Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 18

Thread: New Laguna Slot Mortiser

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Oregon, Wisconsin
    Posts
    324

    New Laguna Slot Mortiser

    Hello all,

    Just received my new Laguna Platinum Horizontal Slot Mortiser this afternoon, and snapped a few pictures so you all could see what it looks like--it is not yet completely together.

    Overall, though I have not used it yet, I feel comfortable saying it is definately worth the $995 I paid for it. This was a lot easier to get the wife's approval than the JDS Multirouter!

    My only complaint so far is the paint does not seem to be up to the quality of my Grizzly, Jet, or Delta tools--there is a large area that was clearly touched-up on the base with non-matching white paint. Also, a screw is missing on the motor cover, and there is a 120V cord on it though all the labels clearly indicate 220VAC. The table does seem to me to be of higher quality cast iron than other tools I have seen from china--at least it is polished better and not stained.

    I decided to give this machine a try as it looks similiar to the Hammer machine based on the image on their website, but at less than half the price. I have not seen the Hammer machine in person or even close-up pictures though.

    Best,
    Greg Stahl
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Oregon, Wisconsin
    Posts
    324
    Forgot to mention, on the third picture, next to the power switch, you will notice a switch to reverse the motor direction!

    Greg

  3. #3
    "...though I have not used it yet..."

    I'm in the middle of making a house full of doors, using my plunge router and trusty mortising jig. So if you want, you could send me the mortiser and I would be happy to break it in for you.....
    David DeCristoforo

  4. #4
    Greg,
    Did you have to wait for the machine to come in to be shipped, and if so, how long? That is one of my beefs with Laguna, they never seem to have what I am looking for in stock, and the wait times are usually really long.
    Thanks,
    Lee

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Oregon, Wisconsin
    Posts
    324
    Didn't have to wait at all, it shipped the day after I paid for it. I told the guy right away I wasn't interested unless they could get one out the door right away to me. This is the reason I ended up with the model I got--it is the only machine between Laguna and Felder that is actually available for shipping right away in North America! Felder can't deliver until sometime in October, but couldn't give me an exact date. In addition, I received a phone message that my salesman no-longer worked for Felder because they are closing their Chicago office and he elected to not relocate. So, no matter who you deal with, it seems there are always issues. I decided to give Laguna a chance despite what I have heard about them. So far, I am very pleased.

    Initially, I was looking at the LBM200, but Laguna had only one and needs it for IWF, so they were going to give me the show discount on it if I would wait, and send me the Platinum Mortiser to get by with until I received the LBM200. The salesman was great, called me several times. I worked him pretty hard for only a $1000 sale! I even made him take pictures of the machine as it is not advertised yet, and I wanted to see what it looked like before buying! Who knows, I'm working on a production deal with another local company, so, I may call him back and buy an edgebander and sliding tablesaw from him! I'll be shopping at IWF!

    Best, Greg

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bloomington, IL
    Posts
    6,008
    So are you keeping this one or springing for the LBM??

    Also Greg, Do you own a Domino? If so has it been replaced or do you find the two two mutually exclusive of eachother?
    Last edited by Mike Heidrick; 08-17-2008 at 10:35 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Oregon, Wisconsin
    Posts
    324
    I'm going to keep it, it seems to be working fine for me. The bottom of the machine is not perfectly flat, so it did shake quite a bit when using it. I remedied this by placing the corners on 3/4" plywood pieces. This substantially reduced the shaking to the point where if it does shake, the table is in unison with the motor, so it does not seem to impact the work much. I am going to attach the motor mount to the wall though, similiar to what Peter did with his. Otherwise, I am happy for what I paid for it.

    I have not used the Domino, but have looked it over at Woodcraft. I decided against it as the container with all the tenons and the few bits that came with it were $250. Also, to continue to buy their tenons, it is in the neighborhood of $60-70 for 500 tenons. I decided I am not going to be commited to this kind of expence for tool that is going to be in a semi-production environment. Also, I may build doors and other large items in the future, so, I thought it would be best that I can make tenons to my specifications rather than be limited to the sizes the Domino can produce.

    I have not ruled the Domino out though. With the adjustable fence on it, it may save time in building jigs to mortise angled pieces on my Laguna. But for now, it is just going to be the Laguna. It meets my needs and I have other tools I would rather aquire at this point than to purchase a $4k mortiser.

