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Thread: Old Walker Turner Bandsaw_ worth Restoring?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Carlsbad, CA

    Old Walker Turner Bandsaw_ worth Restoring?

    Hi, I'm mostly a hand tool guy and need some advice about what looks like a 1930-40's era, 12" band saw I was recently gifted.

    I have a cheesy 70's era, Tawienese 14" BS I use for resawing mostly. If I could make this found saw work w/o too much time and effort might be nice to have w/ narrow blade for cutting curves:

    Walker-Turner Co. Plainfield, NY, "The DriverLine Power Tools' SKF ball bearing equiped".

    12" diameter, solid iron wheels (rubber on outside of wheels is toast). Wheel centers look to be about 20" apart. Blade el guides, table and fence are rudimentery, but cleanable. bearings seem free, but willing to replace if needed. The C frame is cast iron and probably 75-100 lbs?

    Belt drive to motor (definitely pre-OSHA!).

    I really aprreciate any advice and suggestions! I've restored lots of vintage hand tools, but don't know anything about power tools.

    If I can make this a workable, utilitarian tool that does one thing well, I,m interested; if this is never going to be capable of quality work I'll pass.

    Thanks, Mike

  2. #2
    Hey Mike, Good find on the WT! They make pretty good tools and if it just needs some cleaning up and new tires, it's definitely worth it.
    Head over to the and check them out in the photo index. There's a few to see.
    If you have questions, the folks on the discussion forum are pretty helpful too.
    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    Like many machine makers, Walker Turner built machines to price points. The 16" band saws are sought after and smooth running machines. I don't know that particular bandsaw you have. It sounds like it is basic but that's fine if you want to cut curves in stock under 2" or something like that with it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Pottstown PA
    Great find. I'm restoring a 16" WT. They are fantastic. You will probably want to replace the bearings. Accurate bearings will have what you need. Also go over to the vintage tool website and register with the forum. There is all the information you need to get that WT going.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Well you know the old saying "You only get out what you put in it" If you don't have the time to do it right set it aside till you do. The saw deserves your full attention from start to finish and just because its a 12" don't mean it won't preform as well as the bigger brothers.Don't ask it to cut something that a 16" saw should handle,work within its limits and you will be happy and the saw will last another 50 plus yrs.If a person is going to have WW machines why not have apiece of history where making it cheap and disposable was not in the factory while enjoying your hobby.Congrats-----Carroll

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Griswold Connecticut
    It doesn't sound as if it will take much more than some elbow grease, a few bearings, a motor and design a motor mount.
    I'm certain that it's more than capable of performing fine work inside it's design envelope. It's the operator, not the machine.
    I'd restore it, even if I had no plans to use it.
    Last edited by Mike Cutler; 02-09-2014 at 7:45 AM.
    "The first thing you need to know, will likely be the last thing you learn." (Unknown)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Newnan, GA
    I'd restore it to it's original glory. In case you're not aware, Walker-Turner was bought out by Rockwell Mfg.,
    As has already been mentioned, you should be able to find your exact machine on this site.

    "When the horse is dead, GET OFF."

  8. #8
    I’m with Carroll on this one. I own a Walker-Turner Driver-line drill press that I’m currently restoring. The driver-line tools were made in the 1930’s. They were marketed through Sears Roebuck for homeowners, so were ‘value priced’. The 12" bandsaw was in the mid-priced lineup -not the lowest level, but not the highest (same as my drill press). While Walker-Turner advertised SKF ball bearings, my understanding is they aren't the SKF bearings you can pick up at the local motor shop. I think they may be available from a Walker-Turner specialist rebuilder, or you can adapt modern bearings to fit, but it's not plug and play.

    All to say, it’s probably going to need some work to get it running nicely into the next century (and because of it’s age, wouldn’t it be nice to keep it going?).
    Last edited by Harvey Miller; 02-09-2014 at 10:08 AM.

  9. #9
    If you search on google, you'll see several threads of Walker turner saw restoration. vintagemachinery site is good
    place to start. Good luck.

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