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Upgrade bandsaw motor

mvflaim's picture

I'd like to upgrade my Delta 14" Bandsaw 1/2 HP motor to a 1 HP, 1.5 HP or even 2 HP if possible. The problem is that I have no clue about motors. I know I don't need a three phase motor and I like to still use 110 V versions. Should I use Baldor motors or will some cheaper imitation work just as well? Are there motors out there that will spin too fast? Spin the opposite direction? How do I know which one to get?

Here's a picture of my bandsaw

Thanks mike 


BruceS's picture

(post #101087, reply #1 of 29)

Probably your best bet is to find a local motor distributor and take your motor in with you.  Horse power and voltage arn't going  to be as important as the mounting frame.  Just for giggles run your saw and magic marker an arrow for motor rotation before you take it out.  Baldors are good motors without a doubt,  But I have Marathon motors on my Tablesaw and jointer and put them to constant use with no problems. 

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!

Bruce S. 


Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!

Bruce S. 


Napie's picture

(post #101087, reply #2 of 29)

I have the same saw only a lot older and put a 2HP Baldor motor on it.  Along with the Carter guides and riser block it made it a real performer.  RPM is set and the way you connect the wiring determines direction of rotation.  This is an easy upgrade, go for it.

PADDYDAHAT's picture

(post #101087, reply #3 of 29)

Mike, look on your current motor plate, it will state the frame style, the rpm, the hp and the volts/amps. You need an INDUCTION motor TEFC 1,5 HP 110 V with the same rpm, the amps will be 13 to 15. The frame must be the same style as it's the mounting style. The tefc means totally enclosed fan cooled. Good motors are in increasing cost Emerson Electric, Dayton, Baldor and there are others. Measure your shaft diameter as that's another selection factor so it fits your pulley.

Now shop amazon, local motor supply/rebuilders from your yellow pages, the major tool companies,  industrial suppliers or delta if you don't care about the $. There are expensive  1.75 hp motors at 110v but you should not need that with a 14" saw. Over that-2hp- your looking at 220v. I would not look at 3/4 or 1hp if you want to up grade. That looks like old iron and with a 1.5 hp it will be a killer saw at that size 14". Look to spend 150 to 275 for a quality motor that you will have for a long time. Paddy

mvflaim's picture

(post #101087, reply #4 of 29)


Will this type of motor work? My current motor is 1725 rpm with a 5/8" shaft.

thanks mike


Edited 10/6/2007 10:26 pm ET by mvflaim

Napie's picture

(post #101087, reply #6 of 29)

Don't worry about shaft size, you can get a different pully to fit.

PADDYDAHAT's picture

(post #101087, reply #9 of 29)

Mike, that looks like it is just what the doctor ordered. You should check your frame type but it looks correct, just drill slot holes to mount if you have to and I found it good  to use a 1 1/2" flat bar as a stiffener under the pedestal across each pair of bolts front and back. Paddy

mvflaim's picture

(post #101087, reply #10 of 29)

Thanks Paddy! I owe you one.

One more question. Is there any real difference between a 110/220V motor and 115/230V motor? I've seen a Baldor 1 1/2 HP motor for sale for about the same price as Grizzly's and I'd like to get it but wasn't sure about the Volt difference. Everything else is the same.


Edited 10/7/2007 10:41 am ET by mvflaim

PADDYDAHAT's picture

(post #101087, reply #12 of 29)

Mike, not being an electrics guy I don't know the proper answer  but they are essentially the same. Where did you see a baldor for that kind of money? You now have me interested in upgrading my 3/4hp BS to at least 1 1/2 hp. You really know how to spend my money, HaHa.

