WEN 3970 Review
Editor Rating: 4.0/5
WEN 3970 Review
Reviewed by: Timothy Henderson
Getting a decent bandsaw isn’t a challenging task nowadays thanks to the oversaturated market. However, if you’re on a tight budget, the choice narrows down quite a bit, and it becomes dangerous territory. The reason behind this is pretty simple – the cheaper the unit is, the less it has to offer both feature and quality-wise.
In order to avoid buying a worthless piece of equipment, you have to keep an eye on few things. In case you aren’t aware of these things, take a moment and check our review. We go into details and try to advise new buyers to make the right decision and avoid unpleasant scenarios.
The WEN 3970 is one of the units we find is worth looking into. It certainly isn’t the best thing on the market by any means, but it does offer some interesting features as well as consistent performance. On top of that, the price is more than acceptable, even for people who are on a tight budget.
- Power – 4.6 amp motor
- Operating speeds – 80, 120, 200 FPM
- Power source – Corded (Electric)
- Beveling vise
- Vertical feature
- Auto shut off
WEN 3970 – The Basics
This bandsaw can cut through aluminum, copper, brass, steel, and etcetera thanks to its capability to operate under different speeds. Therefore, versatility is somewhat the main selling point of this particular model. Other than that, it also offers a beveling vise which allows the user to cut at an angle from 0 up to 60 degrees. It can cope with pipes that are up to 4-1/2 inches in diameter, and even rectangular materials that are up to 4 x 6 inches in size.
The 4.6 amp motor offers more than enough power for these applications to go as smooth as possible. As far as the complexity goes, it’s quite an easy-to-use machine, especially if you already have some experience with these power tools. The overall quality is decent, but one cannot say it’s flawless.
The design is pretty conventional with one exception – it can be adjusted and turned into a vertical unit within a few seconds. While it’s not an impressive feature by any means, it does deserve to be mentioned, especially if you’re looking for an all-in-one unit. Therefore, if horizontal cutting isn’t your cup of tea, lifting the bandsaw head and attaching it to the table will solve all of your problems.
A stand with a pair of wheels is also included with the product. It’s a great addition because it significantly improves the portability of this machine. The wheels are of reasonable quality, but they aren’t amazing by any means. In fact, some people found them to be a bit on the weak side. The stand is relatively stable even though it’s quite thin and seems to be of questionable quality.
The beveling vise does come in handy, especially if you’re looking to make some angled cuts. It allows you to cut any angle between 0 and 60 degrees as well as 45-degree cuts up to 3-1/2 inches in diameter.
As we mentioned, WEN 3970 works well with a vast array of different metals including copper, steel, brass, and more. The main thing you should pay attention to when cutting through different materials is the speed of the blade itself. Thanks to the ability to change operating speeds, one can fine-tune the machine according to the density of the material they are cutting.
On top of that, thanks to the feature that allows you to transform the unit into a vertical one, you can cut in bulk as well as cut peculiar and complex shapes. It won’t yield grade-A results, but it definitely performs well and is quite consistent.
Easy to use
Can be hard to adjust
Things we liked about it
The overall versatility of this product is what makes it attractive to most people. It can cope with a range of different materials and yield good results with most of them. The hobbyists love this model because of its simplistic yet quite effective design.
The included stand and wheels are also noteworthy. Even though it doesn’t seem like a game-breaking feature, the portability is pretty important to most people. It doesn’t matter whether you’re planning on moving the unit frequently, the ability to do so is what counts.
Things we didn’t like
It’s a good saw for the money, but don’t expect any miraculous performances. You’ll definitely get what you paid for, but not much above that. On top of that, while the machine seems reliable enough, it’s not foreseen for huge projects and continuous use because it tends to struggle with inconsistency.
Also, adjusting the blade can be a nuisance if you’re not familiar with the concept. Even after one reads the user manual, there are some things that simply aren’t answered and can be an issue for the inexperienced users. The best thing you can do is either look for videos and guides online or contact the support department, which isn’t as responsive as one would expect.
The opinions are quite mixed when it comes to WEN 3970. Most DIYers like its simplicity and efficiency while the avid professionals aren’t too impressed with it. It’s an expected reaction though because the unit isn’t foreseen for professional purposes in the first place. That doesn’t mean it can’t cope with demanding projects, but it’s not specifically designed to do so.
If you’re on a limited budget, then this model might offer the most features when it comes to this particular price range. On the other hand, if you aren’t as limited, take a moment and check some other ones out as well. The WEN 3970 isn’t a bad investment per se, but there are plenty of other models that are similar in performance but cheaper.
It all comes down to how much money you’re willing to invest and what do you expect from that investment. The price-to-quality ratio of this model is okay, but far from impressive. As far as we are concerned, it can be a good purchase but it’s not necessarily an ideal one.