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View ToddJB's profile

Old Delta bandsaw, worth it?

by ToddJB
posted 09-20-2012 08:36 PM


33 replies so far

View cstrang's profile

cstrang

1769 posts in 1826 days


#1 posted 09-20-2012 08:51 PM

I love vintage tools and im a sucker for them whenever I see them, I would say call him and ask what the repairs are, do a bit of research to see of u can get the parts and as to how much they would be and then compare the price to a newer model, if you save a considerable amount and can find the time to do the repairs, go for it. Plus there is the pride factor of breathing new life into an old tool. I am not an expert on vintage tools so I am sure someone here can shed a lot more light o this for you than I can, just figured I’d pop in my two cents lol. Good luck!

-- A hammer dangling from a wall will bang and sound like work when the wind blows the right way.

View AJswoodshop's profile

AJswoodshop

1057 posts in 934 days


#2 posted 09-20-2012 09:23 PM

That’s a great saw! I have a 1936 Delta/Rockwell band saw and I love it. With a little work, this saw would be a great tool in your shop. If you could get it for $100, that would be a great deal.

AJ

-- If I can do it.....so can you! -AJswoodshop

View shampeon's profile

shampeon

1377 posts in 841 days


#3 posted 09-20-2012 10:15 PM

Bandsaws are pretty simple machines. There isn’t much of anything that newer machines can offer over this one. And there are significant disadvantages to many newer machines (quality, stability, etc.).

For $120, the needed repairs would have be pretty significant for this not to be a screaming deal.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

View Wildwood's profile

Wildwood

1041 posts in 792 days


#4 posted 09-20-2012 10:49 PM

I also think bandsaws your looking at a great find. Already said bandsaws not complicated but would recommend checking local library for two great books “Bandsaw Handbook,” by Mark Duginske or “The Bandsaw book,” by Lonnie Bird. If had to buy one book would recommend “The bandsaw Handbook.”

While not sure of model number, when you find out think can find parts manual on-line. Lot depends on what is wrong with those bandsaws. Replacing tires, and thrust bearing or wheel bearings not a big deal.

You might just get by with downloading Louis Iturra catalog.

There is a Iturra catalog on line from 2010
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/82359640/Iturra_Design_catalogue_2010.pdf

-- Bill

View Dwain's profile

Dwain

323 posts in 2517 days


#5 posted 09-20-2012 11:12 PM

I guess it’s unanimous. Find out what needs to be repaired, but understand that all parts can be found. You have an opportunity to buy a saw that you will NEVER grow out of. You may need to make some updates, but you will never out grow it. Well worth $120. Heck, offer $90.00 and see what happens.

-- When you earnestly believe you can compensate for a lack of skill by doubling your efforts, there is no end to what you CAN'T do

View teejk's profile

teejk

1215 posts in 1342 days


#6 posted 09-20-2012 11:12 PM

I cut meat for years on a Biro Bros saw (circa 1940 maybe?) that I don’t think ever needed major service. As pointed out above, not much to go wrong. At that price I’d bite. If you do, post back before you have buyer’s remorse when you fire it up (particularly when it comes to “drift” on straight cuts…every machine is different I think, some going right, some going left, few ever going straight in my experience).

View Loren's profile

Loren

7571 posts in 2306 days


#7 posted 09-20-2012 11:23 PM

It’s a good one. Cracked castings are the major thing to
steer clear of with band saws. Most other issues can be
fixed without too much effort or expense.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

506 posts in 857 days


#8 posted 09-20-2012 11:31 PM

Buy it.. clean it up.. enjoy. Parts are readily available from multiple sources including directly from Delta.. it has remained virtually unchanged for decades. They are also very easy to work on; here is what all the parts look like just in case you were wondering :)

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View toolie's profile

toolie

1762 posts in 1286 days


#9 posted 09-21-2012 12:10 AM

toddjb ........ check out that linked iturra catalog on page 96, “modern vs. vintage delta 14” bandsaw” and also page 141, “purchasing a used bandsaw”. that should give you the informatin necessary to determine how much work the featured bandsaw will need.

-- there's a solution to every problem.......you just have to be willing to find it.

View ToddJB's profile

ToddJB

2148 posts in 788 days


#10 posted 09-21-2012 12:51 AM

Toolie, I read those sections. Wildwood, thanks for posting it. Thats very informative You all have sold me, now if I can get the seller to contact me back. I hate anticipation… I’m miserable at Christmas.

Thanks so much for all advice. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View Ed's profile

Ed

28 posts in 733 days


#11 posted 09-21-2012 04:22 AM

+1 for Louis Iturra who is very helpful.

Are you wanting to spend a lot of time refinishing and rebuilding machines or woodworking? You will spend a bunch of hours on that old Delta, which can be fun if that is your interest. If you enjoy that then go for it, but it may set your woodworking projects to a later time.

It looks like Brad is in the middle of a beautiful job or refurbishing and refinishing an old Delta. Is that what you have in mind too?

