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MSC 20" bandsaw - recondition or scrap it?

DMoneyAllstar

New member
So I picked this gigantic bandsaw for $227.00 out the door at a local surplus warehouse. I planned on gutting the pulleys, tracking mechanism, and blade welder for making a big sawmill. However now I'm considering just keeping it as a bandsaw for my hobby shop for metal and a little woodworking.

500-saw.jpg

The saw is equiv. to the MSC #09514647, made in Taiwan, 2hp, 220/440 3ph, 1300#. Motor has 1989 date on it. The saw looked complete at first, but when I pulled the rear panel off, I found the main 1" driveshaft to be sheared and most of the drivetrain missing. Explains the price. :crazy:

There are (2) versions of this saw: [1] uses the Reeves-type variable transmission, and [2] uses a selectable gearbox. What's weird about this saw is that it's got the speed-adjusting linkage of the CVT system, but also has the selectable reduction box of the non-CVT type. Could be someone's Frankenstein? No idea. The chains for the reduction box are there, therefore I have to believe it was last running as a non-CVT type saw. Looking at the parts diagrams and making some assumptions about sheave diameters, sprocket count, etc...the speed range would've been pretty limited without a CVT (330-to-1425 FPM).

While the selectable gearbox increases the speed range, it's still pretty limited. Therefore I'll eventually install a VFD to further expand the speed range. According to the current MSC catalog, the "new" model saw is capable of 82 to 1496 FPM. With the 1720rpm motor on a VFD from 65 to 15Hz, my drivetrain calculations say I can match the range. With the swap of the drive pulley, I can prob get higher FPM better for wood if needed. On the gearbox mfg'er's website, they show an example with 850 rpm input and 1700 rpm output (Fure Shing FS-402, circa 1988). In my math, I'm at 315 rpm max on the input and 630 rpm on the output, so I'm well within the means of the gearbox.

Being this motor is 33yr old and from Taiwan, it will get replaced once everything is up and running.

Here is the parts diagram and the geartrain (Excel). I've got the motor, the gearbox, the left upright bracket, couple bearing blocks, chains, and some hardware. Missing the intermediate sprockets, shafts and sheaves. Waiting for a quote on all the missing guts, but I imagine a lot of it will be long lead-time. And a lot of it is just McMaster-Carr and Grainger type stuff. I've got a S1 Bridgeport and a cnc plasma, so I think I'll end up remfg'ing the bracket myself, and sourcing most of the geartrain. Will also need new blade rubber, grinding wheel ($11) & grinder cover (I'll fab).

500-saw_diagram.jpg

Saw_Geartrain.JPG
 

DMoneyAllstar

New member
Yes, indeed! It's only 90min away. I've scored a few good deals there (ovens, air dryers, dust collectors, Timesaver, tooling, etc), but almost EVERYTHING needs some repair. Most of the stuff there should be selling at 10% above scrap. Fortunately these are my types of challenges.

And NO, they did not tell me it had a sheared driveshaft nor missing drive train. That's why you pay on-site (go look at it first). In this case, I just wanted to steal parts off of it. Electrical looks really clean and is pretty simple. Pulleys look good. Table is straight and trunnion isn't broke. So...I'm seriously considering refurb.
 

steve-l

Active member
This is a much bigger job than you think. Your biggest issue is parts. Do your research and make certain they are available. Then make certain you can afford the cost. After you have all the required parts on hand, allocate a spare year to get it done. That's how much time it will take you. Ask me how I know. That saw requires both the reeves drive and the gear box. Typically the gear box and reeves combination will give you a speed selection of 50 to 5000 ft per min. in 2 or 3 speed ranges.
 

DMoneyAllstar

New member
Looking at the parts diagram, I think now I see that the machine indeed uses BOTH the Reeves drive and the gearbox. They've got it broken up into two separate pages -- gearbox setup on one page, and Reeves drive on the other. Makes A LOT MORE SENSE now.

I'd much rather just ditch the Reeves drive, install a basic gear train, and use a VFD. It will get me the speed range for anything I'll need in my home shop and will closely match what MSC is selling today. I have no zero zilch nadda desire to buy a new/used Reeves drive for this pig.
 

4GSR

Active member
My old Grob vertical bandsaw does all of the blade speeds by stepped sheaves. Don't remember the highest speed but I can get it down to around 1 FPM with the VFD I installed for the motor controller! You can get the speed up there for wood cutting, too! Might be an alternate to way to replace the Reeves drive with stepped sheaves and a VFD motor controller.
 

Mebfab

Moderator
I have gone through this with a LOT of taiwan and chinese machines. The farther back you go the worse the problems become.

Taiwan machines it can vary a lot but sometimes if not too old (15 years?) you might get parts. Some wont fit.

If chinese you generally cant get parts and if you do they almost never fit.
 

john.k

Active member
Typically ,fixin old Taiwan stuff ,you get some of the parts at high cost,then hit a no can do.....often the parts place will string you along with the unobtanium ,to sell what they have.....if you cant find another donor machine,go ahead with your sawmill.
 

DMoneyAllstar

New member
I have gone through this with a LOT of taiwan and chinese machines. The farther back you go the worse the problems become.

Taiwan machines it can vary a lot but sometimes if not too old (15 years?) you might get parts. Some wont fit.

If chinese you generally cant get parts and if you do they almost never fit.


