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steel city mortising machine

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Review by tchaser posted 07-22-2012 05:52 PM 5959 views 1 time favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
steel city mortising machine steel city mortising machine No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

After doing some research found this one I looked over the specs and bought it..It has many of the features I wanted. Great tool. Assy went easy, all parts lined up easily a well machined. Comes with 4 chisels and allen wrench, chuck key. Works well has a wide base of 15.5 in with pull out work piece supports that go to 36 in w. I have used a jet before and this works much better. It has a tool holder in back that will hold 4 chisels and chuck key. Rubber rollers hold stock in place well and fine adjustment knob works well . This is the best one in its price class at $329 incl shipping

-- bad projects make good firewood




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tchaser

37 posts in 1376 days



8 comments so far

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Chris

1867 posts in 2676 days


#1 posted 07-22-2012 09:21 PM

I have this mortiser…. Picked up broken from someone who didn’t want to fix it. The parts cost me $75.00 and it works like a charm.

-- "Everything that is great and inspiring is created by the individual who labors in freedom" -- Albert Einstein

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gfadvm

11216 posts in 1375 days


#2 posted 07-23-2012 02:04 AM

How does the hold down work? It looks like the one on the Jet and it doesn’t work very well. I like the rubber rollers and think I might be able to fabricate those for my Jet.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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tchaser

37 posts in 1376 days


#3 posted 07-24-2012 02:25 AM

allen screw in the back but the rod will go in wrong and it can slip if installed wrong found that out in test run.

-- bad projects make good firewood

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felkadelic

193 posts in 1225 days


#4 posted 07-24-2012 05:54 AM

Actually, the best in its price is probably the (identical) Woodriver model which is $289 ;-)

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NormG

4254 posts in 1689 days


#5 posted 07-25-2012 10:56 PM

I am looking to build some mission pieces and will need one of these for the mortices. Let use know how it continues to perform

-- Norman

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Captain_bligh

10 posts in 1250 days


#6 posted 08-15-2012 03:17 PM

I have this machine as well. Very pleased so far (had it for a year or so). Purchased an upgraded set of chisels from Lee Valley and it has made a world of difference. [http://www.leevalley.com/US/wood/page.aspx?p=53252&cat=1,180,42240,53317]

-- Simplicity and repose are the qualities that measure the true value of any work of art. ~ FLW

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Prplhrtjarhead

80 posts in 791 days


#7 posted 08-21-2012 12:35 AM

This steel city machine looks a lot like my shop fox. There are some minor differences, but it really does look very similar.

Like one of the other posters mentioned, I’m guessing the hold down is very similar to the shop fox and no it does not work great, but it works with some effort. I use some of my Kreg clamps to assist with the hold down personally. It’s a pretty common problem among these types of machines, but some are definitely better than others.

Also like one of the other posters mentioned, I upgraded to the Lee Valley bits and it does help a bunch. The type of wood also affects how easily you can come away from your piece.

I love mission pieces and have made a few smaller things as well (doll cribs, some chairs) and absolutely love using my shop fox. I hope you equally have as much enjoyment from your Steel City machine as I get from my Shop Fox.

-- "We'll preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we'll sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness." R. Reagan, "The Speech", 1964

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Smitty_Cabinetshop

10029 posts in 1304 days


#8 posted 01-30-2013 12:40 AM

My Steel City, same model, broke last week. Compression rod stuck in the ‘down’ position, couldn’t lift the head. Then the holders snapped, top and bottom, and the bottom nib broke off. This was in the same session that saw the front-to-back adjuster toggle lever ‘strip’ inside, forcing me to use a pliers. Argh. Now I have parts to replace like in Post #1 above. Love the tool, found it’s weakness though.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive

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