Rockwell/Delta 6" Jointer (1968?)

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Forum topic by GlennsGrandson posted 01-30-2012 02:15 AM 4803 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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433 posts in 1129 days

01-30-2012 02:15 AM

Topic tags/keywords: rockwell delta jointer rust restoration vintage

Just bought my first Jointer. It is a Rockwell/Delta 37-220 6” jointer in need of some elbow grease. The Serial number is EC8977 which I believe is from about 1968. Seems as if everything works, blades look decent, lots of rust on the bed, enclosed base, missing back cover, missing out table lock knob, rust. From my first take with a standard rust remover the bed seems fairly flat, I know there is shiny metal under there somewhere, what is the best way to get to it? Then what should I coat it with? I really don’t know anything about Jointers and maintenance except that I know a well tuned one is very nice to have.

I will try to get some pictures on here soon. I paid $100 for it. I don’t think I can go wrong, I’ve saw similar ones going for $800 on ebay (but who really knows if that’s right).

Any info on restoration tips or anything other hints on what to do or not to do would be great. Thanks for everyones time!

-- Grant - S/N Dakota

6 replies so far

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2169 posts in 1670 days

#1 posted 01-30-2012 04:19 AM

Your best resource:

These guys eat sleep and breathe old arn and know all the tricks.

Here’s a good video, by a pro, on setting your knives (this guy wrote for Fine Woodworking).

This sweetheart machine is going to become a lifelong friend in your shop!



-- " his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

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433 posts in 1129 days

#2 posted 01-30-2012 07:04 AM

Thank you very much Lee, the jointer in the video is almost identical to mine besides a 2” difference. Very helpful.

-- Grant - S/N Dakota

View GlennsGrandson's profile


433 posts in 1129 days

#3 posted 02-01-2012 08:14 AM

Process is going well, I got the beds shining real bright! I have it all disassembled right now, it’ll be awhile but I’m gonna get it cleaned up and paint it close to it’s original colors.

Just used steel wool with PB Blaster for initial rust removal, then ROS with 100-150-320 grit and WD-40. Can’t wait to post before and after pictures someday!

-- Grant - S/N Dakota

View Tomj's profile


204 posts in 1202 days

#4 posted 02-01-2012 09:07 AM

I had to do the same for my 113 206932 Craftsman Jointer a couple months ago. It was my fathers who only used it it once. He bought just around the time his Medical Center was beginning to take in allot of business so it just sat in our basement for almost 20 years until I started woodworking and realized what it was. The infeed/outfeed tables were so rusted I wasn’t sure if I could bring it back (would have been a shame it’s well built jointer never fully used). After looking at some of the tools on that site that were restored I got my inspiration. I took my time cleaning all the rust off with mineral spirits and sandpaper and then painted it and waxed the the tables. I also had to build a new porkchop guard for it (luckily the spring was still in the hole for the guard). Now I do have to change the knives because one is chipped from when my father ran some scrap wood through it with a nail in it. The other thing I would like to do is build a new stand for it to conserve space and help dust collection. Good luck

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433 posts in 1129 days

#5 posted 02-02-2012 04:52 PM

I have started a Blog to be able to update my status as I go, please refer to “From Rust to Lust” in blogs for more information.

-- Grant - S/N Dakota

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3238 posts in 1495 days

#6 posted 02-02-2012 04:58 PM

Men, cast iron is relatively soft so be careful sanding a table can make it wavy and no longer flat. Try using white vinegar. Put towels across the beds then soak the towels with vinegar. This should remove the rust. Good luck on that jointer.

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