I have a 14" Harbor Freight (Yes, I know) stationary bandsaw that I have used for years for utility cutting of wood, aluminum, and copper. Four speeds - pulley selected. The blade tensioner is but a spring on a threaded shaft with suggested marks for different blade widths, but I have generally kept the blade tension low for all blade types/widths to save the tires and bearings - never had any issues and performance/precision is acceptable.

I have purchased a Lenox Tri-master 3 TPI carbide blade, 1/2 " width x 0.025 thick. Blade test cuts fine and very smooth, and is noisier than other blades on this saw.

I would ask the experts here if I am OK keeping the blade tension on the lower side, and should I be using higher blade speeds or lower? Also, are carbide blades inherently noisier?


Luck is downstream from preparation.