Disc Sanders

One of the oldest styles of sanders and the first on our list is a disc sander. Made up of a circular abrasive paper, mounted on a circular plate; a disc sander is ideal for end grain work. It is also great if you want to shape subtle round corners or remove large amounts of material quickly. The work is supported by a flat table which sits in front of the abrasive disc. In addition, with the majority of our disc sanders, the support table features a mitre slot to enable you to achieve straight or angled end grain work. Disc sanders are great for a large variety of smaller projects and are not intended for large projects such as sanding cupboard doors.

Great value for money, the Axminster Workshop AW300DS Disc Sander is a great addition to the smaller workshop. Alongside a quiet induction motor, the sander features a cast iron table with a ground top surface. The Workshop sander is also supplied with a mitre fence, with two faces at 90° making it ideal if you want to saw mitres.

A step up from the Workshop sander is the Professional AP305DS Disc Sander. Bench mounted like the Workshop model for easy storage, this sander is made of thick gauge steel construction throughout, for strength and stability whilst in use.

Disc sander

Drum Sanders

Want a fine finish? Not intended to be used as a thicknesser; the drum sander consists of an abrasive material which is spirally wound onto a rotating drum to produce a fine finish. Feed the workpiece steadily through the machine to perfectly sand the material to correspond with the loading grit wound onto the drum. Suited to a variety of large sanding tasks, the drum sander is commonly used by furniture makers to sand table tops, doors and windows.

In addition, a drum sander will also give an even finish to a jointed framework, joined panels and cabinet doors. Although the initial outlay for a drum sander can be a lot, the long list of tasks the machine will undergo will soon make it worth the expense. Our great selection of drum abrasives (loadings) will ensure you get the finish you desire!

Next, a top of the range model is our Axminster Professional AP940DDS. This sander features a powerful 5.5kW motor, twin drums made from aluminium castings and a digital readout scale to ensure accuracy. The AP940DDS is a robust, dependable machine, perfect for a busy professional workshop.

Drum sander

Belt and Disc Sanders

Lastly, one of the most useful style sanders - the belt and disc. A great option for the small trade or home workshop where they won’t be used constantly. The machine combines two tools in one; it takes up minimum space and enables you to carry out a multitude of sanding tasks.

A welcome addition to any home workshop - the AW200BDS machine is neatly designed to combine a 100mm belt and 200mm disc sander. Bench mounted to take up even less space; both the disc and belt functions have a decent sized work table which tilts making it ideal for bevel work.

Belt & disc sander

Accessorise your machine

Like all machines, a sander is only as good as the abrasives and accessories you team it with. But we also understand the finish you want to achieve is personal and therefore list an extensive range of abrasive types and grits to ensure you get the finish you want.

Prolong the life of your belt and disc sanders with this abrasive cleaning stick. Simply apply the cleaning stick gently to the moving abrasive and it cleans the belt almost like new!


Power Sanders

Want a silky smooth finish? If you want an ultra-fine finish for your workpiece, consider a power sander. Read this helpful guide to learn more about the different style sanders we have available.

Disc Sanders One of the oldest styles of sanders and the first on our list is a disc sander. Made up of a circular abrasive paper, mounted on a circular plate; a disc sander is ideal for end grain work. It is also great if you want to shape subtle round corners or remove large amounts of material quickly. The…

The Axminster Workshop APF 10 Evolution Powered Respirator: the answer to all your respiratory needs. Providing a lightweight and ergonomic solution for protection in dusty environments, it’s an essential for applications in woodturning and power woodworking, as well as other dusty spaces.


Key features

Superior Protection

First and foremost, this mask has a rating of Assigned Protection Factor (APF) 10 providing a cooling comfortable flow of air at the rate of 160L a minute. Featuring a FFP2 filter which is a particulate filter, you’ll be sufficiently protected against dust particles when working long hours. As it is powered, it has a motor unit situated above your face that supplies filtered air over your face and away from your airways. Unlike negative pressure face respirators, where you can often breathe contaminated air back into your facepiece, this positive pressure respirator eliminates that problem. With a process such as this, you can be assured that air won’t be stagnant in your mask, will always flow outward and it also prohibits misting from occurring.

Comfortable

Not only can you take comfort from its protection factor, you’ll be made to feel more comfortable with its adjustable straps and lightweight design. The Axminster Workshop APF 10 Evolution Powered Respirator can simply be adjusted to suit each individual by adjusting a small buckle at the back of the cap. Work freely for extended hours with a comfortable fit without feeling heavy or restricted, thanks to its light weight of only 680g. You will also find it doesn’t restrict your head movements like other masks, enabling you to fully engage in your woodwork without feeling constricted and it's well balanced; with the motor at the front and the filter at the back.

Without compromising on comfort, you can add further protection with ear defenders and eye wear, which are compatible with this mask. Furthermore, the face shield protects against medium energy, high speed particles along with liquid droplets. Lastly, you’ll avoid any bumps and scrapes with the hardened cap and can wear your usual glasses, without running into any problems.

Work Without Limitations

Work a full day without worry of being cut short. With an 8 hour battery life, the Axminster Workshop APF 10 Evolution Powered Respirator can assist you all day in the workshop. For added functionality, the LED display will notify you when battery life is depleting (red), as well as when it is fully charged (green). For maximum performance of the respirator, we advise that you allow the battery to fully run down before recharging. So don’t be shy to remain protected all day!

For extended performance and longevity, you can quite easily inspect and replace the filters with a twist and lock system, as well as cleaning the bump cap’s outer cover when you need to clean it. It is recommended that you wear Big Blue Ear Defenders alongside the respirator for ultimate comfort and protection.


It’s a winner

Combine protection with comfort and equip yourself with the Axminster APF 10 Evolution Powered Respirator. It’s time to hang up the well-loved dust masks and invest in quality equipment, designed to protect your lungs for life. Don't forget that Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) should not be used as the only means of dust control when working in dusty environments or producing dust waste. Complement this measure with our comprehensive range of dust extraction machines in order to fully protect your lungs.


Get in touch!

If you’re already using the Axminster Workshop APF 10 Evolution Powered Respirator we’d love to hear from you. Comment below or send us a photograph and tell us about your purchase. Alternatively, shout out to us via our social media platforms. You can find us on Facebook or connect with us on Instagram using #breatheasywithaxminster to @AxminsterTools.

The Axminster Workshop APF 10 Evolution Powered Respirator: the answer to all your respiratory needs. Providing a lightweight and ergonomic solution for protection in dusty environments, it’s an essential for applications in woodturning and power woodworking, as well as other dusty spaces. Key features Superior Protection First and foremost, this mask has a rating of Assigned Protection Factor (APF) 10…

Axminster Craft AC254TS Table Saw

Great for most woodworking projects, this table saw is ideal for sizing up wood before you join it together or plane it, prior to the sanding or finishing stage.

“...Excellent piece of kit..I can highly recommend the AC254TS table saw and Axminster service.”

Walron, Axminster customer

Features and Benefits

Fantastic cutting capacity

Enjoy large, accurate and fast cutting 80mm capacity with this table saw; a real workhorse of any home workshop.

Stable and robust

The ground cast iron table allows your workpiece to run smoothly across the table. The rigid rip fence offers maximum support while you work.

Achieve multiple cuts

The table saw allows you to achieve a range of different cuts. These include all manner of straight cuts, mitred cuts and bevel cuts.

Ideal for a range of materials

Need to cut man made materials such as ply, MDF or sheet materials? Or natural timbers including hardwood and softwood? If so, this table saw is just the ticket!

Highly efficient dust extraction

With extraction from both above and below this table saw is ideal for small workshops. It helps your work area to stay clean and also helps to reduce the amount of dust in your environment.

Important safety feature

An NVR switch with separate locking Emergency Stop function helps to safeguard your health at all times.

Easy maintenance

The table saw features removable side panels for easy cleaning and maintenance.

Super smooth tilt and height adjustment

Super-tune your table saw for absolutely straight, smooth and burn-free cuts.

Optional Accessories

With these optional accessories, the Axminster Craft AC254TS Table Saw becomes a truly exceptional machine.

Convert into a floor standing table saw

Offers a generous length of travel past the blade

Puts your saw table at a comfortable working height

Provides vital support, when working with sheet material


Just want the AC254TS Table Saw for now?


Discover more…

Why not explore Woodworking Wisdom, your one-stop woodworking video destination. Live sessions every week, including; tutorials, product videos, unboxings, special guests, Q&A’s, projects, and so much more! Simply subscribe to our YouTube channel to stay up to date on all our latest videos!

Get connected!

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook to stay up to date on our latest tools and machinery. Connect with us using #AC254TS to @AxminsterTools.

If you’re on the lookout for a table saw to help you achieve your woodworking ambitions, look no further. Our powerful Axminster Craft AC254TS Table Saw brings the cutting capacity of a trade workshops into the home workshop. This makes it deal for many types of crafts and DIY projects.

What woodturning lathe should you buy?

If you are looking at getting into woodturning the first consideration is what woodturning lathe to buy. Axminster Tools offers a range of Craft benchtop woodturning lathes to meet your woodturning needs. Before buying your lathe there are a few points to consider and parts of the lathe to understand:

  • Capacity
  • Type of machine
  • Power
  • Budget

Axminster 3 Year Guarantee

It's probably the most comprehensive free guarantee ever - buy with confidence from Axminster! So sure are we of the quality, we cover all parts and labour free of charge for three years!

Capacity

The capacity of your lathe determines the size of project you can turn. It consists of the maximum capacity over the lathe bed and the distance between centres.

The maximum diameter you can turn on an Axminster Craft woodturning lathe ranges between 240mm and 355mm.

The length of work you can turn is determined by the maximum distance between the headstock centre and the tailstock centre. The distance between centres on an Axminster Craft benchtop lathe ranges between 440mm and 510mm.

In short, the larger the capacity of the lathe, the larger the project you can turn.

Top Tip!

If you want to turn longer pieces lathe bed extensions are available. This will extend the turning between centres capacity significantly and, in some cases, over 1,100mm. See our range of Craft lathe accessories.

Type of Machine

There are three types of control. A fixed pulley, where you have a pulley on the top and a pulley on the motor. To change the speed, you turn the lathe off, slacken the belt and move over the pulley settings.

A digital readout clearly shows the speed
A digital readout clearly shows the speed

A mechanical variable speed lathe is where you have you have pulley's both top and bottom that mesh together. As you move the control leaver the pulley's move in and out, controlling both speed and torque.

An electronic variable speed lathe lets you quickly and easily adjust and set the speed to suit what you are turning. For example; drilling requires a slow speed, turning requires a faster speed. When sanding, a speed between the two is required.

Power

Axminster Craft variable speed benchtop lathes have powerful DC motors, giving you instant power when you need it. The Craft range of lathes motor power ranges from 375W to 750W.

Basically, the larger the power, the bigger the pieces you can turn as the motor needs to keep the piece turning at a consistent speed.

Budget

Retail prices for an Axminster Craft lathe roughly range between £200 and £600. *Price range correct as of September 2020

Generally, the more you spend on your lathe the bigger the motor, capacity, and number of features you get.

  AC240WL AC305WL AC355WL
Max Diameter over Bed 240mm 305mm 355mm
Distance Between Centres 440mm 457mm 510mm
Power 375W 550W 750W
Speed 700 - 2,800rpm (5) 500 - 2,040 / 1,000 - 4,080rpm (variable) 250 - 3,550rpm (variable)
Overall L x W x H 865mm x 205mm x 365mm 820mm x 280mm x 440mm 1,040mm x 370mm x 480mm
Nett Weight 38kg 40kg 57kg

Something a little bigger

If space isn’t an issue in your workshop you might consider the Axminster Craft AC370WL floor standing lathe.

  AC370WL
Max Diameter over Bed 370mm
Distance Between Centres 1,100mm
Power 750W
Speed 500 - 2,000rpm (10, variable)
Overall L x W x H 1,680mm x 470mm x 1,155mm
Nett Weight 97kg

The main parts of the woodturning lathe

The main parts of the woodturning lathe
1. Headstock handwheel 5. Lathe bed 8. Tool rest
2. Belt cover 6. Motor 9. Tailstock
3. Headstock 7. Tool rest saddle 10. Variable speed control (if it has one)
4. Headstock shaft

Be inspired

Our expert woodturning Tutor Colwin Way is inviting you all to his workshop for Turning Live. Colwin will be taking you through projects for all abilities and offering you some of the tips and tricks he’s learned on his life-long woodturning journey. Colwin Way will be hosting Live workshops every Tuesday and Thursday at 4pm UK time on our Facebook page.

