Size and mobility of 6" vs 8" jointers

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I am contemplating the purchase of a jointer in the near future, and have been perusing all the 6 vs 8 size threads, etc. For the price and mostly favorable reviews, I am considering the Grizzly 6" 1182Z on sale for $380 shipped or one of the 1018 or 0500 8" machines at $770 and $870 shipped.
It seems that there are more people who have bought 6" and wished they'd bought 8" than there are people who say have no need for more width. Anyone on the other side of this please speak up as well!
My main concern is the overall mobility and size difference between the two. I have a fairly small shop, but everything is mobile, and I think I have enough room to comfortably handle the 6" machine. Its hard to image the size difference just by reading the specs. Here's my questions :
- Anyone who has gone from a 6" to an 8" in a small to medium size shop, whats the overall "feel" you have of the space lost from upgrading?
- On a decent mobile base, is the 8" still easily movable, or just too hefty to roll around regularly?
- My shop is in the basement, how much trouble will I have moving the 8" machine down there? Is it split up reasonably well to allow 2 dudes to carry it down without broken spines?
- Anyone who has a 6" and never wished they'd bought bigger, please speak up too!
Thanks for all the info gang. I have gotten so much good info here that I don't think I'll ever be unhappy with a tool purchase again.
Thanks, Rob
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rob snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net says...

small, ancient Monkey Ward freebee 6". . .Not really any "space" lost, just cause me to organize it a mite better.
It is eminently movable on its mobile base; I only move it a few feet forward when needed for longer stock.
Hmmm. . .Mine came in 3 "parts." Fence assembly, base, and tables assembly (the heavy part). My son (he's 26) and I had no problem lifting the table assembly to the base. Going down stairs would be another matter! I think what I would do is secure plywood for a ramp and use ropes to resist the weight from the top with bodies providing help next to the jointer.
Kim
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I have the 8" grizz of which you speak with the shopfox mobile base. It moves easily, but the long tables make it kind of awkward. But this, IMO is a small price to pay for the bigger capacity. BTW, I am happy with the machine.

2 dudes will be able to set the table assembly on the base assembly, but I seriously doubt that said dudes could get the table assembly down a flight of stairs. I suggest 4 dudes for this operation.
Frank
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I've got a 6" Powermatic. It's a fine jointer with long beds (66") but every time I have a board around 8" or slightly less in width, I kick myself for not going with the 8. They aren't much bigger, and a good mobile base isn't gonna stop you from moving it at will. Mine is hard to keep in one place. I have to lock down a caster and two fixed wheels to keep in place. It rolls easier than you'd expect.
Weight? HEAVY! go check specs on the mfgr's website or call them and ask how heavy the jointer without fence is. Decide if you can get it down the stairs. It might be more feasible to slide it down the stairs than carry it, if there are no turns.
Boils down to my 2 cents votes that if you can afford to get the 8, and are sure you'll get it into your shop without major bodily injury, get it! It isn't likely you'll regret it.
dave
rob wrote:

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My shop is 9x19 (one car garage). Space is a HUGE consideration for me. I have a 6" Jet. I considered the 6" Powermatic long bed and I'm glad I didn't get that. I find myself wanting to flatten a board wider than 6" more often than I want to joint a board longer than the bed can handle. I compared the size of a DJ-20 and the Jet 6" at a recent woodworking show and I couldn't believe how much bigger the DJ-20 is. The Jet looks like a little toy compared to it. I don't think a DJ-20 would easily fit in my shop.
Mark

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On Tue, 06 Apr 2004 16:08:35 GMT, "Mark Wells"

Yeah, the DJ-20 is a major hunk of iron, but I'm glad I did what it took to put it in my small basement shop. This tool is the bomb. It surfaces even the hardest woods absolutely effortlessly all the way to it's 8" width. I don't regret this purchase for a minute.
I am concerned about it's weight when the inevitable removing it from the basement happens. "Inevitable" you say? Yes, someday it'll be pulled up when I move, or my heirs want it out. This applies to anything particularly heavy I bring in. Easy (sort of) down, not so easy up.
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On 6 Apr 2004 07:43:36 -0700, rob snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (rob) wrote:

a footor so at each end. you will need more space to maneuver longer boards through....

it'll want better wheels, but other than that it's easily moveable.

use common sense. take it apart, and you can probably do it yourself.

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rob snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (rob) wrote in message

Rob,
I have the 6" Grizzly with the handwheels. I don't feel the need for an 8", but I don't do a lot of glue up panels, so I guess that depends on what you do. I have heard a lot of people complaining here about this particular jointer beiing difficult to tune. I don't have those problems with the handwheels and a dial indicator. It may be worth a few extra bills to get the handwheels.
Good luck!
Chuck
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You can always see it onto a different angle. Let's say you buy the 6" for now, use it for as long as you need it and wait until your projects requires the 8". Then you sell back the 6", loose a couple of dollars and go buy the 8" of your dreams. It will not cost you a lot to be sure of what you really need.
OTOH, if you eventually give up woodworking or simply slow down for a few years, you won't regret an expensive piece of iron in your basement.
I think it all boils down to what you're foreseeing in your future. Many projects and big too? Go for the 8"... A few small projects, learning the basics, work whenever you have some free time... maybe the 6" is fine for now.
Just my 0.02
Ben
rob snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (rob) wrote in message

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would YOU like to help him get the 6 incher UP the basement stairs when he decides to unload it? :) I say get the 8" and not move two pieces of equipment, NOR lose hard earned (I presume you work hard) cash.
dave
BeniBoose wrote:

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wrote:

