Need a UNISAW motor

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Forum topic by GBS posted 02-12-2009 06:57 PM 21218 views 1 time favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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30 posts in 3907 days

02-12-2009 06:57 PM

Topic tags/keywords: unisaw motor 3hp aftermarket leeson tablesaw

Hello Everyone –
I recently acquired a Unisaw that needs a new motor. I have been trolling Ebay to find one, and the only kind I can find are Leeson brand. Are these motors reliable? Should I lay out 300-400 dollars for one of these units? How is the fit and finish with the Unisaw motor mounts? If anyone has any experience with aftermarket motors on a unisaw I would reall appreciate the help. For what it’s worth, I will be mounting a 3HP, single phase motor.

11 replies so far

View bandman's profile


79 posts in 3589 days

#1 posted 02-13-2009 05:54 AM

I swaped out the 3hp single phase motor on my Delta Unisaw this past year with a 5hp motor.
To make the fit, we used a set of fabricated angles to match in with the existing holes and the
mount on the new motor. Watch your clearance for the dust chute, it can be very problematic.
If you’d like, I could get some digital photos.

-- Phil

View DaveH's profile


400 posts in 3978 days

#2 posted 02-13-2009 04:09 PM

What’s the problem with the motor? I’d take it in to a electric motor repair shop and have it looked at. Some shops charge very little to open and inspect a motor. Repair parts are usually available. Spending a $100 – $150 for a repair may be a better way to go. Shops can also sell replacements.

-- DaveH - Boise, Idaho - “How hard can it be? It's only wood!”

View GBS's profile


30 posts in 3907 days

#3 posted 02-13-2009 04:42 PM

Thanks for the replies so far, everyone…The reason I am putting in a motor is because the saw came equipped with a (functional) 5hp, 3 phase motor. My basement shop is not equipped with 3 phase power so I planned to convert to 3 horse, single phase. I figure that is plenty of power for my use. I suppose I could get a phase converter and just use the stock motor? Does that make sense to do? I guess I kind of thought that 5hp was approaching the limit of single phase power. My saw is a newer Unisaw, 3450 rpm. Whaddy’all think!?

View UVA's profile


16 posts in 3609 days

#4 posted 02-13-2009 05:24 PM

I have a 1985 vintage Unisaw with a 1.5 HP motor. It has served me well but I want to upgrade the motor as well. I have done a lot of research and will buy a Baldor motor which has the correct mounting plate for a right tilt Unisaw. I found the following websites had good information:

Amazon no longer sells the motor but some of the posts are useful.

Woodworker’s Supply sells Maraton motors, supposedly original equiplent:

The Saw Center posts the most complete information on Unisaw parts and rebuilding:

Here is the best price I found for the Baldor, 3 hP, 1 phase motor for right tilt Unisaw:

View DaveH's profile


400 posts in 3978 days

#5 posted 02-27-2009 02:30 AM

I’d also check out the motors at Grizzly. You can probably match the mount. Might save some money.

Grizzly motor

-- DaveH - Boise, Idaho - “How hard can it be? It's only wood!”

View hairy's profile


2782 posts in 3732 days

#6 posted 02-27-2009 02:47 AM

My Unisaw has a 4 hp Leeson.I bought the saw used, the owner had spilled Coca Cola into the original 5 hp motor, and replaced it with a Leeson. It will pop a 20 amp breaker at startup, but pulls 17 amps running. It’s on a 220 volt, single phase circuit. It has all the power I need. I know, it’s supposed to be a 3 or 5 hp, but it’s 4.

-- My reality check bounced...

View DaveH's profile


400 posts in 3978 days

#7 posted 02-27-2009 09:31 AM

You can also find new and used motors on eBay for Unisaws.

Unisaw Motors on EBay.

-- DaveH - Boise, Idaho - “How hard can it be? It's only wood!”

View GBS's profile


30 posts in 3907 days

#8 posted 02-27-2009 05:09 PM

Hi everyone thanks for the replies. I ended up buying a 3HP 1phase 220V left tilt motor from the Saw Center. I haven’t installed it yet but I plan to this weekend. It was nice to have the box come and see Delta printed right on the side of the box. Im confident that the motor mount is going to match up! Plus the Saw Center emailed me to confirm that I did, infact, have a Left Tilt model. Apparently they’ve run into that problem. Shipping was pretty fast because they are in Springfield MA (western MA) and I’m in the Albany NY area. Thanks everyone for the valuable info and Ill probably post some info about the motor when I finally get this baby running!

View Jilm's profile


1 post in 2181 days

#9 posted 12-22-2012 11:49 PM

Hi Greg I just read everything regarding your 5 to 3hp swap. I am currently dealing with exact issue how did the motor from SawCenter work? Thanks. Jim

-- Jim H, Algonquin IL

View toolie's profile


2148 posts in 2828 days

#10 posted 12-24-2012 06:43 PM

$600 for a motor? and if they sold you a motor, it will fit. they are the best on all things unisaw related. heavy little sucker though, isn’t it?

-- there's a solution to every just have to be willing to find it.

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2875 days

#11 posted 12-24-2012 09:04 PM

Toolie I have the same saw and they wanted $680 plus taxes for a motor. I didn’t even ask about shipping. No I didn’t buy one. I went another way for the moment.

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