I'm ready to upgrade my scroll saw....but which one?

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Forum topic by thechipcarver posted 02-02-2016 04:13 PM 1514 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View thechipcarver's profile


225 posts in 2090 days

02-02-2016 04:13 PM

Alright lumberjocks, you have not let me down in the past. I need some advice.

I have a Dremel scroll saw, the last model that came out before they stopped making them. It has been a good saw but I was thinking of upgrading to a new one.

Which one do you guys recommend? I’ve seen some low end models that look good but the higher end models look great. I’m leaning towards maybe a Hawk or Excalibur.

Need some help please.

-- While teaching a class, a gentlemen once asked me: "When chip carving an intricate design, what do you do when you are almost finished and the wood breaks off?" I replied "Cover the kids ears."

10 replies so far

View sawdust703's profile


270 posts in 1932 days

#1 posted 02-02-2016 06:16 PM

Well Mr. Chip, as a scroll sawyer myself, I own five machines. With a 220VS Hawk being my main work horse. My suggestion would be the Hawk line of saws. They are a simple machine to operate, quiet, very easy to maintain, & have an impeccable tech support. Parts availability is unlimited. The saw itself is an amazing experience to operate. You won’t be disappointed, I promise you. My shop has a wood floor. I can run the blade at any speed, & no vibration at all. They use 5” plain end blades. You can check Craigslist or eBay, & get a good deal on one well taken care of, if you’re not wanting new. If I can help you any further, just ask. I’ll be glad to help in any way I can. Enjoy the day!

-- Sawdust703

View TheOtherMrRogers's profile


42 posts in 2693 days

#2 posted 02-02-2016 08:56 PM

My opinion matches that of Sawdust – the Hawk is a great saw.

I’ve personally very cheap, but I’d look on CL for a Hawk, and try your best to get a good price. Mine was missing some parts, so I got if for a song. It is well worth many times what I paid.

Good luck hunting.

-- For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?

View Milled's profile


43 posts in 2135 days

#3 posted 02-02-2016 09:18 PM

If scrolling is your main woodworking passion and money is no object then the Hawk or Excalibur are your choices. If scrolling is used occasionally then you can’t go wrong with the Dewalt.

-- If it's doable, I'll do it...if it's been done, I've done it...if it's impossible, I'll try it.

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2745 posts in 3434 days

#4 posted 02-02-2016 09:26 PM

I have three scroll saws. A 1988 Jet a 1986 Hegner and a 2008 Hegner. These are great durable saws but blade changing is a little slower than the others mentioned. For fret work I would use one of those already mentioned (I do not do fretwork) The scrolling I do I am cutting 3/4” thickness or more and have literally killed a DeWalt in under two years. If you want to do heavy cutting like I do I recommend a Hegner. I can still get parts for my Hegners but Jet is no longer available in the USA, as far as I know.

-- No PHD just a DD214

View northwoodsman's profile


250 posts in 4258 days

#5 posted 02-02-2016 09:31 PM

Where are you located? I have a Hawk for sale over in the “Woodworking Trade & Swap” forum.

-- NorthWoodsMan

View thechipcarver's profile


225 posts in 2090 days

#6 posted 02-02-2016 10:41 PM


I’m in Indiana, but I’m just researching right now. Don’t have the cash yet. Trying to see how much I have to save, borrow, steal.

-- While teaching a class, a gentlemen once asked me: "When chip carving an intricate design, what do you do when you are almost finished and the wood breaks off?" I replied "Cover the kids ears."

View Kelly's profile


2428 posts in 3456 days

#7 posted 02-02-2016 10:50 PM

I have a Hegner, but am not on the level of scroll work the guys above are. Still, I only paid a couple hundred off craigslist and it’s a nice machine. Said another way, don’t sneeze at it, if you can get a good buy on one. Just make sure it’s a variable speed and you can run a foot pedal.

Regardless of what you get, blade swaps and such need to be fast and easy.

These things said, I agree the Hawks and Excaliburs are impressive machines. In the end, they all have their advantages and there’s going to be a lot of Ford vs Chevy attempts to influence your decision, so gather fact on the names that repeat and chase your personal preferences and needs.

View tomsteve's profile


965 posts in 1731 days

#8 posted 02-02-2016 11:03 PM

excaliber,hawk, or hegner.

ive got an ex 16 and love it. in the last 13 months i have over 250 hours on it a d still working like the 1st day.

i purchased that after the motor on a 788 type2 fried.

View Redoak49's profile


4190 posts in 2500 days

#9 posted 02-02-2016 11:12 PM

All of the above mentioned machines are good. I have a Hegner and mostly do Intarsia and thicker wood. It is a great machine but if you are doing fret work probably not the right one. It is a very sturdy machine a.d parts are available.

I would keep an eye out on Craigslist and might find a good deal. I bought my Hegner that way.

View sawdust703's profile


270 posts in 1932 days

#10 posted 02-03-2016 12:59 AM

I might add, Mr. Chip, I do fretwork to 1 1/2” material with my Hawk, & have a foot control. Most all of my projects are 1/2” rough cut cherry, oak, white oak, maple, & walnut. I also use poplar, beetle kill pine, barn wood, southern yellow pine, & pine. Most all the wood I use anymore is rough cut, or reclaimed. Very seldom do I buy s4s lumber for any woodworking project I do. The rough cut & reclaimed is a little tougher on a cast aluminum saw table on the scroll saw, & requires a wax job more often than some, but it’s by far better wood. My older scroll saws have cast iron tables, but the Hawk has as a cast aluminum. I sand both sides of the wood to 220 before I put the pattern on. Saves ALOT of finish sanding. Blade changing is a snap w/the hawk, as well.

-- Sawdust703

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