Looking at buying your first bandsaw?

Watch Craig Steele's Craft Bandsaw buying guide.

If you are looking at getting into woodturning the first consideration is what woodturning lathe to buy. Axminster Tools offers a range of Craft benchtop woodturning lathes to meet your woodturning needs. Before buying your lathe there are a few points to consider and parts of the lathe to understand. 

The bandsaw

The bandsaw is the one machine everybody should have in their workshop. Hugely versatile, the bandsaw can make a wide range of cuts. From mitre, bevel and crosscuts to compound and rip cuts. You can also perform a wide range of shaping tasks and even cut tenons.

Craft Bandsaws Intro

Axminster Craft Bandsaws

There are many options out there, some far better than others. If you are are looking for your first bandsaw or looking to upgrade on an existing one, an Axminster Craft machine might just be for you.


Bandsaw Purchase considerations

Benchtop or freestanding?

Both have their advantages. A benchtop machine is a great option if space is tight or you are using it for smaller work. If that is the case the Axminster Craft AC1400B could be right for you. Weighing 20kg it does lend itself to being moved around the workshop and even taken to wherever you are working. A freestanding bandsaw is quite a bit heavier. Thankfully, most can be made portable by fitting them with a mobile base. These will generally have a larger capacity.

What size throat do you need?

The throat is the distance between the blade and the neck of the machine. If you are looking at cutting wide boards then a larger throat size is required. A  large throat will offer you greater support to manage the weight of the material.

Bandsaw Throat

What depth of material are you cutting?

A good rule when buying a bandsaw is to go with one that has a 20% larger throat depth capacity than you will be cutting. You don’t want to be cutting at its limits all the time as this will put stress on parts and the motor.

depth

The table

Many cheaper machines will have a plastic or a soft metal table.  When cutting with a bandsaw most of the pressure is going down on to the table. Always buy a bandsaw with a cast iron table.

table

Tilting Table

Most machines will have a table that can tilt, however, many will not have a positive stop. This means it’s not easily possible to get the table exactly flat again. All Axminster Craft bandsaws have strong cast iron tables with a 45° tilt capacity and a positive stop.

tilt

Compare the models

Model AC1400B AC1950B AC2606B
Power 250 W 550 W 1.1 kW
Voltage 230 V 230 V 230 V
Blade Speed 800 m/min 660 & 840 m/min 600 & 840 m/min
Blade Length 1,400 mm (55”) 1,950 mm (77”) 2,606 mm (102.3/4”)
Blade Blade Width Min/Max 6 mm to 13 mm 6 mm to 13 mm 6 mm to 25 mm
Max Width of Cut 200 mm 260 mm 360 mm
Max Width of Cut with Fence 102 mm 185 mm 260 mm
Max Cutting Height 80 mm 135 mm 200 mm
Table Size 300 x 300 mm 350 x 330 mm 480 x 550 mm
Table Tilt 0° - 45° 0° - 45° 0° - 45°
Table Height 290 mm 1,035 mm (on stand) 1,060 mm (on stand)
Wheel Diameter 200 mm 270 mm 370 mm
Min Extraction Airflow Required 200 m³/hr 390 m³/hr 1,000 m³/hr
Dust Extraction Outlet 40 mm 63 mm 100 mm
Overall L x W x H 450 x 430 x 700 mm 790 x 620 x 1,570 mm 980 x 630 x 1,740 mm
Weight 20 kg 39 kg 85 kg


The blade

Watch Craig’s video on choosing the right bandsaw blade.


Bandsaw Accessories

Best Buddies

This simple bit of kit is a unique blade aligning tool. It allows you to check the alignment of the blade to the face of the fence quickly and easily.

Conclusion

Always buy a bandsaw with a 20% greater capacity than you need. Make sure the table is made from strong cast iron. Use a good quality blade.


Discover more…

If you’ve enjoyed this article, keep an eye out for our next project of our Skill Centre At Home Series.


Why not explore Woodworking Wisdom, your one-stop woodworking video destination. Live sessions every week, including; tutorials, product videos, unboxings, special guests, Q&A’s, projects, and so much more! Simply subscribe to our YouTube channel to stay up to date on all our latest videos!


Get connected!

If you’re searching for Skill Centre At Home projects, you’ll find them on the Knowledge website. Alternatively, follow us on Instagram and Facebook to stay up to date on all the latest from our Skill Centre At Home series. Connect with us using #SkillCentreAtHome to @AxminsterTools.

Choosing which bandsaw is right for you is an important workshop choice. The bandsaw will be your most used and most versatile machine, but with so many out there, which one should you buy? As part of our Skill Centre At Home Series, Craig Steele takes you through the Axminster Craft bandsaw range.

Cyclone extraction for your home workshop

How cyclone dust extractors work

Often referred to as a two-stage dust collector and unlike traditional dust collectors, cyclone dust extractors have two collection points for dust and debris. The first collection point is for the larger chips such as planer debris, whilst the second collection point collects the very fine dust, typically generated when sanding.

The system works by first drawing the wood waste into the air stream through the dust ports. Once the air enters the machine, the negative air creates cyclonic (centrifugal) action, causing the air to spin around in the cyclone housing.

Large, heavy wood chips fall down the housing into the first container, while the lighter dust particles are drawn up through the impeller into a filter canister. Any remaining fine dusts are collected in the second compartment.

Cyclone Extractor Diagram

Benefits of a cyclone

Keep dusts at bay

The cyclone technology reduces dusts entering the filter and therefore minimises the airborne dusts escaping from the machine. Not only does this improve the air quality in your workshop but it also helps to keep your workshop dust free.


Eliminate any damage

As the air stream is drawn in below the impeller, any large pieces of wood will drop down into the first compartment. Therefore eliminating any damage which can be caused by it hitting the impeller.

Axminster Dust Extractor

Efficient extraction and a longer life

By separating the wood waste and collecting the large wood chips before they enter the filter cartridge, this prevents any build-up of debris in the filter. Enabling the machine to carry on working efficiently for longer.


Three models to choose from

Designed with the home user in mind, our Axminster Workshop Cyclone Extractors are available as three different models.

AW118CE Cyclone Dust Extractor

The AW118CE Cyclone Dust Extractor offers you the complete dust extraction system. Designed for the home user but boasting qualities found within professional cyclone machines, the AW118E gives you clean and very efficient dust extraction.

Fitted with twin dust ports, you’re able to choose between twin 100mm or a single 125mm inlet. Its sturdy tubular steel frame holds the main body securely. Whilst the castor wheels make this machine easy to move around in your home workshop. The extractor is powered by a 1.5kW (2hp) motor, which provides plenty of power but runs happily on a domestic 13A supply.

Plus, fitted with a handy filter cartridge handle, you’re able to easily clean the cartridge of any excess debris. Allowing the machine to carry on working efficiently without a build-up of dust in the filter.


AC118CI Cyclone Interceptor

The AC118CI Cyclone Interceptor allows you to upgrade your current chip extraction system or create a wood dust and chip extractor which will handle even fine dusts from drum sanders.

Unpowered, it includes a cyclone interceptor and waste bin.

Use with a standard High Volume Low Pressure chip extractor to provide the airflow. Fitted with 102mm inlet and outlets, it suits many common home woodworking machines. The waste bin is a generous 118L, whilst the casters allow for easy mobility around your workshop.

Axminster Craft AC118CI Cyclone Interceptor


ACCIH Cyclone Interceptor Head

Already popular with many of our customers, the Interceptor head enables you to create efficient dust extraction for your workshop. Supplied as the head only, you can make your own suitable dust container and position the unit to where you need it; whether it’s mounted on the wall as part of your dust extraction system or placed next to your drum sander.

Axminster Craft ACCIH Cyclone Interceptor Head


Need help?

If you need help or advice on Axminster's Cyclone Dust Extractors or extraction for your home or professional workshop, get in touch with one of our Axminster Experts. Simply pop into your local Axminster store and chat with our experienced sales advisors, or call our dedicated Customer Services team for advice. Alternatively, talk to us through our Online Chat function on our main website. As always, you can get in touch and ask questions via any of our social media platforms. We are here to help you!


Discover more!

We hope you've enjoyed learning about the Craft Cyclone Dust Extractors. If you're still unsure about which dust extraction is right for your workshop, then why not read this helpful Buying Guide on dust extraction. Or, if you're new to woodworking and you're discovering Axminster Workshop for the first time, why not take a look at this helpful Insight to learn more about the range.

Axminster Craft Cyclone Dust Extractors efficiently capture dust created by most woodworking machines. Discover our three models, perfect for the home user.


Bosch Mitre Saw Spotlight

Looking for a new Bosch mitre saw with a difference? If so, look no further than the new GCM 18V-216 cordless 216mm sliding mitre saw from the popular Bosch Blue range. This saw will give you the performance of a corded mitre saw it features Bosch's new BITURBO brushless motor, along with a host of additional fantastic features and benefits. In the world of power tools and machinery, we're certain the new BITURBO system is set to make waves; but what does BITURBO actually mean?

BITURBO Definition

BITURBO = 'Bi' meaning two parts and 'Turbo' meaning greater power. Bosch ProCORE 18V batteries are able to deliver much higher current than standard batteries, up to 90 amps. Bosch have designed their most powerful brushless motor ever used in a Bosch cordless tool. The motor features much larger and extremely powerful Neodymium magnets with a highly efficient Radial turbine fan. This allows the motor to run significantly faster for longer with greater cooling than ever before. This is heart of Bosch BITURBO.

Neodymium magnets

This type of rare-earth magnet is a permanent magnet made from an alloy of neodymium, iron and boron.

Radial turbine fan

A radial turbine fan is a device that consists of an impeller driven by an electrical motor. The rotation of the impeller sets the air in motion, air is then sucked in from the inlet on the side of the fan, then blown out via the outlet. The Bosch design allows this fan to move 100L of air per minute for optimum motor cooling.

Brushless motors

The main difference between brushless or brushed motors is that brushless units use magnets to generate power and not carbon brushes. For this reason, brushless motors have a much longer lifetime, generate less heat, are typically maintenance free and tend to be a little more compact.


Bosch Mitre Saw Features and Benefits

Thanks to its new BITURBO brushless motor and ProCORE18V batteries, the Bosch GCM 18V-216 mitre saw is powerful, equal to a corded 1,600W saw.

Next, the new Bosch mitre saw is lightweight at only 15.7kg (with 8Ah battery) which means it's simple to carry and comfortable to use for longer periods.
Compact in size it also offers complete maneuverability. As such, the new Bosch mitre saw delivers mobility at its best.
Furthermore, it comes fitted with a 216mm TCT blade and features an SDS nut for tool-less blade changes. This makes blade changes both fast and uncomplicated.
Moreover, the 216mm saw blade sets a new standard with the greatest cutting depth in its class - an impressive 70mm depth of cut. This makes for an extended application range in mobile use.
A one hand carrying ergonomic handle enables comfortable transportation while on the go.
The laser line and LED light ensures accurate alignment at all times and illuminates cutting area for precision cutting.
Furthermore, optimised tool design allows a maximum width of cut of 270mm.
Due to the adjustable upper part of the guide fence it is possible to achieve safe bevelling cuts up to 47°.
Next, you will enjoy an easy and smooth sliding function thanks to the perfectly centred rails.
Finally, for best performance run this mitre saw with the Bosch high performance ProCore 18V batteries. This machine is also compatible with the standard Bosch 18V professional battery but runtime and performance will not be compromised; for full performance use Bosch ProCORE 18V 8Ah or 12Ah batteries.

Please note: Axminster supply the new Bosch mitre saw as a bare tool, supplied without batteries or charger.
For best performance run this mitre saw with the Bosch high performance ProCore 18V batteries. This machine is also compatible with the standard Bosch 18V professional battery but runtime and performance will be compromised.


Discover more…

Did you enjoy this article? If so, pop into any of our Axminster stores to see our power tool selection from Bosch and other leading power tool suppliers. Alternatively, read some of our latest articles including how to choose the perfect Bosch battery to suit your needs or find out more about Starlock by Bosch with our helpful guide. Starlock, a joint venture between Bosch and FEIN, is a patented blade mounting system that provides a very fast ‘snap in’ blade fitting. In recent years, the Starlock system has set the new standard for multi-tools and accessories.


Get in touch!

