Welcome Guest, • Login


Search the wiki



This content was originally stolen from the OWWM Discussion Forum FAQ, which is REQUIRED READING for anybody who is participating in the discussion forum. If you have not read it, please stop by and check it out: Discussion Forum FAQ. Feel free to add new entries if they are not already on the list.

List of Sayings


After a bit of discussion this is a way of referring to the Unisaw. Use this as you see fit or if you’d like to stay "under the radar" with the discussion of *n*s*ws.


Literally this is a slur at people who do not sign their messages. We are a community, no need to be shy or elusive.

Arn / Old Arn

Imagine you were a dirt poor truck driver from Tupelo, Mississippi. Now imagine you were vaulted to stardom and took an interest in karate, jewel studded jump suits and bad interior decorating. Now imagine yourself saying "iron".


Annual gathering of OWWMers, ArnHeads, Rust Hunters, and related degenerates. Founded in 2005, ArnFest has been held each year at the Illinois Railway Museum (8th wonder of Illinois) in Union, Pleasant Street Machinery in DeKalb, and the Crystal Lake Holiday Inn.

Art Deco Motor Switch

Back in the day Cutler-Hammer employed Brooks Stevens to design its motor switches. Stevens, a god when it came to industrial design, employed an Art Deco flare.

Back Channel

Sending a private e-mail or PM (Private Message) to another member in lieu of a public response. This is suggested when two members are in the process making a transaction. It is also suggested when you might take issue with something someone has done or said and do not wish to air dirty laundry or make a fool of yourself or the other member.

Bucket Approach

Trial and error, as in "Jayeson used his bucket-o-capacitors to find the right combination to start his rotary phase converter."

Bullet End Motor

This is the motor of choice on a vintage Unisaw. It is a Repulsion/Induction (R/I) motor that is no longer made.

Carbon Dating

This has to do with putting a vintage to dirty paper. As it is explained by Keith Rucker, paper and ink are carbon based. By studying the ink on the paper one can usually find a date. Sometimes the date can be in code. Many times this code will be a printing code as in, 5M-8/35. This code breaks out as, "5,000 copies printed August 1935". Care should be taken when carbon dating. It is not for the amateur.


A combination of country names to denote "off shore" made machinery. For the record, these machines have come a long way over the last decade in terms of quality to the point where any "locally" produced machines are feeling a nipping on their heels.


An acronym for anyone not wanting to take the time to write "cast iron" (cast arn).


Contractors Saw Inna Box / Wantsa Be A Unisaw. This / these have been bestowed on the faux cabinet saws that were sold or are being sold by various companies. This/these are not intended to describe the Junior Unisaw sold by Delta at the end of the 40s and beginning of the 50s nor similar saws of the day sold by Craftsman, Atlas, Walker-Turner and others.


Don't Ask Me How I Know This

Dirty Paper

This is somewhat explained above but there is a back story. The list owner’s daughter, Claire, then age seven, made a reference to the room in the basement, just off from the shop where, "Daddy kept his dirty magazines". Seeing as Claire, then age seven, was in school and might some day tell *others* of this room the moderator saw fit to immediately instill in her that this was "the room with the dirty paper".


Functional Arn Factor. A measure of the completeness and usability of your Old Wood Working Machines. Coined by Don Lehman and expanded in this thread. Bill Simmeth put together an on-line calculator to help the aspiring OWWMer tally up their score. Often seen in conjunction with PPSQF.


Four-Footed Unisaw (see Four-Footer below).


A term used to describe the 1939 Unisaw. In that year it came on four cast iron feet instead of the continuous plinth base adopted the following year.

Goose Egg Motor Cover

This is the cast iron motor cover found with the aforementioned bullet end motor. This is also a favorite eBay item and tracking the going price for one is considered a sport in some corners of the forum.

In The Wild

Typically referring to having seen a machine in person, as in, "Id never seen one of these in the wild".

Mother Ship

The Web site. Our repository of all things Old Wood Working Machine.

Nose Oils

This term is used when a member has found something for sale and is tracking it, as in, "I found a *** and I have my Nose Oils on it".


Literally means, Obligatory Old Wood Working Machines. By our charter and what you’ve read so far we are only allowed to talk about old woodworking machines. But being the sociable types we are we do allow the occasional stray. To justify this it we insist that every message have something of worth and having to do with old woodworking machines. How you accomplish this is half the fun.