    If money was no object, I would get the LBM over the Platinum Mortiser though.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bloomington, IL
    Posts
    6,008
    Here are the specs and features from Laguna's new platnium mortiser page:

    Machine Specifications


    A175021
    • Motor: 3 HP 220 volts single phase
    • Motor Speed: 2,860 rpm
    • Chuck Capacity: 5/8"
    • Work Table Size: 8" x 18"
    • Side to Side Travel: 7"
    • Plunge Travel: 5 3/4"
    • Max. Height Above Table: 5"
    • Base Size: 22" x 27"
    • Heitht to top of Machine: 40 3/4"
    • Weight: 270 lbs.
    Features

    The Platinum Series Slot Mortiser allows you easily and accurately cut slot mortises for a wide variety of projects. The 3 axis table raises and lowers on dovetail ways and is moved with an acme-threaded rod for smooth operation. The single handle operation allows for side to side and plunge movements with one hand. Standard features include miter gauge, two-position hold down clamp, dowel indexing device, and tool tray.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Oregon, Wisconsin
    Posts
    324
    Not sure those specs are accurate. I know my table is just under 20" x 8". I think they just copied the specs from the former Platinum Mortiser. The side to side movement seems to be greater too. I snapped some pictures of the table movement and will post them in the morning.

    For those that are considering buying this machine, here is what I have done so far:

    -Machine came with 120V cord. Cut this off and put 220V plug on.
    -Side to side was very "jerky". I took table apart and deburred and removed paint from guides, lubricated. Motion was much better, but still not as good as in and out motion on cast iron guides. Acceptable to me at this point though.
    -While had table apart, tightened stops as they were loose.
    -Aligned motor so at a 90-degree angle to table.
    -Built jig to attach motor mount to wall.

    I just want everyone to be clear that this machine isn't plug-n-play. Just like Peter's experience with the previous version, I still had alot of work to do, and still am not done.

    Now that the motor is firmly planted against the wall, it seems as though the weekest point is the stock hold down. During my test cuts, the clamp would loosen a bit, and the stock would come loose and vibrate on the bit marring it up a bit. I plan to fix this by building a new table to attach to the cast iron table on the machine, similiar to what others have done. I will include many points to attach aftermarket clamps similiar to how the multi-router hold down clamps attach. I think once I have this done, I will be ready for my first project on this machine.

    So far, I have only used a Freud 3/8" and Whiteside 1/4" spiral upcut bits. I want to try the Laguna bits or the Onsrud bits Peter mentioned in his posts as I think these will give cleaner cuts given the speed of the motor. I was able to get the slots to look pretty good though before I attached the machine to the wall. Now, just have to hold the stock down better.

    Also, just so no-one is surprised, you cannot mortise a 3/4" piece of stock with it clamped to the table. The table does not go high enough. This doesn't bother me as I was planning to build a jig for it anyway ou of 3/4" plywood.

    Overall though, I am happy to have this machine and at $1000 it is a good price for this machine. Someday I may move up to a European import, but I am not in a hurry as this machine will get the job done.

    -Greg

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    3,178
    Quote Originally Posted by Gregory Stahl View Post

    Now that the motor is firmly planted against the wall, it seems as though the weekest point is the stock hold down.
    I drilled and tapped the back of my table to install an angle iron (verticals) and flat stock (horizontal) fence to which I attached two DeStaCo vertically plunging clamps with rubber tips; I got much better holding with that setup than with the single holddown that came with the machine. If I had to redo the whole thing I'd probably use shallow channel stock for the horizontal member, to give a bit more rigidity to the structure -- it worked perfectly well but I did notice a bit of flex in the flat stock when clamping (but the workpiece itself stayed put).

    Love DeStaCo clamps, by the way.
    Last edited by Frank Drew; 08-19-2008 at 3:23 PM.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Northwestern Connecticut
    Posts
    7,149
    Just the other day I was feeling pretty good about Laguna and my now old version Platinum mortiser. Now I am feeling pretty glad for you, and pretty irritated having seen the new rendition which seems to have solved many though apparently not all of the issues with this tool. I spoke with a rep on a follow up call end of last week who forgot to mention as I made a laundry list of the machines short comings (which included the strange bars for movement rather than ways and bearings, lack of a reversing switch or at least right hand rotation, and the flimsy base) that three short months later they had completely redesigned the tool and solved many of the issues with which i am still dealing. Did they learn product development from Microsoft? Ship whatever, fix bugs later in future renditions? I understand tweaking a tool mid year, but i am starting to feel like a guinea pig. That motor reverse is no small issue. I may call to ask them to send me one! But of course, they don't have parts!

