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Thread: My dirty old Beaver 3800 Jointer

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default My dirty old Beaver 3800 Jointer

    This was one of the tools that my friends grandfather had in his home shop. He was a cabinetmaker for many many years. He's over 80 now and health has dictated that he stop using such tools. It was given to my friends father, who has no interest in woodworking and didn't know what to do with it. Before he tossed it in the scrap metal pile, he (thankfully) decided to give me a call. I went and looked at it on Saturday and he was happy to have me haul it off for free instead of it going to scrap.
    It's a bit rusty, but all in all it's in good shape and will clean up well. The 3/4 hp motor works perfectly, it just needs a new pully as the aluminum one thats on there has a bit too much runout for my liking. With a new belt, this thing will run like a dream. The 3 blade cutterhead moves freely and seems solid, and the blades are even still quite sharp. I haven't checked the tables and fence for flatness yet, but this machine does not seem abused. It's very solid.
    I'm going to fully restore it, and once I do, I may keep it or I may sell it, not sure yet.
    The little bit of research I've done on it tells me that it dates from between WWII and 1953. Anyone else have any good info on it for me? It's a model 3800, Serial 7441.
    IMG-20120505-00105.jpgIMG-20120505-00106.jpgIMG-20120505-00110.jpgIMG-20120505-00109.jpgIMG-20120505-00107.jpgIMG-20120505-00108.jpg


    IMG-20120505-00112.jpgIMG-20120505-00111.jpg

    The motor plate is hard to read, my Blackberry doesn't focus well on close ups. It says:
    A.O Smith Corp.
    Model EC163K4AM Serial A-53
    3/4 Hp 60 cycle 1 phase
    115 / 230 V Frame 63 (?)
    Amps 10 / 15 RPM 1725
    Rise 40* (?) Cont. Duty

    Thanks for looking.

    Ryan
    Last edited by RSWoodworks; 05-10-2012 at 07:40 AM.
    Formerly known as "Ryan in Edmonton "

    GALLERY OF PROJECTS: http://lumberjocks.com/galleries/Boomr99#

  2. #2
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    Steve Morris

    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    a fine looking machine!! and yes the dating is correct, post ww2 and pre 54 when beaver was bought by rockwell

    nicely complete, no front guard, but rear guard , tilt handleetc etc

    jarette, chris, jerome and i would be glad to provide assistance in a rebuild, its fairly simple

    cutterhead bearing are a tapered roller bearing setup, easy to repack and adjust, tables are easy to shim level if needed, fence is ridiculously complex but easy to setup

    jarette, chris and i have threads on our rebuilds, read them well, we all had different problems but dont hesitate to ask questions
    Last edited by stevem; 05-09-2012 at 06:26 PM. Reason: added jerome, a fine resource
    my shop is a beaver lodge
    steve, sarnia, ont

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Elmvale Ontario
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Nice machine love mine

    Jerome
    Elmvale On.
    Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.
    Benjamin Franklin

  4. #4
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    I have one just the same and love it
    Jacques

  5. #5
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    none of them can be worse than mine, it spent 40 some years in a barn, totally ignored and forgotten.

    now after a rebuild(actually just a teardown and reassembly), its perfectly functional. a guard will be your biggest challenge
    my shop is a beaver lodge
    steve, sarnia, ont

  6. #6
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Thanks guys! And Steve, thanks very much for the offer. I'm sure I will be taking you up and calling on you for help somewhere along the way.
    I'm not sure when I'll get to this project, but probably in little bits here and there. I will be sure to search for the rebuild threads and use them as a resource.
    I've noticed that when I push up on the cutterhead from the underside, there is some movement there. Is that just loose bearings? Steve you said they are adjustable? Or just easy to get out and repack? I know these are really premature questions as I haven't had a real look at the cutterheads or bearings yet, but I'll get there. Oh, and is that motor I have there a pretty standard size to run it? Would that be the original motor with it?
    Formerly known as "Ryan in Edmonton "

    GALLERY OF PROJECTS: http://lumberjocks.com/galleries/Boomr99#

  7. #7

    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Four words I'll never type!!
    Donna,
    Self Imposed Queen of Design Opportunities

  8. #8
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    i see you got the extensions on your jointer but missing one roller and the adjustable holder, nice bonus!!

    the bearings are adjustable, i'll have to refresh my memory as to exactly how, but it is easy

    repacking the bearings requires a lot more disassembly, but i think it can be done without tearing down the entire machine

    i took a look at my 3800 to refresh my memory!! the cutterhead/pulley rides on tapered roller bearings similar to trailer wheels. the bearing assembly is pressed onto the steel pins in the base casting and those pins are adjusted and retained by the slot screws below the pins

    the steel pin/bearing can be removed completely by turning the screw, carefull though, this leaves the cutterhead loose in the base. i dont think the cutterhead is removable without removing the tables

    if the bearings are in good shape, add some fresh grease and reinstall. note that the cutterhead is adjustable side to side using the bearings, then adjust the bearings for no play and smooth running

    you might be able to remove the cutterhead if the tables are wound down all the way, i cant remember, the cutterhead has to be removed to replace the belt

    most powertools back "in the day" were sold without a motor or the dealer assembled the tool on a stand and supplied a motor/belt/electrical. beaver power tools and most others did not supply motors, so many different motors came with them depending on the dealer

    the 3/4 hp you have should be more than adequete and it looks like the pulley is the correct size. my motor is a 3/4 hp and has a 6 inch cast iron pulley

    the knives can be resharpened in place if they arent nicked, there was an article in fine woodworking on doing this using a diamond stone for honing. its easy and quick!!

    here's a manual to download if you need it:
    http://vintagemachinery.org/pubs/detail.aspx?id=2469
    Last edited by stevem; 05-10-2012 at 07:04 AM.
    my shop is a beaver lodge
    steve, sarnia, ont

  9. #9
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Thanks again Steve. I'll have to have a much better look at the bearing / cutter head assembly to follow along. Sounds like I should be able to take up the little bit of play that there seems to be in the cutterhead tho, which is good. The motor pully will be replaced along with a new belt. The aluminum pulley thats on there is a bit warped I think and I'll seek out a new steel or cast iron one the same size or slightly bigger to increase the cutterhead speed a bit.
    The knives are in really good shape with no nicks, but I'll take them out to clean them and the cutterhead around them properly as well, so I'll give them a honing when I do. Are they height adjustable?

