Vintage Woodworking – Boice-Crane Company’s 3500 Table Saw

Boice-Crane began making woodworking machinery for non-professional woodworkers in December of 1926 when W.B. and J. E. Boice partnered their business with H.G. Crane. At the time of the merger, two plants were in operation. H.G. Crane owned the Adrian plant, and J.E. Boice owned the Toledo plant.

The Boice-Crane Company made lightweight tools for the average consumer with only a few products developed to go into the industrial field. Once the company failed in the 1980’s, Wilton Corporation bought the drill press production line and Comet Engineering Incorporated bought the radial arm saw production line. Gothenburg Manufacturing Company took over the parts business and supported the spindle sander, belt sander, and scroll saw until their company also failed.

The Boice-Crane 3500 table saw was manufactured some time around the late 1960’s to the early 1970’s. It had a 1 1/2 horsepower motor that was 220V. The 10-inch blade was raised, lowered and tilted with controls located on the front of the cast iron encased cabinet. This cabinet type table saw was driven with a triple belt system. The table size was 36 inches by 27.5 inches and this could be enlarged to 63 inches with the extension table. It came equipped with a steel rip fence and a blade guard.

After searching several sites that offer old manuals and repair parts lists, I could not find a specific manual for this particular table saw. However, the 3500 model had many of the same features as the previous 2500 series of Boice-Crane table saws. The saw blade tilts with a rotating handle crank leaving the table itself stationary. A dial indicates the degree of the angle to offer an accurate way to measure your angled cut. Hand levers lock the saw and fences into place to provide security from slippage. The gear boxes are totally encased and grease-packed for longer wear. The large tables were built for a greater load capacity than most other table saws. The hood guard tilts with the blade for extra safety. Other safety features include a large splitter with two anti-kickback dogs to keep both pieces of wood from being thrown forward. The motor located separately in the steel encased cabinet reduces vibration that could interfere with good quality cuts.

Since the Boice-Crane 3500 table saw is considered a vintage piece of machinery, it may not meet modern standards for safety and quality. Anyone who is interested in restoring this antique table saw may have difficulty in finding appropriate replacement parts because the companies that bought out the different lines have also gone under. However, with the World Wide Web at your fingertips, you could probably find someone with a similar interest in vintage woodworking machinery that can point you in the right direction.

Source by Johnathon S. Duvel

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