I have tasted the forbidden fruit of the electro-jointer, and I sort of like
it. I have a Delta JT-160 benchtop deal, which I thought would be better
than nothing. It sort of is. Sort of. It has given me a taste of what
mechanical precision can do that hand planes in my fumbly and unskilled
fingers cannot, but it's a slightly bitter taste. (I love'em, but they're
definitely not precision tools in my hands I'm afraid.)
I've just about convinced myself to ditch this thing and buy a real jointer.
* cast iron tables
a real fence
* tables long enough to joint a 4' board without sniping the hell out of it
The benchtop does OK with boards up to maybe 2' long, which is useful, but
not quite useful enough. I've barely used it, and I'd like to box it back
up in all the original packaging and find a nice new home for it. Surely
someone out there would love to have a nice almost new Delta JT-160. :)
Then I'll turn around and buy either the Grizz or the bigger Delta.
I'm looking spec for spec, trying to figure which one is better worth
looking at. Price for price, they're similar enough that it doesn't much
matter. The Delta is available cash and carry, while the Grizz is mail
order. The Grizz has handwheels, the Delta doesn't. The Delta has a 4"
dust port, the Grizz doesn't.
I don't have a DC, and don't have room for a DC. There's no way my shop vac
trash can deal could keep up, so I suppose I have little practical
alternative but to continue ejecting the chips onto the floor. That gives
my daughter something to do anyway. She likes to sweep my shop, and no,
that's not mandatory gender role enforcement on my part. She just likes to
sweep. Who am I to argue with that?
So, the dust port on the Delta is not really a bonus. The Grizz has
handwheels, which look cool. I'm not quite sure how the mechanism works on
the Delta, but I notice that even their big daddy 12" job has some kind of
lever flummy instead of handwheels. Looks like you loosen a nut and then
use the lever to adjust the height. Looks a bit crude, judging from
pictures. I'll have to go play with the display at Lowe's and check that
Well, anyway, what else should I be thinking about here? I'm generally
inclined more toward cash and carry than mail order, so that puts it at
least 60% that I would grab the Delta. If the Grizz has a lot more to
offer in the way of useful features or enhancements, however, I could be
swayed to go that route. I reckon I could look at JET and stuff too.
(And yes, for those who will point this out, I realize I have umpty
buttloads of medical bills coming in any day now. Thanks for reminding me,
and it doesn't hurt to shop, dammit.)
While I'm at it, there's no place I can leave one of these beasts stationary
in my bitty shop. I need to think about mobile bases that can move a
~250-pound cast iron behemoth around on a floor composed of irregular,
sagging, warped sections of plywood. No two segments are the same height,
and they all have some degree of flex. I might well break through some of
them and have to think about redoing the floor, come to think of it. Pity
the benchtop just didn't have enough fundamental jointeriness about it to
do what I need to do with it.
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < email@example.com>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
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