Author Topic: 40 yr old table saw upgrade  (Read 7996 times)

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Offline blaszcsj

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40 yr old table saw upgrade
« on: January 02, 2016, 05:00 PM »
My uncle recently retired from woodworking and gave me his 3hp Rockwell unisaw. I finally had time to work on it over the holiday. It was my uncle and dads first saw 40 years ago. I added a biesmeyer fence rail, very super cool tools fence, Jessem roller hold downs, new paddle style safety switch, and a laminated top side table I made from made from baltic birch with dominos. It's going to kick  in my shop for the next 40 years.

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Offline WelshWood

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2016, 05:25 PM »
Bet that's going to change your methods of doing woodwork!

~WW
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Offline Rollin22Petes

  • Posts: 178
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2016, 06:31 PM »
Those older unisaws are great table saws. Here's a few photos of one I picked over the summer it was built in early 60's. What's really cool about it came from a cabinet shop in the hospital my mom was a nurse at when I was kid. A guy named Roland run the shop and would give scraps to play around with and let me hang around with him as he worked. Who knew some 30+ years later I would by pure luck have a chance to own it fortunately it has most all it's original parts including the cast iron goose egg motor cover I plan on restoring back to original. I forgot too mention I only paid $100 for it. 

Offline T. Ernsberger

  • Posts: 860
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2016, 06:41 PM »
Those older unisaws are great table saws. Here's a few photos of one I picked over the summer it was built in early 60's. What's really cool about it came from a cabinet shop in the hospital my mom was a nurse at when I was kid. A guy named Roland run the shop and would give scraps to play around with and let me hang around with him as he worked. Who knew some 30+ years later I would by pure luck have a chance to own it fortunately it has most all it's original parts including the cast iron goose egg motor cover I plan on restoring back to original. I forgot too mention I only paid $100 for it.


I have a 1952 Delta Unisaw.  I found it at Habitat Restore for $150.00.  I sold the fence and rails on ebay for $345 and bought a Biesmeyer Fence.  It has a 3hp, 1ph motor.  They are great saws.  You were lucky to find one with the egg.  The eggs are very hard to find aND fetch a high price at auction. 

Offline Rollin22Petes

  • Posts: 178
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2016, 06:52 PM »
Yeah I didn't realize the eggs were so rare until I did a little research it's worth more than I paid for the whole saw.  I have the original fence and rails but the rails are in poor condition so I will also be selling them in favor of a newer more accurate setup. Does yours have the original repulsion induction motor I thought there highest hp rating was 1 1/2 hp those old bullet motors also fetch high prices

Offline T. Ernsberger

  • Posts: 860
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2016, 06:58 PM »
Mine has an aftermarket 3hp motor.  It was on it when I bought it.  My lumber yard has two of the 1 1/2 induction motors in there warehouse that have been rewound and we're never reinstalled on the saws.  I read some where that the induction motors were under rated and actually produced more power than 1 1/2 hp.

Offline Rollin22Petes

  • Posts: 178
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2016, 07:11 PM »
I read the same thing about hp ratings on Old Woodworking Machinery website. Mine has what they call a bowling ball motor it came along after the bullet motors it's only rated at 1 1/2 hp but cuts just as good as the 3 hp PM66 I have at work.

Offline T. Ernsberger

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2016, 07:20 PM »
I took a 4in hole saw and put on a hose adapter so I could hook it up to my dust collector.  I also took some great stuff low expanding foam and sealed around the table where it collects to the cabinet.  I found some magnetic sheets and use them to block off the miter opening.  All of these mods have helped with dust. 

Offline blaszcsj

  • Posts: 388
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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2016, 08:12 PM »
I took a 4in hole saw and put on a hose adapter so I could hook it up to my dust collector.  I also took some great stuff low expanding foam and sealed around the table where it collects to the cabinet.  I found some magnetic sheets and use them to block off the miter opening.  All of these mods have helped with dust. 

I love old iron machines. This one has sentimental value and will never leave my possession.

I was going to do something similar to this to the bottom of the saw. I also thought about modifying the stock splitter to accommodate a modern saw blade guard with dust extraction.
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Offline EA Custom Millwork

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2016, 08:31 PM »
I have an early 50's Delta from my high school woodshop.  They were dismantling the whole industrial arts program in the mid 80's and I traded labor for it and several other machines.  I replaced the 3ph motor and think the arbor needs replacement as well.  Is there a market for the old fence?  I'd love to put an updated fence on it.

Offline blaszcsj

  • Posts: 388
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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2016, 08:36 PM »
I have the old fence for mine with both 36" an 50" rails. I don't know who buy the old fence but I'd sell them. It's no where near as nice as a newer fence setup.
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Offline Rollin22Petes

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2016, 08:43 PM »
Yes there is a market for the original fence I've seen some on ebay go for any were from $100 to $400 depending on year and condition. There is a pretty good following of guys who restore these saws back to factory original if you go too Old Woodworking Machines there's a wealth of info on these saws and many others. There's also a guy on ebay that sales good quality reproduction parts just search unisaw or delta Rockwell. You could also go too Plaza machinery.com they only specialize in old American made machines and parts   

Offline T. Ernsberger

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2016, 09:31 PM »
The guy I sold my fence to drove 3 hours to pick it up and he said he was lookin for a while.  It was the 52in rails and fence. I bought a Powermatic Biesmeyer type fence,  it installs pretty easily. 

