Cannibalize old motors - what kind of power tools can I make?

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Forum topic by ColonelTravis posted 03-30-2013 04:50 AM 2776 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1888 posts in 2040 days

03-30-2013 04:50 AM

Topic tags/keywords: motors power tools homemade

That won’t slice my arm in half. I’ve got:

1.) absolute junk miter saw (9 amp motor)
2.) absolute junk jigsaw (4.5 amp motor)
3.) absolute junk portable table saw (13 amp motor)

There’s got to be something useful I can make from these motors. I’ve seen people make a disc sander, like to have one of those. I thought maybe a lathe but those seem to involve more metal than I’ve got. Guess I could scrounge up parts if I had some plans. Right now I’ve got a good table saw, good miter saw and a good router and want to see if I can add to the collection without buying new power tools if I can make them. Drill press? No clue, might be beyond my expertise.

I’ve searched around and found a lot of homemade hand tools but not so much when it comes to power tools. Any plans/suggestions?

6 replies so far

View runswithscissors's profile


2843 posts in 2171 days

#1 posted 03-30-2013 06:51 AM

Google “homemade jointer.” A young guy made a very impressive 12” jointer out of a lunch box planer (motor and cutterhead).

Those motors of your are all universal motors, which are noisy and not exactly robust. A drum sander comes to mind, but I think I’d want an induction motor for that. If I think of anything else, I’ll add a comment later.

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

View ColonelTravis's profile


1888 posts in 2040 days

#2 posted 03-30-2013 07:22 AM

Oh man that’s awesome, thanks. Yeah, I didn’t even consider the loudness. That would be annoying, but if I can cobble something on my own I guess I could put up with it. Maybe not.

View bobasaurus's profile


3531 posts in 3330 days

#3 posted 03-30-2013 07:23 AM

I just made a buffing machine out of an old motor. Attach a buffing mandrel to a motor shaft and you’re ready to go. Works great for polishing metal.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View Sylvain's profile


723 posts in 2645 days

#4 posted 03-30-2013 10:49 AM

Explore the site of Matthias Wandel:

I think his greatest success is the band saw :

A few LJ have made one.

-- Sylvain, Brussels, Belgium, Europe - The more I learn, the more there is to learn

View MrRon's profile


5086 posts in 3389 days

#5 posted 03-30-2013 10:29 PM

Those “absolute junk tools” also have absolute junk motors. There’s not much you can use them for. If they had synchronicis type motors, they can be used for things like sanders, polishers and grinders or to power any belt driven tool. Those “universal” motors are high speed with no torque at slower speeds.

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 2633 days

#6 posted 03-31-2013 12:45 AM

A belt, a squirrel cage and some pulleys and you would have the makings of an air filtration system.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

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