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First Saw--Delta 40-601--Good???

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  • First Saw--Delta 40-601--Good???

    I have never operated at scroll saw in my life but have always wanted to. I just inherited a hardly used Delta 40-601 varible speed 18" scroll saw. I know nothing about this saw really. I was told that it's motor is a 1HP motor. The saw and stand it VERY heavy, that's for sure. It sure pures quiet.

    I was hoping that you vets could tell me what to expect out of this saw. Should I be able to expect good quality out of this saw? Is it well made? Is it too much muscle for a total beginner?

    Sure would appreciate your thoughts! Thanks!

  • #2
    No worries for you

    Well made saw and there isn't too much you can't do with it.
    I wish I had one It has all the features you will need to carry you through years of happy scrolling!
    "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
    Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21


    • #3
      Hi Jason

      Welcome to the forum .

      It sounds like you've struck lucky, because heavy saws tend to vibrate less than lighter ones. The Delta's are very good machines (although we all have our preferences ) and there's no doubt that it will serve you well.

      There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
      (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)


      • #4
        That should be a great old saw for you. I believe it is Delta's indutrrial quality C-arm model that they had previous to the Delta P-20.
        Here is something I just found about one for sale
        Some say that parts are no longer available for it but I don't know how true that is . Would be best to contact Rick Hutcheson at this address
        He is a scroll saw collector as well as one of the best scrollers you will ever find and he prefers that C-arm for his own use over all the saws that he has.
        Good luck with your new (hardly used) saw. I understand it is quite an aggressive saw in its cutting action but if it is your first saw, then you won't know the difference in the ones that are not so aggresive and you will soon be scrolling out some great pieces of work on it.
        Click on Q3 in the dropdown list on the left side of Rick's site and you will get loads of good information on your saw.

        The task ahead of us is never as great as the power behind us

        Delta P-20 Scroll Saw, 14" x 43" Craftex Wood Lathe and Jet 10" Mini Lathe .


        • #5

          I looked up your saw at They have changed the web site and now require those looking up old parts list to register and login to their site.

          You have one of the "true" C style scroll saws. At the back of you saw there is a single pivot bearing. Your blade clamping system is the original Delta Quickset system. Special hex wrench used. Your quick blade tension set / release system has a cam near the front of the upper arm with a lever that you pull or push. If you look closely you will find a rubber disk of about 3/16 inch thick as part of the tension system. The motor is attached to the lower arm with some small sealed ball bearings.

          As Carl and W.Y. has said, very good old fashion saw.

          With that said, you don't have a new saw. You should be aware of the maintenance you could be faced with. You know your own skill at doing these:
          -1 The main pivot bearing needs to be removed and cleaned. Really cleaned. All gunk removed. Then the bearing housing / bushing. Re-Lub with SAE 30wt non-Detergent oil. If you use 3-IN-1 be sure to use the BLUE can. Not the Red can. Blue can is for rotation motion. States so on the Blue can label SAE 20wt non-detergent electric motor oil.

          -2 The Jaws of the blade chuck get warn and might need to be replaced. Search at for Quickset II. About $25.00 USD. Advance mechanical skill level to remove and install replacements.

          -3 The rubber disk (grommet) gets old and effects your cutting. Disk cost about $1.00. You can only get these from Delta, if they are still available with new Delta ownership. (Lots of parts are no longer available after a few years after end of production now-a-days.)

          -4 Those small sealed bearings that are used to attach the motor to the lower arm go bad with age. You should have a Ball bearing store in the yellow pages if you live near a large city. These are common, and should be about $15.00 to $22.00 each. Again intermediate to advance skill level to replace.

          BTW: The reason the 'true' C arm saws went out of style is the blade does not travel in a true up down motion. There is a very slight sawing action front to back due to the single pivot of the upper and lower arms. I have three books that state this. What I cannot find is why this was bad, or even why it is unwanted. I can only guess that if you stack cut 6 pieces at a time, this would make a difference. But that is only a guess.

          Please care for that saw, as it is not just a tool but a token of person you inherited it from.



          • #6
            It's a great saw

            That saw was my first "serious" scroll saw. I loved it. It was the first to have continuously variable speed, and even though you needed two tools to release the blade it went pretty quick after a little practice. And it was definitely faster than it's competitors. I added the "quick release" option when it became available.

            It did all kinds of scrolling with it, from 2" walnut to lacy fretwork ornaments from 1/4" cherry.

            Makes me wonder why I got rid of it.



            • #7
              Thanks Ladies and Gents for all the great replies. You are all obviously a very friendly little community here. Sure am glad I found you. I be sure to post some pics if I ever am able to make something nice enough to show you.

              Thank you!


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