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View ClearWaterMS's profile

upgrade Craftsman 113 or save up for new saw?

by ClearWaterMS
posted 01-30-2018 01:48 PM


27 replies so far

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

3131 posts in 2714 days


#1 posted 01-30-2018 02:10 PM

The fence upgrade will make an actual table saw out of that saw. You may not feel the need to replace the saw once the fence is replaced.
I put a Delta T2 fence on a 113 best thing I ever did. I replace it later with a Sawstop but only because I wanted the Sawstop safety.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View Steve's profile

Steve

1618 posts in 1124 days


#2 posted 01-30-2018 02:36 PM

What other tools do you have in your shop? I am basically in the same spot, but I opted to upgrade to the T3 fence and then work on acquiring other tools I’d like to get.

View 01ntrain's profile

01ntrain

259 posts in 1612 days


#3 posted 01-30-2018 02:38 PM

Agreed.

Get the T2 or T3 fence, unless you really need over 4’ to the right of the blade(most of the time….no)

My first saw was a 113, and I upgraded it with a 52” Biesemeyer and it would cut just about everything that I threw at it. I did a lot of casework, so I needed the 52” but honestly 36” would be good for most people.

There will be a lot of naysayers, but do what’s best for you and your budget. Spend the money you save on other essential tools and wood.

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

117746 posts in 4118 days


#4 posted 01-30-2018 02:52 PM

Welcome to ljs
I’m not fond of Sears tools but yours is of a time period that their saws were fairly good machines but never the less I’ve seen saws for sale on CL that are far better and newer with good fences for about what you would spend on your upgrades. It may take a little time to find just the right saw at that price but if your patinate and keep and eye on Craigslist and you go look at them as soon as they’re posted you will do well. given your upgrades on your saw you might be able to get $200-$300 for your saw

View ClearWaterMS's profile

ClearWaterMS

8 posts in 659 days


#5 posted 01-30-2018 03:30 PM


The fence upgrade will make an actual table saw out of that saw. You may not feel the need to replace the saw once the fence is replaced.
I put a Delta T2 fence on a 113 best thing I ever did. I replace it later with a Sawstop but only because I wanted the Sawstop safety.

- johnstoneb

John,

Thank you for the advice. That is the part that I am struggling with. As a beginning wood worker, saw stop’s technology is very attractive. The price is currently unattainable as it would probably be around $2000 for the saw that I would pick. What did you do with your old fence? Were you able to easily sell it to recoup some of your cost?


What other tools do you have in your shop? I am basically in the same spot, but I opted to upgrade to the T3 fence and then work on acquiring other tools I d like to get.

- bndawgs

In terms of stationary tools, the only other tool i have is a hitachi 8” miter saw that I received from the same family member as the table saw. It does a great job but makes a terrible mess

I do not have any milling equipment (jointer, planer, disc or stationary belt, etc.) nor do I have a drill press.
I do have a fairly complete set of hand tools.

The other tools I would like to add as the need arises is a drill press, and a bench top sander /w dust collection. I know that the cost of S4S is more expensive, but I do not have the storage / shop space to plane, joint, and store boards regularly. I will have to stick to smaller jobs and hobby projects for now.

As for larger rip cuts than 36” you guys are probably right, I would be better of making it 1/4” ~ 1/2” proud and trim it to fit with a flush trim bit in my router.

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ClearWaterMS

8 posts in 659 days


#6 posted 01-30-2018 03:53 PM


Welcome to ljs
I m not fond of Sears tools but yours is of a time period that their saws were fairly good machines but never the less I ve seen saws for sale on CL that are far better and newer with good fences for about what you would spend on your upgrades. It may take a little time to find just the right saw at that price but if your patinate and keep and eye on Craigslist and you go look at them as soon as they re posted you will do well. given your upgrades on your saw you might be able to get $200-$300 for your saw

- a1Jim

Jim,

Just to confirm, my current saw without an upgraded fence would fetch $200 ~ $300? If that is true, i would assume that $300~$400 is reasonable if I were to complete the upgrades I am thinking about. With that logic and a downgrade to the less expensive Delta fence, I can likely complete my project for less than $400 and I will be able to recoup 1/2+ of that almost immediately and also pick up the ability to use a router table that I do not currently have.