    On the bright side mine came with the correct plug, a nice paint job, and the table raises straight up to the bit, so I could mortise 1/8" material with the right bit! I was discussing my 5 year plan to add a slider to the shop, starting to think Laguna won't be on the list of considerations. Not sure how to feel about this.

    Oh, congrats on the new mortiser! Enjoy that. The thought of Mr. D making a house full of doors with a plunge router makes my brain hurt. Want to buy a platinum mortiser, lightly used?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Oregon, Wisconsin
    Posts
    324
    Peter,

    I wouldn't be to concerned with the differences other than the motor reversing switch. I don't think mine functions too much different than yours, and I had to do almost everything you did to make it function just like yours. I had to take apart, clean, and deburr the side-to-side guides as they were very "jerky" to say the least. I am eager to see how the display model at IWF works to see if it was just mine or not.

    I agree with you about the motor switch though, I would definately be adding one. I'm sure an excellent switch could probably be had for $10, but you'd probably compromise the warranty installing it. If you have a warranty issue though, is it likely that Laguna would even know you installed the switch? Maybe you should just flip the wires and be done with it--if you havn't bought any specific bits yet.

    Also, I am not certain, but I want to say mine is a 2hp motor, not the 3hp you have. I'll try to double check before I leave for Atlanta early tomorrow morning. The manual I got with mine was 4 one-sided sheets poorly written and stapled together! I don't think the HP matters too much for mortising though, as long as it is smooth.

    Funny you mention not buying a slider from Laguna. I have been trying to talk to the salesman that helped me to get info on their sliders and boring machines, but they just don't follow through. I was expecting some data sheets to be emailed to me, and apparently they have a boring machine that just came off demo, and were going to offer me a great price, but they just completely dropped the ball! Now, I think it may be between Felder and Mini-max!

    Best,
    Greg Stahl

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bloomington, IL
    Posts
    6,008
    I am guessing Lagunasoft just copied another OS I mean mortiser model - Hammer B3.

    Interesting about the height of material limitation on the new one. Maybe I will take a 3/4" piece of stock with me to Atlanta.

    What is the thinnest it will mortise. Guess I will find out in 15 hours or so.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Northwestern Connecticut
    Posts
    7,149
    I guess in the light of a new day you guys are right. The mortiser I have, while jerky in the lateral movement, seems to produce accurate mortises in spite of what my dial indicator suggests should be happening. The chuck was nearly perfectly parallel to the table as shipped which is a plus. I have priced a D handle industrial reversing switch from McMaster Carr, the type used on Powermatic shapers at $75. If anyone knows where to buy one of those euro type plastic toggle type three pole (forward, reverse and neutral) switches please advise, I have yet to find a source. I find it irritating that i should have to make the machine what it should have been and as is now being sold.

    I have purchased several carbide bits from laguna in left twist which i don't want to replace, and doweling bits are difficult to acquire in left twist HSS, they simply don't exist in carbide. I have a decent investment in doweling bits already which I would like to use with this machine. Buying a new machine that comes as a fixer upper is mildly irritating, but given it is nearly half the cost of the next option I was willing to accept that challenge. Finding out that the first round of machines was basically a prototype and that the seller has quickly added features and corrected some mistakes without pro offering to do the same for previous machines makes me think I have bought my last Laguna tool. I'm sensitive that way. Fool me twice, shame on me.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Heidrick View Post
    I am guessing Lagunasoft just copied another OS I mean mortiser model - Hammer B3.

    Interesting about the height of material limitation on the new one. Maybe I will take a 3/4" piece of stock with me to Atlanta.

    What is the thinnest it will mortise. Guess I will find out in 15 hours or so.
    Mike,
    Anything to report on that 3/4" thickness limitation? I have been looking hard at this machine but now I'm not so sure given what you guys have said.

    Thanks,
    Lee

Similar Threads

  1. Multi-router vs horizontal slot mortiser
    By Gregory Stahl in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 07-29-2008, 12:02 AM
  2. LAGUNA HORIZONTAL MORTISER, LEFT or RIGHT rotation??
    By Rob Will in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 05-23-2008, 2:28 AM
  3. Laguna Platinum Horz Slot Mortiser Ordered
    By Peter Quinn in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 02-28-2008, 3:57 PM
  4. Euro Slot Mortiser Advice Needed
    By Mike Palmer in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 11-09-2006, 6:05 PM
  5. Looking for replacement for a slot mortiser
    By Mike Henderson in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 19
    Last Post: 01-27-2006, 9:19 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •