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Restoring a unisaw?

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Forum topic by alittleoff posted 11-28-2015 03:17 AM 915 views 0 times favorited 24 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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alittleoff

296 posts in 742 days


11-28-2015 03:17 AM

Picked up an old unisaw a few months back and finally got around to starting the restoration. At first I was just going to put a vfd on the 3 phase motor get it running and use it as it was. Now I’m wanting to make it as close to a new one as possible. I’m going to order a couple of new cast iron wings and that’s where the problem is, or first problem I might say. Since the wings will be new the old table will really look bad. There is no pitting on the table top but it has got stained over the years and I’ve got to do something to make the top blend together. What’s the best way to refinish the old top. I’ve even thought about trying to darken the new wings some way. The old top with new shiny extensions next to it looks really bad. Could a automotive machine shop machine the top down enough to get it looking new, keep it level and not be to thin? Would it cost a lot of money to do it? Any help will be appreciated thanks in advance.
Gerald


24 replies so far

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MrUnix

4232 posts in 1664 days


#1 posted 11-28-2015 03:21 AM

An auto machine shop probably can’t handle blanchard grinding the top. Why are you getting new extensions? Does the saw not have any now? If not, I’d probably try to find some used wings that already have the patina – they pop up all the time over on the OWWM site.

As for the restoration… in case you haven’t stumbled across them, here are two good articles over at the VM site that discuss disassembly and restoration of the Unisaw to get you started on your journey:

Unisaw Disassembly
How to Properly Disassemble and Clean a Unisaw

And here is my discussion regarding taking apart that jet-lock fence should you want to clean it up and paint it to match the saw:

Jet Lock Fence Disassembly

Cheers,
Brad

Edit: Just saw your other post showing the saw... looks like it already has one extension wing… why not just use it and build an extension table (maybe with a router insert) for the other side?

Double edit! Heck, I just looked at that picture again and it looks like it has both extensions… why do you want to replace them?

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

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ElChe

630 posts in 802 days


#2 posted 11-28-2015 05:30 AM

Pics or it didn’t happen. I’ve had reasonable success using wet dry sandpaper and kerosene with a wood block to purty up my unisaw when it was newish. but after fifteen years if it ain’t rust it ain’t a problem. Post some pics. :)

-- Tom - Measure twice cut once. Then measure again. Curse. Fudge.

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TheFridge

5765 posts in 951 days


#3 posted 11-28-2015 05:51 AM

Want to see mine?

Looks like doodoo but it works just fine.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

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ElChe

630 posts in 802 days


#4 posted 11-28-2015 06:08 AM

Mine is still purtier than The Fridge’s. :)

-- Tom - Measure twice cut once. Then measure again. Curse. Fudge.

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KevinL

29 posts in 816 days


#5 posted 11-28-2015 01:01 PM

If you are looking to get the top Blanchard ground, you will need to find a shop that has a Blanchard that is over twice the DIA of your table. The only way that you can do it with a smaller Blanchard is by putting a hole in the center of the part.

-- KevinL

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rwe2156

2198 posts in 946 days


#6 posted 11-28-2015 01:31 PM



Want to see mine?
- TheFridge
No?

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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rwe2156

2198 posts in 946 days


#7 posted 11-28-2015 01:31 PM


Want to see mine?
- TheFridge
Let me think…....No?

- rwe2156


-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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rwe2156

2198 posts in 946 days


#8 posted 11-28-2015 01:32 PM


Want to see mine?

Let me think…....No?

Sorry, couldn’t resist.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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rwe2156

2198 posts in 946 days


#9 posted 11-28-2015 01:32 PM

Want to see mine?
-The Fridge


NO!!

(Sorry, couldn t resist.)

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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rwe2156

2198 posts in 946 days


#10 posted 11-28-2015 01:33 PM

Seriously, I can’t image a top getting so warped it needed surface grinding.

Does that really happen?

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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rwe2156

2198 posts in 946 days


#11 posted 11-28-2015 01:37 PM

edit:dup

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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rwe2156

2198 posts in 946 days


#12 posted 11-28-2015 01:38 PM

edit: dup

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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alittleoff

296 posts in 742 days


#13 posted 11-29-2015 03:51 AM

I guess I’ll just clean it as well as I can an live with it. I really wanted it to look like new when I finished with it. Thinking about it though, after a couple of years and would look old again anyway.
Thanks
Gerald

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MrUnix

4232 posts in 1664 days


#14 posted 11-29-2015 03:58 AM

I guess I ll just clean it as well as I can an live with it. I really wanted it to look like new when I finished with it
- alittleoff

Depending on how much effort you want to put into it, with a little bit of elbow grease, you can get a cast iron table and wings to go from looking like this:

To this:

That is a C-man table (not mine), but it’s all the same. See this thread at OWWM for details.

I don’t usually go that extreme… start with a razor to get most of the rust and gunk off, then various applications of solvents along with a scotch brite pad (put the pad under a vibrating sander to make it a bit easier). This one was in rough shape when purchasedl, and while there is still a bit of light staining, it is considerably better than it was, and with a nice coat of wax, wood slides over it just fine :)

Cheers,
Brad

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

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splatman

562 posts in 864 days


#15 posted 11-29-2015 04:19 AM

Looks like any machine shop with a large enough mill could handle a TS top. The cost? A whole ‘nother ball! Then again, maybe not as much as I might think; after all it’s just making a already flat surface flatter.

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