I had a small 6" jointer that I bought in 83. It was used so seldom I
think I sharpened the knives 1 time. Considering it's capacity it was
easier to cut a straight edge with the TS fence for short stock and I
later built a sled for 8 footers. Now the track saw.
How little is the joiner?
It sounds like the outfeed table is a touch low...while you have pressure on
the board on the infeed, the board end isn't getting cut...later, when you
have pressure on the outfeed side of the board, the center is being cut.
As another asked (and I've not seen answered) how little is "little"? A
4" benchtop w/ only 14-16" tables could be a trick, perhaps, but a
full-size jointer, even if only 4" should be able to do 42" w/o too much
trouble and certainly a 6".
Not knowing the model, here's a link to the Delta sheet for one of the
6" guys that describes how the adjustments are done...
Another suggested the outfeed table is low--that really isn't the
symptom for that; generally there you'd see a gouge at the tail end of
the cut as it drops of the table is low as the end of the piece comes
off the infeed table.
If the outfeed is high, it will cause a curved workpiece but the work
will be slightly convex, not concave because as Fig 18 shows in the link
the edge will ride on the front lip of the outfeed table initially as
the work is held down on the infeed. But, if the pressure is shifted to
the outfeed only, then if it is high, less will be taken from the
The other possible problem is that the table sags...
Likely it's a combination of perhaps of technique and alignment. How
near straight an edge did you have to start with? Did you try to take
any initial curvature out by working either both ends from the middle if
it were concave or just hit the middle a couple of times if convex? If
it's long and had a bow to begin with, you may have just followed the
initial shape and simply lessened it just a little...
I've done (w/ effort) pieces as long a 6-ft on a little 6" Craftsman
successfully so one _can_ stretch the limits w/ care and practice... :)
Thanks for the extensive comments. Much appreciated!
My jointer is a 6" Delta Shopmaster model JT160. The instructions say
nothing about my problem. I am rather sure it's my technique that did
this. I have to get the thing in a better place and practice with some
disposable wood. OTOH, one of the jigs that Karl (Swingman) mentioned
may do the trick too.
The boards were pretty straight-edged to begin with. But the edges were
a bit rounded. Perhaps I'll just glue the next set and then sand them
down, or the other way around.
At least this is/was a woodworking discussion !!!
Might not be all your technique ... spend some time being anal about the
tables being set up properly. Chances that it was done to a gnat's ass
at the factory is slim to none.
The general rule of thumb for the length of board you can practically
joint on any particular jointer is 1 1/2 times the combined length of
IOW, on a well set up jointer with a combined table length of +/- 30",
and with proper technique, the average user can practically joint boards
in the neighborhood of 45" in length.
This can be increased with practiced technique, but probably not much
more than double for all practical purposes, and that will take some
OK, I wasn't familiar w/ it--that is a benchtop model.
I did some searching and found several reviews and downloaded the
manual. About half the reviews said they had trouble w/ the beds either
not being coplanar or at least one or the other not flat/straight. That
would certainly cause problems; the longer the work, the more evident a
One mentioned his outfeed table sagged and he was able to shim it--it
looks to me from the picture on the cover of the manual that there are
four mounting screws for the tables--I'd expect one could manage to fix
a coplanar problem by judicious diddling thereat--if the tables aren't
actually flat, however, there's nothing to be done but have them surface
ground or get warranty service to repair the problem (as one review I
saw said a local service center did for his).
All in all, I'm sorry to say, it looks like a marginal machine but one
would hope one could manage to tune one up...
I don't know what you do in general but if this one ends up not
satisfying but you're limited in space, consider scouring around for one
of the _old_ Delta|Rockwell/Delta 4" guys...
These won't set benchtop but don't take much space and while small are
very much capable.
If you really don't need the width for surface jointing wider material
you can't go wrong. They come up now and again for a pittance
(comparatively to anything of similar quality these days, anyway).
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