If you’ve bought the new Bosch mitre saw, we’d love to hear from you. Comment below or send us a photograph and tell us all about your purchase. Alternatively, get in touch via our social media platforms. Find us on Facebook or connect with us on Instagram using #boschmitresaw to @AxminsterTools.

Powerful but compact, Bosch’s new cordless BITURBO mitre saw with 1,600W can be compared to cable-powered power thanks to its brushless technology. Part of the Bosch 18V family, the new Bosch GMC 18V-216 mitre saw is recommended for use with Bosch ProCORE 18V high performance battery system for the best results.

Benchtop brilliance with the AC1400B Craft Bandsaw

Convenience we just can’t put into words. The AC1400B is the smallest bandsaw in our Axminster Craft range and packed with features not normally found on a saw of this size. Perfect for the discerning craftsperson, the AC1400B is compact, but capable of taking on small to medium sized projects for the woodturner and woodworker. 


The features...

Designed to be bench mountable, the bandsaw overall weighs 20kg. It’s small, compact size means it won’t take up valuable floor space and you can easily store it away or move it to one side when you're not using it. Whilst, it’s sturdy weight absorbs any vibrations to increase the cutting accuracy and gives the machine a quality feel. 

The intricate details on this machine which set it aside from other saws like it include the curved style door. As well as adding to the saw’s aesthetics, this also helps to reduce any vibration which might occur when making cuts on your saw; in turn helping to increase the accuracy and reduce the noise level. Plus, the keyless opening means you can access inside your machine with a simple twist of the knob. 

The bandsaw’s table is solid cast iron and finely ground which enables your work to glide effortlessly through the machine. Plus, take on larger projects with its generous size! The rip fence has a T-shape to match the table; it's quick to adjust and easy to read using the clear view lense. Using a simple cam lock the fence will lock securely in place to ensure no movement is given. 

Another feature which is similar to the larger bandsaws in the Craft range is the wide, curved steel chassis. This design gives you excellent tension on the blade to increase the cutting accuracy!

Watch Tim to find out more about this quality, compact bandsaw in our Axminster Craft range. He tells us more about the bandsaw's intricate features which set it apart from any other like it.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=po6G9AzRQ6Y&w=560&h=315]

Discover more!

We hope you've enjoyed learning more about the AC1400B Craft Bandsaw. If you want to learn more about the Axminster Craft range, why not take a look at this helpful insight! We asked our Product Development team to tell us more about why the range was introduced and what we can look forward too seeing in the collection.

he Axminster Craft AC1400B Bandsaw, is packed with features not normally found on this size saw. Discover more about this compact and capable bandsaw.


Disc Sanders

One of the oldest styles of sanders and the first on our list is a disc sander. Made up of a circular abrasive paper, mounted on a circular plate; the disc sander is ideal for end grain work, shaping subtle round corners and removing large amounts of material quickly. The work is supported by a flat table which sits in front of the abrasive disc. In addition, with the majority of our disc sanders, the support table features a mitre slot to enable you to achieve straight or angled end grain work. Disc sanders are great for a large variety of smaller projects and are not intended for large projects such as sanding cupboard doors.

Disc sander

Great value for money, the Craft AC300 Disc Sander is a great addition to the craft workshop. Alongside a quiet induction motor, the sander features a cast iron body and table with a ground top surface. The craft sander is also supplied with a mitre fence, with two faces at 90° making it ideal for sawing mitres.

A step up from the Craft sander is the Trade AT350 Disc Sander. Bench mounted like the Craft model for easy storage, this sander is made of fabricated steel construction throughout, for strength and stability whilst in use.


Bobbin Sanders

If you’re looking to sand curves or straighten edges, a bobbin sander will give a smooth performance. Also known as a spindle sander, bobbin sanders consist of a tabletop with a sanding drum protruding through a hole in the top. This sanding drum is covered with an abrasive sleeve and the drum both rotates and oscillates whilst in use. Alongside helping with the longevity of the abrasive, this up and down motion eliminates the chance of any unevenness in the abrasive, causing a consistent scratch pattern along the length of your workpiece. Ideal for handling curvy projects with ease, a bobbin sander should be the first choice if you’re sanding curved edges.

Bobbin sander

The Craft AC140SS Bobbin Sander is great for crafts and small projects. The uncomplicated but sturdy machine has a cast iron table which tilts to 45°. Additionally, it includes several nylon table inserts to give a close fit around the bobbin. Both of these features enable you to undertake a variety of curved shapes and finishing tasks.


Belt Sanders

Next on the list is the belt sander. With a long straight surface, belt sanders can be vertical, horizontal or can have the option of both. Popular for the trade workshops, the belt sander is much bigger in size than the bobbin and disc sander. Its long flat surface makes it ideal for flattening and levelling long pieces of timber such as panelled doors.

Belt sander

An ultra versatile model in our range is the Trade AT2260 Belt Sander. Able to sand vertically, horizontally and any angle in between; this belt sander is one of the most useful machines to have in a woodwork workshop. As well as undertaking large sanding tasks, the machine features a small sanding table ideal for curved work.


Drum Sanders

Looking for a fine finish? Not intended to be used as a thicknesser; the drum sander consists of an abrasive material which is spirally wound onto a rotating drum to produce a fine finish. Feeding the workpiece steadily through the machine will perfectly sand the material to correspond with the loading grit wound onto the drum. Suited to a variety of large sanding tasks, the drum sander is commonly used by furniture makers to sand table tops, doors and windows. In addition, a drum sander will also give an even finish to a jointed framework, joined panels and cabinet doors. Although the initial outlay for a drum sander can be a lot, the long list of tasks the machine will undergo will soon make it worth the expense. Our great selection of drum abrasives (loadings) will ensure you get the finish you desire!

Drum sander

A top of the range model is the Powermatic PM2244. It features an innovative LED control panel, which gives real time information on conveyor speed, sanding workload and drum height. This coupled with its sturdy frame made of cast iron sets this machine apart from any other like it on the market.

The Jet 10-20 Drum Sander is a great option for the small trade workshop where space is at a premium. The compact machine is open ended and with the work reversed it allows for material 500mm wide to be sanded up to 75mm thick. With the option to bench mount or use with the optional floor stand.

To learn more about drum sanders and the benefits it will bring to your workshop why not read this informative guide.


Belt and Disc Sanders

Last on the list but perhaps one of the most useful style sanders - the belt and disc. A great option for the small trade or home workshop where they won’t be used constantly. The machine combines two tools in one; it takes up minimum space whilst still enabling you to carry out a multitude of sanding tasks.

Belt and disc sander

A welcome addition to any home workshop - the Craft AC200 machine is neatly designed to combine a 100mm belt and 200mm disc sander. Bench mounted to take up even less space; both the disc and belt functions have a decent sized work table which tilts making it ideal for bevel work.


Accessorise your machine

Like all machines, a sander is only as good as the abrasives and accessories you team it with. But we also understand the finish you want to achieve is personal and therefore list an extensive range of abrasive types and grits to ensure you get the finish you want.

Prolong the life of your belt and disc sanders with this abrasive cleaning stick. Simply apply the cleaning stick gently to the moving abrasive and it cleans the belt almost like new!



More Buying Guides

Keep the dust at bay

Extraction is paramount with any woodwork machine, especially a sander. The specks of dust which are often expelled by the process of sanding are incredibly fine and not always visible - find out more about the dust extractors we have to offer.

Power Sanders

Want a silky smooth finish? If you're looking for an ultra-fine finish for your workpiece, you're going to need a power sander. Read this helpful guide to learn more about the different style sanders we have available.

No matter what workshop you’re in a sander is an essential tool to have at your disposal; read this guide to find out more.


Festool M Class Dust Extractor Update

Introducing the Festool CTM MIDI CLEANTEC dust extractor

The first assembly extractor in dust class M, Festool's CTM MIDI CLEANTEC not only minimises the impact on health but also ensures more efficient working.
Festool NEW CTM Cleantec MIDI Extractor


Applications

When working on site, the minimum legal requirement as set by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is to use an M Class dust extractor.

    With this in mind, the new Festool CTM MIDI dust extractor is ideal for:
  • All wood dust and dust originating from repair compound
  • Filler and clear coats
  • Plaster
  • Cement
  • Concrete
  • Tile cement
  • Paints such as latex and oil paints
  • Quartziferous materials such as sand and pebbles
Festool NEW CTM Cleantec MIDI Extractor

Features and Benefits

  • The CTM MIDI dust extractor includes intelligent integrated Bluetooth technology. The mobile dust extractor is automatically started by the Bluetooth® battery pack or by the remote control. This removes the need to turn-on the two items separately. No retrofitting required.
  • As soon as the extractor is switched on it is set to automatic mode for ease of use.
  • Fitted with automatic suction hose detection, there's no loss in time. For convenience, the adjustment to the suction hose diameter takes place automatically.
  • There is a delayed shut-off; when the power tool is stopped the extractor continues to run for around five seconds longer. This is to clear both the tool and hose of any remaining particles.
  • This Festool extractor is ideal for assembly thanks to compact dimensions, ergonomic design, robust chassis and level storage area for tools and consumables.
  • For convenience, it can be coupled with ALL Festool SYSTAINERs via SYS-Dock. It's simple to attach your tools to the top of the extractor for easy transportation.
  • If you prefer, the level storage area above the hose holder doubles up as a handy seat!
Festool NEW CTM Cleantec Midi Extractor

More features and benefits

  • The intuitive touch-based operating concept combines user-friendliness with a focus on straightforward operation by means of touch-sensitive surfaces. There are no cumbersome rotary knobs which means the extractor is simple to operate even in very dusty environments or if you are wearing safety gloves.
  • The new conical suction hose with smooth outer skin reduces friction making it perfect for sliding over edges. It also increases air flow rate for improved suction and faster progress with your work. For improved handling and a longer service life, the inside of the hose is slightly corrugated.
  • In addition, there's a large internal hose holder and cleverly designed winding concept.
  • A practical externally fitted cord holder with folding mechanism ensures speed and tidiness.
  • For quick, easy and tool-free filter replacement from the outside, this M class extractor ticks all of the boxes. Manual de-dusting of the main filter and filter bag means the suction power can be restored once the filter or filter bag is inserted for a significant increase in filling capacity.
  • It is simple to replace the main filter from the outside. This ensures long-lasting work that protects your health.
  • For extended working times and uninterrupted work, it is possible to continue until the filter bag is full.
  • As a true M Class dust extractor, the new CTM MIDI CLEANTEC dust extractor has an audible alarm to advise you when the suction rate has dropped, for example a blocked hose or full dust bag.
  • In all, the various features and benefits of the new Festool CTM MIDI dust extractor ensure clean air during service and installation work.


Discover more…

Are you a Festool fan? If so, you're in luck. We've got plenty of great articles for you to look through. Firstly, if you work with materials that produce a lot of dust, the Festool CT-VA pre-separator could be just what you need. It delivers continuously high-performance dust extraction and is easy to use.

If you’re looking to create extremely strong, invisible joints, Festool DOMINO joining machines tick all the boxes. Whether you choose the DF 500 or the DF 700 XL version, both allow you to achieve ideal results in less time than ever before. The Festool DOMINO DF 500 connector set allows you to produce highly accurate cabinets and joinery items simply and quickly. The new basic structure and furniture connectors are extremely versatile and provide for a very large range of applications. Ideal for use in the workshop, at home or on site.

Lastly, Festool fans missed the MFT Fixing Set so much, they just had to bring it back. An ideal supplement to MFT 3 and MW 1000 Mobile Workshop, the new and improved SYS-MFT-FX Set consists of various stops, clamps and clamping elements, all designed to make your life easier. Read our helpful guide and learn why this set is perfect for quick and flexible clamping and securing of workpieces with a wide variety of thicknesses and shapes.


Get in touch!

If you’ve bought the new Festool M Class Dust Extractor, we’d love to hear from you. Comment below or send us a photograph and tell us all about your new purchase. What do you love about it, and why?

Alternatively, get in touch via our social media platforms. Find us on Facebook or send us a tweet using #mclass to @AxminsterTools.

Low weight, compact dimensions and a host of innovative details – the new Festool CTM MIDI compact M class dust extractor impresses in all aspects. It has intuitive touch operation, a smooth suction hose and a level storage area for tools and consumables.

New year, new beginnings! It’s the month to start something new and if you’re thinking of taking up a craft in woodwork then we’re here to help. With so many diverse projects you can try, it can be daunting knowing what tools and machines you’ll need to get going with your hobby. But, with a machine range designed specifically for the craftsperson, in-house expertise and our passion for anything woodwork, we want to help inspire and kickstart your craft journey.


