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Thread: Hofman not the dovetail machine maker but the jointer planer slot mortiser company.

  1. #1
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    Hofman not the dovetail machine maker but the jointer planer slot mortiser company.

    Iím looking for the US distributor of Hofman machinery. Iím in the market for both a jointer and a shaper. From what I understand this guys are what Martin is no longer but was.

    I also understand there is only one Us importer and distributor of Hofman. For the life of me I canít figure out who.

    Thank you much

  2. #2
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    My understanding is that no one distributes Hofmann in the US. Joe Calhoon is the guy who knows for sure. Hofmann may be slightly better or worse than Martin but you are really splitting hairs here. Lots of effort to import it vs Martin. Dave

  3. #3
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    I have been told by two people ďboth of whom I have lost contact withĒ that there is a us dealer of Hofman but that itís a new thing in the last couple years.

    More than one person has mentioned to me that the newer Martin shapers ands was are just not what they were in the past with regard to build quality. It seems people are saying the electronics are much ,ore advanced than say the early 2000 era machines and th new spindle system is great but overall the machines are not as substantial as the older ones.

    I was talking with a gentleman this afternoon that is selling a Kolle slot mortiser and I made mention of having just got a quote on anew Martin t12mand t54. His response was I would not buy a new Martin machine. When I asked why he went into how they basically just are not built like they once were but that Hofman still makes a machine the way they were built 20 plus years ago.

    When mentioning Martin to people whom have owned both old and new Martin machines they all say so much to some degree.

    I would at least like the option to price the Hofman if I could. I understand it comes in a 24Ē width and thatís pretty attractive when mated with a 24íí planer.

    I interested in your option that Hofman may not be as nice as current Martin. I really know nothing of Hofman other than what others have told me. I have at least put my hands on a handful of Martin machines.

  4. #4
    I may have something kicking around with a contact number. I like my 70's Martin machines, all their new electronic gizmos worry me.

  5. #5
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    I would appreciate that Darcy.

    All the electronic stuff scares me also. Iím a cabinet maker and not one with a fleet of guys making stuff for me. Iím one of the guys to be perfectly honest.

    I really I would be able to get a machine with only digital readout of the spindle and manual every thing else. Iím not gonna get that from Martin these days but It was suggested to me I might get it from Hofman.

    The art in jointer Iím not so worried about the electronics as they are pretty minor.

  6. #6
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    Let us know what you find out. Steve knows his stuff and my experience with all brands of machinery is that every redesign lightens the build. The machines become more user friendly with better ergonomics but lighter. Shapers in particular get lighter quills, bearings and structure. Good luck. Dave

  7. #7
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    I'm pretty sure it's LIMZ Machinery here in NYC. http://www.limzmachinery.com/contact.html

    Could always try and import what you need from Germany if that doesn't pan out. I know Bort & Heckert are a Hofmann dealer. PM me if you need a contact person.

    Might be considerably less expensive.

  8. #8
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    Hofmann is listed on the Limz site. Link goes to the company website but looks like Limz is the dealer. Dave

  9. #9
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    There is a distributor in the USA .. special order.. Email Hofmann and they will get back to you .. I obviously erased the email ..

    I have 2 Martin Machines that are newer and they are the two nicest machines in my shop.

  10. #10
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    As I remember it, there was also a French company still making some extraordinarily nice and fairly straightforward classical machinery, very similar to older Martin, KŲlle, Bšuerle.

    Chambon? Name escapes me at the moment.

  11. #11
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    CC9D7888-7AC7-49D7-8D44-1C9C4F88A606.jpg
    Looked at a couple Hofmann vintage shapers yesterday.

  12. #12
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    0C287FDC-97E2-4D87-BC41-63ED061B1BB3.jpg
    638BE23A-2FE6-4EDC-B578-12EDDECDDD86.jpg
    1950s Martins bought new by the Grandfather of this shop owner. Best vintage machine so far is Okoma tenoner in mint condition.
    Last edited by Joe Calhoon; 03-20-2018 at 10:13 AM.

  13. #13
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    Hofmann is still a cast iron machine from my understanding talking with Joe. Build quality is supposed to be every bit as good as Martin.
    I have owned old and new Martin. The electronics can speed things up, but they can also be glitchy, and all the built in safety "features" can really slow down working speed.
    Punching in a dimension for the fence on a slider, then waiting for it to adjust is annoyingly slow.
    I have spoken with Laurence from Limz, very nice and approachable guy.

  14. #14
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    I enjoyed restoring my vintage Martin shaper but no comparison to functionality, accuracy and repeatability of my 2003 T26. The old Martin jointer was nice but hard to beat the ball bearing fence and one hand tilt function on the newer ones.
    Hofmann is nice. Outstanding is their jointer - planer that can function in both modes without moving the tables. The other is their shaper that tilts to 90. Panhans and Vertongen had similar but not cast construction. Martin composite construction is as vibration free as Hofmann cast.
    Here is a 1990s J-P. Fence is lacking but new Hofmann’s have a fence similar to Martin’s
    3AE3B3E0-9A21-4DAE-B575-CE5975ABEBAB.jpg
    B3961BCB-8E9F-4F93-8F3D-2B179D61C11C.jpg
    Only have my phone so tough to post

  15. #15
    2003 is old if you ask Martin.

    The mid to late 90s stuff is a total headache when it comes to all the obsolete electronic gizmos.

    The old t75s and t17s are simple a joy to use.

    Rather have 4 cheaper shapers than try to do everything on one fancy machine.

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