New Life for an Old Table Saw

By Steve Shanesy
Pages: 54-55

From the June 2010 issue #183
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The dream of a “barn find” looms large in most people’s imagination, whether it’s 1,000 board feet of 18″-wide walnut or a ’67 Mustang (pony interior, of course). Problem is, it rarely happens to you.

My turn came last fall when I stumbled on an old Delta Unisaw. And I mean WWII-era old. The serial number and a quick Internet search gave me a “born on” date of 1944, about the fourth year of production for this stalwart table saw model.

But finding this relic and owning it were two separate matters. The contents of the building where I discovered it were to be sold at auction. So just how much should I pay for the saw? Would it be a steal? Would a “collector” bid up the price? The auctioneer asked for $125. No takers. Next he asked for $75 and a hand went up. Then $100 and my hand went up. In a matter of seconds, it was mine for $165.

And thus began my relationship with a 65-year-old woodworking machine. As you would expect, “getting acquainted” was the first order of business after hauling the Unisaw back to the Popular Woodworking Magazine shop.


From the June 2010 issue #183
Buy this issue now