by Randy Lisbona
These are the blade guides I made for my Walker Turner 16" metal/wood bandsaw. They could probably be adapted to other makes and or models as well. I used a horizontal bandsaw to cut the raw metal to rough size and a vertical mill for the rest. It seems like it took me most of an several afternoons to make them, maybe longer. I made them several years ago. I had access to a mill in our machine shop at work but the new machinist doesn't let anyone use the equipment anymore.
The upper bearings stop the blade from twisting and the lower bearing supports the back of the blade. I set the upper bearings so they just contact the blade and keep the lower bearing slightly behind the blade so it only makes contact during a cut. I don't recall the cost of the bearings but I don't think they were more than about $5.00 apiece. Be forewarned, it will take much longer than you anticipate to make them.
I might get around to making up some drawings one of these days.
The original guides are shown at the right, The new ball bearing guides are on the left. The upper and lower guides are identical with the exception that the upper guide has extra holes for the blade guard and locking screw.
Closeup. Notice that all three bearings are the same size to make replacement easy.
This is the upper guide, you can see the hole in the top for the blade guard, the locking screw on the side, and a roll pin to stop the guard from swinging into the blade.