Learn to turn

Of all the woodworking tools, the lathe allows the most autonomy to be creative. The ability to turn a shape quickly and easily is not only satisfying but also incredibly rewarding. Woodturning enables you to create unique projects from rough pieces of timber into both decorative and functional projects. Bowls, platters, candlesticks, pens, salt and pepper mills are all but a few of the projects you can get going with when you start to turn.


Axminster Craft AC355WL Woodturning Lathe

Our newest addition to the Craft lathe range will see you through the first and developing stages of your woodturning journey. Designed and developed with the craftsperson in mind, the AC355WL gives you the flexibility to try out a variety of projects allowing your turning to grow and develop.

The power and torque give you the ability to turn up to 12" bowls, whilst the lathe’s control and speed is great for finer projects such as slimline pens. Without limitations, this lathe will see you through many years of turning and give you the ability to test the water and discover what it is you enjoy turning whilst also increasing the capacity of your projects!

Axminster Craft AC355WL Woodturning Lathe

FREE Introduction To Woodturning Session

Discover more about this lathe and enjoy a FREE Introduction To Woodturning Session in your local store. Understand the basics of woodturning, including exploring chucks, sharpening your tools and finishing techniques.


Axminster Woodturning Starter Kit SK100 Chuck Package

Alongside your lathe, you'll also need to look at purchasing various lathe accessories and buying your initial turning kit can be daunting with such a wide and varied range of components available. The Axminster Woodturning Starter Kits come packaged together in a robust box and include a range of lathe accessories to get you started and beyond!

SK100 Chuck

Explore The Knowledge

Why not take a look at what project inspiration and guides we have for buying your first lathe tools?

Discover them here

Why buy a bandsaw?

The bandsaw has an enviable reputation for being the most useful machine in a workshop. Whether you’re prepping material to use on your lathe or using it to create unique projects on their own, the bandsaw is a versatile machine that can be used for multiple uses.

Titanium Nitride (TiN) coated bandsaw table

Axminster Craft AC1400B Bandsaw

The AC1400B Craft bandsaw is great for anyone looking to start woodwork. It’s small, compact size means you won’t need a lot of space to use the machine, whilst its welded steel chassis, upper and lower blade guides give you strength and control of what you’re cutting. The useful depth of cut makes this machine ideal for making small children’s toys, doll house making or household items like chopping boards. Plus, if you’re thinking about trying pen turning this machine is great for sizing down the pen blank.


Axminster Craft AC1950B Bandsaw

A step up from the AC1400B is the AC1950B bandsaw. The extra power gives you the ability to take on similar projects to the AC1400B plus larger projects including small items of furniture. In addition, if you’re looking at learning to turn, you’ll also be able to prep timber for smaller bowls and candlesticks.

Axminster Craft AC1950B Bandsaw


More great woodworking machines for the beginner

Axminster Craft AC285PD Bench Pillar Drill

Another machine to help with your woodworking projects is the pillar drill. Providing you with accuracy and power that no hand drill can deliver. The AC285PD is a great entry level machine. Giving you precise, repeatable drilling so you'll be able to get on with different projects that showcase your creativity.


Axminster Craft AC318BT Benchtop Thicknesser

Useful for prepping all your soft and hard woods quickly and easily is the AC318BT benchtop thicknesser. Portable and powerful, this machine allows you to move quickly onto creating your unique woodwork projects and is easy to store when not in use.


Safety first

With all the excitement of choosing your machines and deciding what projects to have a go at, it’s easy to forget the dull areas, such as health and safety. But, when woodworking, wood dust is inevitable and as well as getting everywhere, breathing it in can be incredibly dangerous.

Axminster APF 10 Evolution Powered Respirator

To help keep the dust at bay our useful Buying Guides make it easier to select what personal protection is right for you. Or if you know what you need, shop our Health and Safety Workwear and Dust Extractors.


Axminster Craft AC50E 50L Portable Dust Collector 

A great, entry level workshop extractor for your woodworking craft. Suited to most benchtop machines and smaller floor standing machines, especially bandsaws, sanders and scroll saws. In addition, this extractor also works as a great alternative to your household vacuum cleaner! Available in March.


Axminster 63mm Extraction Hose Kit

Compatible with the AC50E Portable Dust Collector is this flexible extraction hose. Easy to use, it comes complete with rubber cuffs making it quick and simple to re-connect because of the degree of elasticity to accommodate extraction outlets. Compatible with various woodworking machines including the AC1950B Bandsaw. Plus, if used with a Stepped Hose Adapter it will fit machines such as the AC318BT Benchtop Thicknesser and AC1400B Bandsaw.


JSP FilterSpec Mask & Goggle Combo FMP2V

Combines both eye and respiratory protection.


Take your craft one step further

Have you been inspired to get crafting? Looking for guidance on setting up a small workshop of your own? Our helpful How To Set Up A Small Workshop article will talk you through some of the essential tools you'll need to get started.

It’s your time to craft! With a range of machines designed for the craftsperson and our passion for anything woodwork, we here to help kickstart your craft!

It's finally here... the UK's soon to be most wanted table saw

As many people know, the table saw is the heart and soul of every woodworking workshop. Designed to make straight cuts, the table saw is used for virtually every woodworking project. Therefore, the need for accuracy and precision is essential. The new Axminster AT254TS gives you these essential elements; encompassing unique features of its own and high quality features typically found on higher priced machines. The strong, rigid and powerful body is only the start of this super smart saw; with new optional sets and accessories, you’re also able to rout and make dado cuts!

Axminster Trade Table Saw Shown With Optional Accessories
AT254TS Table Saw Shown Here With Optional Accessories
Axminster Trade Table Saw


Did someone mention Dado?

It’s a term we hear a lot from our customers. Finally, we are able to introduce a machine that has the capabilities to fit and power a Dado Blade Set.

Dado, stacking set, dadoing, there are many terms to describe the u-shaped style cut made across a workpiece grain. Made up of two TCT saw blades and six chipper blades, the Dado Blade Set is an optional accessory and enables you to achieve exceptional tongue and groove slots.

Dado blade

Dado Blade

The Overhead Crown Guard accessory ensures this feature complies with all current Health & Safety regulations. Plus, the quick release catch feature makes it simple to switch out the riving knife for the dado set.

Dado Blade

Axminster Recommends

When using the Dado Blade Set we highly recommend the use of the Overhead Crown Guard; to ensure the blade is effectively guarded (for additional safe use guidelines please see this HSE publication).

Exceptional build quality

From the deep section cast iron table to the widely spaced trunnions, the AT254TS Table Saw includes quality features typically found on much more expensive machines. The whole saw’s design centres around a laser cut, heavy duty welded steel chassis, supporting the entire workings of the machine on widely spaced trunnions.

Axminster Trade Table Saw build quality

A massive, curved iron casting supports the motor and blade arbour, giving huge rigidity and blade support. In addition, the chrome cast handles give you a quality feel whilst also allowing for super smooth blade adjustments.


At the heart of the machine, there is a triple V-belt drive which powers the smooth, quiet running, induction American Leeson motor. American Leeson is a brand well known in the United States for its high quality. The 2.2kW TEFC induction motor is braked for safe, swift stopping and provides enough power to handle thicker, harder material.

Axminster Trade Table Saw build quality

Use the table saw as a router table

The complete workstation means you’ll have somewhere to put your coffee cup! The extension table is recessed to incorporate a router table insert and is compatible with the optional UJK Router Elevator or more basic UJK Router Insert. The optional Router Table Fence is strong and fully adjustable. Plus, it fits straight into the twin 19mm parallel T slots machined into the table's surface. What's more there is a separate dust extraction point for the router which helps control the dust.

Axminster Trade Table Saw used as Router Table

The Router Table Fence works well with the AT254TS table saw or you can purchase it separately for use on a custom-made router table.


Once set it'll stay square!

The full-length rip fence has a ‘T’ square style mounting design and is fully adjustable to give you greater control and support the material being cut. When you make an adjustment to the fence, you can lock it in place and know that it'll stay in place until you need to adjust it again. Plus, made of solid steel, the fence slides effortlessly across the table.


Replace the standard kerf plate with the Zero Clearance

For use only when the blade is at 0°, the Zero Clearance Insert sits extremely close, a mere 0.5mm from the blade. As well as preventing the waste from dropping beneath the table it also helps support smaller work, allowing finer cuts. Supplied un-cut (as shown in the image to the right), you cut the slot with the saw blade for a perfect fit!

ZC-10 Zero Clearance Insert

Accessories for your AT254TS Table Saw Workstation


The new Axminster Trade range

This summer we saw the Axminster Trade range undergo an upgrade as new machines were introduced to the family. Surpassing the expectation of the trade user, each new machine boasts quality features, typically found on industrial rated machines, but at affordable prices for the trade user. Read our insightful guide to learn more about these new machines.

Axminster Trade Machines

The ultra versatile AT254TS Table Saw enables you to not only make cuts with the circular saw blade but also achieve router cuts and dado cuts!

Woodworking machinery - explore our new Craft range

Introducing new woodworking machinery by Axminster Craft. A range specifically developed to meet the demands of dedicated creators who spend hours honing their craft. 

Making anything yourself is now much more than a hobby for so many of you, it’s your craft. The new Craft range has been purposefully designed to give you more quality, reliability and class-leading features but still at affordable prices for the Craftsperson. 

Including a new lathe, table saw and collection of bandsaws; the new machines give you more capacity to achieve perfect results for your project! Watch Ian and Tim as they talk us through our decision to transition from Hobby to Craft. Plus, they show us some of the exciting new woodworking machines that are joining the range soon.

Axminster Craft AC355WL Woodturning Lathe

Want to see more?

With a brand new lathe and collection of bandsaws set to join the range, we take a look at some of their finest features you can look forward to seeing...

Axminster Craft Woodworking Machinery

Show me more


Plus, discover more about your chance to attend a FREE in-store Introduction to Woodturning session with any purchase of a Craft lathe.

Discover more

AC355WL Lathe - woodworking machinery

Be the first to hear about our new machines

With new machines set to arrive over the next coming months, make sure to sign up to our email club to be the first to hear when these arrive.

Introducing new woodworking machinery by Axminster Craft. A range specifically developed to meet the demands of dedicated creators who spend hours honing their craft.


Festool CT-VA Pre-Separator

If you work with materials that produce a lot of dust, the new Festool CT-VA pre-separator could be just what you need. It delivers continuously high-performance dust extraction and is easy to use. It is also simple to dispose of large volumes of dust thanks to the effective pre-separation. Simply couple the pre-separator to your Festool dust extractor using the T-LOC and connect with the hose provided. Finally, thanks to its compact dimensions, modular design and stackable collection containers, it is easy to transport, wherever you are.

Festool Container

Festool cyclone technology

High volumes of dust, shavings and chips are now no longer a problem, neither for the main filter or the suction power. This reduces the load on the main filter and ensures consistently high suction power throughout the work process. The dust-heavy air that's drawn in is swirled into a spiral movement in the cyclone. This causes the dust particles to hit against the wall of the cyclone and, due to gravitational force, to then fall into the collection container of the CT-VA pre-separator.

Festool Dust Extractor

Features and benefits

  • Efficient operation with consistent suction power; dust and coarse particles are separated and collected in the collection container. It collects up to 80% of mineral dust and 95% of coarse particle dust such as sawdust.
  • The CT-VA pre-separator is compatible with Festool CT 26/36/48 mobile dust extractors, both with and without AC dedusting. For easy retrofitting, the pre-separator is approved for dust classes L and M.
  • Festool's new pre-separator is ideal for demanding everyday use on construction sites. It effectively handles high levels of dust thanks to cyclone technology and ensures constantly high suction power. In addition, the sturdy, high quality components ensure a long service life.
  • The sophisticated collection container makes it simple to see how full it is thanks to its transparency. What's more, it's easy to dispose of the contents of the container due to the ergonomic grips on the collection container. This makes the process hassle free and clean.
  • Furthermore, the modular design means it is easy to clean the individual parts.
  • For flexible working, there's an additional socket for plug in suction hoses and power tools.
  • Connect your mobile Festool dust extractor and the CT-VA pre-separator easily using the T-LOC system.
  • For complete convenience, it is possible to work either with or without the pre-separator, depending on the application.
  • It's straightforward and safe to transport thanks to the sturdy design of the stackable collection container with its compact dimensions.

