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Looking for a beginners scroll saw

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  • Looking for a beginners scroll saw

    I am looking for a good entry level scroll saw. I will mainly use it to cut thin sheets of carbon fiber and plastic.

    I have been doing some research and these are the models I'm considering:
    Ace Brand Scroll Saw-8366sl:

    You'll notice they all have a similar price tag, roughly $100 or so. I kind of narrowed it down to the Delta, but I wanted to know if anybody had experience to share with me. To be honest the biggest draw for me on the Delta is the larger motor and I can find reviews for their product. I’m assuming that the Ace saw is a re-branded saw, but does anybody know who the OEM is? I stumbled upon the Wilton brand saw earlier tonight, but can’t find any reviews or user info for it.

    Any help/information is greatly appreciated, thanks.

  • #2
    I can only speak to the Ryobi as it's the only one you have listed that I have owned.

    DON'T BUY IT!!!!!

    I have also owned a DeWalt, a good saw. I presently own an RBI Hawk 220 which is an excellent saw as is the Hegner (which I don't own, but have used).

    There are those that will disagree with me, but I would save my dollars and get a little higher quality saw. In the long run, I think you will be happier and better off.

    Mike, 3-M, mentioned in an earlier post that he can give you a lead on Hegner prices. There are also reconditined saws available as well as show specials and other deals. Look around.

    Now that I've stirred the pot, think I'll just shut up.


    • #3

      There are many discussions of this very topic in this forum so if you do a little seeking you will find others responses. I will again go on record to say you get what you pay for. I feel those entry level saws are just not worth the money unless you are going to use it once in a blue moon. They will not hold up to everyday use and become frustrating to use either because of failure or vibration. If you were to choose between the 2 you mention the Delta is the better of the two and I would stay away from the Ryobi. Now there are going to be someone who says he or she has owned a Ryobi and it is wonderful. Well there are different models to the Ryobi so check that also. The one you are talking about is worth about $50 if that.If you save a little more money and go to the middle of the road in prices you will find 2 real good saws The Delta P20 and the Dewalt 788 for around $400 you will get a saw that will stand up to everyday use and will give you years of pleasure. Unlike the $100 saws which you will have to buy 2 or 3 times because of failure. One reason people get frustrated with the quality of work they are putting out is the equipment they are using and then they miss out on this enjoyable and relaxing artform. Minmd you this is my opinion so don't shoot the messanger. But like I said this topic has come up many times here so browse the forum and find others opinions. Good Luck and whatever saw you choose hope it works out for you and welcome to the world of scrolling.

      One other side note look at the size of the saw you get for $400 as oppose to the $100 saw. Could be of value to you.
      John T.


      • #4
        Beginners saw

        I have used the Delta for over 8 years. I love it. I have sent it in for the odd tune up. I have cut all my projects with it. I like the blade change feature and the variable speed.
        The price is right. Only draw back is the throat size. But I don't do much big work. and if you are creative you can work wonders.
        I also have a Ryobi 16" scroll saw.......not to happy with it but it was free. The blade changing system is cumbersome. That being said I just checked out the latest entry from Ryobi at Hone Depot. an 18" model with dust blower and led light built in. The blade change system has been reworked, the controls are on top , up front and clearly marked. I havent used one yet but it looks promising.
        "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
        Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21


        • #5
          Silentbob, I am brand new to this site as well as scrolling and cannot speak to what is good bad or indifferent about any of the saws listed. What I can say is I went out and bought that new Dremel Scroll Station at Home Depot as I thought I might enjoy this hobby. I have been thinking about it for some time and a friend of mine is into it and really enjoys it. Well, lesson learned, I took the saw back to Home Depot two days later. It just had way to much vibration and I was getting extremely frustrated. I decided to spend a bit extra and get a Dewault or something so I started researching the net on different saws. To make a long story much shorter I found a classified ad on the internet out of the Dallas. TX area. Listed was an older RBI 220-3 for 185.00. I just happend to be going to Dallas the next week so I called the guy and bought it sight unseen. Once I got it home, Olive Branch, MS, I set it up and could not be more pleased with it.

          So I guess what I am trying to say is be patient in your search and do not discount a good used saw. There are still deals to be had out there for those who look. I ended up with what is generally considered to be one of the best saws out there for less than I paid for the Dremel and the RBI had a stand, an extra arm, and about 300 blades with it. Now if I can just figure out how to use it!

          Good luck in your search!


