The Shop Fox Steelex W1706 14-Inch band saw would be an upgrade to any shop. Designed in one of the most popular sizes, this saw has a lot of the features you would expect to find on larger, more costly band saws. The W1706 is available in a 110 and 220-volt model but either will produce the same high quality results you would expect from a saw of this caliber.
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One of the best features of the W1706 is its size. Big enough to handle almost anything you can throw at it, it is still compact enough to fit in shops with limited space. Another great feature of this saw is the 14 by 14-1/2 inch table that can tilt 45 degrees to the right or 10 degrees to the left. Additionally, the saw comes with a stand that has a built-in storage cabinet to allow for easy storage of frequently used items.
One advantage of the W1706 us the cast iron upper and lower wheels which will add longevity to the life of the saw. An extruded aluminum rails and fence help to ensure accurate cuts time and again without having to worry about drifting over time.
The quick release for the blade tension makes changing blades fast and easy while the upper and the lower ball bearing guides help to reduce vibration. The durable cast iron frame and table will also help to reduce any vibrations that are often found in lighter saws. Included with the W1703 is a precisely engineered miter gauge for creating exact angles.
There are very few disadvantages with this saw. In fact, the only commonly reported drawback is the set-up. While it is common for a saw of any type to need some sort of turning or set-up before using once it is out of the box, consumers have reported the set up for the W1706 requiring more effort than a lot of the other saws in this same class.
One other notable disadvantage is the saws throat capacity. There is an expansion kit users can purchase separately that will increase the narrow factory throat from 6-inches to 12-inches, but most users will want their band saw ready to go as soon as it is setup in the shop and not have to do any other additional work except for the initial fine tuning.
Best Suited For
The Shop Fox Steelex W1706 is a quality saw that can benefit the beginner and professional alike. However, due to the narrow throat, it would be better suited for users that don’t require a large throat on their band saw. If you are looking for a band saw with a large throat then check out the band saw page where are all of the different band saws will be listed. We would suggest checking out the Laguna 1412 band saw, you can read our review here.
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So, the beginner or hobbyist that does not have the need to cut large material would find more uses for this particular model than someone with a large shop and with a need for a band saw that can handle large stock. Additionally, this is a high quality saw and would be a great tool for the first time user to learn and cut their teeth on.