1956 Craftsman Benchtop Drill Press Restoration Pt. 5: Motor Repair

Next up was the renovation of the motor. 

There were a few reasons we decided to restore the motor. Mainly, the pulley on the motor’s shaft was secured with a set screw. Over time, this set screw just kept getting tightened and tightened, ruining the shaft of the motor. The motor had two shafts, but the other would be going in the wrong direction. To switch the direction, we planned to flip some wires around inside the motor. Also, the motor sounded horrible because the bearings in it were old and ruined. Finally, the motor was really dirty and dusty. 

First, we took off the base. The screws were super tight and had obviously not been removed very much in the past 60 years.

Next, (after separately removing the pulley) we had to remove the end caps, or the front and back of the motor. The screws holding the bearings to the end caps, which needed to be removed, had worn away and it was impossible to fit a screwdriver in to take out the screws. So, I cut a slot with a Dremel into the tops to that I could fit in a screwdriver.

With the plate off, I then removed the screws sandwiching the end caps around the metal band. You can see the messed up shaft on the right side of the motor below the screw.

With these out, I could finally take off the end caps.

We replaced the bearings. While replacing the bearings, we learned a lot - apparently bearings can measure in crazy ways, such as having metric measurements on the inside and imperial measurements (inches) on the outside!

The motor was now (almost) completely disassembled!

Next, we went through the lengthy process of redoing some of the major wiring. We replaced the power cord, rewired the wiring in the base, and flipped the yellow leads in the box to switch the direction of the motor. We also got a new switch!

After all of this, we reassembled the whole motor, using our photos as a guide. Finally, we had a correctly spinning, clean, and rewired motor!

Next up, I will post photos from the reassembly!

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