Ping Me

This means to notify, Private Message (PM) or e-mail someone. Usually via the "back channel".


Storing an item in your shop or other rat-hole while the owner of the item seeks a way to either retrieve it or arrange for someone else to help move it along. More info


Pounds (of machinery) Per SQuare Foot. Machinery density ratio calculated by total weight of OWWM / shop floor space in square feet. Coined by Don Lehman and expanded in this thread. Often seen in conjunction with FAF.


Because the forum generates an inordinate amount of discussion of the Delta Unisaw there are some members who refer to it by this name. These members have a hankering towards larger (Oliver / Tannewitz / Yates-American) saws hence the name.

Rat Hole

In the beginning you do not have rat holes. As time wears on you find yourself with more, and more, and more and more. It all has to go somewhere. It goes into the rat hole. Rat holes have been known to contain whole machines as well as loose and orphan parts for machines. Many of these orphan parts aren’t even for machines you own but surprisingly you will/may eventually find yourself with the machine and a need for the part(s). Go figure, eh?


Coined in honor of Keith Rucker's proclivity of purchasing big 'ol arn very far away and having said machine hauled cross-country by multiple hands. Many legs of Ruckering are performed by OWWMers who are "goin' that way anyways". May also include storage in one or several rat holes along the way, while awaiting the next leg of Ruckering. Older posts may refer to the UnderGround RailRoad in a similar capacity.

Sad Bastard

This refers to a machine seen in the wild or recently brought into the fold whose condition is way beyond what it should be. A machine for whom its former owner did not show the proper respect for. A machine that was, should be or will be rescued by an OWWMer. Many times these machines are good only for their parts but great care and consideration should be given before parting out any machine. A machine lost creates a void that will never be filled again. On the other hand, a parted out machine could lend new life to many other machines that sit idle, or in our case, idol.


Inspired by this story "to Simmeth" is to achieve new heights (depths ?) of bottom-feeding. In the OWWM world, getting a "You Suck" is like getting a scoop of vanilla ice cream; getting a "that's a Simmeth" is like a gigantic double-decker banana split. In the strictest sense, a "Simmeth" is getting a new (to you) machine and money at the same time--like buying two machines, and selling one for more than you paid for both


To single-handedly lift and move a heavy piece of Arn without assistance or mechanical aids. It is inspired by the multiple displays of near super-human strength by Dick Streff at ArnFest? gatherings. Example usage: "He Streffed the Moak shaper table up the stairs all by hisself!" In instances when truly amazing lifting capability is exhibited, the term can be modified by the word "Dick". Example: "I couldn't believe it, but he Dick Streffed that shaper into the truck all by hisself!"

Snowflake Bandsaw

Some vintage band saws came with wheel covers that had cut outs in the face resembling a snowflake or sun rays. These will usually get you a "You Suck" when they are found.


Single-phase office boy. Used to delineate those who have not reached 3-phase Nirvana.


Solution (electrolyte) used in an electrolysis tank. Also known as "The Soup".


She Who Must Be Obeyed. The long version of how this acronym came about can be found at Wikipedia. SWMBO is used as a good-natured appellation for one's wife / significant other and is in use on many Internet fora where men congregate, spit, and scratch themselves.


This is something adopted from the Old Tools group. It means "trademark followed by the persons initials". Used when quoting a source or repeating an oft-repeated phrase as in, "Just say (tmPL)," In this case it was a trademark of Pat Leach who used the phrase, "Just say," a lot.


The mysterious machine that you're reading this on right now.


A deliberately inflammatory posting or comment; the verbal equivalent of poking a stick in a wasps' nest.


OK, here is the way it works. You get a message across your machine. The message is long. Your reply is short. There is no reason to leave the entire message you are replying to so you *erase* the words from the original message that you don’t need in your reply. It’s really quite simple but a hard concept to get across.


That device that the group uses to measure how much (or little) you’ve accomplished in truncating the original message you are responding to. By the way, we now have software that measures how many worthless words you allow to get by. Once you’ve met your limit your subscription is voided. In other words, please truncate your replies.


Rockwell Automation's Turboencabulator & Retroencabulator are legendary for their reliability, durability, and excellence in obfuscational linguistics.

Wrong Coast

This has to do with someone (usually yourself) finding something and it’s too far away to be worth pursuing. You then might offer it up to the group as, "Hey, it’s here and I can’t do anything with it, wrong coast".

ScrewTurn Wiki version Some of the icons created by FamFamFam.