Limitations you asked: Is the motor 1/3 or 1/2 HP or what? It may be too small and new one may cost $$. Iturra says use 1.5 HP if you want to resaw. How will you collect dust off that machine? How will you guard the belt drive? Is a quick tension release important to you?

Another option would be to find something used that requires no work that costs what you will eventually spend on the old Delta (tires, belt, sheet metal, bearings, cleaning, paint, wiring, casters, guides?, spring, your time?, etc). When you get to the point that you want to upgrade from a 14” machine you can sell and get you money out of a used machine.

Be realistic about the money, time, and your interests in undertaking refurbishing projects.

Have fun.

Ed

-- Ed

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

506 posts in 857 days


#12 posted 09-21-2012 06:02 AM

It looks like Brad is in the middle of a beautiful job or refurbishing and refinishing an old Delta.

Thanks, but that picture was taken some time ago. The machine was restored about a year ago and has been working hard ever since without a single problem, smooth as silk and a joy to use. I could have just thrown on some new bearings, tires and a belt and run it like that, but after looking for info on the machine and seeing some of the fantastic work over at OWWM, I decided to go ahead and do a full restore. I picked it up for $85 off CL, and wound up dumping another $150 or so into it (for bearings, tires, belt, paint, misc. parts, etc..), along with a little more than two weeks worth of work. Most of that time was actually just sitting around waiting for the paint to dry sufficiently between re-coats. The restoration process along with pictures can be found over at OWWM in this thread .

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View OnlyJustME's profile

OnlyJustME

1562 posts in 1035 days


#13 posted 09-21-2012 06:59 AM

Is it really “dumping” when you came out with a machine like that?
Plus the added benefit of doing the restoration, you know that machine inside and out.
I’m still working on a Homecraft Delta Milwaukee 10” bandsaw restore. Need to get the bearings, tires and new blade guides and it will be set. It’s operational as is and i’ve done some testing on it. I really like it even though it is only 10” and i’m sure Todd will like the one he found if he is able to get it.
Wish it was closer to me so i could get it. lol

-- In the end, when your life flashes before your eyes, will you like what you see?

View dhazelton's profile

dhazelton

1186 posts in 954 days


#14 posted 09-21-2012 12:35 PM

$120 is an extremely fair price for that machine and unless it needs new cast wheels or something significant don’t insult the seller with a low ball offer. Bearings, tires, new grounded cord, blade guides, riser – EVERYTHING is available for that saw. And when you change out those parts you learn how the machine works and it becomes a pleasure to use.

View ToddJB's profile

ToddJB

2148 posts in 788 days


#15 posted 09-21-2012 02:21 PM

Okay. Here’s the scoop. He still has it. I’m going to check it out tonight. I apparently woke him up this morning at 8 (oops) and could barely get through his morning voice combined with my terrible cell phone to hear him say that the trunnion blocks need replaced. Upon looking it up after our convo I see what trunnions are, but I’m not sure what the “block” part is. Maybe that’s just an early morning addition to the trunnion. It seems odd to me that a big chunk of metal like that would wear our or break. Is this common?

I do see I can probably pick some up on ebay if needed, but they’re wanting $30ish for one.

I keep everyone abreast.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View OnlyJustME's profile

OnlyJustME

1562 posts in 1035 days


#16 posted 09-21-2012 04:27 PM

That seams to be the most common weak point on these machines since they are cast out of a light weight metal.
$30 is high. I’m not sure but i think most of the 14” bandsaws have the same trunnion except for the rikon and laguna.
From what i saw looking at them at woodcraft the Powermatic, General, Delta, and my old AMT all look to be the same. I’m also assuming that the Grizzly is the same too and i was going to order some from them for my AMT 14” BS that needs repairs. they are only ~$7 each plus shipping. Havent ordered them yet since it isnt a priority right now.

-- In the end, when your life flashes before your eyes, will you like what you see?

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

506 posts in 857 days


#17 posted 09-21-2012 06:05 PM

You can get a pair of them for under $20 (about $8 a piece at places like toolpartsdirect). The most common reason for them breaking is trying to transport the machine with the table still attached. When moving, just remove the two adjusting knobs completely and the table lifts right off.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1351 days


#18 posted 09-21-2012 06:05 PM

Iturra all day long. That’s too cheap to pass up. I’ve got a restored 20” Delta Rockwell that I absolutely love. It’s about 2 feet taller than me and an absolute misery to move. It’s from the 40’s and I can still order parts for it. Carter even makes a conversion. For that price, you could really trick it out.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View stevemorris's profile

stevemorris

46 posts in 963 days


#19 posted 09-21-2012 09:36 PM

the old delta bandsaws were a good solid machine, its really too bad there are so many chinese made clones of it, it gives the good oldies a bad name. the truly north american version is far superior

the ironic thing is that replacement parts from delta are probably chinese made

-- My Shop is a Beaver Lodge

View ToddJB's profile

ToddJB

2148 posts in 788 days


#20 posted 09-24-2012 02:15 PM

It’s mine! She’s resting quitely in my garage just awaiting a little TLC. It’s a 1946. The trunnions were both broken and will need to be replaced. It appears that the tires are newer. It only has the 1/3hp motor. Doesn’t have much vibration even without the added weight of the table. The table has a couple of small dings in it but is nice and flat. It does have the belt guard.

