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New Delta CEO says customer’s won’t notice the transition

Woodworkers who buy or own Delta machines should not notice a difference in availability, performance, or price following last week’s acquisition of the Delta brand by a Taiwanese manufacturer, says Bryan Whiffen, the new president and CEO of that company. Delta Power Equipment Corporation, a subsidiary of Chang Type Industrial Company, purchased the full line of Delta’s woodworking tools and machines, as well as the Biesemeyer line of accessories, from Stanley Black & Decker. This comes just six years after Black & Decker purchased the Delta and Porter-Cable brands from Pentair Group. (Stanley Black & Decker still owns the Stanley, Bostitch, Porter-Cable, and DeWalt brands.)

“We are committed to continue making quality tools and machines that mean something to the woodworker,” said Whiffen, a veteran of nearly 20 years in the tool business with Ryobi. (Joining Whiffen as executive vice-president and COO is Norm McDonald, a longtime veteran of operations and manufacturing with Ryobi.) “The Delta name is known as being the leader in this business for a long, long time, and we aim to continue that tradition. The transition from Black & Decker to Delta Power Equipment Corporation should be unnoticed by the consumer. That’s critical, because we don’t want to take any steps backward as we move forward and focus on growing the brand. And being an independent company with only one brand, we can really concentrate our energies and resources into making it the industry leader. That’s something that kind of gets lost in big companies.”

Whiffen wants Delta customers to be assured of several things:

• Some machines and accessories will continue to be made in the U.S.: the Unisaw tablesaw, Delta radial-arm saw, and Biesemeyer rip fences and accessories. These products, currently manufactured and assembled in Jackson, Tennessee, will now be made in Anderson, South Carolina in a new facility. Although he could not be specific about personnel, Whiffen said, “There’s a list of people specific to the Delta and Biesemeyer brands we’re getting from Black & Decker who will be coming to work for us. There may be more as we set this up further.” He added that Stanley Black & Decker has agreed to build up the inventory of tools made in Jackson to allow the new company time to move the manufacturing machinery to its new location and get it up and running without causing a distribution shortage across the country.

The remaining tools in Delta’s line will continue to be made in Asia. (Although Chang Type Industrial, also known as TOTY, currently makes many tools for DeWalt, it does not make anything for the Delta brand. It also makes several tools, such as mitersaws and radial-arm saws, for Ryobi, Ridgid, and Craftsman.) Whiffen said Chang Type Industrial does not plan to begin manufacturing Delta machines in its factories, but rather continue the relationship already in place with other manufacturers. “This is a pretty small fraternity of companies who make tools overseas,” he said. “Most of the guys who make tools for the Delta line I’ve known for years and have a good relationship with them. We’ve already talked to them about continuing manufacturing for us. That will  help us maintain the quality of the tools.”

• This sale will not result in lesser-quality tools. “We will not be getting into the opening price-point area of tools,” Whiffen said. “We will continue to improve the quality of existing tools as well as the ones we’ll be developing.” Customers might notice a new look to some older-design machines several years from now. “I’m a big fan of the new Unisaw,” he said. “It’s a great saw and it has a distinctive look that separates itself from the competition. I can see building the rest of the line to mimic that look and design without compromising on quality.”

• Parts will still be available for older and current machines. The new company will take over all the warranty and replacement-parts business from Stanley Black & Decker, including the “servicenet” Web site, on Feb. 4. “That was a critical part of the negotiations with Black & Decker,” Whiffen said. “There’s a lot of people out there with old Unisaws and other Delta machinery, and we need to be able to take care of them and maintain their trust.” Current Delta service centers will continue to carry and service the brand, he said.

• Included in the purchase is the Web site domain “deltamachinery.com,” which will become the new company’s home site, Whiffen said.

Bob Hunter

Tools Editor

WOOD Magazine

19 Responses to “New Delta CEO says customer’s won’t notice the transition”

  1. Hello Bob,
    One can tell if a tool is made here in the states by looking at the serial number on said tool for if it starts with a “0″ it is made in the United States.
    If it is made in another country it will start with a number or letter. Many folks don’t know this, another quick tell tale is the use of metric fasteners through out the tools. If you need metric tools to work on them they were made out of the United States but, this does not mean they aren’t worth buying. Yesterday I bought an inch pound torque wrench that was made in an oriental country.


    Ralph Jones

  2. I really liked your article.Really thank you! Great.

  3. Bob Hunter and Delta,
    “Woodworkers who buy or own Delta machines should not notice a difference in availability, performance, or price following last week’s acquisition of the Delta brand by a Taiwanese manufacturer, says Bryan Whiffen, the new president and CEO of that company.”
    I am sorry this is not my experience since I have been waiting over 1.5 months for a part for a Delta bandsaw 28-682. I am told it will be 3 months wait, which is too long to not have use of a tool that is a big part of my work. There is no where else to go, I am dependent on Delta for parts and this is practically non availability for me to have no use of this bandsaw for 3 months is unacceptable. I am ready to buy another bandsaw.

