Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Scrollsaw Review, Excalibur EX-21 and Delta 40-695, TripleB Style

 Reviews

As posted previously. I recently bought an Excalibur EX-21, it is a very good saw. The blade goes up and down and it cuts wood. It's very nice looking and has some features that make it convenient to use.  If you are in the market for a saw, then I'm sure you are aware of what those features are, so there is no point in me rehashing the same stuff over again. Upon initial set up, there is a considerable amount of "Tweaking" required to obtain optimal cutting performance. End review.

As posted previously. I recently bought a Delta 40-695, (unfortunately, I had to return it due to mechanical issues upon arrival, that's why I ended up with the Excalibur), had I kept it and it worked properly the review probably would have gone something like this, ....

The blade goes up and down and it cuts wood. It's very nice looking and has some features that make it convenient to use. If you are in the market for this saw, then I'm sure you are aware of what those features are, so there is no point in me rehashing the same stuff over again. Upon initial set up, there is a considerable amount of "Tweaking" required to obtain optimal cutting performance. End review.

You are probably thinking "Well those are crappy reviews" and you're probably right, but honestly what more needs to be said? I could write another 500 or more words that have already been used many times about what a wonderful saw it is, or they are, that would just end up being another boring review and a check mark in your good review column. I simply have a different take, more of a product comparison than a review, I'm going to compare the EX-21, and (to a lesser degree) the Delta 40-695 to my old scroll saw, because that is what it is actually replacing.

The ultimate review is going to be when you cut your first piece of wood on your new saw.

Comparisons
Excalibur EX-21

Delta 40-695 20-in Variable Speed Scroll Saw
Delta 40-695

My Old ProTech 3033





A little about my old saw first:

The brand is Protech and the throat is 16", but it was actually made by Makita many moons ago. This saw is no longer available nor are the OEM parts that it needs. This was my first scroll saw. I purchased it about two years ago off of Craigslist for $10.00. This saw is what turned me on to scrolling in a big way and it has allowed me to supplement my hobby by making really cool stuff I never knew I could make. It doesn't have a working blower, requires two tools to change blades and tighten the tension and you can only bottom feed with. It is however, variable speed and has literally no vibration and noise once secured to the table. It was easy to talk myself into the fact that an upgrade was needed. I do have to say that the blade alignment (front to back) was always perfectly straight and the blade always went where I needed it to go. Cutting the most intricate of faces on one of my portraits was never an issue, and I really never realized how important a perfectly vertical blade was, until recently, I took it for granted since this was the only saw I had ever used. I thought all saws would have perfectly vertical blades, I really never considered that they wouldn't. I guess I just got lucky.

I had done lots of research as to what saw I would upgrade too, I really liked the Excalibur EX-21, but not the price so I went with the Delta 40-695, that turned out to be a major fiasco. I was never able to do more than test cuts on it, due to the front to back blade alignment was so far off it was impossible to make a simple turn, add the knocking noise and vibration coming from it, and it made for an easy decision to return it. I obviously just received a bad saw, don't let my experience keep you from trying one, I'm pretty sure I simply got a Lemon. For my blog post on all that click HERE 

 I decided to go ahead and open the wallet a little more and get the Excalibur, actually I had to open the wallet quite a bit more! And go figure, once I got it set up, the front to back was way out of alignment, The difference being on the Excalibur is that you can actually adjust it and get it pretty close to vertical. So the saw is cutting pretty well right now, but all the other conveniences make up for not being perfectly vertical. Having a working blower and not needing tools to change or tension the blades is a huge plus and is making me much more efficient. I still haven't decided yet if those conveniences are worth $800.00 though, I guess that will remain to be seen. So my plan for now is to go ahead and use the Excalibur as much as I can, and if it cant do the really intricate cuts I know that my old Pro Tech is there to pick up the slack. Makita really should consider getting back in the Scroll Saw business.

Bob
TripleB


1 comment:

Gryphus said...

Hi, I read your previous post about your trouble with the Delta 40-695.

I am looking forward to buy a good scroll saw and I really like the tilt feature of the Excalibur, moving the arm instead of the table, but it goes far away of my budget, so I want to give the Delta a try.

Unfortunately I can't find a dealer here on my country (Spain, Europe).

Do you know of any authorized dealer there in the United States that ship this machines worldwide?
I've checked amazon.com but they don't ship the Delta overseas, so I'm looking for a store that does. No luck so far :(