Craftsman 12" Bandsaw Rebuild Part 1(Taking it all apart)

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Blog entry by Brian024 posted 02-10-2011 09:55 PM 13717 reads 0 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is a current non woodworking project I’m working on, it rebuilding/restoring a 12” Craftsman bandsaw. The number printed on the body of the saw is 103.24280, which I’ve researched and found that it was manufactured between 1930 to 1950. It was given to me for free from my grandpa who works part time at a small airport which recently changed ownership. Many of the machinery in the shop was upgraded and much of what was not kept was thrown out, luckily my grandpa caught them. I didn’t get any pictures from when I first recieved it but it was on a farily larger metal cart and was a pain to move around. The original motor was 1/3 hp and I plan on upgrading that to a 1/2 hp. I’m also going to repaint it, I’m not a fan of the old dull gray, I know its original but I may paint it black or red. Other than the motor the only other parts I need to replace are the rubber on the wheels.

In order to paint it I needed to completely take it apart, this gave me a chance to check the bearings which all seem to be ok. Before it was taken apart I checked to see if the wheel’s needed to be balanced and it seems that at some point in the past they had been already.

Between the motor, pulleys, and tire rubber I’m putting about $120.00 into this which has me wondering if it’s worth it. But then again I’ve been practically crying for a bandsaw and it sure beats having to pay upwards of $400.00 for one. I’ve been checking craigslist but the only woodworking tools for sale are contractor’s tools.

17 comments so far

View HokieMojo's profile


2104 posts in 3932 days

#1 posted 02-11-2011 12:24 AM

for $120, it is tough to beat. It doesn’t have the features that would probably be on a 14” or larger saw (like cast arms andthe potential for a riser block, but I assume it is still better than my 10” saw that cost $150 new. I also find an appeal in saving older machines. If they are well kept, there is no reason thhey shouldn’t last in very good condition for a very long time. I say go for it.

View HokieMojo's profile


2104 posts in 3932 days

#2 posted 02-11-2011 12:25 AM

also, you will learn more about the machine by taking it apart and reassembling.

View Rob200's profile


313 posts in 3373 days

#3 posted 02-11-2011 12:27 AM

If you are having fun and learning some thing then it is worth it

-- Robert Laddusaw and no I am not smarter then a fifth grader ( and no I canot spell so if it is a problem don't read it ))

View FloridaArt's profile


863 posts in 3502 days

#4 posted 02-11-2011 12:35 AM

Looks like a fun little project.

-- Art | Bradenton, Florida

View rippered's profile


3 posts in 3229 days

#5 posted 02-11-2011 04:38 AM

You might try finding a used motor, just picked up a one horse for 10 bucks. Great saw.

View Brian024's profile


358 posts in 3604 days

#6 posted 02-11-2011 04:46 AM

The quality of this saw seems pretty good, the wheels and table are all cast iron and heavy. It has about 6” of resaw capacity, which may not seem like a lot but it’s fine for what I need. Sure I would love to have a 14” or even an 18” or larger but I have been wanting something to allow me to cut decent curves. I had an older model 10” which was ok, trying to cut through 3/4” ply wasn’t fun though.

View brianinpa's profile


1812 posts in 3927 days

#7 posted 02-11-2011 04:55 AM

I have a similar project (only a little newer than yours) waiting for warmer weather. Mine is currently black, but that is going to change. I was surprised with what a 12” bandsaw will cut, so for now I am happy with it.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View JosMichael's profile


1 post in 2794 days

#8 posted 04-23-2011 11:52 PM

Hope the project has gone well. I workiing on one of these saws as too. Just curious if you had to replace the thrust rollers. I’m missing one and am trying to fugure out what could work in its place.

View emart's profile


445 posts in 2832 days

#9 posted 05-03-2011 04:36 AM

i have the same model saw except maybe a few years newer (its on my blog.) the main differences are that my saw has a 1 hp motor on it and the color/logos beyong that it is the exact same machine. do you have a copy of the manual? if not i can link it to you

-- tools are only as good as the hands that hold them

View WoodworkingGeek's profile


181 posts in 2896 days

#10 posted 07-25-2011 12:14 AM

Keep your eye on cregslist, I saw Grizzlys ultimate band saw that was only used two times, and it was only $200. I think the guy was a little demented because he thought it was a drill press. I’m NOT kidding!! unfortunately I was too late, someone else got it before I got a chance.
So keep your eye out!!

View WayneC's profile


13794 posts in 4301 days

#11 posted 07-25-2011 12:22 AM

LOL. I just saw a saw listed on CL for $40…. If the photo is to believed it is a cheap router/router table….

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 3877 days

#12 posted 07-25-2011 12:37 AM

Congrats, sounds like a fun project.

View Brassnut's profile


2 posts in 2520 days

#13 posted 01-26-2012 05:43 AM

OK I really need to pick you Brain on this saw. I’m Missing the rip fence mounting bar on the Handel side and can not find it listed on the parts Diagram. I may need to beg you for some dimensions.

-- Robert hidden in the Secret City

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2879 days

#14 posted 01-26-2012 06:08 AM

the fence and bar is an option. You had to buy those as an extra and add it yourself in most cases.

View emart's profile


445 posts in 2832 days

#15 posted 01-26-2012 06:21 AM

yeah brassnut you can pick up a universal fence from sears for $40. all you have to do is drill 4 holes in the table to put the mounts on and put a piece of angle bar on the back of the table to support the fence. i have pics of that on my blog. its a pretty straightforward add-on not matter what kit you use

-- tools are only as good as the hands that hold them

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