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Jointers: Powermatic 6 " vs grizzly 8"

by ChrisCarr
posted 720 days ago


35 replies so far

View pmayer's profile

pmayer

565 posts in 1669 days


#1 posted 720 days ago

I think Powermatic offers better quality, but I also think Grizzly is more than adequate quality and will last for many years. I upgraded from a 6” Jet to an 8” Grizzly 490 and think the difference in capacity is incredible and I appreciate it on nearly every project. I would suggest going with the 8” Griz.

-- PaulMayer, http://www.vernswoodgoods.com

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

5371 posts in 1979 days


#2 posted 720 days ago

The PM won’t be very useful on a 7” board, and there are lots of rough sawn boards between 6” and 8”....I’d go for the capacity. The Griz should be more than accurate enough for woodworking.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View dbhost's profile

dbhost

5378 posts in 1835 days


#3 posted 720 days ago

You very rarely hear of anyone complaining about their Grizzly jointers, and let’s face it, you’ll be cussing yourself out every time you try to face joint a 7” board on that Powermatic…

-- My workshop blog can be found at http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com

View Mike's profile

Mike

289 posts in 1291 days


#4 posted 720 days ago

get the grizz. I have a 6” jointer and I would love to have gotten the 8” instead.

-- look Ma! I still got all eleven of my fingers! - http://www.termitecrafts.com

View Shabahfan's profile

Shabahfan

1 post in 720 days


#5 posted 720 days ago

Sounds like you’re leaning towards the pm. I have the griz 490….fantastic machine. Get the Grizz…

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1502 days


#6 posted 719 days ago

The Grizzly is 220v ONLY, I’ll have to wire a 220 outlet. The breaker panel is in my work area however. I dont have any electrical experience, just hours of reading about it, so it will be a hassle.

I have heard about grizzly shipments getting damaged and their tables also coming out of coplanar straight from the factory. Both brands have mixed reviews, more people seem to complain about grizzly though.

I might be more likely to buy grizzly if I could see it first but I cant, no showrroom near me

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11639 posts in 2291 days


#7 posted 719 days ago

I have the 54A and unless you’re planning on milling a lot of long stock , they take up a lot of real estate in your shop when they’re idle. If you’re going to spend that much money on a jointer , you might as well get the 8” version.
There are so many good used jointers available on Craigslist , I would never buy a new one : )
Just my 2 cents .

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1502 days


#8 posted 719 days ago

I can never find any good used ones in my area, just short old king seeley craftsman ones.

I was going to buy a 6 inch grizzly for about 450$ but i thought 46” was too short of a bed. Most my stuff would only be 4ft long max however.

View Everett1's profile

Everett1

208 posts in 1138 days


#9 posted 719 days ago

I have the 656p

Love. It.

I had to run 220 from my basement. So worth it.

Only problem I had was ups messing up and not sending a lift gate truck on the first try (well got the 15” planer at the same time)
Tables where complaner and knives set right out of the box

I used to have a small 6”. Get the 8

-- Ev in Framingham, MA

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11639 posts in 2291 days


#10 posted 719 days ago

I’ve jointed a lot of 4’ stock on an older Rockwell Delta jointer that was way shorter than that.
You can always make yourself an outfeed table or use roller stands for the occasional longer pieces : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View pmayer's profile

pmayer

565 posts in 1669 days


#11 posted 719 days ago

BTW, you can probably arrange with the shipper to pick up the griz from a local delivery hub if there is one nearby. That is what I ended up doing, as the warehouse was right near work for me.

You mentioned a coplanar issue on Grizzlys. This is not uncommon on many jointers, and dealing with it on a jointer with dovetail ways can be a pain. That is the main reason I went with the 490, as it is much easier to deal with this on a parallelogram jointer. I did have to make an adjustment, and it wasn’t pain free, but it was a lot easier than trying to shim your way to perfection.

-- PaulMayer, http://www.vernswoodgoods.com

View Sawdust4Blood's profile

Sawdust4Blood

344 posts in 1625 days


#12 posted 719 days ago

I own a couple of different PM machines (although neither is a jointer). While I love PM’s quality, I truly wish my 6” jointer were an 8”. I tell everyone that the determination of which make/model tool is the best tool for you is always based on what kind of woodworking you do. I can certainly say that for me, the extra capacity of an 8” jointer would out-weigh the higher quality of a PM machine. I’m not saying that Grizzly are a poor quality machine because I think that they are a very good value machine. I think that PM are higher grade machines but I don’t know that the additional quality will provide enough real benefit to merit passing on the very real benefit of upgrading from a 6” jointer to an 8” jointer for the same price.

