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Ed Caffrey's Workshop Talk to Ed Caffrey ... The Montana Bladesmith! Tips, tricks and more from an ABS Mastersmith.

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Old 04-19-2021, 07:59 PM
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Ed Caffrey Ed Caffrey is offline
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Milwaukee Portaband fatal flaw, and how to repair/fix it.

Some of you have heard me say in the past, that I DO NOT like Milwaukee power tools. I've had many less than favorable experiences with various Milwaukee tools, but what soured me forever was the portaband......
Just in case you have a Milwaukee portaband, I am posting this, along with the images to help you IF the same thing happens to you.....that happened to me.

The biggest issue with the Milwaukee Portaband is the system used to hold/adjust the idler wheel. It flexes in a way that, when ANY AMOUNT of pressure is placed on the blade when cutting, the idler wheel will tilt in a way that allows it to make contact with the internals mechanism...... and as you can see from the pics, if you don't catch it and repair it, you will destroy/loose the idler wheel. So here you go.....














Hopefully nobody that owns one of these saws has this problem, nor needs this information......but if you own a Milwaukee Portaband, and you EVER see aluminum shaving when using the saw......here's a solution.....as long as you catch it BEFORE it cuts all the way through the idler wheel.


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Old 04-20-2021, 01:57 AM
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Makes you wonder how much is poor engineering and how much is "planned obsolescence".


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Old 04-20-2021, 07:12 AM
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planned obsolescence is what I suspect. What you see in the pics was on a saw that was less then TWO MONTHS out of the box. I tried to turn it in for repair under the warranty, and the local warranty center told me "It is a know design flaw, and is not eligible for repair under warranty."

That's the reason I tore into myself. After plunking down the $$$ for the saw and having to deal with that, I've not purchased another Milwaukee tool since.


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Old 04-20-2021, 02:10 PM
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Good fix! Beta testing placed on the end user.


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