Refurbishing a Craftsman "King Seeley" tablesaw

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Blog entry by biltron posted 12-31-2011 07:23 AM 10043 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello Lumberjocks -

I’m renting a house that came with an old table saw in the basement – a Craftsman – made by King Seeley Corporation.

I found a good description of it here: and the manual here:

Eventually I hope to buy a house and get a “real” table saw, but in the meantime, I thought I’d see what I could do with this one. I tried to saw through a 3/4” piece of walnut and mostly got smoke! Decided to get a new blade and see if that would fix it. I took off the old blade and saw it was a 7 1/4” with a 5/8th arbor. Not having downloaded the manual yet, I went ahead and ordered the same size blade from Amazon – a thin kerf Freud Diablo. Well, right away I realized that the arbor was the wrong size – and I’m not sure how the previous owner got the old blade centered on the arbor without some kind of adapter, but I did not see one when I took it off. Back to the drawing board… downloaded the manual and found out that the King Seeley took a 8” blade with a 1/2” arbor. Could not find such a thing, so instead ordered an 8” blade with a 5/8th arbor:, and a 5/8th to 1/2” bushing: This made the saw run a lot smoother…. but now realized the belt had memorized the position it had been in for the last 10 years or so since it had been used – so did a little research and got one of the 1/2” power twist link belts. It was getting better! But still not passing the nickel test. Wondering why, I took it apart and noticed the arbor pulley was bent. I ordered a new one of those – and since they were only about $5 each, I got one for the motor as well. Finally it was running pretty smooth and I was able to make good cuts – but noticed that when cutting at 45 degree angles, the saw was way underpowered when using hard wood… So I decided to upgrade the motor from the original 1/2hp to a 1hp Grizzly.

All together I spent about $225.00 upgrading the saw. Well, I probably could have bought a newer and better saw on Craigslist for that price, but at least I had some fun and learned a few things about table saws. In the end I made a box for my wife out of cocobolo. The design was based on one by Claude Godcharles who teaches woodworking at a woodworking store in Belmont, CA. Here’s the box in the middle of being coated with a poly-acrylic. I found that reconditioning the saw was as much fun as making the box.

3 comments so far

View canadianchips's profile


2307 posts in 2415 days

#1 posted 12-31-2011 12:15 PM

It is very satisfying re-furbishing old tools.You can search out other old tools and do the same with them. Its addictive ! NO NEED to buy NEW anymore !

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View ridgeware's profile


1 post in 1322 days

#2 posted 03-10-2013 04:25 AM

I think I have a King-Seeley from the same era. It was my Dad’s and it means a lot to me. I need to get it working again. It’s an amazing tool. I was going to suggest that your saw did not have enough guts because you were running it at 120VAC instead of 240VAC. Those A/C motors can take both 120 and 240 and you basically get twice the power by feeding it 240 VAC. Then I looked at my HP. Mine is 1.5 HP. Wow. I guess 1/2 HP would be pokey. At 240 VAC, the 1.5 horse will cut through anything.

That is, if I could fix it. You left all sorts of links except the one I need!! How do I fix this part:

It’s basically the axle that the blade is screwed to. There’s a pulley with a set-screw that got off-kilter and dug that gash into the axle.

Do I even attempt to find this part or do I go to a machine shop and start winging it?

View joez's profile


120 posts in 2321 days

#3 posted 04-17-2014 01:27 AM

how do you change blades without an arbor lock, I would like to use fret slotting blades without destroying teeth or blade by using other methods of changing blades.

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