-- Greg, Severn MD

View Manitario's profile

Manitario

2264 posts in 1486 days


#13 posted 719 days ago

I have a good 6” jointer but I’ve found often that I wish I had an 8”. The Grizzly 8” jointer is a fine machine and you’ll read many good reviews of it on this site.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1502 days


#14 posted 719 days ago

My feeling is that i shouldn’t have to buy a expensive parallelogram design just to get perfectly coplanar table. I know a dovetail jointer might need shimming, it just shouldn’t need it straight from the factory. If it does then it seems like poor quality control to me.

The PM doesn’t come with a mobile base,thats an issue since they sell it for $189 extra!!
Also i am possibly getting a $200 credit to woodcraft, the PM 54a would now be $799.

My dream jointer would be a Northfield but they are $10,000+ new. I have been living on ebay and my local craigslist but nothing is in my area or with cheap ($100 or less) freight has came up.

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1502 days


#15 posted 719 days ago

Well I emailed grizzly seeing if they’d give me a different (custom) motor with g0656p, that can run on both 110v/220v . Worth a shot. Just want to see what they say. I hope they respond, Delta ignored my 2 emails about buying a new top for my old contractor saw.

View tenontim's profile

tenontim

2131 posts in 2348 days


#16 posted 719 days ago

I have a 54A and I really like the longer bed. I also just upgrade it to a Byrd shelix head. I face joint boards up to 10” on it , by removing the guard and then use a 1/4” thick planing sled to flatten opposite side in the planer. It’s a couple of extra steps, but the lumber that I use is normally around 6” anyway. An 8” would be nice, but I bought this one almost 12 years ago and they have almost doubled in price, and the PM 8” is out of reach.

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1502 days


#17 posted 719 days ago

Tim, why did you choose powermatic? What is opinion about others like grizzly?

View tenontim's profile

tenontim

2131 posts in 2348 days


#18 posted 719 days ago

I chose the PM mainly for the long tables. I was building some wardrobes that had 80” corner post that I needed to true up. I have no problem with Grizzly. I have their 15” planer and a floor model radial drill press and I’m happy with both. I haven’t really looked at their jointer, since I don’t need one.

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1502 days


#19 posted 719 days ago

How often do you find 6 inches is not enough for jointing boards? 6 inches seems like a good max size since anything bigger further increases woods natural tendency to cup/warp. I figured 2 inches more size wouldn’t matter, if i went bigger then 6 inches a 12” would make more sense to me. Plus if your making a tabletop your going to have glue-ups anyway with any jointer, just more with a 6

.I always figured i would work 6 inches and smaller unless its a really good board then i’d use this trick…

http://woodgears.ca/jointer/wide_boards.html

View tenontim's profile

tenontim

2131 posts in 2348 days


#20 posted 719 days ago

I’ve used that method, but now I just take off the guide and face joint like I’m making a rabbet on the edge. Lower the table a little with each pass, then I use a 6” x whatever length necessary x 1/4” piece of hard board, placed in the jointed section and true up the other side and then plane off the rabbet. Like I said, I can do a board up to 10” with no problem.

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1502 days


#21 posted 719 days ago

How long of a board can you do easily on the powermatic? I like the idea of the long beds, seems nice.
Is your machine straight knives?

View tenontim's profile

tenontim

2131 posts in 2348 days


#22 posted 719 days ago

I’ve done boards up to 7’. That’s all of the clearance that I have in my shop. I up graded the cutter head at the first of the year to the Byrd Shelix, and I’m very happy with that. The cheapest place to get the Shelix is from Grizzly, but if you’re getting a new machine, go with the helical cutters.

View bunkie's profile

bunkie

411 posts in 1750 days


#23 posted 719 days ago

I’d say you should bite the bullet and run a 220V line. My Rikon 6” jointer really strains my 115V line and it’s on my list of tasks to reconfigure it for 220V. Luckily, I have a convenient 220V outlet (which normally serves my clothes dryer!) I would expect an 8” jointer would simply not run on a 115V line.

-- Altruism is, ultimately, self-serving

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11639 posts in 2291 days


#24 posted 719 days ago

My 1950’s vintage Powermatic 8” jointer has a 110v motor in it : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

5371 posts in 1979 days


#25 posted 719 days ago

I’m curious why the Griz is even listed as a candidate? It sounds to me like you really want the PM and nothing to do with the Grizzly.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11639 posts in 2291 days


#26 posted 719 days ago

knotscott , I agree. He’s already bought the PM in his mind , just hasn’t picked it up yet : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View alexdom_89's profile

alexdom_89

98 posts in 900 days


#27 posted 719 days ago

I had the chance to buy a grizzly 8” for 150 I passed because of lack of funds I wish I would have just overdrafted to buy it. deal gone for sure.

View pmayer's profile

pmayer

565 posts in 1669 days


#28 posted 718 days ago

“it just shouldn’t need it straight from the factory. If it does then it seems like poor quality control to me.”