    My friends grandfather supposedly still has the other missing roller, and I'm going to see if he might still have the front gaurd too. Having that all origina would be great. If not, I'll see if I can sore a gaurd off another jointer, or make my own replaement shouldn't be too hard.

    Thanks for the link to the manual. That will help.
    Formerly known as "Ryan in Edmonton "

    GALLERY OF PROJECTS: http://lumberjocks.com/galleries/Boomr99#

  10. #10
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    if you can find the missing bits that would be a big bonus, the guard especially

    the 3800 is kinda rare even around here, so parts are imposible

    a cast steel pulley wont be cheap, but well worth the investment, the manual recommends an 8 inch, mine is a 6 inch and works very well

    i cant remember how far you have to disassemble the machine for a belt change but i suspect the tables have to be removed

    yes the knives are adjustable, same as any other jointer. takes patience and time!! but first and foremost the bearings have to adjusted/replaced/lubed as required. mine just required a cleaning and repack, jarette's required a whole lot more, new bearings and he made new steel pins for them
    my shop is a beaver lodge
    steve, sarnia, ont

  11. #11
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Here are some rebuild links for you:
    http://forum.canadianwoodworking.com...3800-Rebuild!!
    http://forum.canadianwoodworking.com...ebuild-thread)
    http://forum.canadianwoodworking.com...r-3800-rebuild

    Haha, I can look into casting a replacement guard...

    I think my pulley is 4" and it still works just fine (well, as far as I know).

  12. #12
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Quote Originally Posted by stevem View Post
    the steel pin/bearing can be removed completely by turning the screw, carefull though, this leaves the cutterhead loose in the base. i dont think the cutterhead is removable without removing the tables

    <snip>

    i took a look at my 3800 to steel pins in the
    you might be able to remove the cutterhead if the tables are wound down all the way, i cant remember, the cutterhead has to be removed to replace the belt
    You can remove the cutter without removing the tables... You don't need to wind down the tables...

    Welcome to the madness

  13. #13

    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Quote Originally Posted by chris.trotter View Post

    Haha, I can look into casting a replacement guard...
    Sign me up if you do. I have a replacement which is functional, but ugly.
    Donna,
    Self Imposed Queen of Design Opportunities

  14. #14
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Quote Originally Posted by J. Vibert View Post
    You can remove the cutter without removing the tables... You don't need to wind down the tables...

    Welcome to the madness
    thx for that jarrett, i couldnt remember. i would remove the knives from the cutterhead though beforehand, if they arent nicked now they soon will be
    my shop is a beaver lodge
    steve, sarnia, ont

  15. #15
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    Well it looks like I found another complete 3800 that has the guard and all, So I'm gonna grab it for parts, anything I may need for this one. It won't hurt to have some extra nuts and bolts for it as well I'm sure.
    Chris, thanks very much for the links. I had found the first one by search but will have to have a good read through all of them when I have some time. I may start cleaning my beaver this weekend, or at least get down and have a good look at it to see what kind of work it all needs. I will be sure to take out the cutter knives. They will need to be cleaned and I'll wrap them up and save them until the machine is ready to use before I install them again. That's surely the easy part.

    So, what is everyone's opinion on repainting the painted parts? I know several of you have done it. I won't be going fire engine red, but maybe a nice grey again like original? Or maybe black?
    Formerly known as "Ryan in Edmonton "

    GALLERY OF PROJECTS: http://lumberjocks.com/galleries/Boomr99#

  16. #16
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    mine is flat black which is actually a very dark grey. i used krylon rust tough enamel from uap

    very simple to use spray can, covers very nicely even with one coat

    dont forget we're painting cast iron not a car body, flaws are to be expected

    as far as the second machine, thats a good grab for spare parts for anybody who needs them, i have almost complete 3200, 3300 and 3400 machines for spare parts(table saw, bandsaw and lathe), its good to know you have an extra machine

    btw, if you want to see my collection of old beavers, click on my gallery, "view photos by stevem", beaver made some nice machinery
    my shop is a beaver lodge
    steve, sarnia, ont

  17. #17
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    I followed Steve's lead and painted mine flat black as well... Mine is definitively black though...

    I'm personally not a fan of grey, but I guess black isn't that far off either....lol.

    Your desired end result may play into your colour choice. Myself, I knew I was going to dress it up to some extent, so I used the black to make the other details pop that much more.

  18. #18
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    Steve Morris

    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    as jarrett says simple flat black or grey, i dont go crazy on the restore thing, make it functional and looking origanal
    every part on mine that isnt painted is just wire brushed clean
    my shop is a beaver lodge
    steve, sarnia, ont

  19. #19
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    Default Re: My dirty old Beaver...

    If you are going to do paint, take the time to do it properly. I rushed the 3300 bandsaw paintjob and it shows (didn't clean properly beforehand). The 3800 paint so far seems much more durable.

    Otherwise, paint isn't really necessary unless you've got a lot of rust coming through. The factory paint was quite tough.

    Also, my view on colours is that while the red is fun, the darker colours really make the gauge markings 'pop'.

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