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Forum topic by daddydave posted 12-21-2016 08:35 PM 811 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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daddydave

9 posts in 376 days


12-21-2016 08:35 PM

I finally took back the Craftsman 20” scroll saw last week. There were too many impending problems aside from the inability to attain enough blade tension to overcome the weak arm flexing.

Now; if you had a budget of $600, what saw would you buy to do mostly fret work. Have been watching used saws in E-Bay and Craigs list but nothing has come up reasonably priced lately. The new Jet 20” looks great; but out of my budget.


13 replies so far

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JayT

5453 posts in 2044 days


#1 posted 12-21-2016 08:43 PM

For mid-budget, the DeWalt 788 gets by far the best reviews. The older type 1’s are supposed to be better than the more recent ones, but a new one is still far above the sub $300 entry level saws. Obviously a used RBI or Excalibur would be nice, or even the Delta that the 788 is base on, but if the used market in your area isn’t that great, the DeWalt should serve well.

-- In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock. Thomas Jefferson

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ArtMann

677 posts in 649 days


#2 posted 12-22-2016 05:14 AM

I have an old Hegner and it is just great. I think it is about the best you can get if you can find a good used one. They sell for a lot less than $600.

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kroginold

23 posts in 882 days


#3 posted 12-22-2016 06:25 AM

Used Dewalt 788s are often on Craigslist for 350-450, and sometimes for less. I have also seen RBI Hawks for about the same prices. The Delta saw that is similar to the Dewalt is 400 new at Lowes. Hegners are usually higher unless very old, but are good saws – few frills but last forever. Excalibur saws are very good, but a little scarce right now. But if you are patient you may get a deal – I bought a 30 inch Excalibur in good condition for 500 on Craigslist a couple of months ago (did have a 4 hour drive each way to get it)

View MustacheMike's profile

MustacheMike

259 posts in 1922 days


#4 posted 12-22-2016 11:53 AM

We do most of our scroll saw videos on the Dewalt DW788. Yea the type 1’s that were built in Canada were better but since they have been out of production a while now they are harder to find and it’s hard to tell without either tearing one apart how much wear is on one. IMHO there are two short falls to the 788. One is the blade holder knobs will wreak havoc on your fingers on a many hole, pierce cut projects and second, blade movement out of perpendicular (varies from saw to saw). That being said there are repairs that can be done for the Arm problem as well as mods for the knob.

-- You can trust Mike -" because I will never pull your stash!" See my show weekly at Stumpynubs.com

View daddydave's profile

daddydave

9 posts in 376 days


#5 posted 12-22-2016 03:48 PM

So far folks, thanks for your replies. I see that there are potential arm problems of the Dewalt 788. What are they and are they extensive or easy to repair as on the blade holder knobs. There are a few of our local craigslist.

One more question. Don’t want to star a preference war, but if you had a preference, what high priced scroll saw would you choose for doing mainly fret work?

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Davevand

49 posts in 669 days


#6 posted 12-22-2016 04:05 PM

I have the 21” Excaliber and really like it. If I were to buy a new scroll saw I would take a good look at the new Jet JWSS-22.

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Loren

9605 posts in 3481 days


#7 posted 12-22-2016 04:08 PM

I have an old Hegner I got used… no variable
speed but a very acceptable and smooth
cutting saw otherwise.

View tomsteve's profile

tomsteve

662 posts in 1052 days


#8 posted 12-22-2016 04:49 PM

“what high priced scroll saw would you choose for doing mainly fret work?”
love my EX16. although I haven’t used it, I like the idea of the table staying level and everything else tilting for compound cutting.
but in all honesty I wouldn’t mind an Ex 21 and an EX 30…..or both! theres a few fretwork portrait patterns id like to supersize. but it looks like theres something up with excaliber ( general tools?) and they aren’t in stock anywhere ive seen or read. I hope that doesn’t create a problem with the awesome warranty.
I read seyco is doing something with an EX “clone”

on the 788 type 2 problems, ive read verying problems and have read about the arm problems, but don’t recall reading the exact problem. i used to have a type 1 and put a LOT of hours on it until the windings in the motor shorted. new motor was quite pricey. thought about buying a new 788, but then saw the problems that MAY be in the new type 2’s- it seems a hit and miss thing and ive read varying problems from tables warped or uneven to blade clamps breaking real easy to nuts and bolts internally coming off, but the main thing that stopped me from buying one is reading the motors going bad. not on all of them and not often, but enough to keep me from getting one. its pretty sad, too because the type 1’s were( and are) excellent saws at a great price.