When you say “straight for the factory”, keep in mind where the factory is. That thing is lifted and dropped many times by people, cranes and forklifts, and endures thousands of miles of ocean and highway before you uncrate it. Some factors are out of the factory’s control. Even if it is perfect out of the box, if you use it for the many years that you intend there is a good chance that it will need an adjustment or two over its years. This is such a hassle to do on a dovetail designed machine that many people never actually fix it, they just end up living with it. And if a jointer isn’t perfectly tuned to make a flat, square cut, it is nearly worthless in my opinion. I can get “pretty good” results with other tools; I spent the money on a jointer (and allow it to have a large footprint in my shop) because of its ability to produce perfect joints.

-- PaulMayer, http://www.vernswoodgoods.com

View thedude50's profile

thedude50

3503 posts in 1081 days


#29 posted 718 days ago

I own the 54a And the machine is a real joy to work with. It is very quiet and I love that. The knives are simple to set and it is easy to adjust. And by far the quality of a powermatic is miles above a Griz. I too wish I had a larger jointer but why stop at a 8 inch? I am thinking of adding a 14 or 16 inch jointer to the shop. I don’t think it will be a waste when jointing huge boards which I don’t want to rip and re glue. That said 90 percent of the wood i get has already been face jointed. And the most common use of my current Jointer it edge jointing. I have also found that on the rare occasion I need to face joint a wider board. I can have my wood guy run it through is 30 inch jointer. I Have to say I would not opt for the Griz even though it has 2 more inches of width. I feel the quality of the Powermatic far out weighs the extra 2 inches. My good friend has the 8 inch Griz and he is forever complaining that the fence wont stay square. I don’t know if it is a inherent problem with the Griz but I do know my Powermatic has no issue with the fence, it does exactly what it is supposed to do.

I have jointed boards up to 10 feet long and have had no issues with this jointer

-- when I am not on Lumberjocks I am on @ http://thisoldworkshop.com where we allow free speech

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1502 days


#30 posted 718 days ago

I see what your saying. Never thought of it like that. But its still the company’s responsibility to make sure it arrives in one piece.

I actually thought shimming dovetails would be easier to adjust in theory for coplanar. Dovetails, you take a measurement with a feeler gauge and place a certain size shim in, parallelograms you turn a screw mindlessly or at a snails pace till you get it right.

View BerBer5985's profile

BerBer5985

420 posts in 1024 days


#31 posted 718 days ago

I’m working on the same debate. I’d love to have a 8” jointer and grizzly’s pricing seems to be right on, but I keep checking out the jet jjp12, jointer and planer combo machine. It’s a 12” jointer/planer combo that looks very easy to change over and gets good reviews. But an 8-10” jointer would be my preference for a plain jointer with the easy adjust tables.

-- Greg, Owner, Quality Carpet One, www.qualitycarpetonecrofton.com

View GarageWoodworks's profile

GarageWoodworks

419 posts in 760 days


#32 posted 718 days ago

“The PM won’t be very useful on a 7” board,”

Sure it will. I do it all the time.

http://www.garagewoodworks.com/video.php?video=v5

-- Subscribe on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/GarageWoodworks?feature=guide

View Luke's profile

Luke

537 posts in 1897 days


#33 posted 718 days ago

Any machine that you buy will need to be setup properly in order to cut wood correctly. You will have to fidget with the tables no matter what brand you buy. Even if you bought one locally that was already setup, you will probably mess that up in the move and have to recalibrate. There’s nothing worse than buying a new tool for a lot of money and expecting it to be perfect right out of the box, only to face joint a 6’ long board and have it come out with a crown in the middle. The wood whisperer has a great video on setting up jointer tables, I would just plan on having to calibrate your purchase no matter what.

-- LAS, http://www.abettersign.com

View ducky911's profile

ducky911

201 posts in 1393 days


#34 posted 718 days ago

about adding a 220 outlet

i was able to do this myself and was surprized how easy it was. one i had a 220 already in my panal box. two there was two open spots.

i just copied the existing 220….ended up to be pretty easy…but if the box did not have the sample one to copy i would have been in trouble.

to have an electrition come out and add a plug is only about 150 dollars

View pmayer's profile

pmayer

565 posts in 1669 days


#35 posted 716 days ago

“I actually thought shimming dovetails would be easier to adjust in theory for coplanar.”

In theory, perhaps, but not in my experience. After adjusting one of each, I would take the parallelogram for sure if the price was the same. Obviously the price isn’t the same, so if this is a desirable feature (sounds like not in your case) one has to determine how much the incremental perceived value is worth. To be honest, I am not sure that it is worth the $100 upcharge that was in place at the time I bought mine, but when I found the beds to be out of alignment I did enjoy the ease of adjustment. The only other advantage of parallelogram that I am aware of is that the bed remains closer to the cutterhead throughout its travel, making it marginally safer, but to me this is not a relatively small advantage.

-- PaulMayer, http://www.vernswoodgoods.com

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