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Thread: vintage Craftsman table saw upgrade

  1. #1

    Question vintage Craftsman table saw upgrade

    I am a new member to the community. I retired 2 years ago after major back surgery and have renewed my interest in woodworking. It began with woodturning, evolved into creating a garage workshop to use a lathe, and has recently expanded to making boxes for jigs so that I can practice and develop my joinery skill. I inherited a 1960's era Craftsman 10" contractor's table saw and radial arm saw which I have brought both back to life. Restored would be an overstatement.
    I use the table saw almost everyday I'm in the workshop. I've made minor upgrades to the table saw, installing a new paddle on/off switch, replacing the V belt with a link belt, making a scarifical fence for the original aluminum fence, installed microjig splitters on zero clearnace inserts, and purchased an Incra V120 miter guage with extension and flip stopper.
    The table saw still has a lot of vibration when cutting (to date 70% crosscut and 30% ripping) and the aluminum fence system does not maintain a parallel position to the miter slot without measuring the distance at the front and back of the blade. I've cleaned the cabinet as best I can. I would need physical assistance to remove the table from the cabinet to adjust the trununs if required.
    I plan on upgradeing the fence system with a Shop Fox system (w1410) which would require drilling holes into the table sides to mount the fence brackets.
    My questions for response are several:
    1.) Even though I've spent alot of hours bringing the table saw back to life, if I pursue making more refined boxes, would it be necessary to consider purchasing a new table saw?
    2.) Does anyone have specific recommendations to reduce table vibration?
    3.) Is there another aftermarket fence system which could be attached to this age table saw for more precise cutting?
    Mark Mrsa

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    McKean, PA
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    What is the model number of your saw?
    I have a Craftsman 113 model saw with the cast iron open grate wings. I have tuned my saw, added a Beismeyer fence and a Kreg crosscut guide. I also replaced the original belt and both pulleys. I have very little vibration. I routinely switch between full kerf 60 tooth crosscut and 24 tooth rip Freud blades with no issues.

    You can visit my profile and view a number of the projects I've made with my saw.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Waterford, PA
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    782
    Welcome Mark,

    I actually just purchased a 113 for a second table saw in my shop a couple months ago. My intent for it is a dedicated saw for making box joints, primarily for drawer boxes. Before anything else, align the miter slots to the blade. You don't need to remove the tables, but a set of PALS or something similar you make yourself will make the job much less frustrating. As for vibration, I'd suspect the motor pulley being out of alignment with the pulley on the arbor. If that's not the problem start looking for a bent arbor, bad bearings or something similar.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
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    If your saw is direct drive or flex drive I would think twice before putting a lot of money into it, my experience with old Craftsman table saws is that the motors get weak and burn out pretty easily, at least on the 3 I had back in the day. With a belt drive it would be easier to replace with a generic motor if that should become necessary.

  5. #5
    Lee,
    Thanks for responding to my posting! This is just what I was hoping for.
    The Craftsman table saw is model number 113.29410 and I think it was manufactured between 1960 and 1965.
    I have the original pulleys. The problem is the one attached to the motor arbor keeps losing and moving toward the end of the shaft. A tech rep from the Highland Woodworker recommended to roughen the side of the V belt as the smooth surface may be the root of the problem. I did so and the pulley attached to the motor arbor losened again. Since putting on the link belt this problem has not reoccured, but the new belt did not noticeably reduce the vibration. Where did you purchase the pulleys? eBay? Craftsman partswebsite? Haven't researched this part to determine if it is available through a website like McMaster-Carr.
    It considered the Beismeyer fence system, but didn't think it would interface with the model Craftsman table I own. Did you have any problems drilling through the cast iron table sides? Threaded holes or over size holes?
    I'm upgrading my blades from the Kromedge blades to Frued and DeWalt. I have 2 cross cut blades. Just purchased a Frued combination blade.
    Did you remove the table from the cabinet and detach the truniuns ?
    I'll visit your profile to see what you've produced. I haven't encountered many woodworkers with a vintage Craftsman to share experiences.

