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Thread: Powermatic vs Grizzly

  1. #1
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    Powermatic vs Grizzly

    Hey guys,
    This is just my personal experience dealing with Powermatic vs Grizzly. A few years ago I purchased a Grizzly G1023RL 3hp cabinet saw. The fit and finish in my opinion was truly excellent. Not one issue with the saw. Prompt delivery, well packaged, everything on the saw was spot on. I had very few adjustments to make after set up. Customer service was fantastic when buying the saw. I ended up buying a new house and I decided to sell the saw to a colleague (big mistake).

    At the end of September of this year I ordered a Powermatic PM1000. I decided to go with another cabinet saw and one that was 115v. I wanted to buy the best 115v I could find for my money. I figured Powermatic would be one of the best. My experience so far has not been great. The saw showed up on a busted up pallet. The fence rail box was tore up and the front fence rail was gouged. This was not shipping damage as all the parts were wrapped up nicely sitting on the pallet. I contacted PM and I received the new part a couple weeks later. It was hard to get a tracking number from them. I was ghosted by customer service a couple times. I went through two CSR's to get this part. Problem is I bought the black anniversary model and they sent the standard gold rail. I provided pics, proof of purchase, PN needed before they sent. I contacted them and they decided to send me a can of paint and asked me to paint the rail. This has been over two weeks now. I contacted them today and they haven't even sent the paint yet. The CSR emailed back just a bit ago and said they found a can and will be rushing it out to me. I ended up assembling the saw anyway with the black rail. The next problem was with the cast wings. They had a burr along the machined edge that mated up with the table. When you leveled the wing with the table top it was very noticeable. I had to give the wing top 90 degree edge a soft sand with some high grit metal paper. This seemed to solve that issue. When fastening them they just didn't quite line up evenly so I switched them around. This helped but then the front 45 degree bevel didn't quite line up. I brought that to their attention and they are supposed to be sending me a new set out. I'm still waiting for them. I asked today for a tracking number. So far I have worked with 3 CSR's and one tech support guy. I've had the saw a month now.

    I truly believe Powermatic makes a great product but their after purchase support hasn't impressed me. In hind sight I wish I would have bought another Grizzly.

    deck

  2. #2
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    This doesn't surprise me. I think Powermatic is trying to live on their laurels. They make good machines, but as you are experiencing, their customer support is lackluster. PM machines are also way overpriced in my opinion.

    Maybe they just took their foot off the gas hoping to rake in some profits before being bought out? Or maybe they seen the PM circling the drain in the near future and they have simply given up?

    I was shopping for a cabinet saw a few months ago. I was leaning very hard at Harvey, but went with a SawStop and I'm very happy with it. Lucky for us, there are many other options. I didn't even consider Powermatic. Yawn.

    I have a band saw and jointer from Grizzly and I think they're great.

    UPDATE: So I didn't realize Powermatic was purchased by a Private Equity Firm in 2014. This explains a lot.
    Last edited by Pat Germain; 10-31-2023 at 3:56 PM.

  3. #3
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    customer support, generally, is in decline these days.

    edit: Even Felder has been disappointing.
    Last edited by mike stenson; 10-31-2023 at 4:04 PM.
    ~mike

    happy in my mud hut

  4. #4
    Bummer on your PM experience, in my last 5 years or so of researching & buying new I ended up with Grizzly, Jet & Laguna as the PM line seems to be made in the same place as the rest, share parts & they are more expensive. IMO PM is no better than the any other major player but I've never done a side by side comparison. I do know I've had great success with all 3 manufactures on machine performance & customer service.

  5. #5
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    Felder, tried for me. I got a call inviting me to felder day in delaware. On the call he asked how everything was working out with my machine. I told him all was well asside from a small part that broke. He wrote up a ticket and I missed a few calls over the next 2 days before I finally was able to pick up and get a description and a part number to the rep. He told mne they are available and cost $4 but felders cheapest shipping is $75. I told him Ill pick it up the next time im in Delaware.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by George Yetka View Post
    Felder, tried for me. I got a call inviting me to felder day in delaware. On the call he asked how everything was working out with my machine. I told him all was well asside from a small part that broke. He wrote up a ticket and I missed a few calls over the next 2 days before I finally was able to pick up and get a description and a part number to the rep. He told mne they are available and cost $4 but felders cheapest shipping is $75. I told him Ill pick it up the next time im in Delaware.
    That's disconcerting. My rep wouldn't even bother to reply, so I found another. She helped out, then sent the sale back to the same rep that couldn't be bothered (so it seems like I'm stuck with a rep I don't trust or like). I guess now that they have money, I can expect even worse. Wonderful.
    ~mike

    happy in my mud hut

  7. #7
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    Nothing against the OP but posts like these end up just reinforcing what people already think. PM sucks. Grizzly sucks. Festool is overpriced and sucks. SawStop is tech any real woodworker doesn't need, oh, and sucks. And on and on.

    I have 4 PM tools in my shop. All arrived in perfect condition, needing zero adjustments before use and build quality is outstanding. Calling them for a replacement part was simple and it arrived in a little over a week. Am I a shill and think they're perfect? Nope. Would I recommend them? Yep. Do I think there are viable alternatives for different types of woodworkers? Yep. Same goes with Harvey, SawStop, Festool, Dewalt and a Home Depot Husky products. I've dealt with all of them and they were all excellent CS, but could it be just my level of expectation? Maybe.

    OP, if PM told me to paint my saw, I'd say bring a truck and come get it, I'll just get one painted green or black with a different company logo instead. That's out of line IMHO. I'm sorry you're going through the ringer, hopefully it all works out and you have a good saw in the end.

