Worth repairing/upgrading Craftsman 113?

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Forum topic by Matthew posted 05-06-2018 01:20 AM 1066 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3 posts in 690 days

05-06-2018 01:20 AM

Hello everyone.
I would like your thoughts. I know there are number of posts regarding the 113 table saw in regards to repairing motors and such.

My father gave me his old Craftsman 113. I have both cast iron wings but the fence is gone. It ran for a few cuts but would tend to blow the breaker. Now when turned on the motor hums but does not turn and then blows the breaker. The frame overall is in decent condition, though could use a coat of paint. There is some rust on the wings and top, but not a huge amount and they can be cleaned.

I know I can get a replacement motor (or possibly change the capacitor) and a 3rd party fence, but my question to you, the experts, is it worth it? For what I would spend on those I could get a pretty decent contractor’s saw.

Thank you for your thoughts.

11 replies so far

View MrUnix's profile


7582 posts in 2803 days

#1 posted 05-06-2018 01:22 AM

$10 max for a capacitor and you are in business. A replacement fence can set you back anywhere from nothing to a couple hundred depending on what you get. Unless you get another used saw, you aren’t going to get a decent contractor saw new for that kind of money.


-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View CRAIGCLICK's profile


117 posts in 678 days

#2 posted 05-06-2018 01:40 AM

The 113 is an easily upgreadable saw. You cand get a more powerful motor or just change your capacitor and add a fence and uou’re in business. The factory fence was no good, you’ll want to buy a decent fence for it.

-- Somewhere between raising hell and amazing grace.

View knotscott's profile


8354 posts in 3980 days

#3 posted 05-06-2018 12:18 PM

It was your Dad’s. It’s irreplaceable, therefore worth some time and effort to bring it up to snuff IMHO. No reason it can’t be whipped into a serviceable saw for a reasonable cost.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View CRAIGCLICK's profile


117 posts in 678 days

#4 posted 05-06-2018 12:44 PM

It was your Dad s. It s irreplaceable, therefore worth some time and effort to bring it up to snuff IMHO. No reason it can t be whipped into a serviceable saw for a reasonable cost.

- knotscott

I would add a caveat.

Having restoed and upgraded a 113 myself, I can tell you that, depending on what you do to it, you could wind up spending the kind of money that could buy you a much nicer saw on Craigslist.

If the saw has sentimental value, keep it (of course).

If you just want a saw for occasional use, then get a cheap fence, a capacitor, and clean it up.

If however, you’re planning of seriously getting into woodworking, you’d me money ahead and just buying a better used saw.

I paid 80 bucks for my 113. I am now about 560 bucks into it because I don’t lnow when to cut my losses! Don’t get me wrong…its now a really good saw, for what it is…but it’ll never be a Unisaw.

-- Somewhere between raising hell and amazing grace.

View TheFridge's profile


10859 posts in 2090 days

#5 posted 05-06-2018 04:05 PM


-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Matthew's profile


3 posts in 690 days

#6 posted 05-06-2018 08:55 PM

Thank you everyone for your thoughts. You pretty much summarized my thinking. I would like to keep it as it was my Dad’s and I’m really trying to not add to ‘broke get a new one’ mentality. I’m just getting into woodworking and aren’t sure how serious I will be. I’m really enjoying it but you never know.

Thank you again. For now I I’m going to try get it working and cleaned up. Thank you again for all your help.


View moke's profile


1475 posts in 3380 days

#7 posted 05-07-2018 05:09 PM

I had a 113 for years, I got a new fence, which was a unifence that had a 50 something inch extension, so I added a Formica covered extension and put both cast wings on one side….it was on it’s own cart with a built in out feed, and dust collection. It was nice, but at the end of the day it was a contractor 1.5 hp saw. I bought a saw stop when a friend lost a couple fingers on his saw and the wife offered to buy me a saw stop. The saw stop is 3 hp and so much nicer ( of course it is 3K, but I did have the wife’s authorization!) but I had 1300 in upgrades to the craftsman, that I sold for 200.00 btw.

So, as I think you have already arrived at, just fix it up enough to where it functions well and is safe and upgrade when you can afford it.

-- Mike

View ruger's profile


134 posts in 699 days

#8 posted 05-07-2018 05:53 PM

I owned a 113 3 hp saw with cast iron wings picked up at a yard sale for 150 dollars 4 years ago. put a delta t2 fence on it that i purchased off craigs list. I had no complaints at all with the saw,, sold it to my brother in law for 250 dollars last month after i picked up a unisaw 34-802 for 400 dollars. at an estate sale. What really makes me mad is four years ago i also purchased a Bosch gts 1031 new, and have damaged the arbor bearings to the point of won’t use it any more. till i fix it. so point being the 113 is a much nicer saw than this asian contractor crap they produce now.

View SubSonicGroove's profile


3 posts in 1800 days

#9 posted 05-07-2018 09:13 PM

I’ve had a 50’s 113 for a few years now, (picked it up for $20 at a yard sale) had the original fence and two wings, one cast-iron and one made by the previous owner. I had more problems trying to get that original fence to square-up than I care to admit and the rail was broken too but, I eventually figured out a system to get relatively straight cuts on it until I got fed-up with measuring front to back and still being off somehow. I do want to upgrade the motor to a 2 or 3hp sometime down the road and design a cabinet for it that includes dust collection but, for now, it works pretty darn well with a sharp blade.

I just recently upgraded the fence to the one that John Heisz designed plans to make for $10. Didn’t take long to build, only cost me the plans, a 1/2 sheet (24”x48”) of 1/2” Birch and a few screws, washers and nuts for the rail to mount to the original fence mounting holes. Works like a charm, dead straight every time I set it and clamp it down. Nice to only have to measure once and know its where it’s supposed to be.

Is it worth putting money into? In my opinion, I can’t afford an expensive cabinet saw at this point so, I work with what I have. I like the saw for what it is, it’s still runs like a champ and as long as it’s cleaned and lubed from time to time, it should last another 50+ years… Worth it to me for sure. YMMV

I enjoy working with the saw even more today than the day I brought it home.

Good luck with your efforts.

View B4B's profile


163 posts in 1962 days

#10 posted 05-07-2018 11:57 PM

If you are just dabbling it’s a decent saw. I spent time and money to refurb mine a couple years ago and it’s nice to use. Just don’t go overboard as the resale value really isn’t there, most people are looking for these around the 100$ price point.

-- There's two routers in my vocab, one that moves data and one that removes wood, the latter being more relevant on this forum.

View CRAIGCLICK's profile


117 posts in 678 days

#11 posted 05-08-2018 12:59 AM

I put a 240 Volt single phase 2hp motor and a vega utility 50 fence. I built a pair of extensions out of some oak and MDF I had laying around.

The saw it a TOTAL beast. 8/4 oak has not even made it breathe hard and the Vega fence is fantastic!

I can see this saw lasting me a long time…but as I said before, I’m about 560 bucks into this saw. I probably could have gotten a used cabinet saw for that price.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my Craftsman, but if I knew the what I know now, I would have kept it as is until I was ready to buy something bigger.

-- Somewhere between raising hell and amazing grace.

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