PORTER-CABLE 16" Variable Speed Scroll Saw with Stand

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Review by FJPetruso posted 02-13-2011 10:39 PM 16643 views 0 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch
PORTER-CABLE 16" Variable Speed Scroll Saw with Stand PORTER-CABLE 16" Variable Speed Scroll Saw with Stand PORTER-CABLE 16" Variable Speed Scroll Saw with Stand Click the pictures to enlarge them

I have a 24” Delta / Rockwell scroll saw but found it too hard to change blades for scroll work & has too much vibration. When I decided to get a bit more serious about scroll work I checked outquite a few brands & “off”-brands. Yes I’d love to have a New Dewalt or Delta but you need at least $600 to get a new one. I wanted a saw for under $200. There’s quite a few out there… Most of them crappy. But the best one I found in that price range is this PORTER-CABLE 16” Variable Speed Scroll Saw with Stand. It has easy left & right tilt of the work surface up to 45 degrees both ways, a nozzel to blow dust away from our sight line, a vacuum hook-up, very easy blade change (something I really wanted that my old scroll saw dosen’t), easy adjust tension, a dedicated stand &, unlike some reviews I have read) quite tollerable vibration. I did have to make some adjustment to the blade clamps to make the blade face straight forward. But that was very easy to do. The only thing that I would change is to add a thicker insert for the blade to go through. I have to add a circular gasket to shim the insert up because there is a step from the insert to the work surface that catches your work on, especially if you work on small sized projects. This wasn’t hard to do either. I do have to agree that the work light is a bit weak, so I use a battery operated portable light I have that sticks to the stand with magnets. I gave it only 4 stars because of the previous three reasons. But in the $200 price range, (mine was $189) it the best for the bucks.

-- Frank, Florissant, Missouri "The New Show-Me Woodshop"

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313 posts in 2798 days

10 comments so far

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jim C

1463 posts in 2187 days

#1 posted 02-14-2011 02:00 AM

Thanks Frank
It looks like a doable machine without the crazy price.
I’m sure I could make it useful.

-- When I was a boy, I was told "anyone can be President", now I'm beginning to believe it!

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Steven H

1117 posts in 2149 days

#2 posted 02-14-2011 06:10 AM

You got any vibration problems with it?

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2656 posts in 2012 days

#3 posted 02-14-2011 01:19 PM

I have this saw and it does have a lot of vibration. Otherwise it’s ok for what I use it for.

-- Life is good.

View FJPetruso's profile


313 posts in 2798 days

#4 posted 02-15-2011 05:04 AM

Compared to my old Delta / Rockwell 24” scroll saw, it has a lot less vibration. And thats considering it is a lot lighter than my old cast iron tabled saw. The little vibration that it has is no problem to me. But like any other stationary tool, if it’s bolted to the stand securely & you’ve added some heavy tools to the shelf underneath, that will do a lot reduce the vibration of a tool quite a bit.

-- Frank, Florissant, Missouri "The New Show-Me Woodshop"

View jerrells's profile


891 posts in 1973 days

#5 posted 02-26-2011 06:19 AM

I, also, have that PC 16” saw. I do not notice an excessive vibration from the unit. Yes, the light is almost useless but I still use it. the thing I dislike the most is the lower clamp screw. Too hard to get to it. I have tried to talk to PC about it and I am still looking for a workaround. Overall, for the price, I would rate the saw at a 3 to 4 on a five scale. If I had it to do ove, and had the money, I would go for the DeWalt 788 but who would not.

-- Just learning the craft my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ practiced.

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1 post in 1653 days

#6 posted 05-20-2011 05:11 AM

I’ve had the Portercable 16” scrollsaw in my shop for a couple of months now. Seems to be a pretty good addition for the price. Very little vibration, it can accomodate both plain and pin end scroll blades. Very easy to change.

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123 posts in 2110 days

#7 posted 02-07-2012 06:40 PM

I HAD the same scroll saw. After having it for about 9 months, it stopped working. I had noticed some vibration, but decided it was just the machine. I also bought the extended warranty, but because it was within the one year manufacture’s warranty, it had to be shipped away. After 3 months I found out that the piece is made overseas (the part was on back order for over a month) and Porter Cable stuck its name on the product. I used to hold Porter Cable in high regard, now I don’t know if I will purchase another.

View Peg5273's profile


2 posts in 383 days

#8 posted 11-10-2014 03:46 AM

I purchased this saw and love it!!! Can you tell me how to make the circular gasket to shim the insert up? Most of my projects are small and hard to get a smooth cut because of this.


View lynn1953's profile


3 posts in 882 days

#9 posted 03-20-2015 10:30 PM

I made a “wrench” for the bottom blade screw, by cutting some slots in a 1/2 inch pvc pipe. works better than trying to finger it.

View FJPetruso's profile


313 posts in 2798 days

#10 posted 03-21-2015 02:07 AM

Neat trick… I’m going to make one too & try that out.

-- Frank, Florissant, Missouri "The New Show-Me Woodshop"

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