          • #6
            A good Scrollsaw

            Bob; I speak from my own limited experience as I am rather new to this, however I purchased a Craftsman 16" and found it to be a great buy. It runs smooth,blades are easily replaceable and it is manufactured with U.S.A. parts.I've also tried a Delta and found it to be a good machine. One of my criteria before buying anything these days (was it made in the good old U.S.A.?) If I have to pay 50.00 extra I'll pay it. Not only am I keeping fellow Americans employed but I am usually getting a superior product.
            Sincerely; Totilla


            • #7
              I would love to know what saws are still made in the US. I know the RBI is made here. All Delta saws and the DeWalt are made over seas.
              Mike M
              SD Mike


              • #8
                Mike that is a tough question because there are so many brands especially the lower brands but suspect they are all foriegners. I know the Eclippse is.
                John T.


                • #9
                  Well, I guess my Dad was right. He always said if you listen to those who are wiser and have more experience you just might learn something.

                  I am researching scroll saws before I buy one. I was looking at the Ryobi 16" and the Dremel 18" scroll saws advertised in the Home Depot catalog.

                  After reading this thread I have now crossed those two off my list and will concentrate on the ones I've seen mentioned here.

                  So thank you oh wise and experienced ones for saving me time, money and aggravation.

                  [FONT=Arial]Any idiot can handle a crisis. It's the day to day living that wears us out.[/FONT]


                  • #10

                    I've only been at this for 4 years,But(there's always a but) I have learned this,check the blade tension system on each machine.
                    My 1st machine is a Mikita(no longer avail. my area) it has a front mounted tensioner which pops up in the middle of a cut(very frustrating).
                    My 2nd machine is a Craftsman with the tensioner in the back which I've never had a problem with.
                    Both cost around $150.00 each,But(there's that but again) I bought the 2nd machine 1) because of the tensioner, And 2) because of the frustration of the first(which sets in the corner and my better half doesn't like it either).
                    Hope this helps in your process of finding the right saw for you.
                    Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most.Cliff


                    • #11
                      $300 for 2 saws. Another $100 and you could have bought a Dewalt 788 and not be having this conversation. I do not know what it is but I just can't stay out of this type of conversation. It just keeps coming back over and over again about these $200 saws. Good luck and hope you make lots of sawdust.
                      John T.


                      • #12

                        Remember hindsight is twenty-twenty.
                        I was a beginner too,And looked for cheaper saws to start out with.
                        Bought the saw and then found the magazines w/ websites and I just signed up to this forum.
                        Finding there is lots of good info here and hope others do too.Btw I looked at other woodworking mags that had comparisons of diffent models of scrollsaws and the Craftsman was considered a good buy for the money so whats a guy to do?
                        Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most.Cliff


                        • #13
                          I got the Delta

                          I got the Delta-SS250 about 7 months ago and I really like it. Before then, I had never used a scroll saw, but now I am very possessive when it comes to my free time because I would rather be scrolling than doing just about anything else.

                          I'm sure the Delta would work find for carbon fiber and/or plastic. The only thing I have ever cut on my Delta is wood; usually pine or baltic birch. One time I cut a celtic cross out of lyptus wood and, while the results were beautiful, I didn't care for the post-cut aroma of the wood.

                          I have heard pros and cons on the blade changing on this model, but I've never really had a problem with it. The one thing I will warn you, however, is not to tighten the bottom clamp too tight. I was doing that a lot when I first started and soon found that I didn't need to overdo as much as I soon as I stopped doing that, my blade changes are much faster.


                          • #14

                            I am glad to see you are happy with the saw. I liked the Delta very much.
                            I recently got a new saw, I am sure the usual crowd will shun me now but thats life.

                            I got a Ryobi 18". I am very pleased with it so far. The controls are up front, there is not too much vibration. The blower and built in light work well.
                            There are two indents on the table to rest your wrists on while cutting.
                            The table is teflon coated and wood moves very well over the surface.
                            Blade changes are a snap although I will have to get the practice to work the same speed I did with the Delta Quick Clamps.

                            There is a dust collection port for a vacuum and a blade storage compartment at the front of the saw.
                            I think Ryobi must have listened to scrollers with this saw because it is far superior to the old 16" Ryobi I had years ago.

                            I have to say the main reason I bought this saw is the price. I couldnt afford the $600 for the Dewalt. I also dont think I do enough scrolling to justify the upper end models. Each user has to evaluate their own needs and buy the saw that suites them.
                            CAЯL HIRD-RUTTEЯ
                            "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
                            Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21


                            • #15

                              I, also, have a Delta SS250. It is a good saw for around a $100 but you will have to keep up with maintenance. Grease those bushings more than just 20 hours of use. Mine are getting pretty worn. I do like the ease of blade change and the tension adjustment up front, tho. I have enjoyed my Delta and learned allot about scroll sawing. I bought this saw only because it wasn't very expensive just to try out scroll sawing and now that I love it. I'm thinking of upgrading to a DeWalt 788 in the near future.

                              Good luck and keep sawing.


                              My saw is a DeWalt788 Measure twice; cut once; count fingers after cut


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