Really the only manufacturer parts I'd really like to get my hands on would be the main lower pulley shaft and the drive sprocket. Everything else is industrial catalog stuff to just make a simple reduction drivetrain (per my cartoon graphic in the original post). Hoping to put together the grocery list and cost roll-up over the next couple weeks.

Also I'm a 25yr mech engineer & 3D draftsman (stamped/machined automotive, aerospace & defense parts), 6yr hobby cnc (mill & plasma), rebuilt several BlueM ovens & 3ph machines. So this bandsaw project is up my alley and within my skillset.
 

gustafson

Active member
I think it would be easy enough to make a single speed with a gearbox high low. Probably never fast enough to be perfect for wood or slow enough to be perfect for stainless, but would do most things.

Probably not that much more difficult to make it 2 belt speeds resulting in 4 speeds total

I cannot see trying to rebuild the vari speed
 

car2

Active member
I also have a 1951 Grob NS18, no gearbox, all belts and pulleys. Replaced the bearings, put a VFD on it, fixed the welder, and it was in perfect alignment, table perfectly flat when put back together; they are a unique design and construction, most of it is jigged together and welded in alignment, and the trunnion design is unique and works well (big ground beveled sector plate resting on big flared pins, versus a dinky cast trunnion found on lots of saws, solid bronze guides, etc. I skived on the smallest jack-pulley position since it was worn, but didn't really need it with the VFD...You can't even hear it running with the VFD, and it's fun to watch all the pulleys goin round-n-round...maybe I'll put some blue LED's in there. It's not a monster saw, but works great for what it was designed for.

I did have an old delta with a gerarbox and reeve's drive many years ago, when you have a gearbox with issues, that can be a problem finding parts.
 

neilho

Active member
A vertical wood and metal cutting saw is very handy. If it's in your skillset, why not?

FWIW, my Grob NS18 has a top speed of 2030 fpm and a low of 50 fpm, 10 ranges. It would be nice to have faster speeds for cutting wood, but I doubt the wheels are balanced for speeds they were never intended for.
 

DMoneyAllstar

New member
I think it would be easy enough to make a single speed with a gearbox high low. Probably never fast enough to be perfect for wood or slow enough to be perfect for stainless, but would do most things.

Probably not that much more difficult to make it 2 belt speeds resulting in 4 speeds total

I cannot see trying to rebuild the vari speed


Agreed. The vari-drive is not at all worth buying new or used.

The gearbox on it already has 4 ratio selections: 0.5, 0.85, 1.25 & 2.0. Adding the VFD will give me all the range I need within decent freq ranges. But still can get crazy with freq and see how fast or slow it will run.
 

steve-l

Active member
I have two bandsaws my horizontal is a 12" model with cooling and a hydraulic feed. It has 4 speeds. I use it for bar stock. My vertical is a DoAll 1612. I did a bare frame up restoration. it took a year. I don't know how I ever got by without it. It's marvelous. It has speeds from 50 fpm to 5000 fpm with a 2 speed gear box and a Reeves drive. It will handle 1/8" to 3/4" blades. I have all the guides required. It was built in 1968. Some parts are available and some are not. Those that are not, DoAll will supply the drawings to make replacements yourself.
 

DMoneyAllstar

New member
I have two bandsaws my horizontal is a 12" model with cooling and a hydraulic feed. It has 4 speeds. I use it for bar stock. My vertical is a DoAll 1612. I did a bare frame up restoration. it took a year. I don't know how I ever got by without it. It's marvelous. It has speeds from 50 fpm to 5000 fpm with a 2 speed gear box and a Reeves drive. It will handle 1/8" to 3/4" blades. I have all the guides required. It was built in 1968. Some parts are available and some are not. Those that are not, DoAll will supply the drawings to make replacements yourself.

Old iron rocks!

I've got a two-post Wells W-9 horizontal saw with hydraulic bar feed. I barely use it, but it's earned it's keep. It's on huge iron casters so gets rolled out of the shadows when it's needed. Has some speed adjustment as well as down-force adjustment. Best part is that it cost me $0. Part of a "going away present" from my 20+ yr employer when they closed a facility.
 

gustafson

Active member
Agreed. The vari-drive is not at all worth buying new or used.

The gearbox on it already has 4 ratio selections: 0.5, 0.85, 1.25 & 2.0. Adding the VFD will give me all the range I need within decent freq ranges. But still can get crazy with freq and see how fast or slow it will run.

I think you should work through the ratios. You might need a significant reduction in there so that you are not trying to make torque with your VFD at 20 motor rpm. VFDs are also better at going fast, and the fastest you ever want those wheels going is, I think less than 600 rpm.
 

DMoneyAllstar

New member
Only way this geartrain is pushing the 20" tire pulley near 600rpm is way up there at 146Hz (3000 fpm). I'll be happy with the ~1500 FPM (pulley 274rpm) at 67Hz.

To get 80 FPM...
- the VFD would be at 15Hz,
- the gearbox would be in 4th gear (2x)
- pulley at 16 RPM
- motor at 430 RPM
 

rj1939

New member
I've got the smaller MSC bandsaw, 14-15 inch, not a bad saw for what I do but a 20 inch would certainly be nice. They don't have as big a footprint as a Doall, which is handy for me in my crowded situation.
 

HappyWyo

New member
You shouldn't have any trouble having any hard to get parts made by the machinists on this forum. Just post what you need and wait for prices. A rebuilt machine by a good machinist is always better than the original.
 








 
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