  4. Thanks for your helpful article. Other thing is that mesothelioma cancer is generally attributable to the breathing of dust from mesothelioma, which is a positivelly dangerous material. It is commonly witnessed among workers in the building industry who may have long exposure to asbestos. It is also caused by living in asbestos covered buildings for some time of time, Genetics plays a huge role, and some consumers are more vulnerable for the risk as compared with others.

  5. Been trying to buy a Delta drill press for a month, now. Can’t be found – ANYWHERE.

  6. [...] New Delta CEO says customer’s won’t notice the transition | After …May 2, 2011 … Ryobi was founded in 1943; the company began manufacturing and selling die- cast products the following year. Officers: Chairman and CEO: … [...]

  7. Sorry, Delta parts are much harder to find now. Don’t buy Delta if you want support.

  8. I returned a part 2 months ago and still haven’t received a refund. I also ordered a part more than a month ago, and apparently it is in a warehouse “waiting to be processed.” I am one very unhappy Delta customer and I will not be buying another Delta tool any time soon. Won’t notice a difference…what a load of cow cookies.

  9. I have a 31-255x Delta Drum Sander, The Cheap gears to raise and lower the feed platform stripped and now cant get any replacements because they are now “OBSOLETE” SO NOW I ASK MR CEO, WHAT SHOULD I DO WITH MY $750.00 drum sander, Maybe I can get a push,pull,drag sale at a Performax Dealer, or maybe just maybe you can find some of these gears

  10. Dealing with Delta is a nightmare. I have an air cleaner “In repair” in their service facility in MD since early July – 6 months! Apparently they can not get a replacement motor for the one that burned out after 3 months of light use. The statement that the customer will not notice a difference is plain BS – the service is non-existant. Stay away from them!

  11. I have a Porter Cable Chain Saw, model 110. What can you tell me about it, what was it used for and what would be an equivalent product today?

  12. I am planning on buying a midi lathe. My early research said the Delta 46-460 was the king of the court. After delving further I have found many people who received defective machines and have had a terrible time trying to get them fixed or replaced. Would it be better to buy a Jet?


  13. I have been unable to locate a switch for a 28-640 bandsaw. I’ve looked all over the web. So much for “taking care of customers and maintaining their trust.”

  14. I have the Delta 46-460, if by “have” I mean “have in the shop for 6 weeks so far for a simple on/off switch”

    I would recommend the new Jet 1221vs.

  15. It looks like Stanley Black & Decker bailed on what used to be a good brand name. I have a shop full of Delta and now can’t even get parts for my lathe which is only a few years old. 46-715 Variable speed had the motor pulley set explode, and discontinued by Delta. Many problems on lathes and drill presses with it, so just discontinue parts. My $700.00 lathe is now????

  16. Delta has terrible customer service! Ordered parts in January and was told would only take 5 to 7 business day to arrive. Didn’t receive until March! Not only that, but when I called I was on hold for more than 20 mins and was told first that all parts but one was back ordered, 2nd time I called was told that everything was on back ordered but one part (the part that was the only thing back ordered the 1st time I called). When I received the parts, they had entered the wrong quantity and when I called they said it might have been an error on their part but that I would have to put in another order for the remaining amount. Working in customer service and dealing with warranty companies and suppliers all day I would rate Delta one of the worst for customer service.

  17. Delta is not supplying all replacement parts for older machines! I have a 1642 Steel Bed Lathe and the motor and speed control are not supplied! If these main parts fail, you are screwed! You have a 2000 dollar plus machine for the scrap yard! I will never buy a delta machine again!

  18. Echoing Brad’s experience, i’ ve discovered that Delta no longer manufactures a simple drive belt for my 20-year old planer that was well cared for, but now requires a replacement belt. There are off brands, but no guarantee of quality. wow! What is going on at their corporate headquarters? My guess is that Delta will go the way of many other US companies and slide into oblivion. i’ll certainly help by not buying anything else from them. Howard would turn over in his grave if he knew the state of affairs at Delta.

  19. I have a Delta Unisaw that wouldn’t run – magnetic starter switch was bad (tested at motor repair company). Found one at the local Berland’s House of Tools that was made in China. Same general layout, 3 Amp, 230 Volt, Single Phase. Cost me about $70 bucks. Delta calls, searches, etc. came up nill. Guy at store smiled and rolled his eyes when I said Unisaw. Won’t be buying Delta again. Delta’s new CEO said, “There’s a lot of people out there with old Unisaws and other Delta machinery, and we need to be able to take care of them and maintain their trust.” Current Delta service centers will continue to carry and service the brand, he said. Right. And when is that? Scratch the trust thing. Scratch the take care of them thing. Service centers? No help there. Service the brand?? CEO speak, me no speaka ceo doublespeak.

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