Reply by ondablade

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Posted on What do you Thinkra about Incra?

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105 posts in 3193 days

#1 posted 12-31-2009 05:11 AM

I can’t add a lot from experience in use, but i’ve committed big to Incra based on the universally excellent feedback over many years in test reviews – it wasn’t really an option to get to see it in the flesh here in ireland before buying.

You see it coming up in subtle ways too – in mag articles about people’s work where there’s often that flash of red and gold in the background. Usually an elderly earlier model, so it’s definitely not product placement.

Having come into quite a decent tax refund i set out to upgrade my shop with separate Hammer machines. (panel saw, shaper and planer thicknesser)

The technical feature that sold me was the incremental positioning capability their systems have using the lead screw/rack system – the ability to go straight to a measurement on a saw repeatably without messing around bumping and nudging stuff like you do on typical fences etc. is such a step forward in my view. It’s icing on the cake to take that capability and to use it to accurately pitch joints etc in the joinery system.

I bough a long stroke TS LS system for the panel saw (got a discount for not taking the stock rip fence), and then taking advantage of the discounts they have been running and after being very impressed at the quality of the TS LS a router table and a 25in Joinery System as the basis for a router table, plus a Mitre 1000 SE for the saw and the router table. Not sure if it’s strong enough to use on the spindle moulder. I also got their router table cabinet chassis and wheel set.

As a manufacturing engineer i’m happy to say that i don’t know how they do it at the price. I’m still setting up the shop, so i can’t comment on the stuff in use.

Customer service (efficiency, expertise and friendliness) have also been absolutely remarkable, and more to the point genuine. Mark is such a decent guy, and went so far out of his way to figure out a way to get the stuff to me at reasonable cost.

My experience buying in the US has been generally excellent, but they really were right up there with the likes of Lee Valley who run a really tight operation too – and way ahead based on my experience of another well known name company that cost me a month’s delay.

The only negative i can come up with is that it’s fairly clear that there’ quite a few out there on the trad wing of woodworking that look down their noses at it. Possibly because it doesn’t rust… Not to mention that it’s not the way your grandfather did it. :-) Joke – but I do think actually there’s plenty out there put off by their perceptions (it’s got quite a blingy look) that don’t get as far as looking at it properly.

Which isn’t quite fair, because while i’ve no interest in the sort of showy work it’s capable of it’s clear that it has its own learning curve and is far from being point and click woodworking.


-- Late awakener....

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