Applications

Fine mineral dust

There are several benefits of working with the CT-VA pre-separator, especially when working with dangerous, fine mineral dusts. These include:

  • Extracts up to 80% of fine dusts
  • Quick and easy disposal of dust
  • Constant, high suction power
  • Work without interruptions, wherever you are working
  • Removal of load from the main filter
  • Ideal in combination with the Festool CTL/CTM 26/36/48 mobile dust extractors with Autoclean function
  • Typical use with Festool tools including long-reach sanders; PLANEX and PLANEX Easy and the RENOFIX RG 130 Diamond Grinder. (Please note: the suction assistance of the PLANEX Classic is reduced when using the CT-VA pre-separator)

Coarse dust

If you work with chips from sawing, routing and planing, the pre-separator offers similar benefits including:

Festool Dust Extractor

Round Up

The new Festool CT-VA pre-separator is efficient, easy to use and reliable. This makes it the ideal combination when used in conjunction with your mobile dust extractor and tools. Designed for every application, the Festool pre-separator provides optimum results when used in environments with high levels of dust such as on the construction site.


Discover more…

If you love Festool, we've got plenty of new products for you to feast your eyes upon. Firstly, if you want to produce precise, pristine and steady cuts the Festool ISC240Li 5.2 EBI SET FS Insulation Saw 18V (5.2Ah) is just the ticket. Lightweight and ergonomic, the saw cuts insulation material efficiently with minimal effort.

Secondly, the Festool DOMINO DF 500 connector set allows you to produce highly accurate cabinets and joinery items simply and quickly. The new basic structure and furniture connectors are extremely versatile and provide for a very large range of applications. Ideal for use in the workshop, at home or onsite.

Furthermore, Festool fans missed the MFT Fixing Set so much, they just had to bring it back. An ideal supplement to MFT 3 and MW 1000 Mobile Workshop, the new and improved SYS-MFT-FX Set consists of various stops, clamps and clamping elements, all designed to make your life easier. Read our helpful guide and learn why this set is perfect for quick and flexible clamping and securing of workpieces with a wide variety of thicknesses and shapes.

Finally, there's the Festool MW 1000 Set designed specifically for mobile working. Taking the best elements from two existing systems and combining them together, this brand new all-in-one solution provides everything you need for mobile working, wherever you are.

Get in touch!

If you’ve bought the Festool CT-VA pre-separator, we’d love to hear from you. Comment below or send us a photograph and tell us all about your new purchase. What do you love about it, and why?

Alternatively, get in touch via our social media platforms. Find us on Facebook or send us a tweet using #festooldustextractor to @AxminsterTools.

The Festool CT-VA pre-separator with cyclone technology does exactly what it says on the tin. It separates and collects both coarse and fine dust before it reaches your Festool dust extractor. Read our informative guide and learn more about this innovative technology. In doing so, you’ll soon discover for yourself how this is by far the most efficient way of handling large dust volumes.

Introducing the new compelling collection of woodworking machinery by Axminster Trade. Specifically built to meet the growing demands of the trade customer and serious woodworker, the five machines truly surpass the expectation of a trade user.

Each machine boasts qualities and features typically found within industrial machines but at affordable prices for the trade user. The bandsaw, table saw, two spindle moulders and dust processor not only look contemporary but their innovative, unprecedented features and quality of build truly set them apart from anything similar on the market.

New Axminster Trade machines


Quality of build

If you’re looking for woodworking machinery to work day in, day out then these new trade rated machines are for you. Each machine has been specifically chosen because of its build quality. They are purposely built to be robust, whilst also delivering exceptional performance.

We were looking for machines that were an even better build and spec but were still of a physical size attractive to both a small woodworking business or enthusiastic home woodworker. The results are machines that raise the bar in terms of build quality, simplicity in use and custom build using the extensive options available.

Keith Thompson, Innovation and Product Manager

Robust tables

The spindle moulders and table saw feature a cast iron, precision ground and polished off table to offer a smooth, controlled travel for your workpiece. Plus, the cast iron is stress relieved to diminish any dimension distortion.

The bandsaw table has a Titanium Nitride (TiN) coating. Not only does this make the machine look great but it also creates a hard wearing, smooth surface, preventing corrosion and again allowing the workpiece to travel effortlessly through the machine.

Titanium Nitride (TiN) coated bandsaw table

Strong steel chassis

The five woodworking machines all centre around a steel chassis which forges a strong, stable shell. The strong material increases the lifespan of the machine as it protects the machine from knocks and absorbs any vibration. Additionally, the use of steel improves the accuracy of the machine in that a good stable base is very important. Steel also has a natural frequency of oscillation and therefore reduces any potential vibration.

Chrome cast iron handles

The spindle moulders, table saw and bandsaw all feature chrome cast iron handles to ensure any adjustments are effortless and controlled. Plus, cast iron prevents the handles from wearing and creates a comfortable grip for the user.

Chrome handle
Bandsaw and Dust Processor in use

Simplicity and ease in use

Each machine not only represents superb build quality but it also delivers engineering excellence to your workshop. The innovative features and unprecedented technology make these woodworking machines simple and easy to use.

Effortless table tilt

The bandsaw table tilt adjusts using a chrome cast iron control wheel which requires no effort to turn. Whilst this is happening the table is held steady by a rack and pinion gear and gas strut. The steady, easy adjustment allows you to achieve an accurate angle for your table.


Eye level, simple to use control panels

Both spindle moulders feature a control panel which sits above the machine. At eye level, the control is easy to adjust and makes the machine simple to control.

Control panel

The CNC spindle moulder also runs off an innovative Siemens drive/control system to make it exceptionally easy to adjust the speed, height and tilt giving you ultimate accuracy.


Maximum extraction performance and reduced filter maintenance

Innovative technology is used in the Gyro dust processor to reduce the filter maintenance. The clever centrifugal force separates the dust from the airflow, dropping the particles into dust containers and leaves the air exiting the separation chambers into the filters 99.9% dust free.

Dust Processor

Multifunctional woodworking machinery

A complete workstation

The ultra versatile table saw gives you the capability to not only make cuts with the circular saw but also achieve router cuts and dado cuts using the ingenious optional accessories.

Dado Blade Set

A first for the UK market, a table saw with compatible Dado Blade Set and overhead blade guard for exceptional groove and slot cuts. This optional accessory is easy to fit; you simply remove the riving knife with the quick release catch and fit the stacking Dado Blade Set. We also list an Overhead Crown Guard as an accessory which is compatible with the Dado Blade Set and complies with all current Health & Safety legislation.

Dado Blade Set

Spindle to router

Both spindle moulders feature a router spindle with HSK fittings. This makes it accessible and easy to switch from your spindle to a router cutter. The adapter uses an ER collet for fitting a UK 1/2" (12.7mm) diameter router cutter.

Spindle Moulder close up

The new Trade machines - quality has never been so affordable

We have been working with a number of manufacturers on the launch and upgrade of our Trade range for some time. We now have a host of machines all ideally suited to the expectations of the trade customer. These are at the very top end of the range and the five new machines form part of that picture.

Ian Styles, Product Development Director
Axminster Trade HW615E 375mm Bandsaw

The AT3352B Bandsaw

Featuring a gold colour, TiN coated table for hard wearing and smooth workpiece travel, the AT3352B bandsaw's design is one of the very best premium bandsaws on the market. Its high quality, robust frame, and smooth and accurate table tilt adjustment, matched with the T-square style fence allow you to achieve precise and accurate cuts.


Axminster Trade HW303ES Deluxe Spindle Moulder

The AT220SM Deluxe Spindle Moulder

The compact size, robust build quality, and the sleek and innovative design make this a great woodworking machine for your workshop. The extra large, cast iron table gives you the capability to work with larger materials, whilst the mitre fence in T-slot supports the smaller projects. The easy, quick release spindle type makes it simple to swap out your spindle for a router cutter collet without removing the tooling.


Axminster Trade Gyro Air G700 Fine Dust Extractor

The Gyro Air ATG700DP Dust Processor

The most unique extractor in our range and unlike others on the market. The Gyro Air uses centrifugal technology to maximise the extraction performance and minimise filter maintenance. The variable speed allows you to adjust the airflow to your work whilst the compact size and multiple dust outlet options make this extractor an ideal companion for your table saw or almost any workshop machine. Plus, the dust containers are simple and easy to remove with just a simple opening of a drop down door. The very low noise level, typically 61-76 dB(A) allows this high performance machine to be used in any busy workshop and, is especially reliable for educational use with both wood and metal working machines. 


Coming soon... The HW110LGE Table Saw Work Station and The E-305S Eagle CNC Tilting Spindle Moulder

The AT254TS Table Saw Work Station

Revolutionise your workshop! The ultra versatile machine enables you to not only make cuts with the circular saw but also achieve router cuts and dado cuts using the optional accessories. The Dado Blade Set is a feature the UK has been waiting for. Now, you can achieve tongue and groove slots for strong, solid joints using this accessory. The quick release catch makes it simple to swap the riving knife out for the blade set, whilst the compatible Overhead Crown Guard accessory ensures this feature complies with all current Health & Safety regulations. The right-hand table is recessed to incorporate a router table insert and is fully compatible with the UJK Router Elevator or more basic UJK Router Insert. The additional moulding fence is strong and fully adjustable and works well with the saw bench or can be purchased separately for use on a custom-made router table.

The AT220TSM CNC Tilting Spindle Moulder

State of the art technology is used in this machine to precisely control the speed, height and tilt. This gives you optimum accuracy with every profile you mould. The touchscreen control makes it easy to adjust the machine, whilst the eye level position makes it clear to read. A 5kw high performance motor drives the machine and gives extraordinary torque to the cutter block enabling clean and accurate cuts. The robust, finely ground, cast iron tables allow for easy workpiece travel whilst also reducing any chances of corrosion.

FREE 3 Year Guarantee - Buy with confidence from Axminster

So sure are we of the quality of our machines, we cover all parts and labour free of charge for three years.

Plus, our Buy Now Pay Later payment options makes it flexible and affordable options to pay for your tools and machines and gives you even more reasons to buy our machines.

Find out more about our guarantee

Discover more...

Here at Axminster we consistently look for new tools and machines to develop and introduce to our range. Discover more about producing precise, pristine and steady cuts with Festool’s NEW cordless insulation saw. Or find out more about tools that we develop and manufacturer right here at our HQ in Axminster with our Story Of The Parf Super Dog.


Do you want expert advice?

Our knowledgeable, friendly team of experts are on hand to give you advice on our new Trade machines. Whether you want technical advice for your home workshop or need expert advise on helping your business grow, contact us today.

Introducing new Axminster Trade machines. A selection of trade rated, woodworking machines boasting industrial features but at affordable prices for the trade user. Their compelling design, unique features and robust build help surpass the expecations of the trade user.

Delivery and set up

We took delivery of our new planer thicknesser back in October 2017. It arrived pretty much fully assembled, minimising the work involved in getting it up and running. The first thing you have to do is remove if from the delivery pallet. We managed this fine between Rhiannon and myself.

We already had an Axminster mobile base that we resized before aligning next to the new machine (whilst still on its pallet). We then wiggled the planer thicknesser bit by bit to gently drop it down from the pallet and into the mobile base. Both cast iron tables come already fully fitted, leaving you to fit the fence and bracket/tilt mechanism along with the blade guard, fence storage and smaller components.

Best instruction manual for a machine that I have come across so far!"

The whole process of getting set up took less than an hour. I found we only had to do minimal fine-tuning of the tables, which is all brilliantly explained in the instructions; the best instruction manual for a machine that I have come across so far! It’s full of large coloured photographs with explanations and couldn’t be easier to follow. It looks more like a magazine.


First startup

The first thing you'll notice when you start up the spiral cutting planer thicknesser is the exceptional reduction of noise compared to a straight knife machine. It's said to be up to 50% quieter, which for us is definitely agreeable since we can now talk without raised voices with the machine running. It is even quieter than our dust extractor!


What about the finish?

The spiral cutter block leaves an outstanding quality finish of cut. It doesn’t struggle with the difficult change in direction of the grain in timber. Also, there is no tear out like our previous straight knife machine. This is down to the way the cutters are mounted to the spiral block. Firstly, each cutting edge is ever so slightly convex (you can see this when you look at them). Pairing this with the mounted cutting angle enables the machine to give a shear cut through the timber with less stress, therefore prolonging the life of the machine and saving energy.