  6. #6
    Lisa,
    Thanks for the advice. It's nice to know there are people who are using vintage machines. I've done some basic alignment of the blade (vertical and horizontal to the table surface) using a metal square. I have a Starrett dial indicator and am searching for a miter slot accessory to assess the blade being parallel to the miter slot. Woodpecker has an interesting design for $70.00. What is a PALS?
    As to the pulley alignment, that's one problem I think I've solved. I haven't looked the arbor for the blade. There is no wobble when the blade is spinning and the arbor in the motor appears straight. The motor still works fine, but am considering a "tune up" so to speak.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    McKean, PA
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    13,409
    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Mrsa View Post
    Lee,
    Thanks for responding to my posting! This is just what I was hoping for.
    The Craftsman table saw is model number 113.29410 and I think it was manufactured between 1960 and 1965.
    I have the original pulleys. The problem is the one attached to the motor arbor keeps losing and moving toward the end of the shaft. A tech rep from the Highland Woodworker recommended to roughen the side of the V belt as the smooth surface may be the root of the problem. I did so and the pulley attached to the motor arbor losened again. Since putting on the link belt this problem has not reoccured, but the new belt did not noticeably reduce the vibration. Where did you purchase the pulleys? eBay? Craftsman partswebsite? Haven't researched this part to determine if it is available through a website like McMaster-Carr.
    It considered the Beismeyer fence system, but didn't think it would interface with the model Craftsman table I own. Did you have any problems drilling through the cast iron table sides? Threaded holes or over size holes?
    I'm upgrading my blades from the Kromedge blades to Frued and DeWalt. I have 2 cross cut blades. Just purchased a Frued combination blade.
    Did you remove the table from the cabinet and detach the truniuns ?
    I'll visit your profile to see what you've produced. I haven't encountered many woodworkers with a vintage Craftsman to share experiences.
    My saw is a 113.298720. I would definitely recommend changing the pulleys. It has been too many years to recall where I got mine. What you want are machined pulleys of the same diameter and hole size as the ones on your saw. If there is room, they sometimes use two set screws stacked in the hole to prevent loosening. Or you can use the Blue Loctite. One source for machined steel pulleys for table saws is In Line Industries, which may be where I got mine. They have kits and sell individual pulleys as well. Mine are 5/8" bore and 2-1/2" diameter for both.

    As I recall I had to drill one hole through the cast iron for my fence. I drilled a pilot hole then stepped up to the bolt size I needed. Mine are all through holes, no threads.

    For alignment, I reach through the opening into the back and loosened the bolts holding the trunnions to the underside of the table. I probably spent several hours getting down on the floor, then getting up, then down on the floor, etc making the adjustments. If I were doing it now I would first buy the PALS for my saw, also available from In Line Industries. They save a lot of time. For about $20 you can get a dial indicator from Harbor Freight that will do a good job measuring your alignments when mounted on a block of wood clamped to your miter gauge.
    Last edited by Lee Schierer; 02-25-2021 at 6:01 PM.
    Lee Schierer
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  8. #8
    Join Date
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    The model 113.29410 shows up as a radial arm saw. Is this correct?
    I always forget . . . Is it the letter "S" or the letter "C" that is silent in the word scent?
    - Glenn (the second "N" is silent) Bradley

  9. #9
    I have a similar Craftsman that my Dad brought home used in the mid sixties and taught me how to use it. Although my main saw is a Sawstop ICS, I got the old Craftsman when my Dad passed away. It still works great. I now use it for making drawers. I modified it by switching to cast iron pulleys, replaced the belt, and upgraded the motor. I also replaced the rip fence with the Delta T-Square fence, which is actually the original Biesemeyer home shop fence. (Delta bought Biesemeyer). Replacing the fence was straight forward. It bolted right on without having to drill any holes. I would suggest a good quality motor of at least 1 1/2 hp and run it if all possible on 220.

  10. #10
    Sounds like a lot of good advice so far. I would add paying the $6 a year to post and see pictures and other benefits on this forum as a saw upgrade. Good luck with your saw, I have a shop full of old machines.

  11. #11
    Glenn, I had the wrong number. Correct model number is 113.29901.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Belmont, CA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Mrsa View Post
    What is a PALS?
    PALS = "Precision Alignment and Locking System". Sold by Peachtree Woodworking, among others. Search for "table saw pals" on Google or Amazon and you'll find them quickly.

    They mount to the rear trunnion and allow you to micro-adjust its position, and hold that position while tightening the mounting bolts.

  13. #13
    Thanks Leo. I've found it on Amazon. I have to check for parallelism of the blade to the miter slot first. I gotten a lot of good advice on this first posting.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
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    There is a company that sells complete kits to upgrade these says, I believe their name is "inline industries". They sell the pulleys, pals, and the jigs to hold the dial indicator.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael J Evans View Post
    There is a company that sells complete kits to upgrade these says, I believe their name is "inline industries". They sell the pulleys, pals, and the jigs to hold the dial indicator.
    inline makes good products but many have had bad luck ordering from them directly. so order from Peachtree or others if possible...

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