The sentimental value of the saw being passed down from my wife’s father, combined with the reduced hassle of not dealing with craigslist makes it seem to me that the Delta Fence upgrade is a wise investment.

THanks for the tips and for talking me down from the Vega system.

View JCamp's profile

JCamp

1008 posts in 1092 days


#7 posted 01-30-2018 04:08 PM

Clearwater. I have the same saw that you do but mine has none of your upgrades. Ive had mine for about a year and my only complain is that id love to add another extension so I could cut wider material. Your saw will serve you well as is without spending all the money. I’m sure your wife will appreciate it if you would keep it and you could possibly donate it to another family member when you out grow it.
Personally I would not spend the money on a fence. Since I do it as a hobby its not worth the money to me since I can measure twice for free. Im guessing you are in the same boat but it really is a personal preference. Also you can go get regular angle iron and make the fence rails as wide as you want which is much cheaper than buying the upgraded fence
As far as the router goes I have seen people take the metal side extension out and make their own fabricated one that will fit their routers. That might be a cheaper way to go
For a hobbyist I think the 113 is a great saw. Sure a SS would be great but its hard for me to justify paying that for a hobby plus in your case you could buy a lot more tools with that money

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

117746 posts in 4118 days


#8 posted 01-30-2018 04:23 PM

Clearwater
Check your saw on your local Craigslist and double check my estimate of what it’s worth, since my price range could be off in your area plus sometimes upgrades that aren’t that evident to the eye may not add value to some buyers.
I understand the family connection thing, so if you have room and the funds go for a better saw with a better fence and use yours for a dado blade down the line.

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

23978 posts in 3225 days


#9 posted 01-30-2018 05:32 PM

Some people have a bias against certain brand names…..never mind that Sears never, ever made a tool….they merely sold tools. Emerson was the maker of those table saws….I bought one brand new back in the early 80s….as far as I know, it is still running great…

Trunnion on the original saw split…..replaced that, and a better motor….and added two more extensions to the right of the blade. Used that fence for the entire time…only “upgrade” was an add-on wood strip, for dados…a shim between it and the metal fence as needed, to keep the wood part straight….

Sold mine a few years back..only reason was I no longer had any room for this big of a tool..


YMMV

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View LesB's profile

LesB

2223 posts in 3984 days


#10 posted 01-30-2018 06:01 PM

I used that saw for almost 25 years (bought in about 1972) before I upgraded to a commercial grade cabinet saw. My biggest complaint about it was lack of power and the fence needed regular adjustments to keep it parallel to the blade. I build hundreds of projects with it and a Craftsman radial arm saw I also had. Lots of cabinets. My step son still has the saw and it still runs well with the original motor.. I use it when I visit and help this non woodworker with his projects. One of the reasons I did not replace the saw earlier was it’s portability. I worked in my garage and frequently needed to move it. Have you ever tried to move a large cabinet saw, even with wheels on it?

I can’t recommend putting another $500 into that old saw except for possibly getting things that you could eventually move to a new saw when you think you are ready….like a good set of dado blades. The fence works OK but needs regular checking and adjustment. I would get a new (or used) router that fits this saw if that is a problem. You can never have too many routers (-: Or you may want to build a free standing router table?
Safety equipment is great but the biggest safety item is setting on the top of your neck. Think safe and be safe.

-- Les B, Oregon

View Woodknack's profile (online now)

Woodknack

12928 posts in 2921 days


#11 posted 01-30-2018 06:20 PM

With the upgrades you have already, I don’t think you can buy a significantly better saw without upgrading to a cabinet saw. A new fence will make a world of difference. If the question were between this and a used Unisaw, I would say Unisaw. But between this and a $600-800 saw, I would say keep and upgrade.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View Robert's profile

Robert

3558 posts in 2022 days


#12 posted 01-30-2018 07:39 PM

My advise is don’t do it. A1Jim is being nice ;-). Lets just say that era of ww’ing machines by Sears were not great.

I owned one of those TS’s lin the pic above and also a bandsaw. They were both pretty awful machines. As you already know that fence is horrible but I wouldn’t spend 2x as much for a fence the whole machine is worth.