Spiral cutter block with carbide cutters
Spiral cutter block with carbide cutters

Benefits of the carbide cutters

Some of the benefits of the carbide cutters are that they are much stronger than the standard high-speed steel knives. So much so that the carbide cutters will stay sharp for up to ten times longer. Each cutter has four cutting sides, so before you actually fully replace the entire cutter set, you'll rotate the cutter until all four sides have been used.That gives you up to forty times longer than the time you would have before swapping and re-sharpening a set of standard HSS straight knives.

Stay sharp for up to ten times longer"

Spiral cutter block with carbide cuttersThe carbide cutter sets are not cheap, looking at just over £400 for enough to replace the entire set. But you would have to compare this to the cost of 40 resharpens of a set of HSS knives. With the effort and time involved in this alone, the carbide cutters are a win for me!

Think about that time that you put a freshly sharpened set of straight knives in your planer, and within no time you’ve hit a staple or similar, and now have a chip in your fresh blades set. Back to the sharpeners they go or spend forever sanding out that irritating raised groove from everything you thickness after that event. If this hasn’t happened to you yet, it’s quite a common event for woodworkers. Now with the carbide cutters, you will have the ability to rotate just the affected cutters and get back to thicknessing and enjoying the clean finish of your timber. For convenience, each carbide cutting edge is numbered from 1-4 so that you can keep track of when a cutter needs fully replacing.


Simple cutter alignment

When you come to changing the entire set of carbide cutters, you will be doing so with ease. Where the straight knives each need specifically setting, using jigs or measuring tools (not to mention the sometimes difficult to reach small tightening screws) the carbide spiral block cutters simply remove one by one with a Torx key. The new cutters align themselves to their designated position for you to replace their individual Torx screw. We've had our machine for five months now and we've not had to replace or reposition any of our cutters yet. I wish we had a measure of the number of meters of timber we’ve fed through our Axminster trade series planer thicknesser just to know how well it's performed.

Switching from planing to thicknessing is simple"

One of the most important things for me is ease and speed of changing to and from planing and thicknessing modes. In my dream workshop, I would have space for a stand-alone surface jointer and also a thicknesser. With Axminster’s ATPT129, I can easily change from either mode and be fully set up in the other in just minutes. This is very convenient as with some jobs I need both setups frequently.

Switching from planing mode to thicknessing as a process is simple. Firstly, remove the fence and place it on the storage rack at the back of the machine. This is brilliant, as our older version didn’t have this, it's more convenient than finding a space in our busy workshop. Next, unlock the planing tables with the locking levers. This enables the tables to each lift up and stand out of the way, where they are held by a safety catch. You can now flip the large chip extraction hood in to place and click it into the thicknessing mode position. Release the locking lever on the front of the machine to engage the thicknessing function, set your thicknessing cutting depth and you’ll be ready to go. Changing back to surface planing is pretty much the reverse of these steps. One thing to note is that you do need to drop the thicknessing table to 150mm to swing the extraction hood back down for surface planing.


Surface planing

When surface planing, the large tables (totalling 1380mm in length) provide a brilliant support for planing larger and longer stock. I like to use an additional support on the outfeed side for extra ease. The alloy fence is long and rigid, with tilting ability of up to 45 degrees for bevels. I initially thought I would prefer a cast iron fence, but have had no complaints with the alloy. The massive bonus is the reduction in weight compared to a cast iron version. This is appreciated when switching to thicknessing on a regular basis and removing the fence a lot. If surfacing wide stock, there is a real noticeable difference compared to our old machine in the smoothness of cut and no vibration that we used to experience, reduced by the shear cutting action. The new Axminster planer thicknesser also has a lower surface planing table height. This increases support when edge planing wider boards, doors or worktops. In surface planing mode the max depth of cut is plenty for me at 4mm.


The importance of being mobile

As I mentioned, we keep ours on one of Axminster’s mobile bases. This is to enable easy manoeuvrability in our workshop, which doesn’t have the smoothest of floors due to being an old dairy farm building. The planer thicknesser weighs in at about 270kg and the mobile base has no complaints when I am pulling and pushing the machine around the workshop. I highly recommend these, particularly if you have a small workshop.


Extraction

The dust extraction is said to be better with a spiral cutter head machines due to the shear cut. This gives smaller sized chips rather than the longer chips and strips you can get from a straight knife machine. The smaller chips, being lighter, flow easier, faster and reduce the chance of extraction pipes clogging. Though I have to add I had no complaints with the extraction on our older straight knife machine either!

Axminster Trade Series Planer Thicknesser

Conclusion

I would highly recommend one of Axminster’s planer thicknesser machines and definitely the spiral cutter head version. This machine would sit happily in the workshop of a hobbyist woodworker, through to a small business workshop with 2-3 people using the machine on a daily basis. If you're in the market for a new planer thicknesser, be sure to visit one of Axminster tools showrooms to take a look at this machine in person. I’m sure it would not disappoint!

Watch Jamie and Rhiannon in our Meet the Maker series.

[axm_products title=”%20″ skus=”101157″ template=”list” /] Delivery and set up We took delivery of our new planer thicknesser back in October 2017. It arrived pretty much fully assembled, minimising the work involved in getting it up and running. The first thing you have to do is remove if from the delivery pallet. We managed this fine between Rhiannon and myself. We already had an…


Festool mobile dust extractors - what's new?

Fantastic innovative details

Festool has added new and better features to all NEW CT 26, 36 and 48 mobile dust extractors. Virtually all Festool mobile dust extractors now come supplied with a new, smooth suction hose. Some models also include the new SYS-DOCK with cable holder and T-LOC function so that you can get to work straight away.

Just a selection of new extractors

New smooth, suction hose

Thanks to its smooth exterior and tapered design, the new hose reduces friction making it perfect for sliding over edges. It also increases air flow rate for improved suction and faster progress with your work. For improved handling and a longer service life, the inside of the hose is slightly corrugated.

For a secure fit on the tool, the new CLEANTEC extraction sleeve with integrated bayonet fitting is the perfect solution. There’s now no chance of the suction hose slipping off the power tool due to the reliable connection. This saves you time and any inconvenience.

Anti static hose

Finally, the new hose is interchangeable with the old style dust extractors. For convenience, the hose can plugged into the inlet of the older style machines.


Simple transportation, better organisation

Thanks to the new cable holder, the cable can be quickly and neatly wound up and tidied away. This also means there’s no need to waste time frantically unwinding the cable when you need to use the extractor.

Another key benefit is that the hose is much more flexible. You can effortlessly bend it in whatever direction you want. This makes it simple to coil the hose into a hose garage or SYSTAINER for clean transportation.

You can also transform two hoses into a single long one by connecting the initial piece and end piece of two suction hoses. Moreover, the two pieces slot together for transport - this keeps any remaining dust in the hose.

These practical features help improve workplace organisation and minimise the clear up process. The optimised SYS-DOCK with cable holder and updated T-LOC function makes it easy to safely connect SYSTAINERs to the mobile dust extractor.

Connecting a SYSTAINER to the extractor

Innovative Bluetooth technology

On all compatible Festool mobile dust extractors, the control panel includes provision for retrofitting a Bluetooth module (optional accessory). A qualified electrician should carry out the fitting. A remote control on the suction hose activates the extractor. This allows you to remotely operate your extractor wherever you are, without needing to change the dust extractor mode from AUTO to Manual.

Bluetooth remote control

The innovative Bluetooth technology works with cordless tools in conjunction with a Bluetooth battery pack. For convenience, the mobile dust extractors start up automatically when Festool cordless tools with Bluetooth battery packs are switched on. This saves you time and energy as there is no need to keep going back and forth to the extractor to switch it on and off.

Festool bluetooth-capable battery pack

Overall, the introduction of new Bluetooth-capable battery packs extends Festool’s range of compatible batteries. Collectively along with the latest updates and additions, the new products represent real progress in cordless and cleaner work.


SERVICE all-inclusive warranty cover

The new Festool mobile dust extractors are covered by the Festool SERVICE all-inclusive warranty cover. If something is faulty, any repairs will be free of charge. This includes labour, spare parts and all wear parts for 36 months. This doesn't just apply to tools but also for battery packs and chargers too.

Most noteworthy, the warranty cover also includes 36 months of theft protection. In the event of a theft from your vehicle or site you are covered with a one-time excess charge of £100 inc. VAT per tool.

Benefit from us registering your tool!*

When you buy a Festool mobile dust extractor from Axminster we will register your product on your behalf. You must give your consent and be registered in the United Kingdom. For peace of mind, our customer service team are here to make the process as straightforward as possible. You also have the choice to opt out and do it yourself. *Terms and Conditions apply.


Designed with you in mind

In conclusion, Festool mobile dust extractors make your work less stressful, more comfortable and even faster than before. Ergonomic, powerful, and extremely robust, it’s now possible to achieve more in less time, and more safely thanks to the new range of products released this month.

Discover more...

Our 'First Look' at the newly released Festool Hybrid Sanders is definitely worth a read. With some clever new innovations to help you in your work it's now possible to easily switch between a corded or cordless sander. Furthermore, our 10 Top Tips to Improve Workshop Efficiency is a great resource for anyone looking for some useful hints and tips on organising their space and time. It might just make the difference between working in tranquil balm or complete bedlam!

Get in touch!

If you've bought a new Festool mobile dust extractor we'd love to hear from you. Comment below or send us a photograph and tell us all about your new purchase. What do you love about the new extractors, and why?

Alternatively, get in touch via our social media platforms. Find us on Facebook or send us a tweet using #festooldustextractor to @AxminsterTools.

When it comes to your health, reducing dust is a priority. Explore the key features of the latest Festool mobile dust extractors by reading our guide.

In the engineering workshop, no matter what size it is, the chances are you will need a metal cutting bandsaw. This is mainly for the cutting and sizing of your stock. You can of course on certain bandsaws produce intricate shapes for sculpting and architecture.

There are many, many different bandsaws available on the market today and so finding the right one for your needs can be difficult. This guide will try to help you in this by going through what key features you should look for, as well as how they will benefit you.


Why do you need a Metal Cutting Bandsaw?

Now some of the traditionalists out there may argue that a hacksaw will suffice, but if you are sizing large amounts of metal, you can't beat the speed and accuracy a metal cutting bandsaw brings. Not to mention the lack of physical exertion.

For the hobbyist, you may wonder if the initial outlay is worth it, and that will depend entirely on how much you need to cut. For those of you who work in fabrication workshops, they are vital and that's where some key features come into play.

Metal cutting bandsaw in use

Horizontal or Vertical?

Although vertical bandsaws are very much associated with woodworking, they can still have their place in the engineering workshop. This will mainly be in workshops where intricate or curved work needs to be done, as well as sheet work. Smaller workshops will also benefit from vertical models, due to the smaller footprint that they have.

Horizontal bandsaws are definitely what you think about when talking engineering. Although they can't do the intricate shaped work that vertical models can, the accuracy and ease that you can cut stock makes them invaluable for the busy workshop.

 


Key Considerations

Before you jump straight in and buy, it's best to think about your needs and requirements. If you can put a list together, this will certainly narrow down the selection of bandsaws available.

  • The amount of work - This will determine firstly if you need a bandsaw. If you're going to be doing very little work, do you really need to dig into your pockets to buy one? Secondly this will determine the size/power of the model you need to buy.
  • Workshop space - Always a defining factor on your purchase. Try and buy as big a machine as you can fit into your shop, as you never know when you'll need to something bigger!
  • Size of the job - Will ultimately affect the size of the machine you need. Try to think of the biggest task you will be doing, then add a little more to get the machine. This is so you won't be working at full capacity at all times.
  • Type of job - This will decide if you need a horizontal or vertical bandsaw. Curved or intricate work will require a vertical model. Cutting of stock and straight cutting will need a horizontal version.
  • Ease of use - Fabrication workshops will likely be looking for a saw with hydraulic downfeed and cut off switch. This is so the cut can be started, then the engineer can move onto other tasks before coming back to the saw.
  • Budget - The bigger the budget, the larger, more powerful machine you will likely be able to buy. Depending on the age of the machine. Of course it's also good to consider extras such as blades and coolant.

What are the Key Features to Look For?

Depending on the size of the machine and the tasks you need to perform you may only be looking for one or two of these features, but here are a list of the key ones we think you need to look for...

Variable Speed

Different materials will require different speeds for optimum cutting. Some machines may come with a belt drive with three or four speeds which are good, but a variable speed is definitely preferable. Not only will these give you easy speed changing, but also great flexibility of use over many materials. With the overall benefit of making your blades last much longer.