Dave,
Ben didn't have a bad idea afterall. It's for sure a big job to bring a 6" or a 8" jointer downstairs but on the other hand, it's fairly easy to find a few friends to give you a hand even if you need them twice over the span of a few years. If he's serious about woodworking, the jointer won't be the only tool going down so he may call his friends more than once...
Here in Canada, a 6" jointer is roughly half the price of a 8" jointer (for the same quality) which translates in quite a bit of money. Even before considering a purchase, one should at least assess properly his needs. Before suggesting to go with the bigger the better without even asking what the guy's doing is kind of stupid. What do you do if all he wants to do is to turn pens? Using your same reasoning, the poor guy may throw some hard earned money onto something bigger than he needs.
A beginner may be well happy with a 6" jointer if it fits the type of projects he's planning on doing. Gary Rogowski from Fine Woodworking is using a 6" jointer and it's enough for him.
Wally
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Wally, you don't seriously think the OP asked about 8" jointers to turn pens, now do you? You can't convince me that your notion of buying smaller is really what the OP is concentrating his thinking on. He wants to know if folks with 6" jointers wish they had an 8. The answer is, "hell, yes!" I haven't needed a larger DP, or a larger BS, but I definitely would like a larger jointer, no question.
The fact that he is questioning which to get pretty much indicates he isn't building doll furniture.
dave
Wally wrote:

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Dave,
I think he was refering generically to "buying more tool than you ever use"
I think Wally has a point. I have a 6", intend to upgrade. I do NOT regret buying the 6. At the time it was purchased, I would have had to wait to afford an 8. In the meanwhile, I got the use of a 6. Even if I had the cash, I could have used the leftover cash to fill some other void in the shop that would have gone unfilled.
Sure, it's a judgement call that only the OP can evaluate, but not a completely inappropriate process.
As much as I am an advocate for always buying a little more tool than you know you need *now*. I also beleive that you also need to buy many tools twice. Once to learn the tool, and what I really want. The second time is the keeper. I can think if several tools which I bought one of, that buying "the best" would have been a waste.
My delta scroll saw is a prime example. I don't do the type of work that required precision curved cuts in thin stock. The most important lesson learned is that it is the wrong tool for curved cutting in anything *but* thin stock.
-Steve

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all I need to say is see Rob's latest post... :)
dave
Stephen M wrote:

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I have a Powermatic 6" which has the longer bed (66"). I am not an experienced authority, but I'll give you some second and first hand feedback.
My dealer carries Jet, Powermatic, and Delta. He specifically recommends the Powermatic for home shop owners. He said he's found most of his hobbyist clients come back for an 8" to get the length, not the width. He also pointed out the pricing of jointer knives going up exponentially with increases in width. I have not verified this. I rationalized that if I wanted something wider, I'd certainly want to go a bigger jump than two more inches.
The powermatic is not as long as many of the 8" jointers, but its long enough to feel like you are docking a battleship instead of moving a portable tool. Its the length, not the weight that makes it cumbersome. Its also surprisingly wide (23 inches). I am able to roll mine in and out easily, but I had to get really creative to make it fit.
If I had to give it up because of space reasons, I'd just go with hand planes instead. Not to worry - I am keeping the long jointer. It saves lots and lots of time doing its job really well.
Bob
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A quick price check will show the difference between 6" and 8" as being pretty close to linear -- less than $5/inch for reasonable HSS. Certainly the time to set the knives is invariant. Assuming you slide the fence to various positions when using the machine, then your costs per sq in surfaced or lineal edge jointed are close to linear in jointer size and you get time savings as well as capacity. Under the assumption you aren't running too much dirt or metal through the jointer, knives are pretty cheap anyway. hex -30-
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I started out with a 6" and upgraded to a DJ-20... While the two jointers were in the shop I was amused to find that the fence and infeed table themselves on the DJ 20 were each about the size of the whole 6" jointer's tables! Yes it is much bigger and there is no way I'd want to hump it down stairs... I've got the jointer on a Delta mobile base and it moves easily enough but the length makes it a bit tricky to maneuver around other tools in my shop. Personally I use the full cutter width and table length of the DJ-20 regularly enough that I cannot imagine not having them.
John
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In response to some of the posts, the answer is that I am planning on building a lot of projects in the future, and many fairly large ones. B.A.D., you were right in assuming I am planning more than turning pens :) And it seems that the concensus is mostly 'go larger and work around the size'.
So it seems to me that I will probably go with the bigger iron since I don't want to buy this tool twice. It is hard to swallow the twiceasbig price tag, but the hassle of hauling out one jointer to make room for another later doesn't sound good either.
Thanks for all the responses, and I look forward to your help getting the thing down the stairs :)
Thanks all, Rob
rob snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (rob) wrote in message

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let us know when you get that big iron, Rob! :)
dave
rob wrote:

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The other posters have given you much to chew on, but all I can say is that I upgraded from a Griz 6" to a DJ-20 8" and as someone else said, I can't imagine not having it after only 6 months, and I think the extra width, more than the length of the tables, is the key factor in my mind.
I would say, however, that this beast is heavy, and while you can save a few pounds by taking off the base assembly (or, if purchased new, not assembling it until you get it where it is going), it will take a minimum of two, and likely 3 for saftey, strong guys to hump it down a flight of stairs. I imagine further disassembly could be done. New, a DJ-20 comes in a wooden crate, and two of us had a hard time getting it off the truck, and although I have a walk-in basement, it was a two person job to get it into its final position on the base (although the two people were over 50 and likely lost some of their youthful strength). Mutt.
rob snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (rob) wrote in message

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