How can I fix my jammed up sawzall?
Hi I have an 18 volt cordless dewalt sawzall and it seized up out of nowhere. I used it one day without a problem and the next day all it will do is make a whining noise as the motor tries to move the shaft but can't. Is this the end of my sawzall or do you have any ideas of what I could do to salvage it? I don't want to be without it! Thanks
The first question I ask is how old is the tool because it may not make a lot of sense to spend a lot of time and money to diagnose a problem if the thing is just worn out and your batteries are newer or compatible in other tools, which is often the case for reciprocating saws. You can get a naked reconditioned DeWalt sawzall from http:cpooutlets.com/factory-reconditioned/ without batteries or charger for less money than a repair shop might charge for just diagnosing that the reciprocating mechanism is shot. A rebuilt one may cost less than even a bad bearing might cost. It sounds like the motor is okay, but they often fail after the mechanism does because of the abuse that they take. Actually, batteries usually fail before the mechanical parts do, but you may be on your second or third set of them.
I've replaced the bearings in the Milwaukee's and it's a messy, time consuming process just to find the bad one and if you go to that much trouble, you might as well change all of them (I don't remember how many are in the front end of this thing, but it's probably at least 4). If the tool is relatively new, take it apart and see if you can see what's jamming it, because it may be as simple as a broken spring or snap ring. You can get parts from http:ereplacementparts.com or the manufacturer and if it's a bearing, you can get it from the McMaster-Carr catalog http://mcmaster.com because they usually cost about half of what you'd pay at ereplacement or from DeWalt. If you have a factory service center near you, I think they still offer free diagnosis, though I don't know how long that will continue now that Black & Decker/DeWalt is owned by Stanley Tool Works.
Again, a lot depends on how old and beat up the tool is. By the way, I've been buying reconditioned tools for myself and my shop for years and have never had a bad experience. They come with the original manufacturer's warranty and significant savings. I've never had to return one and it is often cheaper than paying someone to replace or sometimes even to buy, certain parts. But yours may just need a spring, and it's almost impossible to diagnose without seeing it. But you can at least take the front end off and see if there's anything obviously in the wrong place, broken, or not turning freely, which should give you some indication as to what your next step should be.