Mitre Or Dual Mitre Cutting

Having this ability is what makes bandsaws stand out over powered hacksaws. A lot of processing, especially in the fabrication workshop will need to be angles and therefore mitre cutting is a necessity. Not just having mitre cutting, but accurate mitre cutting with a precise scale.

Dual mitre cutting is another great feature to have, especially good for workshops that have a multitude of cuts to do on non-symmetrical material. For people wanting a vertical bandsaw, this should be easily done with a standard mitre fence.

Rigid Construction

As with most engineering machinery, solid steel and cast iron construction are very important. This is so the machine can withstand the cutting forces put on it, as well as giving it vibration dampening qualities that will aid the accuracy of the cut.

Rigid construction

Desirable features

These are great features that not every bandsaw will need but are certainly beneficial.

  • Coolant system - For larger machines performing bigger cuts, having a coolant system is vital for prolonging the life of the blade. For smaller machines, it's great to have some available to spray on the job sporadically.
  • Hydraulic downfeed - These are preferred over the basic spring systems, which are found on smaller machines. This is due to them offering a consistent blade pressure during automatic functioning.
  • Swivel head over swivel vice - Some machines may come with swivel vices instead of swivel heads for mitre cutting. Although these are good, they won't provide the accuracy of the swivel head alternatives.

Blades And Accessories

An important factor in the performance of your metal cutting bandsaw will be the blades that you use. Most 'stock' metal cutting blades will come with a standard tooth count (6, 10, 14tpi). Although these blades will do an adequate job, it's best to get variable pitch teeth (6-10tpi or 10-14tpi). The variable teeth allow the blades to cut through almost any material. This is because while the finer teeth do the cutting, the coarser teeth then clear away the swarf, reducing heat build up.

Another great accessory especially for the larger workshop are roller stands. When cutting stock, these provide a stable structure that supports the weight of the material, whilst also making it easy to feed it into the vice. If you are doing round bar or tubular materials, a V Roller stand, is going to be your best bet. Finally, some coolant for putting onto the work is essential, to get the best finish, as well as prolonging your tool life.


Buying a metal cutting bandsaw is probably a bit harder than it first seems, with many things having to be considered. However, once you have done the research and found a machine that suits your needs, you will (with the correct maintenance) have a machine that will perform accurate cuts time and time again.

A metal cutting bandsaw is an important part of the engineering workshop. So what are the key features? and how do they affect you? We take a look…

Hobby Series? Trade Series? Industrial Series? We pride ourselves on the fact that we bring you a wide range of machinery easily identifiable to match your needs. It's much simpler than the light-trade sort of descriptions you sometimes get. Those can often leave you thinking, is this really going to be able to withstand the rigours of the trade workshop?

Our ranges are designed to keep it simple. Without even looking into the small print, you know if an Axminster machine is the right level for you and if used correctly, will be covered by a Three Year Guarantee.

A lot of work went into this classification, so we wanted to show you how this was done and how we choose what machine is right for which level. Here we take a look at the ever popular Axminster Trade Series.


What is Trade Series?

Firstly, what does Trade Series really mean to you? Well as the name suggests these machines are made for small trade workshops. These are bespoke furniture makers, joinery makers, bar and shop fitting and many others. They are also great for the education sector.

Axminster Trade Series bandsaw

Trade Series machines are designed to be in use for up to 1,000 hours per year. A big difference from the 100 hours that our Hobby Series is designed for. Geared towards those who rely on woodworking machinery to earn their living, you can be sure these machines will be dependable and do the job required, when required.


How Does a Supplier Make the Grade?

For us, a key contributor toward making a machine trade quality is the supplier. Through decades of working together, we have developed a close knit group of suppliers that we trust will be able to develop a certain standard of machinery.

This has been done with a few key things in mind;

  • Engineering qualities of the factory - This boils down to the machinery they have, their production methods and, of course, the quality of the workplace. If the supplier has their own foundry to develop quality castings, this is a big bonus.
  • Design capabilities - Does the factory have its own design team that has the capability to improve or suggest changes to current designs? This may sound like a no brainer, but many factories won't have this.
  • Willingness to listen to feedback - Many companies simply won't change their designs, even if our development team have found faults through testing. We only work with those companies who are happy to take onboard feedback for the better of every party involved.
  • Trust - Through years of working together, we have developed a close knit group of suppliers. This has been done through trust which goes both ways. We trust them to make high quality machinery, that meets our very high standards. They trust us to continue developing machines further with them, treat them fairly and keep them on as supplier if our needs are met.

The Machines

What can you look for when you buy a Trade Series Machine?

  • Heavy, robust manufacturing with high quality steel frames and castings.
  • Innovative features that will improve the usability and performance of the machine.
  • Highly durable motors matched to the specification of the machine.
  • Complete compliance with all relevant safety standards for the work environment.

The Guarantee

Our guarantee is one of the most comprehensive available. All that we ask is that you purchase the correct machine for the required operation and usage and maintain it in accordance with the manual. There's no yellow tape here. No need to register the machine, just keep your proof of purchase. Any problems in the first three years of having the machine and all you need to do is call.

3 Year Guarantee on Axminster machinery

With all of this in mind, what are you waiting for? An Axminster Trade Series machine will give you all that you need and more in a woodworking machine. Back that up with a Three Year Guarantee and our award winning customer service and you needn't look any further.

Hobby Series? Trade Series? Industrial Series? We pride ourselves on the fact that we bring you a wide range of machinery easily identifiable to match your needs. It’s much simpler than the light-trade sort of descriptions you sometimes get. Those can often leave you thinking, is this really going to be able to withstand the rigours of the trade workshop?…

The machine that will most likely be bought first in a new engineering workshop is a lathe. A mill or pillar drill are of course very important but a lathe is usually the central feature, around which all other work is done.

That alone makes it imperative to get the right lathe. Then of course there is the small matter of how much the lathe will cost, with prices of Axminster products ranging from £500 right up to £15,000. Making sure you get the right lathe first time becomes even more important.

With this in mind, we're here to help you out a bit. Here we will look at the main considerations and key features of an engineer's lathe, so you can make the best choice.


Why do you need a lathe?

The simple fact is it's the most versatile machine that you can have. Not only can you turn, bore, grind, face and part off but with some slight modifications, you can also carry out milling jobs. Now of course doing milling jobs on the lathe won't be as accurate as a mill but, you can still do them. With one in your workshop, you will be able to perform a wide variety of tasks at very good standards. It's a no brainer...

Axminster Engineer Series SC4 Bench Lathe in use

Main considerations

Before you start looking at the lathe you will need, it's best to draw out a list of your own needs. This is so you can narrow down the wide selection of lathes that are available on the market.

  • Workshop space - As with all machinery purchases, this is key. If you have a space in the workshop available, try to choose as large a machine as possible. Always remember though, bigger machines, require better foundations.
  • Size of the job - This will also ultimately affect the size of the machine you would like to buy. It's always best to get a machine that's capacities are above the maximum work size.
  • Ease of use - Larger lathes will usually be geared rather than variable speed, but some are both, so choose wisely. If you are just getting into engineering, it's best to go for a variable speed machine as the ease of use is second to none.
  • Types of job - Very important as certain jobs will require different machine speeds. A general rule of thumb is that larger machines will not run as fast as smaller ones.
  • Budget - What sort of money are you putting aside for the lathe? You must also consider tooling and any extra accessories that will improve the performance of your machine.

Key features

Now that you understand your needs and requirements, it's time to look at the key features that every good lathe should have.

Rigid construction

Steel and cast iron construction is imperative in an engineering lathe. This will give the machine weight and stability as well as the ability to absorb any vibration from the motor or the force of the cut.

Rigid construction

Design of the bed

There are two main bed designs that you will find when looking for a lathe; the flat bad, or the V bed. As a company, we certainly prefer the V bed design as you will see on many of our machines. This is because they are far stronger and rigid, as well as allowing the headstock, carriage and tailstock to be completely parallel with each other.

Motor torque

The power of the motor is often the key feature in many machines, but if you have a size of machine in mind, the power will most likely match this. What you really need to think about is torque. With even more emphasis on the torque under load and at low speeds. A lot of brushed DC motors will stall at low speeds when the load is high, and with many jobs being needed at low speeds (such as screw & thread cutting), you need to buy a lathe, with a high torque motor. Other benefits of these type motors is they are variable speed, run at almost 100% efficiency and are very quiet. For more information on this, read this piece.


Capacities

The main capacities to look for in a lathe are;

  • Centre height - This is the distance from the centre of the chuck to the lathe bed. This determines the radius of the task that you can do.
  • Swing diameter over the carriage - This is the maximum diameter that can be turned over the carriage, i.e. a bar, spindle or tube.
  • Distance between centres - The maximum length of material the lathe can accommodate. This will be a secondary one due to the fact that most engineers only use the first six inches of length.

Desirable features

These are the features that not every lathe must have but are great additions.

  • Threading and screw cutting - Tasks that you will no doubt want to do once you become more proficient. Having these capabilities will make the process much easier.
  • Power feeds - This will enable you to do many tasks quicker, and get a better finish, due to the constant mechanical feed speed.
  • Morse Taper tailstock and spindle - To enable complete accuracy it's best to have a morse taper spindle. Look mainly for machines with MT2 or MT3 as these will be the most common for tooling.

Tooling and accessories

As stated in the last section of desirable features, it's good to check that the lathe you're interested in has a wide variety of tooling available. So Morse Taper spindle sizes MT2 or MT3 are common, but also check it's workholding compatibility.

That is where we will look to start. Most new lathes will come with a chuck, with 3 jaw self centring being very common in smaller lathes. Although 3 jaw chucks are very accurate, you can increase this by getting yourself a 4 jaw independant chuck. A quick change tool system is also a vital accessory, this will make your whole machining process much more efficient.

Onto the tooling itself. The three main tasks you will do on a lathe are, turning, boring and facing. So getting these tools from the off will mean that most tasks can be done straight away. Instead of buying them individually, they can be bought in a set. As a start, this should see you through until you are confident enough to tackle more complex tasks.

Once you've sorted the tooling and workholding, we can look at optional accessories that will take your lathe further. A digital readout (DRO) is something more and more people are turning to. Completely eliminating the effect backlash and ensuring complete accuracy. These are expensive though, so consider where your machining wants to go before taking the plunge. A milling attachment will complete your lathes versatility and if you don't have the space for a mill alone, can provide a perfectly good alternative. Finally, a coolant system will prolong tool life, as well as giving a better final finish.

 


The lathe is the key machine in the engineer's workshop, and buying yourself a high quality one will ensure accurate, consistent work for years to come. To get that lathe though, you will need to do your research. We hope that this guide has helped you some way to making the right choice for you and your work.

The machine that will most likely be bought first in a new engineering workshop is a lathe. A mill or pillar drill are of course very important but a lathe is usually the central feature, around which all other work is done. That alone makes it imperative to get the right lathe. Then of course there is the small matter…

If you're thinking of taking the plunge into metalworking, one of the first things you need to think about is a mill. Along with the lathe, a precision mill forms the basis around which all engineering work can be done.
Buying a milling machine is not to be taken lightly. Even the smallest of mills can be expensive and that's without adding on the tooling. Factor in the differences in size, features and capabilities of those on the market and even the most seasoned engineer may struggle.

To make the buying process easier, we're here to offer a helping hand. This guide will take a look at the key considerations you need to think about, as well as the main features of a milling machine.

Why do you need a mill?

Some people might say that you can perform most, if not all, of the tasks a mill can do on a lathe. This is true but be warned, the tasks won't be performed as accurately. The design of the lathe just isn't intended to deal with the forces encountered on a mill. What about a milling attachment? These are very handy, especially if you have limited space, however once again, they're not as accurate and can cost almost as much as a compact milling machine.


Horizontal or Vertical?

This is one of the main questions that needs to be answered. So what are the main differences? Horizontal mills are very, very strong and use horizontal blades to cut the material, allowing them to make bigger cuts with a higher load. These are recommended to production users or those who have very large jobs to do. Vertical mills are extremely versatile with the ability to perform a number of different jobs across all axis. They can also be used as a precision drilling machine. This versatility lends them very well to the multitude of tasks a hobby user will want to do.

Universal mills are available on the market for anyone who thinks they need the capabilities of both a vertical and horizontal machine.

