Ideas on upgrading my table saw to a 3HP motor??

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Forum topic by dmorrison posted 07-19-2010 01:58 AM 3198 views 1 time favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View dmorrison's profile


151 posts in 3289 days

07-19-2010 01:58 AM

I have a Powermatic model 63a contractors table saw and I have been searching for a used cabinet saw. I don’t really need to upgrade my saw. The Powermatic is very nice and has done everything I have asked of it. I work primarily in pine. I love the Vega fence and everything else about the saw. I noticed in Craigslist a Jet Cabinet saw 3HP 52 inch fence. Blue model. Listed for $700 and I can probably get it for $600. Seems nice in the one picture and description.
First of all do I need to spend $600 minus what I can get for my Table saw. Or save the money and upgrade my motor. I have seen 3HP motors in the this area for $75-100.
Whats everyone’s opinion on upgrading a Powermatic Contractors saw, model 63A which is just like the model 64, to 3HP??

The model 64.

To much power for the weight of the unit? How about power transfer though one belt, a link belt?
I’ve look and an could change the belt setup to a 2 link belt setup, there is room for 2 belts.
Another consideration is the space. I only have a single car garage shop and its pretty packed right now.

So what are your thoughts.


5 replies so far

View knotscott's profile


8057 posts in 3403 days

#1 posted 07-19-2010 11:09 AM

The trunnions, bearings, and pulleys aren’t made to handle the weight and torque of a 3hp motor, plus you’d still have all the issues associated with the old contractor saw design. I wouldn’t put more than a 2hp motor on it, and even then I’m not sure you’d be gaining enough oomph to make it worth your while. Good alignment and blade selection can go a long ways toward better performance.

I’d definitely opt for a 3hp cabinet saw if you’re going to make a change.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3102 days

#2 posted 07-19-2010 02:28 PM

I’m trying to figure out why you need more power if you are working primarily in pine.

You may be a good candidate for the new ultra thin kerf blade. It’s expensive, but would give you the same effect as more power.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View dmorrison's profile


151 posts in 3289 days

#3 posted 07-19-2010 10:02 PM

Thanks for the thoughts. I have concluded the same as posted. I will for now Just use my Powermatic 63A. Keep the blades sharp and go forward. I did like the Jet saw, but when I thought of re-arranging the shop AGAIN due to the 52 inch fence And selling my old faithful Powermatic, which is like an old friend. I figured I should make some more sawdust before upgrading any more tools in the shop. Over the last year or so I have upgraded to a Jet 18 inch band saw, Jet 6 inch jointer, Craftsman belt disk sander and a Ridgid OSS. So I’ll just work with the new tools and make some furniture.

If anyone is interested here is the link to the Jet JTAS-101

Besides the Wife said if I get another tool, she gets a new couch, so the tools was going to be overall, very expensive.


View ToddTurner's profile


144 posts in 3350 days

#4 posted 07-20-2010 01:32 AM

If you look at my projects, i upgraded my old Ridgid from 1.75 to 3hp and it was amazing! I ‘came across’ the motor and got the starter off ebay for $45. You MUST upgrade the switch to a magnetic starter. I switch will not handle the amperage and will start a fire. Yes, 2 or 3 belts is better. Yes the bigger trunions are better. But the bottom line is you will have a very powerful machine. When i flicked mine on, it would do the little belt squeel, motor would jump, then the blade would make a nice whizzing noise to let you know its ready for business.
Now-the downside-if i paid for th motor, it would be over $550. THat plus the starter is 600 and you could probably buy a nice used 3hp machine for that. If i had to pay for the motor, i would probably not done it, but got another saw. Now, there is always ebay and craigslist and you can get these parts for much cheaper, just make sure the motor is at least 3450 rpm and is fan cooled. Hope this helps you out.

View tbshop's profile


16 posts in 3051 days

#5 posted 03-11-2014 04:23 AM

I wanted to put a new 3hp Leeson I found from a new PM66. Now I’m not so sure I want to do the upgrade if I have to go thru all the changes Todd posted above. Any other thoughts?

-- tbshop

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