Jointer Useful for Hobbyist?

I have recently taken up woodworking and I am thinking about buying a jointer (6" floor model). My question is how useful/essential do you think a jointer is for a hobbyist? I already have a table saw, router, drill press, hand tools, and most of the basics.
However, I really only have time for a few projects a year... things like bookcases, chests, shelves, side tables, etc. All of the wood I buy is surfaced on four sides (i.e. I don't have the time to buy rough cut wood and clean it up, plane it down, etc). Is a jointer really worth the investment in this case?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 21 Aug 2003 20:19:44 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (JVG) wrote:

I think a jointer is necessary. I build similar to you in number of projects. Perhaps some, like beds or an entertainment center are bigger, but those are exceptions.
I always buy lumber rough. I used to have a 6" jointer (Craftsman) and recently traded up to a DJ-20. The biggest reason was for the longer tables the DJ-20 has. Wider is good too. I use a DeWalt planer to thickness.
This is the only way to be sure your stock is really flat and straight. It adds a couple of days to the project completion time, maybe a week if you follow Gary Rogowski's technique in the new FWW. Not only that, but you can get *any* thickness you need, not just those your lumber supplier has.
So is it *necessary*? Maybe not, but it is convenient and if you take a critical look at the S4S you've been buying, I'll bet you'll see that some of it isn't completely flat or straight.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
The jointer is a very overlooked piece of woodworking macheniry. You need it more than a planer. Get one, you won't regret it.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
you may be buying surfaced wood, but it's rarely FLAT. It usually is cupped, warped, etc. YOU have to be the one to decide how seriously you take your new hobby. My opinion is that it is an essential tool. But then you like to buy S4S, so YOU decide.
dave
JVG wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
After you own a jointer, you'll wonder how you ever got along without one.

Remove the 'remove' in my address to e:mail me.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 21 Aug 2003 20:19:44 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (JVG) wrote:

Let me invite you to back up a minute from all the posts that say a jointer is mandatory and take a little walk "outside the box."
There's a subtle but important difference between: "You need a jointer." and "You need to properly joint your stock."
It's absolutely the case that properly jointed stock is necessary to join boards for whatever you're building.
But maybe as a hobbyist, you don't care to unload the bucks to purchase latest, greatest Binford 8000 jointer. Fine, you can joint wood with a router. Yes, your humble router and a good straight edge guide will give you perfectly acceptable results for edge joining two boards.
If you're going to work wood with any regularity or passion, then learn woodworking rule #1. It will serve you well:
"There is always always always more than one way to accomplish something."
<whisper> However, if joining boards is an "excuse" for going out and buying a jointer then by all means buy one. ;> </whisper>
Good luck, Michael Baglio Chapel Hill
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I would add to the other posts, that I have a 22 inch jointer that cost as I recall less than $45... Made by Stanley.
--

Larry Wasserman Baltimore, Maryland
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I think you refer to the No.7 Stanley. I have one and it is nice-after you sharpen it. He is a tackling some projects that I would also like to have a motorized jointer for. But a lot of furniture has been built with a No. 7. And, the weather is getting right for a No. 7.
On Fri, 22 Aug 2003 17:29:44 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@fellspt.charm.net (Lawrence Wasserman) wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Lawrence Wasserman wrote:

Mine cost less than $20.00 for the maple plank and the iron. Should have made it 30" long instead of 24.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
For several years I convinced myself that I didn't need a jointer, so I made do with hand planes/surface planer for face flattening and the table saw with a good blade for jointing. I, like you, only do a few projects per year because of limited time.
Last year I took the plunge and bought the Powermatic 54A 6" jointer, and have never looked back. I don't know how I got along without one, and the most important thing is that a well tuned jointer will make quick work of what could otherwise be hours of drudgery. Even if you like hand planing, you have to question whether hand planing board after board makes sense if you don't have much time on your hands.
Good luck
Glenn de Souza Scottsdale, Arizona

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
The following is a repost of the purpose of a jointer and a planer. As to whether you really need one or not, that's pretty much up to you now isn't it?
Steps for truing stock.
Absolutely necessary. A flat face to work from.
Joint (make flat and straight) one face (reference face) so you have something to true (reference) the remaining three sides to. Not to be done on a planer because the feed rollers will push out any warp and it will reappear as the stock exits the planer. For the same reason use very little down force when jointing.
Joint one edge with the reference face against the jointers fence. This will give you a straight edge that is at 90 degrees to the reference face. Also an edge to reference the next edge.,
Rip a second edge on the table saw with the reference face against the table and the reference edge against the fence. Try to do it on the jointer and it will give you a straight edge but not one necessarily parallel to the first edge.
Now you can plane the piece to a proper thickness with the reference face flat down on the planers feed table. Since the reference face is flat the planer has no warp to press out so the face being planed will be not only be flat but parallel to the reference face.
The jointer performs the two most critical steps in the process (the reference face and edge) but, with sufficient dicking around, there are work arounds. but, without the dicking around, the planer will not perform the functions of a jointer and the jointer will not perform the functions of a planer.
--
Mike G.
Heirloom Woods
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ripping with a jointer. That's a new one.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.