Universal Mill

However, for the hobby user or first time buyer, we would recommend vertical and that is where we will focus....


Main considerations

As we have said above, buying a mill is not something you can do on a whim. Now that you've decided the type of mill, you have to start narrowing the selection available. This is where your needs come in...

  • Workshop space - A defining factor in most machinery purchases. If you're limited on space it can often lead to people buying smaller than they need, which leads perfectly in to...
  • Size of the work - Never get a machine where it's maximum capacity just fits the size of work you're doing. Always go one higher or the machine will burn out a lot quicker.
  • Material you are using - Often not considered but if you are using hard materials, you will need a bigger machine to cope with the forces required.
  • Benchtop or floor standing - This is often dictated by all of the above but generally speaking, hobbyists will only need a benchtop model.
  • Ease of use - Are you looking at being able to control the spindle speed or table movement with the flick of a switch or are you happy getting stuck in?
  • Budget - Last but certainly not least is how much you are looking to spend. This will after all determine the size, quality and age of the machine.

Key Features of the Mill

Now that you've had a chance to think about what you need, let's have a look at the key features.

Design

Many vertical machines nowadays look very similar but it's always good to pay attention. A key design feature to look out for are dovetail slideways. This is both on the column and also under the table. These give the machine huge strength and rigidity, which not only allows it to soak up the cutting forces but also aids in getting complete accuracy.

Dovetail Slideway

Another great design feature is a tilting head mechanism, which will enable the user to do angled or even horizontal work. As the head is quite heavy, moving these around can be quite energy sapping, therefore make sure you need a tilting head and aren't just buying one for the sake of buying one.

Tilting head mechanism

Motor

The bigger the better is a term that is quite often used when referring to the motor on any machine. Although not unwarranted, it's also not the be all and end all. A lot of the machining when milling requires torque and the ability to maintain that torque even at lower speeds. This is where brushless motors come into play. Instead of relying on carbon brushes, these use an AC/DC converter that generates very little heat, meaning that under load there is no drop in torque. Other benefits of these type of motors are that they are variable speed, with an easy to use control panel and that they run almost silent.

Precision mill motor

Capacities of the Mill

As you've now thought about the size of tasks you will be performing, the mill will have to cater for those needs. Like we have said, you should always look to go one size up, just so the machine isn't being overworked. Main capacities to look at are;

  • Under the cutter height - This is the space between the cutter and workholder. It's important as it's the usable space of the machine.
  • Machine movements - The range of movement of the X (side to side), Y (back and forward) and Z (up and down) axis
  • Table size - It's important to get a machine with a table big enough to fit your work or the workholding
  • Spindle speed - Having a large range of speeds available allows you to perform different jobs on a variety of materials

Tooling and accessories

A big part of this is the availability of tooling. You don't want to buy yourself a mill only to find that the spindle taper size it takes it very unique or doesn't match the one on your lathe. So do your research here.

Done that? Great, now let's look at the things you have to purchase.

To get started you must have some kind of workholding. This can be in the form of a precision vice or clamp kit, both would be preferable. Next up, toolholding. Collet holders are very important, so much so they are usually supplied with new mills. But you will also need collets that match the machines arbor, as well as the sizes to fit your tooling.

That brings us on nicely to the tooling. End mills and slot drills are a great place to start and will perform the majority of jobs the hobbyist needs. After you become confident in your machining, the door will be open to buying much more tooling for harder tasks.

Other possible accessories include... A digital readout (DRO); becoming a must have for precision milling, this will completely eliminate backlash aiding accuracy. A coolant system will increase the standard of the finish, whilst also prolonging tool life. Finally, a Y axis powerfeed, which will give a controlled feed speed to your work, further improving the finish.

As you can see, buying your first mill requires careful thinking and a great deal of research. However, if you are willing to do the groundwork, not only can you save yourself time and money but you'll also get the benefit of having a machine that will perform well for years to come.

Here are some top tips and key considerations to think about when buying your first precision mill, so you can make the right choice, first time!

Pillar drills play an important part in both the wood and metal working workshop. With accuracy being the main feature that sets them apart from their handheld cousins, people sometimes forget their versatility. Here we take a look at the accessories and consumables that will ensure your pillar drill is as precise and versatile as possible.


Drill bits; The types and applications

Getting the right drill bits for your pillar drill is very important. As was discussed in a recent article of ours, there are a plethora of drill bits out there. These vary in type and quality with both having an effect on the accuracy of your work. If you need a hand with the type of drill bit you need, then this guide would be a great help. For woodworking, two of the most popular types are forstner bits and brad point (lip and spur) drills. For the best quality bits out there, we recommend those from Austrian makers Fisch.


Drill bit cutIn metal working it's imperative to get drill bits made from a material that's hard and resistant to wear. The Swedish M2 grade steel in the Axminster M2 drill bit set is a better quality steel than standard HSS, making them extremely resistant. Adding a TiN (Titanium Nitride) coating also prolongs tool life, which is why this Ig2 set will perform in almost all metals. To prolong tool life further, it's important to use a lubricant. We recommend Ambersil and more specifically Tufcut metal cutting compound for your drilling tasks.


Workholding

When drilling, a key safety recommendation is that you clamp your workpiece securely to the table.  It will also aid the accuracy of the job being done. There are many different clamps and vices out there that can do this. In woodworking a simple G clamp or toggle clamp may suffice if the job is light. For heavier duty work it's better to use a drill vice, clamped securely to the table with a specially made drill clamp.


In metalworking you'll generally need a stronger, better made vice for stability and accuracy.  The Axminster 3-way unigrip vice is fantastic for both wood and metal working. It is substantially constructed and can be used both vertically and horizontally. For the most precise tasks, the Axminster super precision vice is a must. For use on both pillar drills and mills, it is made from close grained, high tensile cast iron with the jaws parallel to within 30 microns! Working in the crafts? The Axminster toolmakers clamps are great for smaller jobs.


A versatile pillar drill?

That's right, pillar drills aren't just for drilling. They are actually an extremely versatile machine. Buy a large drum sander and turn your drill into an excellent bobbin sander. If you need to cut some mortices, this morticing attachment will convert your pillar drill into a lightweight morticing machine. It's best to check whether or not this is suitable for your drill first though. When doing both of these tasks, you will probably need more support than the standard table provides. TheAxminster pillar drill table will give you a 610mm x 305mm work area to support any larger projects, while also providing a base for customer made jigs.


Safety

With the workpiece being firmly held down by a clamp and/or vice, there are only a couple of safety considerations. Firstly, due to the waste being thrown by the cutting of the drill, it's very important to wear eye protection. Secondly, it could be very easy for clothing or even hair to be caught on the rotating spindles, so take precaution by tying hair back and be careful not to wear loose clothing.


Conclusion

A pillar drill is a great bit of equipment to have in the workshop, one that can be made even better by getting the right accessories. We hope that this has gone some way to helping you think about the items you need to improve yours.
If you are in the market for buying a pillar drill, we can certainly help you with that. This buying guide will give you an insight into the key features and how they will work for you...

Pillar drills are an important part of the wood and metal workshop. To get them working to their best, you have to get the right accessories. Here we take a look at these accessories and how they will make your pillar drill more accurate and more versatile.

Drill bit sets come in various shapes and sizes but essentially they're just used for making holes, so why the difference in price? There are hundreds of cheap quality bits that have flooded the market so here’s a guide to which characteristics to look so you can separate the good from the bad.

A brief history of twist drill bit sets

Invented in the 1860s by Steven A. Morse, the twist drill bit got its name from the original manufacturing methods. Grooves were cut into a round bar which were then twisted to create the spirals. Today modern techniques rotate the bar past a grinding wheel to create the flutes. Ground bits are much stronger and so this is one of the first properties to look for.


A point to make

The point of standard drill bits is 118°. These are best for drilling materials such as wood, plastic and softer metals. With more expensive drill bits such as the M2 set you’ll see that the geometry is slightly different and they have a finer point. This enables the tip to cut into the material faster. For harder materials the bit will have a flatter point, normally 135°.

Prove your metal

Just as showing your mettle is about bravery and strength of character, the metal that goes into drill bits is an important characteristic to look for. Standard bits are typically made of High Speed Steel (HSS) which is hard and resistant to wear. HSS can also tolerate higher levels of heat. This is an essential feature to have as the friction generated when drilling is obviously considerable. Drill bits made of inferior quality metals will quickly lose their edge as they get hot. In the end you’ll have to replace them more frequently and ultimately this results in poorer quality holes. The M2 steel in the Axminster M2 drill bit set is of a better quality to standard HSS and this gives it a higher wear resistance.


Drill bit anatomy

Looking at the anatomy of your drill bit sets is another indication of the quality. Cheaper drill bits will have more of a land. The web on a bit is the actual thickness on the drill point and this thickness increases as the bit is sharpened.

How our drill bit sets compare

13 Piece High Speed Steel Ground Drill Bit Set 19 Piece High Speed Steel Ground Drill Bit Set Axminster 19 Piece Metric M2 Drill Bit Set
Description To the point - A solid basic set for when you just need simplicity and speed. The SAS of HSS - Like a crack military unit these are tough, durable and precise. Drill Masters - Superbly refined from high quality steel, these will competently cope with harder materials with excellent chip clearance and a quality cut.
Sizes 1.5mm to 6.5mm in 0.5mm increments, plus 3.2 and 4.8mm 1-10mm in 0.5mm increments 1-10mm in 0.5mm increments
Usage Wood, metal and plastics Wood, metal and plastics Different materials including hardened steels to HRC-30
Made From Ground High Speed steel Ground High Speed steel Swedish M2 grade steel
Supplied In Plastic case Good quality, reusable metal case Robust plastic case

Drill bit sets come in various shapes and sizes but essentially they’re just used for making holes, so why the difference in price? There are hundreds of cheap quality bits that have flooded the market so here’s a guide to which characteristics to look so you can separate the good from the bad. A brief history of twist drill bit…

Introduction

The table saw: a central, pivotal machine for any woodworker and is considered by many to be the workhorse of the workshop. Being such an integral part of any workshop, it's important to make sure it's working to the very best of its abilities. To help you do this, we have selected 12 accessories that will take your saw from good to great!

Increase Capacity

A standard table saw is a great bit of machinery but can be restrictive in terms of the amount and size of jobs you can do. If you have the space in your workshop, buying the sliding table kit and right hand extension table will dramatically increase the versatility of the saw. These can also be purchased in one complete package for a moderate saving of cost - see the Axminster Trade Series AW10BSB2 Saw Bench (2).

Axcaliber Saw Blades

Getting the right blade for the task is vitally important. We not only have an extensive range of blade types (3) but we also have two categories within it. You can either choose from the high quality yet economically priced Contract Range or the exceptional cutting performance of the Premium Range. Unsure of which blade you require for the job? Our handy guide is sure to help you out.

Mitre Fence Upgrade

Known primarily for their ability to perform high volumes of cutting, table saws aren't seen as being that accurate. When cutting mitres, however, it's hugely important to get them as accurate as possible. Some 'stock' mitre fences may not get the best results so we recommend the UJK Technology Precision Mitre Gauge and Fence (4).

Perfect Alignment

Get your blade and fence perfectly aligned with the mitre slot and many other small tasks, a circular saw aligning jig is key (5). If you're using the saw for bevel cuts you'll also need to invest in a digital angle gauge (6). Both these tools are ideally suited not only for the table saw but also for a multitude of tasks around the workshop.

Stand or Mobile Base

Benchtop saws will need to have a stable platform for optimum use so be sure to secure it safely to a workbench or a purpose built stand (1) which is designed to be at the right height for work. Floor standing saws won't have this problem but may need to be moved around the workshop in order to maximise working room; a well-built mobile base (7) will do this for you at a minimum of cost.

Safety

Safety is paramount when woodworking and a table saw does have a bad reputation for safety if used incorrectly. Fortunately the riving knife and blade guard have taken away most of the risk but to be extra safe a push stick keeps your hands away from the blade (8). Other ways of protecting yourself include safety glasses for potential flying chips and ear defenders (9) for the excessive noise.

More Safety Gear

Dust Extraction

Even though it can be quite hard to get extraction perfect on a table saw (with the blade spitting out chippings left, right and centre), it's still extremely important to have the right extractor. By checking the minimum airflow of the machine, you can then choose the right extractor to match its needs, get your saw working optimally and keep your workshop clean.

Browse Chip Extractors

The table saw: a central, pivotal machine for any woodworker and is considered by many to be the workhorse of the workshop.

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