Offline ear3

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #13 on: January 03, 2016, 08:19 AM »
Way to go with continuing the tradition.  Can I ask, what brand is the miter gauge on the left (next to the Incra on the right)?  It looks very heavy duty.
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Offline rvieceli

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #14 on: January 03, 2016, 09:11 AM »
@Edward A Reno III

Edward that's a JessEm Mite-R-Excel miter gauge. They made it for a while a few years ago, but it is apparently not produced any more.

http://go.rockler.com/tech/RTD10000137AA.pdf

You might want to email Jessem and see if they have any old stock:  jessem@jessem.com

They occasionally come up on Ebay

Ron

Offline T. Ernsberger

  • Posts: 860
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #15 on: January 03, 2016, 09:14 AM »
Those older unisaws are great table saws. Here's a few photos of one I picked over the summer it was built in early 60's. What's really cool about it came from a cabinet shop in the hospital my mom was a nurse at when I was kid. A guy named Roland run the shop and would give scraps to play around with and let me hang around with him as he worked. Who knew some 30+ years later I would by pure luck have a chance to own it fortunately it has most all it's original parts including the cast iron goose egg motor cover I plan on restoring back to original. I forgot too mention I only paid $100 for it.

Is your saw missing one of the table extensions?

Offline JD2720

  • Posts: 1028
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2016, 09:18 AM »
That is a nice saw.
I got hooked on Unisaws in junior high school.
Here is a option for a guard & splitter.

Shark Guard

Offline blaszcsj

  • Posts: 388
  • I like building stuff with my hands.
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #17 on: January 03, 2016, 09:20 AM »
@Edward A Reno III

Edward that's a JessEm Mite-R-Excel miter gauge. They made it for a while a few years ago, but it is apparently not produced any more.

http://go.rockler.com/tech/RTD10000137AA.pdf

You might want to email Jessem and see if they have any old stock:  jessem@jessem.com

They occasionally come up on Ebay

Ron

Yes it's jessem. I have no idea why they stopped making it because I would buy a second one to replace the incra. The handle is solid turned an knurled aluminum an the base plate is 3/4" billet. The extrusion is very beefy and solid. And the rule on top is on a separate bar for extremely easy calibration.
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Offline blaszcsj

  • Posts: 388
  • I like building stuff with my hands.
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #18 on: January 03, 2016, 09:25 AM »
That is a nice saw.
I got hooked on Unisaws in junior high school.
Here is a option for a guard & splitter.

Shark Guard

I was looking at the shark guard or the Bork "riving knife". I was also thinking about getting a saw stop guard with dust evac and modifying the splitter to accept the latching mechanism.
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Offline Rollin22Petes

  • Posts: 178
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #19 on: January 03, 2016, 11:17 AM »
Those older unisaws are great table saws. Here's a few photos of one I picked over the summer it was built in early 60's. What's really cool about it came from a cabinet shop in the hospital my mom was a nurse at when I was kid. A guy named Roland run the shop and would give scraps to play around with and let me hang around with him as he worked. Who knew some 30+ years later I would by pure luck have a chance to own it fortunately it has most all it's original parts including the cast iron goose egg motor cover I plan on restoring back to original. I forgot too mention I only paid $100 for it.

Is your saw missing one of the table extensions?
It was when I first got it but I was able too locate one on Ebay

Offline WarnerConstCo.

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #20 on: January 03, 2016, 03:15 PM »
I do not like the tubular T style locking fences like the beismeyer.

I actually prefer the old style fence with the tubes and micro adjust.

My favorite fences are pinned rack and pinion style.

They are solid, simple saws that will last forever basically.

Offline EA Custom Millwork

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #21 on: January 04, 2016, 03:08 PM »
I do not like the tubular T style locking fences like the beismeyer.

I actually prefer the old style fence with the tubes and micro adjust.

My favorite fences are pinned rack and pinion style.

They are solid, simple saws that will last forever basically.
Mine is for sale if you're interested

Offline WarnerConstCo.

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Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #22 on: January 04, 2016, 03:15 PM »
I don't own a unisaw, I have had numerous ones, but only to fiddle with and resell.

Offline transam

  • Posts: 1
Re: 40 yr old table saw upgrade
« Reply #23 on: July 14, 2018, 09:42 AM »
There is someone selling cast iron motor covers that are better than the originals on Vintage Machinery and eBay for $150 and shipping is only $25. Original covers are only 1/4" thick and his are 3/8", plus they are made from a better grade of cast iron. The originals break too easy because they are too thin and soft.