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Another Jet 10" jointer/planer combo review

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Review by Eric posted 02-08-2012 12:35 AM 8413 views 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Another Jet 10" jointer/planer combo review No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

Having a large hunk of white oak cut up roughly (chainsaw!) and dried, and beaten up by taking a good hour on one piece jointing with hand planes, I finally took the plunge with the Jet 10” combo. I have a small non-garage shop, so both space and charge card were important! Since others have reviewed the machine here and on other sites, I just want to add my thoughts if you are considering the purchase.
First, as others have said, set up is a snap, tables well-enough co-planer out of the box for me. The supplied stand is cheap and probably a danger if you actually plan on using the tool. I made a low box-type stand on rollers out of 3/4” plywood, wide and long enough to be stable, but not too big for my shop.
Second, when setting up as a jointer be careful with the dust collecting hood. It triggers a dead man switch under the front housing; if you’re not careful enough with placing and securing the hood (and I speak from experience here!) the plastic of the hood will jam the rollers of the planer (which doesn’t affect the jointer’s operation)—the foul odor you smell shortly thereafter is the roller drive-belt frying. Since I already have an old and well-beaten up DeWalt planer, I didn’t really care; but if you need the planer be careful. As you’re installing the dust hood and raising the planer table into the “dust collection position” for the jointer, have the front cover off to make sure that the dead man switch is pushed in (its on the left), and then make sure the large white plastic gear driving the rollers moves freely BEFORE you turn the gizmo on.
Third, if you aren’t a believer in hearing protection become one before turning the machine on. I really think the passenger jet pilots flying over our house at 30,000 ft were wondering where that noise was coming from!
Fourth, induction motor and all, edge jointing with 1/8” remove works fine with little bogging-down; on face much over 1/16” made the neighborhood lights dim. It joints well enough, but it will definitely teach patience.
Fifth, since this my first experience with a jointer, all I can say is that dust & chip collection is OK—bits still fly everywhere.
Sixth, the biggest weakness in the machine I’ve found is the spring-loaded jointer blade guard. The spring really was installed upside down out of the box, and it secures weakly when placed properly. If you inadvertently over-rotate the guard away from the fence (again speaking from experience, as I was paste-waxing the table) it pops loose, and you have to disassemble/reassemble again. If you’re like me on this, a pair of those fancy pliers that help remove and replace spring clips comes in handy (I work on my own motorcycle, too….).
Last, my white oak is up to 53” long; much over that and outfeed support (roller stand, whatever) would be a great help.
Overall, it does a passable job (recall, my first experience with a power jointer), and is a whole lot quicker than hand planes. For what you get it seems a good value, and solid enough to do hobbyist work.




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Eric

1 post in 1005 days



7 comments so far

View Todd's profile

Todd

10 posts in 980 days


#1 posted 02-08-2012 05:42 AM

Thanks for the review. Your statements are right on track. I have one of these myself. Got it about a year ago at Woodcraft. Actually, I bought the floor model and about three days later one of the main bearings froze up on me. I called Woodcraft, and the Jet rep, and the replacement was quickly at my door. So, I had a bad taste in my mouth right out of the chute. The noise is an issue, and GOOD hearing protection is a must. I also find that dust and chips quickly collect directly below the infeed table. But, for the most part, the vacuum port is fairly effective.

The biggest problem I had with my Jet combo machine is keeping the tables coplanar. After I bought the machine I started looking at some reviews, and the biggest complaint that most had about the machine was keeping the infeed and outfeed tables coplanar. Jet supposedly had a fix, which didn’t work as well as I wanted it to. There simply wasn’t enough adjustment potential with their engineering. Therefore, I re-tapped some machine screw holes and the machine is now flat from stem to stern. :)

Overall, as you stated it does a passable job. For the money, and a shop with limited space, it’s about the best “bang for the buck” on the market. I am very much a Grizzly and Porter Cable man, with more of an emphasis on Grizzly, so I had to dig deep to stray from my biased brands.

Again, thanks for the review. Hope my 10 cents worth made sense?

-- Anybody can become a woodworker, but only a Craftsman can hide his mistakes! - Walter Blodget

View dbol's profile

dbol

135 posts in 1649 days


#2 posted 02-08-2012 12:11 PM

Mine is at the service center right now getting new belts put on. I would not bother buying this machine. Do some more homework and upgrade to something else.

View mtnjak's profile

mtnjak

29 posts in 1703 days


#3 posted 02-08-2012 05:14 PM

I’ve owned the Jet 10” jointer/planer now for about two years. I’m a hobbyist woodworker and would say it works well overall and I haven’t had any serious problem with it. I haven’t had the co-planer table issues that others have spoken of. I did have the blade guard problem right out of the box and fixed it. I used the mounting base that came with it which I have sitting on a Jet mobile base and this setup works fine. I’ve used commercial jointers before and while I can say that it’s nothing like those, the $400 price tag is much more appealing than spending 2 grand on something for my occasional use and the fact that the bed is 10” in width is a plus. If you’re cranking out cabinets for a living you’ll most likely want to spend the money on a better machine but for any hobby woodworkers out there, I think it’s worth a shot. Too bad they are now $100 more than they were 2 years ago.

View Builder_Bob's profile

Builder_Bob

160 posts in 1710 days


#4 posted 02-08-2012 05:50 PM

I have the coplanarity problem on this machine. With the clamping knobs loose, the infeed table just wallows around with a lot of slop. Now I carefully measure each setting before clamping in place. Thickness planing is hard to measure with everything hidden from sight.

I used to plane and joint every board in a project, now I evaluate each case carefully. My table saw is good enough for jointing most of the time.

-- "The unexpected, when it happens, generally happens when you least expect it."

View Twigger's profile

Twigger

26 posts in 1656 days


#5 posted 02-09-2012 07:16 PM

My only complaint with the 8” version of this machine is the noise level, as noted. I find it frightening – protection is a must – it could double as a tornado siren.

-- When can we go fishing, err woodworking?!

View Chris Birge's profile

Chris Birge

5 posts in 938 days


#6 posted 02-21-2012 07:06 PM

I’m looking at getting one in the next 2 to 3 weeks.. The price tag and space saver is what i’m looking at for the Garage workshop..Its all about space when you don’t have enough.. lol

Thanks for the review

-- The quality of a person's life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor.

View mtnjak's profile

mtnjak

29 posts in 1703 days


#7 posted 02-21-2012 07:32 PM

I’m in the same boat with shop space. My shop is an extra 225 square foot “nook” at the back of my 2 car garage. For hobbyist, the price is great.

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