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Thread: Moulder Questions W&H vs. Grizzly

  1. #1

    Moulder Questions W&H vs. Grizzly

    There's a used W&H moulder with variable feed drive for sale in my area. Not sure how old, but it looks to be maybe 10-15 years old. It doesn't include any knives and he's asking $600. Grizzly sells a 13" planer/moulder for about $1000 after tax and shipping.

    I only need a moulder maybe once a month for about 50 feet of cabinet crown, so it won't get used much; that limits its value to me and makes $1000 about the top end of what I'm willing to spend. Also, the w&h is 6-1/2" vs 13" for the grizzly, but it would be a dedicated moulder and never used for planing, so the width capacity is a non issue.

    I don't love grizzly tools. Every time I order something from them, I'm underwhelmed and have to spend additional $ to make the tool work as described. I'm not eager to be let down again.

    I don't know much about w&h moulders except they're built well and have good motors and bearings. But it's older, might have issues, and might have messed up feed rollers (I haven't seen it yet)

    Any advice? One over the other? Neither?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    black river falls wisconsin
    Posts
    826
    i would go with wh. $600 seems like great price. coul of sold my shop foxx cloan few times for way more.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    54,699
    W&H molders are the "gold standard" for these machines. Setting aside your personal concerns with any given vendor, the W&H is designed specifically for cutting molding and can even be used for curved work. (which may not be on your radar, but still...) The other product you mention is multifunction so it's possible (said without any facts as to reality) that the convertibility may introduce compromises. OTOH, it comes with a new machine warranty, although it's important to remember that "you are the technician" anyway...'nature of the tool business.

    You are going to have tooling costs regardless of which machine you choose.

    Personally, I'd probably go for the W&H because these machines have a great reputation, but that would also entail getting a good look at it and understand just how hard it's been ridden prior to it being put up for sale. There's always some level of risk with a used tool, but at least in this case, it's something that's still supported "out there".
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    2,005
    W&H for sure. You might need to replace the synthetic rollers, but it's far better for radius moldings if you ever do that. Faster and easier blade changes too. $600 with a variable speed feed is a bargain.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    13,787
    I have owned the Grizzly Moulder machine for many years. Both me and my neighbor have ordered custom knives and I also have several sets of Grizzly knives. The Grizzly model is a good machine, not one complaint concerning performance or options.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    WNY
    Posts
    6,876
    I've had a machine like the Grizzly and now I have a W&H. No comparison. The W&H is much easier to set up and change knives on. It looks too simple to work well, yet the moldings it makes hardly need sanding. If the one being offered is in good shape it's a no brainer. I paid twice that for a used one and have no regrets.

    John

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    5,183
    I have an older model of the Grizzly, with the motor on the top. It works fine. It also works great as a finish planer. I end up using it as a planer, more than a molder. It's by no means a beast for hogging off a lot of material, but when I'm building sash, or cabinet face frames, not much is left to do to clean up the faces. I think it's mostly because it's a fairly slow feed, and has rubber (or some synthetic) feed rollers.

    It's not too bad to set up for a molder, but if a molder is all you need, I'd go with the W&H.

    I bought that Griz off CL for $400. I wouldn't buy a new one.

  8. #8
    I have a very old W&H. Like you, it doesn't get heavy use but does a great job. Mine has the original metal feed rollers which I have read exclude taking multiple passes, but I take multiple passes when making crowns and it does a great job. $600 is a really good price.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Central WI
    Posts
    5,534
    When looking for a molder it is all about how easy it is to index the knives. A two knife system is way better than running only one but lining the two up require either a bolt system like the w and H or corrugated back knives. Molding machines are seldom used hard as there is no money in running molding other than short specialty runs. I'd go for the W and H unless beat to death. Dave

  10. #10
    W and H.

    I have a woodmaster I modified and put a corrugated head, all the shaper knives corg now work on it. Its not open end but you can still do a radius as there is width to work with.

    Most important thing not mentioned is speed control. The woodmaster there is a gear motor drive and that feature is very important, I can run a birdseye maple moulding and not get tear out, you dial in the speed you need. I run slow then save on sanding time. Does it have a speed control you can dial in? m Most ive run is run in one pass, rubber rollers grab well and have some forgiving.

    You will resell the W and H to someone and get your money back, you wont on the other.
    Last edited by Warren Lake; 10-25-2020 at 1:55 PM.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    54,699
    Grizzly's Shop Fox moulder is more akin to the W&H for reasonable comparison based on what I just looked at in the catalog.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Western Nebraska
    Posts
    3,911
    I thought about buying a local WH for quite a bit more money, took a few days to think about it and decided there was no profit to be made in running my own millwork if I didn't do wacky custom things on a regular basis. By then the machine sold anyhow. It did not have variable speed, so I think you have a great deal there if you want a molder.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Lebanon, TN
    Posts
    1,025
    I have the ShopFox W1812, bought it new.

    If I'd had the money, I would have bought the W&H.

    I've had three sets of custom knives made, one for planation shutter louvers, one set for the baseboard in my house and a set for custom baseboards for a friend. Each set cost around $130.

    It's not a tool I use often, but it works as designed.

    I've cut about 1500ln/ft of shutter louvers, 200ln/ft for my fiends baseboard and about 80lm/ft of baseboard for myself.

    I'd snap the W&H up.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    805
    I have a couple w&h moulders. They are great machines, and I wouldn't hesitate to buy one.

    The grizzly is a clone of the Bellsaw / woodmaster. Some prefer them to the w&h if you are grinding your own knives as you are only running one knife. Certainly more fiddly to set up though.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Doylestown, PA
    Posts
    6,319
    Grizzly/Shopfox was selling two different style molders at one time. One was like a planer, one was like a W&H. They got dinged on a patent infringement on the W&H clone, wound up selling them for cheap, $400 as I recall.

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