  8. #8
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    Michael, you only get one chance to make an impression. I'd be completely, and understandably, upset if I were the OP. I'd also tell em that they can have it back.

    I'm not going to feel bad about businesses dealing with what they always have, customers with problems complaining about it.
    ~mike

    happy in my mud hut

  9. #9
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    I agree with Michael. Everyone has a story of poor customer service, and good service. Ask 50 woodworkers about brands and you get 100 opinions. I had a very unpleasant experience with a machine from Grizzly. I don't own any Powermatic.

  10. #10
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    I own both Grizzly and PM tools. While I like most of my Grizzly tools I can only think of one that didn't require me to call customer service or have an issue I just dealt with, my oscillating spindle sander. My lathe came with damage from poor crating. My bandsaw had defective tires and vibrated. My planner had sharp edges on the table behind the two lower rollers that caused wood to hang up. My mortiser is an embarrassment. Grizzly no longer sells the model. My PM66 is a workhorse that has never let me down and my PM882 has the flatest tables and fence I have ever seen. Once getting the issues resolved my Grizzly tools have became workhorses as well.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike stenson View Post
    Michael, you only get one chance to make an impression. I'd be completely, and understandably, upset if I were the OP. I'd also tell em that they can have it back.

    I'm not going to feel bad about businesses dealing with what they always have, customers with problems complaining about it.
    Understood. I donít begrudge the OP but Richard hit the nail on the proverbial head.

  12. #12
    They’re all overpriced, IMO. This is why I buy used industrial and do my own due diligence and maintenance / don’t even think about warranties or deal with sales reps / CSRs that just want to pass the buck.

    Not for everyone but I don’t have these problems. If there is an issue then it’s on me to sort out and that can be a risk but has generally worked out well over the average of ~10 machines. The upside is that I acquire machines that are ~5-10x better build quality than new Chinese / Taiwanese for often times less than half the price so there is room and expectation there to occasionally have to sort a thing or two out here or there.
    Still waters run deep.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Burnside View Post
    Nothing against the OP but posts like these end up just reinforcing what people already think. PM sucks. Grizzly sucks. Festool is overpriced and sucks. SawStop is tech any real woodworker doesn't need, oh, and sucks. And on and on.

    I have 4 PM tools in my shop. All arrived in perfect condition, needing zero adjustments before use and build quality is outstanding. Calling them for a replacement part was simple and it arrived in a little over a week. Am I a shill and think they're perfect? Nope. Would I recommend them? Yep. Do I think there are viable alternatives for different types of woodworkers? Yep. Same goes with Harvey, SawStop, Festool, Dewalt and a Home Depot Husky products. I've dealt with all of them and they were all excellent CS, but could it be just my level of expectation? Maybe.

    OP, if PM told me to paint my saw, I'd say bring a truck and come get it, I'll just get one painted green or black with a different company logo instead. That's out of line IMHO. I'm sorry you're going through the ringer, hopefully it all works out and you have a good saw in the end.
    I don't think the OP is saying "Powermatic Sucks". Rather, he paid a lot of extra money for Powermatic, he got a machine with problems and Powermatic customer support is thus far lackluster at best.

    My take is any company can have problems with a particular machine. What makes the difference is if and how they make it right. Thus far, Powermatic gets the proverbial "Epic Fail". So why pay more for the Powermatic name?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phillip Mitchell View Post
    They’re all overpriced, IMO. This is why I buy used industrial and do my own due diligence and maintenance / don’t even think about warranties or deal with sales reps / CSRs that just want to pass the buck.

    Not for everyone but I don’t have these problems. If there is an issue then it’s on me to sort out and that can be a risk but has generally worked out well over the average of ~10 machines. The upside is that I acquire machines that are ~5-10x better build quality than new Chinese / Taiwanese for often times less than half the price so there is room and expectation there to occasionally have to sort a thing or two out here or there.
    The issue of buying used machines always comes up. I'm very happy you are able to find good, used machines in your area. Likely there are a lot of used machines in North Carolina because there were a lot of furniture factories in North Carolina. This is not the case in Colorado. I admit I don't check listings every day, but when I do check listings, I never see any good deals on good, used woodworking machines. I mostly see junk someone is trying to get rid of. If I see nice machines, they are priced at or near full retail.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Pat Germain View Post
    The issue of buying used machines always comes up. I'm very happy you are able to find good, used machines in your area. Likely there are a lot of used machines in North Carolina because there were a lot of furniture factories in North Carolina. This is not the case in Colorado. I admit I don't check listings every day, but when I do check listings, I never see any good deals on good, used woodworking machines. I mostly see junk someone is trying to get rid of. If I see nice machines, they are priced at or near full retail.
    I can imagine the used options being slimmer in CO. That being said, many of my machines have come from outside of NC and still been less expensive / worth it for me to acquire. Some I have taken trips to retrieve and others I have had freighted to me.

    Off the top of my head, I have acquired used industrial machines from NC, SC, TN, VA, WV, MA, MI, NJ and still felt like I came out ahead overall compared to new. It is not for everyone to go down this road, but I do like to bring it up in these threads occasionally for those that think that new is the only feasible option. You do have to check listings with consistency and often times be set up and ready to secure or go get the machine when it becomes available, which is its own type of stress/burden. It also helps to look at more industrial / commercial type listings and not as much in the CL / Marketplace searches unless you have specific keyword searches. There is just too much drivel to sort through if just searching generally in those places.

    It is disappointing to read the OP experience after paying a premium for the yellow paint and having an experience that would be more in line with what you might expect from the lower end of the green paint.
    Last edited by Phillip Mitchell; 11-01-2023 at 11:55 AM.
    Still waters run deep.

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