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Delta 36-979 Table Saw

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Forum topic by Bdford01 posted 11-14-2018 08:17 PM 353 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Bdford01

3 posts in 25 days


11-14-2018 08:17 PM

Topic tags/keywords: table saw delta ridgid

I am looking into purchasing my first table saw. I have done lots of construction type work, but am relatively new to woodworking and furniture building. I did my first two projects at a local maker space (cutting board and band saw box), and got bit by the bug in a big way. I fell in love all over again!

I already have quite a few “beginner” tools and feel my next purchase nees to be a table saw. I have been reading through tons of post on this site as well as others. Opinions about which saw a beginner should buy differ by about as much as political opinions. Why can’t there just be one right answer? I’m kidding. I understand that there is a lot that goes into it.

Onto my question though, I have been combing through craigslist looking for used table saws. I came across a Delta 36-979 with Biesemeyer fence for $525. I have not seen the saw in person yet, but it looks to be in good shape from the pictures. (I’m going to try to post them.) My question is…Is this a good deal? I have been looking very closely at the Ridgid 4512, but this Delta feels like a better deal. The one thing that I know I don’t like about it is the lack of a riving knife. Should this be a deal breaker? Also, if this is a great saw but the price is too high, what would a fair price be?


9 replies so far

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PPK

1197 posts in 1006 days


#1 posted 11-14-2018 08:58 PM

I think the price is steep. I owned a saw just a tad newer than this one, and it was $1000 new. Further, what on earth happened to the cast iron top? It looks as though it got rusty and someone went to town with a sander. I wonder how flat/true it is anymore. The Beisemeyer fence is great, though! I personally don’t use a riving knife very often, but it can be very helpful when learning woodworking to prevent a lot of kickbacks. It IS a safety feature. If it were me, I’d offer about $350 for it, providing the top is fairly flat still.

-- Pete

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HokieKen

6997 posts in 1335 days


#2 posted 11-14-2018 09:13 PM

A riving knife wouldn’t be a deal breaker for me personally. You can always add a splitter pretty easily for most situations.

For a contractor saw, that one seems to be held in pretty good regard. At 1.5 hp, it’s not a hoss but it’s likely enough for a hobbyist. The fence is nice and I think the price may be a little steep but, not way off base. At least not for my local area. I share Pete’s concern about that top though. What the hell happened there?

Depending on the actual condition of the top, I think $350 would be a good deal. Depending on your local used market and how often these types of saws come up, as much as $500 may still be a fair price.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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MrUnix

7036 posts in 2395 days


#3 posted 11-14-2018 09:17 PM

Further, what on earth happened to the cast iron top? It looks as though it got rusty and someone went to town with a sander.
- PPK

That is exactly what they did… although it appears to be hand sanded, not by a machine. It should not effect it’s operation, but it does indicate that it may have been neglected for quite a while and just cleaned up so it could be sold. And I agree, the price is a bit high as well… IIRC, those were selling for around $600 new, maybe slightly higher with the Biesemeyer fence. Ken is in the ballpark… I was thinking $250-$350 would be reasonable.

Cheers,
Brad

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

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Bdford01

3 posts in 25 days


#4 posted 11-14-2018 09:24 PM

Thank for the response! I asked him what was up with the top. He had mentioned previously that he is the original owner and always kept it covered and the top waxed. He said that the marks on the top are from a scotch bright buffer that he uses prior to waxing it. Unfortunately, the saw is about 1.5 hours away from me, so I can’t just run over and take a look at the top. Before making the drive, I need to be sure that I want the saw as long as the top is in good condition and runs well.

You’ve definitely eased my mind a bit about the lack of a riving knife. I guess no older saw is going to have one.

Other than the top, what other things should I be looking for when I go look at any used saw?

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PPK

1197 posts in 1006 days


#5 posted 11-15-2018 03:06 PM

Other things to look for:

-Check the tilt/trunion movement up and down for smoothness.
-Check the trunion for cracks and slop or movement. It should not wobble or move.
-Check the motor operation and the switch. The motor is a big cost of any tablesaw.
-Make sure fence rail is straight/not dented.

-- Pete

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HokieKen

6997 posts in 1335 days


#6 posted 11-15-2018 07:53 PM

Yep all that^. Make sure the blade doesn’t wobble from a bent arbor and listen to the arbor bearings. If the bearings need to be replaced, it’s not a deal breaker but it is something to be aware of.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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Bdford01

3 posts in 25 days


#7 posted 11-15-2018 09:05 PM

Thank you all for the help.

We have agreed on $375 for the saw, an aftermarket push stick, zero clearance insert, miter gauge, and outfeed table. He also has a Forrester blade that he wants an additional $75 for. I know they are expensive blades, but I feel that’s a little steep for a used saw blade. Any suggestions on this? If this is too steep, what saw blade should I look into? I’m not really wanting to spend another $125 on a blade unless that’s what I should do.

I plan to go inspect the saw on Friday or Saturday and will be checking everything that you all have mentioned. I did find out that the saw is actually the Delta 36-982 after I did a little digging. Apparently, they made the same saw without a fence and three different fence options. This happens to be the nicest fence that was available. Based on my research, this is a very nice fence to have.

I look forward to actually getting to use something instead of doing nothing but research. Hopefully, this saw turns out to be as good as he says it is.

Thanks again for the help! It’s greatly appreciated.

-Brad

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knotscott

8144 posts in 3572 days


#8 posted 11-15-2018 10:02 PM

$375 seems like a nice deal for a good contractor saw with solid cast wings and a Biese fence. A riving knife is a nice to have IMO, but would not be a deal breaker. You can add a decent splitter to it, or maybe get creative and build you own riving knife. Get it aligned, and buy a decent blade or two for it, as the blade will have a huge influence on the end performance.

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

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PPK

1197 posts in 1006 days


#9 posted 11-15-2018 10:08 PM



Thank you all for the help. He also has a Forrester blade that he wants an additional $75 for. I know they are expensive blades, but I feel that s a little steep for a used saw blade. Any suggestions on this? If this is too steep, what saw blade should I look into? I m not really wanting to spend another $125 on a blade unless that s what I should do.

-Brad

- Bdford01

I’m assuming you’re referring to a Forrest blade, probably the woodworker II. This blade IS the cream of the crop, for sure. But who knows how sharp it is or it it’s been abused. I’d probably not buy a used blade for $75. That’s just me though. BTW, there’s a very comparable (in my opinion) blade called the Freud Premier Fusion P410. It can be had new for approx $75.

-- Pete

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