Really it is next on my list as I move into East Tenn.(the land of hardwood). I already did the Walker Turner DP, two joiners and rebuilt a 1985 right tilt 3hp. unisaw to help out the 1  1/2 hp. contractors saw. All the best, Paddy

btw,  I was blocked around 1600 hrs east coast time with an error message that the taunton site had an error condition. Any one else ? Or was it just Verizon's dsl -cardboard servers that swell up in any dampness!

mvflaim's picture

(post #101087, reply #13 of 29)

It was on Ebay but has since been sold.. figures.. That's what I get for going out for the afternoon..



pzaxtl's picture

(post #101087, reply #16 of 29)


I have a 1.5hp farm duty baldor motor, model #FDL3514M that I bought a couple of years ago to upgrade my bandsaw.  I have since bought a new bandsaw (Laguna LT16HD, which I love).  Anyway, I gave my old bandsaw to my father-in-law who doesn't do any woodwork but would like to (that's another story).  I swapped the original motor back in before I gave him the machine since I knew it would sit in storage and thought that I might have another use for the baldor motor.  Turns out, it's just taking up space in my shop.  The motor is in practically new condition -- I doubt that I've had more the 50bf of lumber through it (honestly!).  If you're interested let me know.  I'll let you have it for $150 plus s&h.  Here's a link to the exact same motor on Baldor's site:

Take Care,


If you’re OCD and you know it wash your hands

mapleman's picture

(post #101087, reply #17 of 29)

There ya go Mike! That motor will walk all over your stock delta - and a good price too.


mvflaim's picture

(post #101087, reply #23 of 29)

Well I finished up my upgrade to my bandsaw this weekend. I had to have my buddy who's an electrical engineer come over and help me hook up the switch. He told me to buy an industrial switch for 220V at McMaster Carr. I tried to do it myself with the old switch that was originally was on it and that was a very bad idea. Blew the 220V outlet and melted a prong off the plug. Thanks for hooking me up with the motor Michael! This bandsaw will see many years of service thanks to your generosity of letting go of a fine motor at a very reasonable price.

Thanks again, Mike


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northhouguy's picture

(post #101087, reply #24 of 29)


I would hope that you are going to install a guard over the pully/belt motor.  You have a very dangerous situation as shown. 

I'm not getting on your case.  As an electrical engineer I shudder when I see systems like this with no guards.  It looks like you have a great design to improve your machine.  Don't stop now.  Make it safe.

mvflaim's picture

(post #101087, reply #25 of 29)

Yeah I plan on building a guard over the belt. Good point!


dgreen's picture

(post #101087, reply #26 of 29)

Nice looking job. Might I suggest a coat of machinery gray for the motor? Also I noticed your dust collection at the bottom wheel housing, Delta makes a dust pickup that collects the dust at the bottom of the table, terribly overpriced but does an outstanding job.


It would indeed be a tragedy if the history of the human race proved to be nothing more than the story of an ape playing with a box of matches on a petrol dump. ~David Ormsby Gore




Men will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.
~ Denis Diderot

mvflaim's picture

(post #101087, reply #28 of 29)

That cut out with the hose works really well. The only problem is that when I hook it up to my dust collector it makes a terrible whistle. I guess it's because I'm going from 5" hose down to 3" and the air volume is so concentrated it ends up whistling. I move the hose up and down and all around until it stops but once it lays there for a few seconds, it whistles again. Horrible!  I either need to redesign the air flow some how or attach like a wire mesh around the adapter that goes from 5"to 3" to break the air flow into segments. But that might make it whistle worse???

Anyone else have this type of problem?


pzaxtl's picture

(post #101087, reply #27 of 29)

Hey Mike,

Glad it worked out for you!  I'm sure the saw will give you many years of top performance.  I think you'll find resawing much more effective with the larger motor.



If you’re OCD and you know it wash your hands

mvflaim's picture

(post #101087, reply #29 of 29)

Yes Yes resawing is much better.. Thanks again!


mapleman's picture

(post #101087, reply #14 of 29)

Mike and Paddy,

The trick on ebay is to keep your eyes open and watch things for a while. The good deals will pop up and you will figure out what stuff is going for. A while back some guy had a mess of brand new 5 hp single phase Baldor motors (missing the boxes) for sale. I watched every one of them go for about $200-$240. I mistakenly thought if I waited the price would go down - they did, but the guy ran out of them before I decided to bid.

Now that would have been one mean delta 14" bandsaw, don't you think?


