Im looking at buying a Grizzly 1023s unisaw but a friend of mine at work
mentioned that I should re-think my purchase because of the bearings used
throughout the internal components. He mentioned that Delta uses more
smaller bearings which in turn will make the tool last longer. The better
the bearings the smoother the arbor etc. Does anyone out there own a
Grizzly, I know the Delta unisaw is an amazing tool, but its $700 more
I am biased because I own 2 unisaws, one made in 1939. That said, you have to
look at the entire picture. Compare one to the other. Include features,
options, availablity of parts, quality, motor, personal preference,cost, and
future resale. I would "suspect" the bearings on the grizzley could be
replaced in the future. You have to write the check, but maybe these thoughts
will help you decide.
============================Pretty good advice ...
While I run a Jet Cabinet Saw, and not a Griz or the Unisaw I kind of
suspect that the "life" of all three most likely is loinger then my own
life...Especially since none of them will be would be overly abused nor run
than a few hours every day...as a comercial saw in a comercial shop may
I agree. You are the one who is shelling out on this one so do so with the
Currently I own a Jet saw with the extension table I think it is an awesome
saw. But prior to buying this I read through all the feedback from others
and they always had great things to say about the Grizzly saws. They would
always mention that they were best in price class and comp to the Jet and
Unisaw. But all the feedback still doesn't pay for the saw. I ended up with
mine amazingly cheap and brand new so that was how I made my buying
decision. I paid less than the Grizzly.
I am no engeneer but did your friend explain how smaller bearings equate to
longer life? It has been my experience that larger bearings tend to last
longer. Perhaps a better quality bearing will last longer than a lessor
quality bearing but I would find it hare to swallow that smaller bearing
last longer than larger bearings.
He did say there are more smaller bearings. If there are two small
bearings on the end of a shaft it's quite possible they would be
stronger and last longer than one large bearing. Actually it's more than
On getting replacement bearings, pull your bearing and go to your local
bearing distributor. The only time I left without what I needed was when
they didn't have enough of what was needed (8 idlers on a band saw, they
only had 6). I have yet to see a proprietary bearing. There is a caveat
but out of this forums context.
On bearing quality, Many times there will be more than one bearing with
the same dimensions/ suitable for the use but one will have
substantially more balls/ rollers/ pins. The more rollers the less load
each carries (duh?).
The larger the bearing, the more load it can handle. However - - - The
larger the diameter, the more travel each ball or roller will make on a
I have two cars that will turn 2,000 RPM at 70 mph. I drive a lot at that
speed every years. I had a rental car that I liked, but at the same speed,
the engine was turning 2500 rpm. After driving it a while I decided I'd not
buy one for myself. Why? I keep cars well over the 100,000 mile mark.
Given that I may drive it 100,000 miles at 70 mph, the crankshaft will have
turned 43,103,000 times more than my present car. Lots of wear on them
So, if bearing "X" is 3" diameter it will have a ball travel of 9.42 inches
while a 2" bearing will travel 6.28 inches. At 4,000 rpm, the larger
bearing will cover 3142 feet while there smaller bearing will have gone 2094
feet. Given proper loading, I'd say the smaller would last longer purely
from a friction point. That would also mean proper operating temperatures
OK, who knows for sure?
AAhhhhttt... Crank bearings are totally different than roller bearings.
They are more like split 2 piece bushings. The larger CS bearings will
distribute the wear and load over a larger surface. CS bearings do not spin
unless you have just blown the engine.. ;~) Good thinkig on the wear
factor of the higher RPM motor though.
AAhhhttt... Ball bearing balls and needle bearing needles don't circle the
bearing at a 1 to 1 ratio. The larger those balls are, the fewer times
thay will turn around the inner race. If the inner race is 1/2" in
diameter, and the outer race is 2" the balls are about 3/4" in diameter.
For each revolution of the inner race which is about 1.5" in circumference,
the ball that is about 2.3" in circumference will only turn .65 times for
each revolution of the inner race. For a larger bearing with the same size
1/2" inner race and an outer race that is 3" in diameter, the balls are
about 1.25" in diameter and 3.93" in circumference and those balls will
turn about .38 times for each revolution of the inner race.
So, regardless of the bearing size, the inner race that the arbor is
supported by will always be the same size and turn the same speed given the
arbor is the same size and turns the same speed. The larger the outside
race of the bearing the larger the balls will be and the slower thay will
Well, that was an example,,, I was using extremes as I have never seen
roller balls in bearings as large as I described when the inner race is 1/2"
in diameter... ;~) Race thickness would also dictate ball diameters
wrote in message
I have the Grizzly 1023z. No problems, have used the Delta unisaw and the
Jet and find the Grizzly compares well with both, each have strength and
weaknesses. On Grizzly tools I have had bearing problems (Have had similar
bearing problems on Delta and Jet products also) The Griz bearings were
mostly off shelf bearings that could be picked up at NAPA and were easy to
replace, One exception was a bearing that had to be specially ordered. All
of the Jet and Delta bearings were special order items. In all but one
case, with all brands the tools that had bearing failure were tools that had
been used harder then they were designed to be used. In retrospect I would
go with the Grizzly tools in respect to bearings, they are easier to replace
and hold up as well or better the Delta and Jet tools I have used. If cost
were not a factor I would buy the Jet saw first, the Grizzly second and the
Delta third, for the cost it would be the Grizzly first by a wide margin.
Total number of Grizzly bearings replaced in last 5 years 2 number of Delta
bearings replaced in last 5 years 4 number of Jet bearings replaced in last
5 years 1 all on sanders and drill presses, not all of them mine by the way,
and all tools used on a daily basis.
I just bought the "retail version" of the Grizzly, the Shopfox saw with the
classic fence ( the "B" clone") . And while I have only used it a few times
before engaging it to complete my set of custom quartersawn white oak
mission style kitchen cabinets, I am happy with it so far.
Dennis Slabaugh, Hobbyist Woodworker
I'm also thinking about buying the Shop Fox TS. Who did you buy if from?
Mail-order or store. If mail-order, any comments on the shipping? I've heard
many horror stories about damage in freight shipping, mainly from Grizzly
customers but, at least, Grizzly seem to respond quickly and make it right.
I'm on a budget and been saving for a loooooooong time for my dream TS. Will
I be happy with the Shop Fox?
You want a shipping horror story? OK here you go. Ordered the Griz 1023zx,
took 2 weeks to get it in, When delivered the saw was on its side and funny
little cast iron things were rattling around the box, I called Griz and they
sent another one out a week later and got the broken one. New saw had broken
box with parts spilling out of it, some were big cast iron things that
looked like broken table tops, I refused it and sent both back to Griz.
Called Griz and told them what I had done. Griz got all upset (woman
worker) no more 1023zx in stock, sent me a 1023z by different carrier,
discounted saw , refunded difference. week latter got new saw, took 45 min
to get the shrink wrap off the thing so that I could get it off the pallet
and unpack it, saw it mint condition. Year latter ordered new 1023z took
two weeks to get it, better packing job, new carrier, saw arrived in mint
condition. Both saws working fine and seem happy in their new homes.
Got a 1023 seven years ago and use it pretty much daily. Great
machine. ploughs through whatever I give it, stays true and never
seems to need anything done to it. I clean and wax the top
occasionally. Save the $700 I say.
Good luck with decision Casey.
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