $4000 for a bandsaw with a 24" cutting capacity, although I suppose a large table saw would have a similar price. Still, I wonder why bandsaws with a cutting capacity of 24" and larger are not more common?
There seems to be a correlation between the cutting capacity of a bandsaw and the size of the wheels since the compact design puts the bandsaw's table spanning horizontally across the space between the upward and downward moving blades, see Figure 1 below. My question has to do with the proposed bandsaw design, shown on the right in figure 1, in which the table has been extended to the side and the fence is on the far side as well. Is there anything inadvisable about doing rip cuts on this proposed bandsaw design? Figure 1: (Left) traditional bandsaw design, (Right) proposed bandsaw design
I have seen some YouTube videos showing bandsaw table extensions. In-flow or out-flow extension tables can support long pieces of wood, but they are not what I'm interested in. Most (but not all) of the bandsaw "side" table extensions that I have seen are somewhat small see this YouTube link. My question is whether there is anything problematic with ripping a panel on a large bandsaw side table while registering it against a fence that is also mounted on the side table? I'm primarily asking about rip cuts here, but I would also be interested in your thoughts about having mitre slots in this large bandsaw side for cross cutting.
My guess is that there must be something "wrong" with this idea or this would be a more common commercial tool. I appreciate your time and your thoughts.