I haven't owned a scroll saw in probably 20 yrs, but now I've got a couple of projects in mind that will require that resource. I'd like to keep the price under $200. What would you recommend?
I've looked at the DeWalt 788 but just don't think I can justify the price for my expected usage. I would love to find a decent used saw, but I've been burned on used tools several times already.I have a DeWalt and they are good machines. Under $200 I doubt you’ll get a very good machine unless its used.
Based on my experience be very careful buying a used one. Bearings and bushing have a limited life in a reciprocating mechanism.
I thought I got a good deal on mine. Plugged it in and sounded fine. when I put some wood through it, it was knocking badly. It needs to be rebuilt it I use it anyway. Eventually I’ll sent it off for a rebuild.
I don't plan on cutting metal, except for maybe some very thin non-ferrous. As for probable uses, my wife wants some new unique Christmas ornaments, I'll try my hand at marquetry, my daughter wants to make some puzzles -- I'm sure there will be others....tell us what you would be doing with a scroll saw and will you be cutting any metal ?
For that much use a DW788 makes sense over the generic Wen I posted about above.It is totally outside your budget, but we have a DeWalt DW788 as well. It is my spouse's primary woodworking tool. She uses it almost daily. It has lasted several years without a problem.
Your wife wants you to make the ornaments or she will? Either way, 2 or 3 users, if you are making that much stuff I think you'll be happier with a better saw than the low end of the market saws. The DeWalt has about 4" more capacity between the blade and rear of the arm. I expect it's noise and vibration are smoother too, and far more durable. Think of the DeWalt as a Christmas gift the 3 of you are giving each other.As for probable uses, my wife wants some new unique Christmas ornaments, I'll try my hand at marquetry, my daughter wants to make some puzzles -- I'm sure there will be others.
[...] [my spouse] uses it almost daily. [...]
Just to clarify, my spouse averages a couple hours a day. Some days are several hours, others are none at all. The scroll saw isn't running all that time. There is all the design/pattern work, the glue-ups, the sanding/dremeling/finishing, etc. But every day, there is usually a few minutes of cutting time on the scroll saw.For that much use a DW788 makes sense over the generic Wen I posted about above.