woodworkers on 'mud?


Jun 19, 2018
Seattle, Wa USA
I know some of you folks make sawdust from time to time. I have a quick story. I own a 1975 Rockwell 28-200 bandsaw. It's the ubiquitous 14" cast iron saw that has been basically the same forever, under many brand names. No, it does not have the gear reduction for metal cutting:( which I think is a 28-203, but I digress.
I stumbled upon some pieces of figured Maple at a garage sale a while back, but the size of them meant I couldn't resaw without a riser block. There are various ways to accomplish this, and I had researched off and on for a while.
I scooped up a Powermatic riser block kit on fleabay 2 weeks ago and proceeded to dismantle my saw when it arrived. This would be a fairly straightforward swap if one made more accurate templates than I did. I had to grind off one of the factory registration pins and make my own new pin. The other common issue since Powermatic doesn't seem to publish upper blade guide post diameters anywhere is that I still have the standard (short) guide post installed until I can source some 15/16th tool steel rod.
The moral of the tale is that if any of you have an older 14" bandsaw, a newer Jet, Powermatic and possibly Grizzly riser block kit should fit with pretty minor modifications.


Oct 25, 2021
I desperately try to avoid wood. Only reason for saying something is when you mentioned needing a 15/16 tool steel guide rod.

Tool steel is very expensive, beyond overkill and kind of the wrong application for a guide support on a bandsaw. I would recommend 1045 TGP, chrome hydraulic cylinder stem (also 1045) or if your wallet's feeling extra thick splurging for 4140HT TGP. TGP means turned ground and polished.

1045 is the go-to cheap steel of choice for making any kind of shaft that doesn't need to be welded. Pretty tough and very nice to machine.


Apr 26, 2007
Upper So. CA
1045 is also in the HSLA group of steels. That's "High Strength, Low Alloy" so not a Tool Steel or a gear steel or a chro-mo steel, but still a good, strong steel to make stuff from where the typical "mild steel" is woefully too weak to use.

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