PADDYDAHAT's picture

(post #101087, reply #15 of 29)

Lee, it sure would have--YA JUST BRING ON DAT HARD STUFF FROM OZ- Paddy

mvflaim's picture

(post #101087, reply #18 of 29)


Here's the guy on ebay selling the baldor motors. apparently he sells them all the time.


PADDYDAHAT's picture

(post #101087, reply #19 of 29)


Napie's picture

(post #101087, reply #5 of 29)

Do you really need to go to the expence of a TEFC motor?  I have a drip proof on my bandsaw and it has lasted nine years with no problems at all.  TEFC adds a lot to the cost.

PADDYDAHAT's picture

(post #101087, reply #8 of 29)

Napie, usually I would agree but being a belt and braces type guy TEFC motors are just better in the dusty world of a wood shop. Most motors die from the dust in the start up mechanics and I blow them out with an air line as well. Paddy

PaulMassachusetts's picture

(post #101087, reply #7 of 29)

My replacement 1 HP motor for a Delta bandsaw came from  a local electrical distributer. I saved approximately 50% of the retail cost by having professional access. The old motor burnt out after reseting the overload switch without letting the thing cool down.  The old motor had an external reset button. The new one has an internal automatic reset.  I had been cutting burls for woodturning.

If you keep looking at yard sales and used machinery places there are used motors and sooner or later come across one. My recommendation would be to find a used motor if you can. Sometimes they are cheaper if they are in a piece of junked electrical machinery.  

You might consider selling your Delta and upgrading to a used/new bandsaw. These are one of the most useful tools in a shop.




mapleman's picture

(post #101087, reply #11 of 29)


I have what looks like the same exact bandsaw, with the carter guides and riser block. I bought mine with a 1 hp baldor. I would say if you are going to upgrade go for the biggest 110v you can - at least 1.5 hp. If you have plentiful 220v in your shop, I would consider going with the 2 hp.

The 1 hp baldor outperforms delta's original motor by a long shot, but I find when resawing 10-12" thick hardwoods and exotics I could use a little more power.

As for the motor mounting bracket, I would not worry too much about that - it would be easy enough to drill 4 holes on the stand to mount the new motor - if you don't want to drill holes in your stand then mount the motor to a piece of 1/4" aluminum or steel and mount that plate to the stand using your existing holes.

Motors are plentiful on ebay and other places as well - unless you decide you have to have a brand new one a used one will likely do the trick.

Good luck,


Edited 10/7/2007 10:59 am by mapleman

EdHarrow's picture

(post #101087, reply #20 of 29)

This picture doesn't show the motor very well, but I got it from Hollar.  It's a 2HP, and slightly different from the std 56 frame, but not with respect to the mounting holes, but the shaft is larger in dia.  I got a 'good' pulley from McMaster Carr, along with the Fenner drive belt.

I imporovised rubber mounts - got some hanger mounts from my local NAPA buddy.  Of course they are made to hang things, not hold things up.  The result is that the motor doesn't sit quite square to the belt, but it's much quieter than before, and works fine, with no change to the basic structure of the saw.

Edited 10/11/2007 5:32 pm ET by EdHarrow

CTWoodWkr's picture

(post #101087, reply #21 of 29)

IMHO, I would not upgrade your Delta bandsaw. Delta style bandsaws are great for light duty work. Leave a 1/4" - 1/2" blade on it and use it as is for light sawing and cutting curves on small parts. If you need a heavier duty bandsaw I would suggest you save up for a Laguna 16"- 20" saw which would be able to do anything you ask of it including heavy duty resawing. The Laguna can use up to a 1 1/4" bladeand has a Baldor motor. Keep both saws if you have the room in your workshop or sell the Delta. It will be worth more if you keep it all original and don't modify it.

mapleman's picture

(post #101087, reply #22 of 29)

So you are advocating skipping a $200 upgrade in favor of a $2500+ purchase? To keep from lowering the value of a $400-$500 bandsaw? Which will be worth more if you go to sell it with a 1.5 hp baldor motor anyway, original or not?