Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Cosmetics and Costs

Here comes the costliest and most time consuming aspect of restoration by far - cosmetic work.
  • Stripping
  • Painting/Powder Coating
  • Cleaning/Shining/Polishing metal parts
  • The Column
  • Knobs
  • Badges

I use the word "cosmetic" because, with the exception of cleaning some parts, none of this will affect the function of the saw.

Bead blasting and professional painting of the metal parts will run you roughly $250.00.

Powder coating is another $50 on top of that (and you can't powder coat the motor because the winding insulation will melt at 400° unless you have special insulation applied).

Having the column polished and plated is roughly $100.00

To re-create badges you need some illustrator skills, a scanner, and manufacturer of badges that still can do etching.

I have the skills for the former and found a place somewhat local to me to do the latter:

Melrose Nameplate and Label Company.

I will post the costs once I get an estimate. I suspect it will be pricey ;-)

For this saw I intend to re-create the smaller arm badge and create a water slide decal for the larger arm badge.

My current thinking is to paint or powder coat the 925 black, keep the red ball knobs, and replace the mushroom knobs with Stainless Steel flat versions from McMaster. $5.83

What does this really mean? In short, don't bother restoring these smaller saws for profit.

Initial Cost - $0.00
Capacitor - $10.00
Strip and Paint - $300.00
Column - $100.00
Knobs - $12.00
Bearings - $50.00
New Table - $40.00
New Hardware - $20.00
New Cord - $20.00

So we're looking at $552.00 to restore a FREE saw that no one will want to buy for more than $300 if you're patient and lucky. That's the downside.

I imagine you could have someone blast the parts for ~$100 and paint them yourself to save ~$200.

You could polish the column yourself (if you had a fatty wire wheel setup) but that is a lot of work (really) to save yourself another $100 but you still probably couldn't recoup your costs.

The upside is that this saw will last forever so it makes one heck of a gift for a young woodworker, school, or church.

If you are a woodworker you just spent $552.00 on a saw that can't be bought at any price and will last the rest of your woodworking life (and well into your children's and grand children's, should you be so lucky).

The 925 is a 1 horsepower saw. It would take same cost to restore a 1.6 - 5HP saw which a professional who knows that value of a RAS is would happily pay $600-$3500.00 for. The only modern RAS's available worth buying are the Delta or an OSC (Original Saw Company) which will run you $1600-$6000 and not be in the same class as a well restored and calibrated saw from 1953-1971.

To give you an example, I purchased a ~1970 DeWalt B&D Model 3526 which is a 3HP 3 Phase saw with a 46" arm that can perform 24" cross cuts for $200.00. I spent $300.00 to have the motor shop put bearings on it and balance the rotor. And another $185.00 on a VFD (1 to 3 phase converter controller). This saw blows the OSC model (costing $6000.00) out of the water! It will also allow me to sell my 2HP Craftsman Table Saw which I have never loved (I won't tell you what I paid for it but it was more than $500.00).

So $685.00 for a better than $6000.00 model. Not bad.

1 comment:

  1. Kent, excellent rundown of the process and its dollar-cost value. The other day, I made a call to OSC re parts for my 7790, and the Rep tried REALLY hard to sell me on one of the new saws: "Why in the world would you want a 40 or 50 year old saw?" I didn't bother telling him about my '58 Delta 40C or my '79 Delta 30C, 'cuz I just didn't think he would get it.