How to Tell the Age of Delta Woodworking Equipment

By Dustin Hill
Determining the age of Delta woodworking equipment can be simple if the machine has a serial number.

Delta has been making woodworking tools since the early 1920s. The company -- now called Delta Machinery -- specializes in larger pieces of equipment such as bandsaws, tablesaws, drill presses and planers. Determining the age of Delta woodworking equipment can be a straightforward process if the machine has a serial number. Some Delta machines, however, have lost their serial number plates due to age and wear. Without a serial number, you will need to look for several details on the machine to get an approximate age.

Search the machine for a serial number. Many Delta woodworking machines have a serial number plate riveted to the front, side or back. The exact location of a serial number plate varies greatly from machine to machine, according to Old Wood-Working Machines, a website devoted to vintage woodworking equipment.

Call the Delta Technical Assistance line at 800-223-7278. Once you have a serial number, representatives with Delta can tell you information about the month and year that your Delta machine was manufactured.

Search a privately operated database of serial numbers. If a Delta technician is unable to help you, there are several websites, such as Old Wood-Working Machines, that maintain an extensive listing of Delta serial numbers categorized by year.

Examine the Delta logo on the machine. If you are unable to find a serial number, the Delta logo can provide information about the machine's date. Any machine labeled as a Delta/Rockwell was made in 1945 or after, according to Old Wood-Working Machines. If a logo lists Milwaukee, Wisconsin, it was built in 1952 or earlier. A machine with a stamp of Pittsburgh, Penn. was built in 1953 or after. In 1973, the Delta logo was changed to incorporate the easily recognizable Rockwell International logo that includes a version of the "peace sign." Any Delta machine that lists Jackson, Tenn. on its label was made in the late-1990s or later.

Tip

If a Delta machine does not have a serial number plate, look on some of the individual parts of the machine for a part number. A Delta technician may be able to determine an approximate age of a machine based on a part number.

About the Author

Dustin Hill is the former owner and publisher of a Midwest business journal and has been reporting on small business since 1992. He has a Bachelor of Science in journalism from the University of Kansas and currently works as a government and business reporter for a daily newspaper.