Went to the big tool store to have a look-see today. I've been wanting to
upgrade the jointer and am really interested in a drum sander. Anyway, I've
done some research, and had a good idea what I'm looking for in both. I've
been drooling over the new Grizzly 12" jointer, but the reality is I'm laid
off at the moment, so $ is a bit of an issue, plus I dunno if that big ass
12" jointer would fit in my shop very easily. The second choice was the
Griz 0490 like this one: http://www.grizzly.com/catalog/2007/Main/40
My local Big Iron store carries the Grizz equivalent in the ShopFox
brand (W1741) so that is what came home with me today. Got her set up and
running. Pretty smooth and impressive jointer so far. 3hp.(Yes, 3 horse
power!!) , 4 knife cutterhead, loooong tables, heavy as @#&$, and under $800
including tax out the door. Funny thing though, while there I was really
checking out a DJ20. The Shop Fox and DJ are, with the exception of some
cosmetic stuff, identical although the DJ cost more than twice the Shop Fox.
After asking a few questions to the cool old guy that works there, I learned
that the DJ20, Grizz 0490 and the Shop Fox w1741 are all made in the same
overseas factory. He said the only difference is the Grizz/shop fox have a
3hp. imported motor, and the DJ still uses an American made 1 1/2hp motor.
He also went on to say that the Grizz/Shop fox models were originally
supposed to have a 2 hp motor, but the manufacturer had made a mistake and
shipped the first batch with 3 hp. motors. Grizz/Shop fox apparently told
the manufacturer that they couldn't switch back to 2 hp motors now after
selling some as 3hp, so they are all 3hp. now. Prolly overkill for an 8"
jointer, but what the hey. Maybe I can switch the motor with the 1 1/2 hp
on my Jet 18" BS. It needs the extra horses more than the jointer does.
Anyway, I just got her set up and made a few test cuts and am pleased. The
4 knife cutterhead, makes smooooth cuts, but is somewhat of an oddball.
Most replacement knives are sold in packs of 3. I suppose I'll have to get
a Byrd cutterhead for it next :) In any case, I'll be starting a new
project tomorrow and am looking forward to breaking this thing in. --dave