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thumb control variable speed control on portable band saw


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I needed a portable band saw for occasional use and thought🥴 the Chicago Electric 10 amp model Variable Speed Band Saw Kit might work for that.  About the third time using (past 90 day warranty) it wouldn't start.  Checked brushes and they were fine.  The little circuit board on the variable speed roller had sprung a leak.  I cut it our of of the circuit, rewired direct to motor and it worked fine, but at high speed.  Naturally, no replacement parts at all are available for this 3-year old tool.


Has anybody here found a fix for this?  I could use it wired direct and see how long it lasts, or maybe try to retrofit a similar part for a 10A Makita of similar design.  I saw on you tube someone had used large variable speed control box off of something else, but he had his on a stand for in-shop use.  I would like to stay portable.

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  • 2 weeks later...

So, if something like this happens to you, here is a cheap fix HiLetgo 2000W PWM AC Motor Speed Control Module Dimmer Speed Regulator 50-220V Adjustable Voltage Regulator) from Amazon for 5.89.  Pretty small, but likely will have to fashion a separate enclosure for it on exterior of handle.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Looks like a one-sided conversation, but maybe someone can find this helpful in the future.  I was able to remove some plastic ribbing in the handle interior by the old switch and fashion an opening for the speed dial of the replacement.  After repositioning some wiring routes everything fit in the space created and the handle halves were screwed together.  I removed the original finger switch.  With the off position on the new switch it became redundant.  It works fine and can be used in a homemade stand like some have done on YouTube, or used remotely.  


I would think this would be a common problem with modern speed controls on small tools with the little printed circuit boards.  Doubt they were designed for a lot of banging around, vibration, etc.   -Ed

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