January 30, 2014

Restoring a 1977 Rockwell (Delta) 34-461 Unisaw

My journey restoring a 1977 Rockwell International (Delta) 34-461 Unisaw

Backstory

Early in January I stumbled upon a great deal on a Rockwell International (Delta) Unisaw from the 70′s on Craigslist. Knowing that a Unisaw is a timeless classic table saw, its age of 37 years old did not matter. All it meant was a little elbow grease was going to be needed to have the table saw running like it did when it left the factory.

Thanks to the good folks at OWWM.org and VintageMachinery.org, I was able to identify that the Unisaw was built in 1977 in Tupelo, MS plus learn a ton of other information that is proving to be critical to the restoration process. Owwm.org and VintageMachinery.org are both essential resources for tool restoration. The depth and breadth of knowledge available is amazing!

Game plan

My game plan is to completely disassemble, clean, paint, and rebuild the saw in preparation for another 30 years of service. I am also replacing the arbor bearings and will likely replace the motor bearings too.

Visual Guide of Progress

Condition at time of purchase.
Unisaw-As Purchased
Unisaw-As Purchased
Unisaw-As Purchased
Unisaw-As Purchased

Detailed pictures before starting the restoration.
Unisaw Pre Restoration
Unisaw Pre Restoration
Unisaw Pre Restoration
Unisaw Pre Restoration
Unisaw Pre Restoration

Cabinet cleaned with Mineral Spirits to remove contact cement all over it.
Unisaw Cabinet Cleaned
Unisaw Cabinet Cleaned

Internal castings after Soda blasting, new arbor bearings, and painting with Rust-Oleum Machine Grey paint.
Unisaw Castings Painted

Custom mounted electrical control box recessed into the cabinet.
unisaw-starter-box-inside-cabinet-overall
unisaw-starter-box-outside-close
unisaw-starter-box-outside-with-cover

Inside of cabinet primed
Unisaw inside of cabinet primed
Unisaw inside of cabinet primed
Unisaw inside of cabinet primed

Exterior of cabinet with holes filled and ready for final sanding before priming. This is where I am at with the project as of today.
Unisaw Cabinet Ready For Final Sanding
Unisaw Cabinet Ready For Final Sanding
Unisaw Cabinet Ready For Final Sanding

~Nathan