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Help with Delta 36-431 contractor table saw vibration

2314 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  knotscott

I am new to posting on this page, but after reading for a while I thought this group would be of some.

I recently acquired a Delta 36-431 contractor saw with Beisemeyer fence used on Craigslist. I went through all of the procedures to align the blade, and even talked to a senior tech at Delta during the process. He had me align the two long rods, and it resulted in my blade being within 3 thousandths aligned.

I build myself a massive mobile cabinet/ base to house my saw and router. At first, the saw vibrated like crazy. I added a segmented blade and now a nickel stands perfectly still (through start up and shut down).

My problem lies in some sort of vibration from the saw "guts". When ripping, especially hard Maple, my cuts look so terrible (saw marks) I doubt I could re-glue the pieces. I can feel the chattering. I upgraded to a Forest rip blade (from a Freud combo blade) and it only helped a little.

I can grab the motor, and push the blade back and forth nearly .010" each direction. In the pictures, I have a blue arrow for how I push on it, and a red arrow for the piece that moves. I also show the way I am measuring this.

It may be useful to note 2 things: the knob to lock the blade height does not work; I can still easily adjust the height. I also have VERY minimal clearance between the belt the the underside of the table when the blade is at its max height (see photo).

Does anyone have any insight as to what is causing this, and how to fix it? I am only assuming someone else has faced the same issue at least once. My father has the same saw (and blade) and it works perfectly.


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You can push the motor - and the blade moves back and forth? The motor is not attached to the blade by anything but a belt (unless I'm thinking of a different machine), so I can't wrap my head around that. Also, is it the arbor that is moving or the arbor bracket?

If it were mine, being a 'new' used machine… I'd tear it down, clean it up and replace the bearings before doing anything else with it.

I have a Delta 36-600 direct drive table saw. I was having the same problem. I have movement when pulling the blade up but no side movement. My lock knobs don't hold well either. I had a good bit of run-out at the arbor which meant a lot of run-out at the blade edge.

What I did to correct it was I ground the arbor with a sharpening stone. I set the arbor at 45 degrees and brought it up as far as possible. I then clamped the sharpening stone to a block of wood at 45 degrees and flipped the saw on then off not allowing it to get up to full speed. I then moved the stone until it was barely touching the arbor. I could see where it was contacting the high parts of the arbor. I repeated this over and over until uniform all around. I then checked run-out again and there was none. I checked run-out at the edge of the blade and it was near perfect there as well.

Don't try to grind it at full, continuous speed as it won't do anything. The stone will get a glaze on it and you won't make any progress.

I get very clean cuts now and can glue up straight off the table saw.
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Yes, I can push the motor back and forth and watch the blade move. The trunnion I have the red arrow on will wiggle, which (I think) wiggles the long "rods", which wiggles the front, which connects to the arbor. It is confusing the heck out of me. My blade is withing .004" (measuring a tooth, front to back), the part of the arbor that touches the blade appears to have .003" of run out, and the blade has similar run out. I am awaiting a magnetic base for my indicator (Wednesday) to better check the arbor. Have you replaced the bearings, and if so, how did it go for you?


How did you correct the locking knob issue? I want to see if I can fix this to eliminate all possibilities.

Thank you both for the input and help!
Sounds like something is loose, or possibly broken. If you replace the arbor bearings, it would give you the chance to check things out better - and reassemble it making sure things are tight and properly aligned. I've never done the bearings on that particular saw, but they are in general pretty easy to do - and you don't usually need any special tools other than what you should already have around the house. May want to consider replacing the motor bearings as well while you are at it.

As for the locking issue, those appear to just provide a friction lock when tightened. The tilt shaft has a stop collar that may have been pushed back slightly over the years, so you may want to examine that. Also check the washers and friction surfaces for wear - you may need to replace a washer or add one, perhaps even a fiber washer or something similar that provides a little more friction.

Just to make sure we've covered all the low hanging fruit….the trunnion bolts are fully tightened and holding the bracket firmly, correct? How about the connecting rod bolts and all the bolts on the motor mount?
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