My suggestion is keep an eye out for a used commercial grade saw. Or for for a little more money, something like the hybrid saw Grizzly carries. Guarantee it will be no comparision to what you’ve got.

And BTW I see those old C’man saws all the time on CL their almost always $100 or less.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

23978 posts in 3225 days


#13 posted 01-30-2018 09:39 PM

Yet another “Anti-Sears” biased diatribe….used my old saw for almost 30years..NO ISSUES.

They just can’t get it through their heads..Sears NEVER, EVER made a single tool…..yet all they see is the brand name, and go off. If you were to say “Emerson” they wouldn’t know anything about it…

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View 01ntrain's profile

01ntrain

259 posts in 1612 days


#14 posted 01-30-2018 10:13 PM



Yet another “Anti-Sears” biased diatribe….used my old saw for almost 30years..NO ISSUES.

They just can t get it through their heads..Sears NEVER, EVER made a single tool…..yet all they see is the brand name, and go off. If you were to say “Emerson” they wouldn t know anything about it…

- bandit571

No kidding. Geeze, you would think some of these guys own stock in Craigslist, the way it always seems to be the go-to place for all of these “unicorn” deals on Unisaws, Grizzlies, and Sawstops. Where I’m from, there is hardly ever a “deal” on a used cabinet saw, but I can buy a Craftsman 113 anyday, six ways to Sunday.

My point is this…..if you’re just starting out and you’re on a budget, you gotta go with what you have.In the past, I’ve built several built-ins using a well-worn Hitachi jobsite saw and they’ve come out just fine. In fact, I still use the thing in combination with my track-saw out on the jobsite.

View Don Broussard's profile

Don Broussard

3816 posts in 2793 days


#15 posted 01-30-2018 10:13 PM

I was given a Craftsman 113 saw— that was my first table saw. I mounted a Delta T2 on it, aligned with a PALS kit, put on a link belt, and used that saw regularly for 7 years. I recently got a 12” Craftsman Motorized Table Saw, so I relocated the T2 to the newer-to-me saw.

I think you’ve gotten some pretty good advice here, but it’s your decision ultimately.

-- People say I hammer like lightning. It's not that I'm fast -- it's that I never hit the same place twice!

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runswithscissors

3081 posts in 2566 days


#16 posted 01-30-2018 11:23 PM

True that Sears never built their own tools, but they did dictate the specs for those tools. They could do that because they were such a huge market that manufacturers pretty much had to do as Sears demanded (sort of like Walmart in that regard). Consequently, they would specify the cheapest components, such as bearings.

I bought a circular saw from them, and took it back because the bearings sounded like pea gravel in a can. The salesman said they were supposed to be like that. “Nonsense,” I said, as I took my refund and walked out.

I do know some people who seem happy with the 113.XXX series of saws, but my dad’s 40’s era TS was really an awful machine. We lived with it for years, but always hated it.

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

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

117746 posts in 4118 days


#17 posted 01-30-2018 11:48 PM

Here’s what I said “I m not fond of Sears tools” that’s because I had bad experiences with them over the years,it’s not really relative who made them sears sold them, the bottom line is were the tools good tools that did what they are supposed to do, and for me they did not, not just table saws. If people that own sears tools like them then perhaps the had good experiences with them or they evaluate tools differently than I and others do. So you folks that like them Enjoy nothing wrong with that, but don’t say others don’t like their tools are wrong because you don’t know what experiences we had with their products.

View JCamp's profile

JCamp

1008 posts in 1092 days


#18 posted 01-30-2018 11:56 PM

Fellas the OP just asked for folks advice Since this is his first post let’s keep the brand bashing, fighting and feuding out of it. Set a good example and mayb he’ll stick around
Happy January 30th :)

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

View ClearWaterMS's profile

ClearWaterMS

8 posts in 659 days


#19 posted 01-31-2018 12:00 AM

One of the reasons I did not replace the saw earlier was it s portability. I worked in my garage and frequently needed to move it. Have you ever tried to move a large cabinet saw, even with wheels on it?

this is one of the issues with my current space. Our garage is 34’ deep but i have 2 cars parked in it. This makes the effective space 14×22 and as such all of my tools need to be on wheels so they can be rolled against a wall when not in use.

Based on the advice of everybody here, I have gone ahead and purchased the delta fence from toolbarn (got it for $197 /w free shipping.)