imo, an important feature for a scrollsaw is variable speed. theres times when im doing very intricate veining I like to slow the spped down.

daddydave, after you get your new saw and become addicted to scrolling( it WILL happen!! :) ) PLEASE look into dust collection/air filtration. that fine dust is the stuff that is terrible for us to breathe. theres quite a few different options and ideas out there.

and PLEASE remember:
we like pictures of the projects!

one last thing:
look into a foot pedal switch. great invention!

View tomsteve's profile

tomsteve

662 posts in 1052 days


#9 posted 12-22-2016 04:50 PM



“what high priced scroll saw would you choose for doing mainly fret work?”
love my EX16. although I haven t used the feature yet, I like the idea of the table staying level and everything else tilting for compound cutting.
but in all honesty I wouldn t mind an Ex 21 and an EX 30…..or both! theres a few fretwork portrait patterns id like to supersize. but it looks like theres something up with excaliber ( general tools?) and they aren t in stock anywhere ive seen or read. I hope that doesn t create a problem with the awesome warranty.
I read seyco is doing something with an EX “clone”

on the 788 type 2 problems, ive read verying problems and have read about the arm problems, but don t recall reading the exact problem. i used to have a type 1 and put a LOT of hours on it until the windings in the motor shorted. new motor was quite pricey. thought about buying a new 788, but then saw the problems that MAY be in the new type 2 s- it seems a hit and miss thing and ive read varying problems from tables warped or uneven to blade clamps breaking real easy to nuts and bolts internally coming off, but the main thing that stopped me from buying one is reading the motors going bad. not on all of them and not often, but enough to keep me from getting one. its pretty sad, too because the type 1 s were( and are) excellent saws at a great price.

imo, an important feature for a scrollsaw is variable speed. theres times when im doing very intricate veining I like to slow the spped down.

daddydave, after you get your new saw and become addicted to scrolling( it WILL happen!! :) ) PLEASE look into dust collection/air filtration. that fine dust is the stuff that is terrible for us to breathe. theres quite a few different options and ideas out there.

and PLEASE remember:
we like pictures of the projects!

one last thing:
look into a foot pedal switch. great invention!

- tomsteve


View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

5975 posts in 2032 days


#10 posted 12-22-2016 07:09 PM

You can find some pretty nice saws used if you look around. Down here, there is a basically brand new RBI hawk with an asking price of $380, and a 21” Excalibur, purchased in July of last year (so basically new) with an asking price of $550. They are out there. I’ve considered upgrading, but my Delta 18” (garage sale find for $35) does everything I need of it and more.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View becikeja's profile

becikeja

823 posts in 2646 days


#11 posted 12-22-2016 08:45 PM

I have the Dewalt 788 for several years and have been very happy with it.

-- Don't outsmart your common sense

View MustacheMike's profile

MustacheMike

259 posts in 1922 days


#12 posted 12-23-2016 11:50 AM

Some of the 788 problems and fixes http://www.scrollsaws.com/SawReviews/DewltTuneUp.htm

-- You can trust Mike -" because I will never pull your stash!" See my show weekly at Stumpynubs.com

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

2887 posts in 1822 days


#13 posted 12-23-2016 11:56 AM

Depending on your area, you probably can find a used one. I got my used Hegnar 18 VS for $350. It is a great saw and parts are available even for a 20 year old saw. However, a Hegnar seems not to wear out.

Take a look a Craigslist to see what is available.

Good Luck

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