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Thread: What size, type of Jointer to buy?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    137

    What size, type of Jointer to buy?

    I am new to the SMC, but have found there is some very good stuff here.

    I am a hobbyist and I currently have a Craftsman 6" bench top Jointer, I get mixed results especially with longer stock. I am looking to by a bigger, better Jointer. First off what size? I am thinking at least 8", but I could probably swing a cheaper 12" from Grizzly or a Jointer/Planer combo machine from Jet or Grizzly. How do people like those combo machines? Also I am concerned that it will be too big and heavy for what I need, but it sure would be nice to have 12". I have a two car garage shop. I live in Seattle so I am fairly close to the Grizzly store here, how do people like the Grizzly brand and their Jointers, they are so much better on price than anyone else. Any other Jointer advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks, Brian

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Eddington, ME
    Posts
    538
    If you have the room, and cashola for it. I would say pic a 12" from a company you trust and don't look back. I only have had 1 Griz machine and it was their cheap 14" saw. I had issues with the finish of the tool, but it worked fine. This was 20 years ago, and their quality has gone up quite a bit since then. And again it was their least expensive bandsaw.

    I currently have a 6", and unless I find a really good deal on a used 8" (really good deal!). I am holding out for a 12".

    I am not a fan of the combo machines. I tend to go from one machine to another. With a combo. Need to prioritize a little better, because if you don't. You will be spending alot of time converting the machine back and forth. That doesn't appeal to me. So having to wait to afford 2 seperate machines is worth it to me.

    The G0609, and G0609X appeal to me quite a bit. Those would be my choices from Griz.

  3. #3
    Brian -

    I asked the same question a couple months ago. Most will say get the biggest you can afford.

    I made my decision this way. I am a hobbyist, but I want to buy a tool only once so I buy quality.
    For years a 6" was the norm and it seemed to prove the test of time.
    6" would work for most of my projects and anything else, well I have to improvise.
    A 8" would have been sweet.

    I choose the PM 54HH.

    I am very satisfied.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    3,178
    Brian

    I'm not familiar with any of the combination machines but if I was in the market and space was limited I'd probably give them a look.

    Wider is usually better in a jointer, within reason, but accuracy is paramount. I'd much rather have a narrower machine that was dead-on accurate that a sloppy 12" model (I had a very good, older 12" model). If you get a chance to road test a Grizzly, that should give you the information you need, that combined with your confidence in Grizzly's commitment to customer satisfaction and service after the sale.

    Maybe give yourself some time to look for a used, high quality machine, though.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Parker, CO
    Posts
    78

    J/P Combo

    Brian,

    I have the GO634 and have been using it for a few weeks. I went with the HTC Custom Heavy Duty mobile base based on the weight of this puppy. I actually got it off the pallet and on to this base by myself which was a feat my wife didn't quite get as excited about as I did. This is my third HTC and I would save my pennies for one.

    Overall, I am very happy with it. I love the jointer and the planer is good. I would have liked it to be about 12" longer on each side. The only beef I have is with the pork chop guide. It is a pain to take on and off. If Jet would have had a spiral cutter head, I might have gone that route. I also rewired and moved their on/off box. It is right where you stand when joining so I did some drilling and tapping and moved it just under the planer out feed table. The Grizzly support has been great too.

    Kevin
    Kevin Davis
    Carmel Group

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    21,416
    Blog Entries
    1
    I have the G0490X and really like it. If I could have afforded the G0609X, I would have gotten it.
    Take me to the hotel - Baggage gone, oh well . . .

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    137
    Thanks I was concerned with the ability to put one of those on a mobile base, I don't think that I am ever really sure where I want to put my machines. Very impressive that you did it yourself. When you say you would like it to be 12" longer, do you mean that you would like the Jointer tables to be longer? That is a concern that I had also.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Beantown
    Posts
    2,830
    Just finished the rough milling stages of a project using some 6/4 Sapele on my recent aquisition....a 16" EMA Jointer. Some of the Sapele slabs were about 16" wide, well wouldn't you know the maximum capacity of the jointer is 15-1/8" sunova #@*%....could have really used that 20" jointer.