Upon arrival of the fence, I am going to reconfigure the saw with a working router table kit. The cost of that project will be less than I had originally anticipated.

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

117746 posts in 4118 days


#20 posted 01-31-2018 12:00 AM

I agree with you JCamp but I don’t feel my post was argumentative, just telling my personal experiences which can be helpful to CW

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

117746 posts in 4118 days


#21 posted 01-31-2018 12:02 AM

Good luck with that, I know that will be a good improvement for your saw.

View Steve's profile

Steve

1618 posts in 1124 days


#22 posted 01-31-2018 02:18 PM


One of the reasons I did not replace the saw earlier was it s portability. I worked in my garage and frequently needed to move it. Have you ever tried to move a large cabinet saw, even with wheels on it?

this is one of the issues with my current space. Our garage is 34 deep but i have 2 cars parked in it. This makes the effective space 14×22 and as such all of my tools need to be on wheels so they can be rolled against a wall when not in use.

Based on the advice of everybody here, I have gone ahead and purchased the delta fence from toolbarn (got it for $197 /w free shipping.)

Upon arrival of the fence, I am going to reconfigure the saw with a working router table kit. The cost of that project will be less than I had originally anticipated.

- ClearWaterMS

you’ll be fine with the upgraded fence. you’ll have to drill a couple new holes for the new fence, but it’s easy to do.

View toolie's profile

toolie

2172 posts in 3170 days


#23 posted 01-31-2018 02:46 PM

To the OP, I opted to keep my two Emerson built 10” CI contractor saws over a 70s vintage Unisaw that I got for $40 and rehabbed. I got rid of the Unisaw because I didn’t like its right tilt feature, and it’s table, inclusive of its cast iron extension rings, was smaller than the table and wings on the contractor saws . I would look for a splitter on craigslist or eBay. While they are not a riving knife, they work very well at preventing kick back when working with dimensional stock.
Also, you are going to like that Delta fence. I have one on one of my saws and they work quite well.

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

View Tony1212's profile

Tony1212

365 posts in 2276 days


#24 posted 01-31-2018 02:50 PM

I inherited my 1950’s Craftsman 113. My grandfather used it for 50 years with the stock fence and made some incredible work. He already had a 220V motor on it.

I tossed the stock fence and put a Vega fence on it. I don’t know how he did it with that fence, but I love my Vega fence.

I’m just a weekend warrior making things for myself, family and friends. So, even if this saw gives up the ghost, I will probably buy another used one. I can’t justify the cost of a sawstop. But I can take the Vega fence off of my current saw and use it on a new-to-me one easily.

You need to decide how you feel about the saw and how you’re going to use it, regardless of the fence. If you like the saw and don’t plan on being a production shop, then just upgrade the fence. If, in the future, you decide that you want a different saw, you can look for a used saw and not worry about how good the fence is. If the new-to-you saw has a good fence, you could sell one of the fences and only be out a bit of money.

But if you don’t like the saw and/or plan on doing production runs, then you might be better off upgrading the saw and fence as soon as you can afford it.

-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs

View GR8HUNTER's profile

GR8HUNTER

6596 posts in 1254 days


#25 posted 01-31-2018 03:31 PM

IF I WAS YOU …...i would buy just the fence …..put it on first …..cause this way you don’t lose much money….. GOOD LUCK :<))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN

View KTNC's profile

KTNC

127 posts in 797 days


#26 posted 01-31-2018 06:19 PM

Sounds like ClearWaterMS has already upgraded his fence. Enjoy!

For anyone who’s still using their old fence – here’s a pretty good youtube video to help you get the most out of your old craftsman table saw with the original fence.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iHbTMpdn0Ok

View ClearWaterMS's profile

ClearWaterMS

8 posts in 659 days


#27 posted 03-19-2018 07:00 PM

Thank you everybody for the help in selecting the saw upgrades. As others have noticed, I did purchase the Delta fence and after adjusting it and drilling a few extra holes because I didn’t align it correctly it turned out great. It is accurate to within a 1/32” of an inch which given my skills is plenty enough for me.

I finished my first project that i used the table saw with the new fence and it works very well. The project was a small cabinet with 3 drawers, etc.

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