Antique Circular Saw

Discussion in 'The DIY Tool Shed' started by jkingma, May 24, 2019.

  1. jkingma

    jkingma Super Moderator Staff Member

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    My wife and I just took possession of a vacation home / cottage / place to retire (when the time comes)...

    The previous owner left behind a lot of stuff in the garage/shop including a small miter saw, vice, compressor, an assortment of hand tools and this very old Craftsman Circular Saw in a metal carrying case.

    IMG_20190520_120252_233.jpg IMG_20190520_120252_228.jpg

    Aside from the handle being cracked, it's in pretty good condition. I haven't plugged it in yet, but I'm itching to give it a try.

    Does anyone have any idea how old this might be? My guess is mid 50's.
     
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  2. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    Looks more like the '40's by the aircraft styling. Is there a date code somewhere near the Craftsman logo?
     
  3. jkingma

    jkingma Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I haven't looked at it close enough yet. I'll check this weekend when I get back there.
     
  4. PlainAllman

    PlainAllman Tele-Meister

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  5. dkmw

    dkmw Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    A friend of mine (now passed) owned a hardware store his dad started in the mid 40s. When the big box stores and chain hardware, i.e. Ace, took all his business, he became more of a service place and worked on everyone in town’s power tools. He was also the Milwaukee dealer back when Milwaukee was all made in US and top-notch stuff.

    He had a display of vintage power tools in his front window; a bunch of things very similar to yours. I wish I had taken pictures before the place closed up. And I wonder where all those old tools went...

    Parenthetically, I bought a Milwaukee jig saw from him about 1985. After about 15 years, I had worn out the drive gears. He said he’d never seen anyone wear out the gears in one of those saws. We then calculated that I’d cut something like 7 miles with the thing. I told him I was gonna retire when I wore out the second set of gears he installed, and I did just that about a year ago.
     
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  6. mexicanyella

    mexicanyella Tele-Holic

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    I inherited my grandpa’s mid 60s Craftsman saw and it was all aluminum like yours but shaped pretty much like a current saw: direct drive, motor on right/blade on left.

    Heavy, but a quality piece. Good shoe adjustments, and cut well with modern 7-1/4” framing blades on it. I scrapped it when the bearings started howling and the trigger switch got intermittent but sometimes wish I’d tried to fix it.

    A friend of mine acquired an old Homelite gas-powered circular saw that appeared to be closely based on the old blue and white XL12 chainsaw power head. Never got to try it before he eBay-ed it, but it ran.

    If that old saw works, put it to work! That’s cool!
     
  7. Alamo

    Alamo Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    That's a very nice old saw.
    I'd be watching a lot restoration videos on YouTube first to get to know it

     
  8. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Not plastic!
    You might want to change it to 3-prong.
    And check if it has a death cap ;)
     
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  9. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    My grandfather had a Craftsman circular saw in a sheet metal box like the one the OP showed. I'm pretty sure the box is still around somewhere but I have no idea what kind of saw is (or isn't) inside.

    When I was growing up, the circular saw my Dad used (and I learned to use when I was old enough) was just like the one in Alamo's video. Not one for getting rid of things, he probably still has it around somewhere.
     
  10. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Friend of Leo's

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    That was my first thought - it's not 'double insulated' so you probably want a three-prong plug and cord on there (I'm guessing the cord is the only fragile thing in there). The brushes would probably need attention as well.

    But, given the age, you might investigate it's value before doing any tinkering. Not many of those survived and there are people who don't just admire that old logo - they pay for it! Originality would matter to a collector (though it looks like the plug was already replaced).
     
  11. KG7IL

    KG7IL TDPRI Member

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    That saw is beautiful.
    Although folks are suggesting changes... Keep it as original as possible. If you do decide to change out the cord, KEEP THE ORIGINAL in a baggies, clearly marked in the case.

    Nothing destroys value like NO LONGER ORIGINAL.

    I love the art deco look of that saw... Do not polish it, do not change it in anyway... Please!
     
  12. LeftFinger

    LeftFinger Tele-Afflicted

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    Now that Rona owns the Craftsman logo and is slowly bringing the tool line back I wonder if they got any archives of old designs?
     
  13. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    The good old days when tools were quality. The old brands like Milwaukee and Sioux were workhorses back when I was a kid, still have most of those power tools. One of my favorite thing to do was going to garage sales and looking for any power tools in a hard case...those were the good ones.

    Craftsman before about 1990 were great tools and on-par with some of the best tools out there. In my Father's repair shop, he had 2 rolling tool boxes, one was Snap-On and one was vintage Craftsman from the '70's. They were both made at the same foundry and both were great hand tools with the only difference being that the Snap-on had slightly better tooth pitch on the wrenches and sockets. We used to cut and bend wrenches to make special access tools and you spent a long time with a torch and vise to get those tools to bend. Today, those same tools are made I think in France and the steel is so granular that the wrench will break instead of bend. Not much quality left anymore.
     
  14. Jupiter

    Jupiter Telefied Silver Supporter

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    nice! Reminds me of the one my pa had.
     
  15. warrent

    warrent Friend of Leo's

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    If the comments in the website PlainAllman cited are correct that saw was $89.00 in 1943. That was an expensive saw then and now. It would be over 1300 in today's dollars. Nice find.
     
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