    Moral of the story, you probably won't have a jointer big enough to handle every task, so get the biggest that is practical for most of your needs.

    good luck,
    JeffD

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Colorado Springs
    Posts
    2,318
    I've been using my 8" jointer for almost a year now and I'm absolutely thrilled with it. It's a Shop Fox, which in this case is just a Grizzly with different paint. It has built-in mobility, which is really nice. I just push on a foot pedal and move wherever I want.

    I think you'd be very happy with any Grizzly jointer 8" or larger. Sure, buying a large, used machine is a good option: if you can find one. In a year of looking online in my area, I've seen exactly one used 8" jointer; and certainly nothing larger. It was a Delta and the seller wanted about $10 below full retail. No thanks.

    I recently bought a Grizzly 17" bandsaw. I'm also thrilled with that machine. Grizzly machines can't be compared to high-end, European machines. For the serious hobbyist, I think Grizzly machines are more than adequate.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    3,178
    Keep in mind that you can flatten (take out the cup, bow, and wind of) a board just under twice the width of your jointer; it won't be pretty -- there will probably be a ridge of sorts along the center -- but it will be a good enough reference surface to run through the planer.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Northwestern Connecticut
    Posts
    7,149
    In short, GET THE BIGGEST ONE YOU CAN GET THROUGH THE DOOR AND THE WALLET!

    I checked out a 16" Rojek J/P combo at a show recently that really caught my eye. 4 knife head, other wise no frills, fairly long bed length on the planer for a combo. Easy change over took less than one minute. Price was around $4500? Seemed to offer a lot of value. Might be worth a look, they make a 12" too a bit cheaper.

    I have an 8" and a 6" long bed now. The 8" does most of what I need, and it is a professional quality machine in terms of weight and performance. 6" can do a lot of things but I run into too many parts wider than 6". Can't say which is right for you, but I can say my 6" general is a heck of a lot more machine than any bench top model.

    If you were a professional custom furniture maker I'd say 16" is a minimum, 24" jointer is preferable for wide boards. I can make your average set of cabinets on a 6" no problem. For passage doors I need a machine with an 80" bed that weighs at least 500#! I guess I'm saying IMO the jointer is a part of the total package. Think about what you make now, what else you would like to make in the future, and what the quality of your other tools is. No point having a 16" jointer with a 12" lunch box planer and a portable table saw.

    MPQ

  12. #12
    Rob Will Guest

    Old Iron

    I would get a very wide old iron jointer and avoid the Chinese goods alltogether.

    Ideally, your jointer will be the same width as your planer. Once you have used this matching combination you will wonder how you ever got along without it.

    Rob

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Willmar, MN
    Posts
    75
    I found a used G9860, and paid $1500 for it. The machine was in daily use in a professional wood shop for a few years but it was in 100% perfect working order so I felt the price was fair. I know I could have got a brand new G0690 for just $345 more (incl delivery), but felt I was still getting a better deal with an used professional grade unit (plus the seller brought it to me and put it on my shop floor with his forklift - a nice perk with a 1250 lb unit).

    I was also first speculating if I will truly need the 12" capacity, but two weeks after I had the machine I was already happily face jointing 12" boards. This is the only full size jointer I have ever owned so I can not really make any statements on how good Grizzly may be vs something else, but I can tell you that I am very happy with my unit and I have a feeling that it will fulfill my expectations and last longer than I will.

    Good luck with your choice, whatever it may be.

    Pete

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Parker, CO
    Posts
    78
    No I mean the planer infeed/outfeed tables. The jointer table has been sufficient for my needs.

    Kevin
    Kevin Davis
    Carmel Group

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    137
    Thanks for all of the info. For anyone who has one of the big machines, around 1000 lbs or more, do you ever need to move it, if so how? Also being fairly new to woodworking, less then 10 real projects, it is hard to tell what I will work on in the future. One think that I know for sure, I am tired of buying junk that I want to replace fairly soon after the purchase. Decisions, Decisions.

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