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The mystery Craigslist DELTA 14" Bandsaw -What could it be? and how good is it?

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Forum topic by mnik posted 06-25-2011 04:25 PM 7223 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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mnik

58 posts in 1997 days


06-25-2011 04:25 PM

Topic tags/keywords: bandsaw delta

I’ve been thinking about buying a bandsaw so when I came across a Craigslist ad for a “Delta 14 inch bandsaw in perfect Condition” for $150 tonight I jumped on it.

I spoke briefly w/ the seller who sounded like a decent enough guy. When I inquired about the model number he said he didn’t have it on him because the saw is being stored elsewhere. He said he bought the saw new about ten years ago for $375.

So what is it?
I’m guessing either a 28-206 or 28-475X. Or another model I’m not aware of?

How good is it?
What’s your take on Delta bandsaws? According to FWW it’s a pain to change their blades and it seems vibration is an issue. Is that your experience owners? What kinds of things can I do to improve those issues or improve it in general.

I’m supposed to pick it up next Sunday. The ad was up for only about 30 minutes when I jumped on it. Based on what I’ve seen $150 gets you in a bandsaw I figured I couldn’t go too wrong. I know I could get a better saw for $400 used , but as I just bought a 6” jointer last weekend and I’m not even 100% sure what I’m gonna build with it yet I went for it. And hey, I could always sell it for what paid for it if I wanted to upgrade eventually right?

Let me know your guesses/thoughts/experience/advice.

Thanks in advance!

-- Yeah, I'm probably over-thinking it. But that's my other hobby.


12 replies so far

View Mickey Cassiba's profile

Mickey Cassiba

312 posts in 2495 days


#1 posted 06-25-2011 05:58 PM

I’ve got a -206, with a few mods(step pulleys, carter spring and roller guides and a link belt from harbor freight) It won’t pass the nickle test, but it’s a good saw. Blade changes are not difficult at all, although tracking a narrow blade takes a little finesse. For 15 you could do a lot worse, I’d say jump on it.

-- One of these hammers oughta fix that...

View mnik's profile

mnik

58 posts in 1997 days


#2 posted 06-25-2011 06:07 PM

Thanks Mickey. He wrote me back to say he’ll look up the model number. I’ll look into step pulleys. I’m expecting the Carter guides will run me $150 on Amazon. I guess I coulda gone with the Grizzly Ultimate 14” bandsaw after all the improvements -but it’ll be fun either way.

-- Yeah, I'm probably over-thinking it. But that's my other hobby.

View EEngineer's profile

EEngineer

1061 posts in 3077 days


#3 posted 06-25-2011 06:11 PM

Might want to look at it pretty hard. That was when they started moving manufacturing offshore (and quality went down, of course). If it is one of the last bandsaws made in America, it will be a pretty good unit. Some of the Chiwanese imports were still pretty good, but quality is hit or miss. Vibration issues are something I hear everyone bitch about on the imports. Old American units are supposed to run smooth.

As for changing bandsaw blades, I haven’t seen any bandsaw that it is a pleasure on.

-- "Find out what you cannot do and then go do it!"

View justinwdemoss's profile

justinwdemoss

148 posts in 2359 days


#4 posted 06-25-2011 06:19 PM

I don’t know your particular saw. I was in similar spot a few months backa nd scored a Rockwell 14 saw 28-200 that came off the line in 1978. It needed a new throat plate, guilde blocks, and a switch. But other than light surface rust ont he table and a bit of cosmetic stuff, if runs great. Additionally, it was a 3/4 hp motor with only about an hour of run time on it. I paid $50 for the saw plus the hour drive to pick it up.

What I am getting at is, if you don’t love it, then don’t ruch into it. I love tuning up and rehabbing older tools and this band saw was a project. You may be right that the grizzly is the better way to go for you. I love CL buys, but have learned to walk away sometimes. A $150 used saw that you are happy with and can safely cut on right away is a great thing, but a $150 that you want to put $200 into from the start is a $350 used saw.

-- Justin in Loveland, OH

View Mickey Cassiba's profile

Mickey Cassiba

312 posts in 2495 days


#5 posted 06-25-2011 07:14 PM

mnik if it’s a-475X it’ll have the step pulleys…and it was built in Jackson TN. If it’s a 206, it’l be a two speed, but for the price he paid, I suspect it’s a -276…single speed open leg stand. The 206 & 276 are both imports but quite servicable saws. On any of them check the quick tension lever for smooth operation…if there is binding or it doesn’t lift the upper wheel you are in for repair work. Not terribly expensive, but a real PITA…

-- One of these hammers oughta fix that...

