8" Delta Homecraft table saw #1: Repairing Delta 34-966 Tilting Arbor Saw

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Blog entry by Bluepine38 posted 05-24-2012 07:47 PM 14652 reads 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of 8" Delta Homecraft table saw series Part 2: Frankensaw »

When Canadian Chips obtained his Delta 8” table saw and 4”jointer combination, I was very interested
because of a conversation I had with a model airplane builder. He put a thin kerf skil saw blade on a 10”
table saw and used it to cut small precision wood parts for making models. This idea would work even
better on an 8” saw if I only wanted to cut small items. I printed out PM-1722 from Old Woodworking
machines and discovered this little saws arbors and parts were made with as much precision as the big
Unisaw. I got lucky and bought one on Craigslist a few days later for only $30. Canadian Chips got his
entire unit in better shape for only $20, but I can not complain.

The saw did run, but the noise indicated that the bearings in both the saw and motor were bad, I tore
the saw and motor down enough to get the bearing numbers and buy new bearings. The saw had the
original New Departure 87503 bearings which had an offset inner race and could be ordered for between
$30 to $40 apiece. They measure the same 40mm OD X 17mmID X 12mmW race as the new 62032
bearing. To take care of the offset inner race difference, I bought a 14 guage 5/8” machine bushing
and turned the ID to 17mm and placed it beside the spacer between the inner races in the saw arbor
and put the arbor back together in the reverse order of taking it apart. To set the preload on the
arbor I tightened up the inside spanner nut the same way you set the preload on front wheel bearings
when repacking them. Tighten the nut until you have no side play on the bearings and the bearings
are starting to drag slightly. This trick worked on the Unisaw arbors back when they started replacing
the replacement bearings with a cartridge pack that cost way more than the bearings did, and should
still work today. If you want a picture of this set up your can look at this publication . Page 5 shows it.

The electric motor also used the 62032 bearings, but when I tore it all the way down the armature
shaft was worn so bad that the bearing tilted back and forth, if the wear had not been so bad I might
have tried some Loctite stud and bearing mount to tighten it up, but on a 3450 rpm motor, just a
slight out of roundness would have wore the bearings out in short order. Having a 1 HP motor of the
same rpm that I had acquired a while back I was not too worried. It just needed an adapter plated to
mount it on the saws mounting plate. This would be easier than making an adapter plate to bolt a
57 Oldsmobile J2 tri-carb motor up to a 33 Ford sedan’s transmission.

The first picture shows the flat head socket head capscrews countersunk into the plate and holding
one side of the adapter plated to motor, the second picture shows the special bolts made from the
head of 3/8” flat head sleeve anchor heads with 5/16” socket head set screws threaded in and
held in place with Loctite stud and bearing mount. These were countersunk into the back of the
plate and will bolt the plate to the saw motor mount, the allen wrench opening in the set screw
will allow me to tighten and loosen the nut holding the plate to the mount. Nothing worse than
not being able to take something apart once you put it together. Regular bolts through the other
two holes in the plate bolt the adapter and motor to the saw mount.

This gets the saw almost ready to run, but I decided to replace the old plywood on the stand and
set the saw lengthways on the stand at the same time, as well as add a dust collection port under
the saw. I removed the front plate on the stand and replaced it with a couple of pieces of tubing
and added a plywood shelf for storage. I then installed and wired a paddle switch on the right side
of the stand to make the saw safer to operate.

The metal on this stand was almost 1/16” of an inch thick, so I grabbed my metal cutting skil saw
and cut an opening in the back so I could access the dust collection port.

The old plate covering the saw blade had been ridden hard and put away wet, so I made a zero
clearance plate from an old plastic cutting board I had, and made two spares.

As you can see from this picture, there are four tabs sticking out of the opening that were used to
level the old table insert. I drilled 4 holes in the plastic, and only ran the tap part way through the
holes, the 5/6” X 18TPI X 3/8” long socket set screws thread down through the holes and the
partially tapped holes as a nylock to hold them firmly in place. You can access them from the
top and level the plate with ease. On the back of the saw opening there was another lip sticking
out, so I cut a piece of oak with a slot to hook under this lip when inserting the plate into the saw.
This holds the plate securely in place when I crank the Freud Diablo thin kerf blade up through the
plate as shown .

I will be making one more zero clearance plate with a riving knife secured into it later. The miter gage
that came with the saw was held to the bar with a wierd flat head shoulder bolt that was loose because
of wear, and the fact that the 8-32 thread on the end of the bolt had been twisted off in the gage. I
got lucky and my left hand drill bit spun the broken part out with no trouble, I then drilled and counter-
sunk the bar for a flat head socket head capscrew, and drilled and threaded the gage for the 1/4-20
thread. This tightened up the miter guage, and a socket set screw in the back of the guage will keep
it from coming loose. The mounting bars for the fence had become bent and beat up over the years,
so I cut them off just beyond the table.

The manual for this saw shows a splitter attachment and guards, while I doubt these parts are still
available, I might try to make them myself. This saw was designed to be used with both dado blades
and molding cutter heads. I just have to make some bowl segment sleds for this saw and it will
become my specialized bowl saw. I am going to have to improve the dust collection, and add some
casters, but I think this saw was well worth my $30 and the work I put into it. If nothing else, it
did keep me off the street corners and out of trouble for a while.

I know this saw does not look nice and shiny and new, but it suits both me and my shop, slightly
old and worn, but still working and having fun. Here is a shot of my other hobby, bird watching.

These mallards and wood ducks seem to think our lawn is their new home, along with pigeons, fool
hens and red winged blackbirds.

-- As ever, Gus-the 83 yr young apprentice carpenter

5 comments so far

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 4609 days

#1 posted 05-24-2012 08:27 PM

great refurb work on that one Gus
nice little table for smaller work though you proppebly shuold be more carefull
to focuse when using it …...... it is as dangerous as a big tablsaw
maybee more since people seems to relax too much using smaller tools

looking forward to see some small boxes a la Martyns (brixboxmaker) ... :-)

thanks for sharing Gus

take care

View wkerr's profile


10 posts in 4186 days

#2 posted 05-24-2012 08:28 PM

I’ve got one of these saws and I absolutely love the way it runs and the precision that I get out if it. It’s honestly more precise than my skills currently allow and it’s a lot of fun to run this little saw. My Dad gets jealous as I did a complete refurb on mine and it’s way nicer than the old rockwell that I grew up with him using.

View davidroberts's profile


1027 posts in 4980 days

#3 posted 05-24-2012 11:26 PM

The homecraft is a sweet saw, ready to go another 60 years. Thanks for the rescue effort. IIRC, I think the saw came with a 1725 rpm motor either 1/2 or 2/4 hp, and the pulley spun the blade at 3450. I could be wrong.

-- Better woodworking through old hand tools.

View Porchfish's profile


862 posts in 4027 days

#4 posted 05-25-2012 01:19 PM

I relied on one of those lil’ wonders back in the day ! Glad to see the revival in interest . You’ve done well with this one. I have an old craftsman 3450 rpm 1 hp motor I took in as part of a trade…it appears in decent shape and may well be off one of these or it’s offspring…anyone nearby here who is interested, let me know.

-- The pig caught under the fence is always the one doing all the squealing !

View drnic's profile


59 posts in 2874 days

#5 posted 08-15-2014 09:55 PM

Just bought one…needs arbor work, hopefully just bearings, but I wanted a smaller saw for precise dedicated cut-off work via a sled. Are there any arbor replacements out there if it requires that? I am working with my local tool repair shop now, but may need some help if they do not come through.

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