Beginner Scroll Saw suggestions

My 13 year old daughter is interested in working with a scroll saw. I also think my wife would enjoy scroll saw projects.
I would be most interested in your oppinions on the entry level saws. I know that spending $400-$1200 plus will get me a better saw, and I do agree (somewhat) on getting the best equipment I can afford, but I'd rather spend $100-200 on a saw now and buy a more expensive one if it is used after the first few months.
Lowe's currently has the Delta SS-250 variable speed saw for $100 and it looks reasonably nice. I saw the SS-350 get a decent review this month in one of the mags, but is it really worth the extra $100?
Thanks for sharing your expertise! Jim
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I have a delta 2 speed. The main thing to look for is the quick change blade clamp. My brother got a delta variable speed. As soon as the warranty expired so did the variable speed. Now his is single speed, mine is two speed. I am happy with it.
Jim wrote:

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Gerald Ross
Cochran, GA
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Spend the extra and get the DeWalt 20" scrollsaw. It works like the $1200 saws and very easy to use because everything is up front. No stretching for the tension control or the speed control. It's heavier then most so not much vibration. When something just works right it's a pleasure to use.
Tim

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I'm pleased with my older Delta. Low price and it gets the job done.
Jim wrote:

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Jim, Most teens {AND a lot of *adults*} have an attention span of about 5 minutes. This may be reduced by a factor of 10 when the 'project at hand' requires careful or repetitive work.
Go to the local library with them and get a couple of books on Scroll Saw Projects & Techniques. Go over them together and watch THEIR reactions. If no one has 'zoned out', get the 'decent' saw in the $100-200 range {I have an old AMT 16 inch, 2-speed}and a couple of dozen GOOD assorted blades {Olsen, etc}. If the saw doesn't come with a 'Quick-Change' feature, get a spare set of blade holders. Paint BOTH sets of holders FLUORESCENT RED. Also one of those blade holder 'holders' to make tightening the blade clamps easier.
If the saw is set up carefully, almost all of them will do a 'credible' job. If there is REAL interest in the PROCESS, after a while they will KNOW what features THEY want in their NEXT saw. Birthdays & Holidays age good times for 'surprises'.
I know I don't have the patience for REAL scroll saw & fret work. I use mine to cut Hardboard templates and small parts. It has also been useful 'training' for the 14 inch bandsaw.
Regards & Good Luck, Ron Magen Backyard Boatshop

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