I won’t have any time to get to really dive into it until Weds, and I’ll try to make a short video because I’d really like some adivice from those who have mess around with these old machines, because I’m not sure exactly what a good one should sound like.

Thanks for all the comments so far. I will be interested to see what ya’ll have to say after seeing her run.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View Surfside's profile

Surfside

3170 posts in 831 days


#21 posted 09-24-2012 02:18 PM

Todd, if you need parts for that vintage machine, a good source would be http://owwm.org. A lot of great folks who loves restoring the old school machines hang around there. Surely an easy find.

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View toolie's profile

toolie

1762 posts in 1286 days


#22 posted 09-24-2012 11:52 PM

congrats on the buy pending posting of pics. can’t emphasize enough how much of a resource lou iturra can be rehabbing old delta BSs. he’d be my first stop for an overall strategy and then you can decide where to shop for any necessary parts.

-- there's a solution to every problem.......you just have to be willing to find it.

View shampeon's profile

shampeon

1377 posts in 841 days


#23 posted 09-25-2012 05:15 AM

Sweet! Pictures are a must, of course.

I’ll warn you now, going down the path of old arn makes most new tools seem ugly and cheap.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

View Surfside's profile

Surfside

3170 posts in 831 days


#24 posted 09-25-2012 02:00 PM

Never say ugly to a vintage machine. Cheers.

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View ToddJB's profile

ToddJB

2148 posts in 788 days


#25 posted 09-28-2012 02:33 PM

Here are some pics! All pics are from the condition I broght it home in, except the last one.



The Badge has pretty much no fading. It will polish up nicely



Lower Thrust bearing is seized


Seem to be newer tires

The bad: The upper wheel seems rub on the back of the housing on the left side.

The Bad: Drive axel (better name?) is fairly boogered from a loose set screw. Will try to file down. Also the upper pulley is warped which is where I am getting my vibration from.

Table Top after a little effort. Very little pitting, a couple small scratches. The only really noticible blemish is a 1/2 nick in the miter guage slot that is about 1/16th deep. My miter guage does not get hung up on it though.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

1794 posts in 1151 days


#26 posted 09-28-2012 02:42 PM

That’s going to make you a good saw, and one to be proud of. Congrats….looking forward to pics after you get it back into service.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, we sent 'em to Washington.

View ToddJB's profile

ToddJB

2148 posts in 788 days


#27 posted 09-28-2012 02:49 PM

Ed,

I see what you were speaking about being realistic with my expectations and how it can be more money up front. So far I’ve spent 40 in supplies (WD-40, scotch brite, steel wool, DA, and wax), 16 on a set of thrust bearings, I will need a new upper pulley, a two trunnions, and I think I will get the highly reviewed Power Twist belt. So I’m looking at least another $150 on top of my intial $120. For now believe I’ll be fine with the 1/3hp and I have 1/2hp as a back if need be, but will keep my peepers pealed for a good deal on something with some more umph.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View OnlyJustME's profile

OnlyJustME

1562 posts in 1035 days


#28 posted 09-28-2012 06:21 PM

Doesn’t seem like it will add up to that much. Harbor Freight has those link belts cheaper. Only dif is they are green and they come out to $5 a foot instead of $7. cheaper if you find a coupon.

-- In the end, when your life flashes before your eyes, will you like what you see?

View ToddJB's profile

ToddJB

2148 posts in 788 days


#29 posted 09-28-2012 06:34 PM

Matt,

You’re my favorite. That’s twice now you’ve saved me over ten dollars.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View OnlyJustME's profile

OnlyJustME

1562 posts in 1035 days


#30 posted 09-28-2012 06:42 PM

Glad i could help. Money is always tight for me (see avatar pic) which doesn’t mean i go cheap i just trim where i know it wont affect quality.
Don’t know if you have a HF near you or get the ValuePak mailer but i recently found the HF 20%off one item coupon in that mailer. Around here it’s a blue colored envelope with a bunch of coupon/adds/discounts for local businesses and services.

-- In the end, when your life flashes before your eyes, will you like what you see?

View shampeon's profile

shampeon

1377 posts in 841 days


#31 posted 09-28-2012 08:04 PM

Are you sure the upper wheel will rub when the blade is in tension and the wheels aligned (ie the blade tracks correctly)?

Ditch that warped blade right quick. Get a good couple Timberwolf, Lennox, or similar blades (around $15 each).

You can get good machined cast iron pulleys from Grizzly for cheap, and I think they carry Timberwolf blades to piggyback on shipping.

The OWWM guys would definitely approve of the belt guard on that saw, which is probably worth half of what you paid for the entire saw.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6939 posts in 1572 days


#32 posted 09-28-2012 08:20 PM

Nice find. Enjoy the restoration process.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Surfside's profile

Surfside

3170 posts in 831 days


#33 posted 09-28-2012 09:18 PM

Good luck on your restoration process. Find the best blades in this thread: http://lumberjocks.com/topics/41668

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

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