View SCOTSMAN's profile

SCOTSMAN

5839 posts in 3049 days


#6 posted 06-25-2011 08:18 PM

Why would making them abroad suddenly make them inferior.I understand country and national loyalty, but surely the same checks would be made on the finished product I really don’t understand this logic. Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View Mickey Cassiba's profile

Mickey Cassiba

312 posts in 2495 days


#7 posted 06-25-2011 08:51 PM

In my qualified opinion( spent years reconditioning warranty returned tools for Delta/Porter Cable, and later Black and Decker) The same quality checks are not made, or made at less frequent intervals. Early on in the swing towards outsourced machinery the design end was in the parent company, and quality was ensured by the frequent inspection of processes and tooling. Later on this procedure was(in some, but not all cases) by purchasing agents buying tools designed and made off shore. These tools were often clones of tried and true designs, and simply labeled with the purchasers label. Have you ever noticed the many ‘look alikes’. Some manufactures sell to many companies, with very minor(mostly cosmetic) differences. The purchasing company might require some technical differences but quality control, and design became the property of the manufacturers. This has produced an attitude among the manufacturers that is best summed up as ‘once it’s on the boat, we never see it again. The only liability they may suffer, would be to get dropped by a distributor. No worries there, there is always another distributor qued up.

-- One of these hammers oughta fix that...

View teejk's profile

teejk

1215 posts in 2148 days


#8 posted 06-26-2011 12:07 AM

what is the nickel test?

a piece of equipment that may have sold for $500 new is supposed to equal something that sells for $25,000 in a commercial shop and still be able to balance a nickel on edge?

as for blade changes on the Delta, it wasn’t in the manual on mine but I have learned to loosen the hex screws that hold the front blade guard…they were apparently made that way since they have the angled slots…you only have to loosen them and the guard comes on and off easily and blade changes are a breeze, or at least no harder than JET etc. that I’m sure come out of the same factory).

$150 for a 14”...I say “jump” at it if it is in perfect condition.

View EEngineer's profile

EEngineer

1061 posts in 3077 days


#9 posted 06-26-2011 12:50 AM

Why would making them abroad suddenly make them inferior.

I don’t know. All I can do is report what I see. Whenever manufacturing goes overseas (at least to Asia, and who isn’t outsourcing to Asia now?) fit, finish and overall quality goes way down. I have seen it with every brand from the cheapest to the most expensive. And, as I said, they aren’t necessarily all bad, just hit and miss. You might get a good one, you might get a bad one.

-- "Find out what you cannot do and then go do it!"

View mnik's profile

mnik

58 posts in 1997 days


#10 posted 06-26-2011 03:47 AM

Thanks everyone. I’m set to take a look at it next Sunday and agreed to purchase if it is indeed in perfect condition as advertised. In the meantime, I’ll pour over Lonnie Bird’s “The Bandsaw Book.”

I picked some pieces of 12” wide 8/4 poplar from the yard this AM to try out my relatively new (to me) jointer and planer. Ripping it w/ a jigsaw to get boards to fit my 6” jointer was a bit tedious. I can already see the utility of this machine for me right there.

It seems almost impossible to have a discussion about power tools w/o the overseas thing coming up. That said, your thoughtful points re: quality control Mickey were great. Again, thank you everyone for your help. No doubt I’ll avail myself of your collective experience and informed opinons frequently in the future.

-- Yeah, I'm probably over-thinking it. But that's my other hobby.

View teejk's profile

teejk

1215 posts in 2148 days


#11 posted 06-27-2011 11:35 PM

mnik

I realize the “facts of life” when it comes to origin of equipment…it is what it is but the majors produce where they do to make a product that will sell. Too bad but I understand totally.

Have fun with your new “toys”...but realize that poplar is very easy to work with (I used it extensively on our new house and love it…very interesting grain patterns when stained and varnished)..

but don’t think your knowledge will transfer over to oak or maple (translated means stock up on saw-blades!)

View mnik's profile

mnik

58 posts in 1997 days


#12 posted 07-04-2011 05:26 PM

Update. Got an email from the seller saying his son doesn’t want him to sell the bandsaw. Oh well, there are more fish in the sea and I wasn’t 100% sure that I didn’t want a better model anyway. Thank you everyone for your input, I’ll use your advice for the future purchase.

-- Yeah, I'm probably over-thinking it. But that's my other hobby.

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