Shopsmith Multipurpose Machine History — Mark V / Mark 7

Shopsmith Multipurpose Machine History — Mark V / Mark 7.

The Shopsmith website,, can be a little difficult to navigate, but has a huge amount of good information. I just met with the folks at Shopsmith and they are planning to streamline the site this year.

Susan just found the link above, (reproduced below)and I think it is a great, concise summary of the MarkV and Mark7s from 1953 until now. If you bought or inherited a used Shopsmith, or are looking to purchase, this should be a good resource for you.

Shopsmith Mark V/Mark 7 Tool History

Shopsmith Mark V Model 500 -- An American Classic Since 1953

Mark V (Model 500) Magna America put this American classic 5-in-1 tool into production in 1953. Since its introduction the Mark V has gone through a series of important upgrades to improve its performance, working convenience and safety.

Today, any Shopsmith owner is able to add any or all of these upgrades to their older machines — and do it themselves — to bring their machine up to the latest standards. No other power tool that we know of offers this level of upgrade-ability!

Shopsmith Mark V Greenie

1953 to 1960 — Greenies

Mark Vs during this period were painted green. These units had a Gilmer Drive System (the inside of the top belt is like a tank track). These units were a single bearing spindle. 3/4 Hp motor was the standard. An information packet, including copies of parts lists, owners manuals and more, can be ordered Here.

Shopsmith Mark V Goldie

1960 to 1963 — Goldies

Brown / Gold / Tan / Anniversary Model machines produced during this period were painted tan/gold. An information packet, including copies of parts lists, owners manuals and more, can be ordered Here.

1960 – Poly-V Drive System (the inside of the top belt is a serpentine) introduced, delivering improved belt durability and reduced machine maintenance.

More Powerful 1-1/8 HP Motor

1962 – 1-1/8 HP Motor

The more powerful 1-1/8 HP Motor was introduced. Your can upgrade from a 3/4 hp motor to the more powerful 1-1/8 hp motor. An information packet, including copies of parts lists, owners manuals and more, can be ordered Here.

1963 to 1964 — Gray Crinkle Texture

These were the next units to have the Poly V drive system. An information packet, including copies of parts lists, owners manuals and more, can be ordered Here.

1964 — Was Temporarily Out of Production

The Magna America Corporation relocated and the Mark V went out of production.

1972 — Shopsmith, Inc. Formed — Mark V is Back!

In 1972, Shopsmith, Inc was formed and the Mark V was back! The Mark V now remains gray but now has a rougher splatter texture.

Less Runout and Wobble

1984 — Two Bearing Quill

In October of 1984 (starting with serial number 190000), Shopsmith upgraded the drive system to the 2-Bearing Quill. Older Poly-V Drive System Mark Vs can be Upgraded to the Two-Bearing Quill for greater stability with less runout and wobble. A Mark V information packet, including copies of parts lists, owners manuals and more, can be ordered Here.

1985 — Mark V Model 510

Big 17-1/2 inch x 22 inch Main Table

In 1985, the Mark V Model 510 was introduced with an improved, big 17-1/2″ x 22″ main table. The table system also includes two floating extension tables along with connecting tubes and telescoping legs to provide over 8 feet of table width. A new larger rip fence with t-tracks for mounting accessories and jigs. Other parts of the upgrade include a see-through upper saw guard (with riving knife and anti-kickback device), lower saw guard with 2-1/2″ dust port and more. An Upgrade kit is available to add the larger, more expandable table and fence system to Model 500 Mark Vs. A Mark V Model 510 information packet, including copies of parts lists, owners manuals and more, can be ordered Here.

1991 — “C” Headstock

1991 Mark V Models were introduced with the “C” Headstock featuring a Red Safety Key Switch.

1999 — Mark V Model 520 Introduced

Shopsmith Mark V Model 520 Features the Pro Fence System

In 1999 the Mark V Model 520 (with Pro Fence System was introduced. The Model 520 Pro Fence System features two interchangeable stainless steel scales for direct-reading of rip cut widths… plus… twin locking levers… one for the infeed end of the fence and another for the outfeed end to ensure a positive, precise fence lock-down, even when working with large and / or heavy workpieces. An upgrade kit for the Mark V Model 500, as well as an upgrade kit for the Mark V Model 510, is available to give these advantages to older machines. An information packet, including copies of parts lists, owners manuals and more, can be ordered Here.

2010 — Shopsmith Mark 7

Shopsmith Mark 7The Revolutionary Shopsmith Mark 7

The Shopsmith Mark 7 adds two additional functions (shaping and routing) to become a 7 function machine and features an electronic speed-change mechanism making it one of the most revolutionary woodworking power tools available anywhere!

Shopsmith PowerPro Headstock with Digital Variable Reluctance Motor

The Shopsmith Mark 7 is powered by the revolutionary Shopsmith PowerPro Headstock. The PowerPro’s DVR (Digital Variable Reluctance) motor features • More Power (1-3/4 hp at 120V and 2 hp at 240V) • 120V or 240V operation without any adjustments beyond switching the plug on the power cord • Reduced energy usage and emissions over conventional motors • Dual direction capability • Easy-to-use touchpad controls • Quieter operation • Reduced maintenance… and more! Click here to read more about the benefits the advanced Shopsmith PowerPro brings to the Mark 7 and about options for upgrading older Shopsmith machines.

Double-Tilt Provides the Flexibility of Both Over and Under-Table Operation

In addition to existing functions, the Mark 7 adds Double-Tilt to bring an under-table option to its Shaping and Routing capabilities. An upgrade is available to bring tilt-both-ways convenience to older Shopsmith Mark V machines.

Information about other machines bearing the Shopsmith name (10E, 10ER, Mark II, Mark VII, and Sawsmith Radial Arm Saw is available here.

3 thoughts on “Shopsmith Multipurpose Machine History — Mark V / Mark 7”

  1. I am sure this is the SS Inc,/RLF Tools ‘approved’ copy, but as in the past is not entirely accurate.

    The Greenies and Goldies and late Magna American and early SS Inc. were NOT Mark V, but were Mark 5.

    Also there are two different 510.

    Those are the Major distinctions that are not mentioned.

    It is quite understandable to ‘ignore’ both the Model 10E and 10ER as well as the Mark VII, but no history account is complete without at least a passing reference to them.


    1. Hi,James, and thanks for your comments.
      You seem to know a great deal about the Shopsmith history. Were you ever a part of the company?
      What can you tell me about “two different 510s”? I am always trying to learn more.
      The bottom of the page has a link to the 10ERs, MVII etc. I have always said that Shopsmith is good at making tools,but not so good at naming them.


      1. No I have never been an employee, but purchased my Goldie new in 63. I have more recently acquired an ‘early’ 510, a 10E and a Mark VII. All three of those are being restored and are a work in ‘progress’. I also have a partial Mark 2(with Greenie/Gilmer headstock) which I use as a ‘portable’. A couple of power stations round out the ‘stable’ as well as a ‘mini’ made from scavenged parts..

        The original 510 was changed in 86. The rail tubes were made slightly thinner, the mounting screws were replaced with studs and the center mounting stud was relocated. The later version uses through holes and kep nuts to secure the rails to the table aprons. The earlier version used screws(torx) and tapped holes in the aprons. These screws are accessed through holes in the front edge of the rails. The slightly differing id of the rails creates a compatibility issue when mixing tables of the two versions using the connector tubes(albeit a very small difference). Both have the same od. There are slightly differing versions of the 510 rip fence caused mainly by a different cross section of the aluminum extrusion, different screws and the rear cap etc.. I do not think the fence differences coincide with the rail change.


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