|Review by Tsmutz||posted 05-07-2013 08:05 AM||5296 views||2 times favorited||10 comments|
Hi guys. I recently bought a Baileigh JP-1686. Since they’re pretty new to the woodworking market, I thought I’d give you a review of this jointer/planer combo machine.
For context, I build furniture professionally in Southern California. Most of my work involves wood and metal so my shop is a mix of woodworking and metalworking machines. The Baileigh JP-1686 stood out to me for a couple reasons: my shop is modestly sized so the jointer/planer combo takes up less real estate than 2 separate machines. I had an 8” Delta jointer and a DeWalt DW735 planer that do the same jobs as the Baileigh combo machine but I was running up against their limits on a regular basis, especially as my furniture commissions got bigger in scale and type. Also, I own a Baileigh cold saw that I use to cut steel and it hasn’t given me any problems after 2 years of daily use.
All in all, it took about 9 days to get the machine from the time I placed my order over the phone – I received a shipment notification after 5 days (I was told it’d take about a week to prep the machine), and 4 days later it showed up to my shop. It was crated on a truck so we needed a forklift. Once it was turned sideways, the crate took up almost the entire width of the semi with a couple inches to spare. When we finally got it settled into my shop, it was quick to pop the lid and pull the crate apart. The machine was packaged well and had no shipping damage, though I did have a small pile of hardware that rattled loose during shipping. I called Baileigh about the issue and they were very helpful; they even offered to send out a replacement machine (wow). I declined the offer because downtime is a bigger problem for me than what it would take to go over the machine to retighten fasteners and check for any other issues. I went through and checked the machine from top to bottom and got acquainted with the design and moving parts in the process. I broke out the dial indicator and proceeded to dial in the entire machine (I actually do this on all my machines regardless of how close to “right on” they were from the factory.) The adjustments were easy to make and went quickly. It took me a total of 3 days to get the machine exactly how I wanted it. To be fair, I was overly-thorough on dialing the machine in because I’m pretty picky and because it’s an early production model and arrived with those loose parts. I wanted to make extra sure that it could be operated safely and accurately. Judging from the surprised reaction when I called Baileigh about it (and their offer of a replacement right off the bat), I don’t imagine that this is a perpetuating production problem. Within that 3-day prep I also built a nice mobile base for the machine, in case I want to move it in the future. All things considered, my experience was probably unique and it might not take others as long to get going on this machine. I’ve had the machine now for a month and a half and I’ve run over 400 board feet through it. It’s still accurate and planes snipe-free.
The cutterhead is a monster! It’s a true helical design with 6 rows of inserts. I’m really pleased with the quality of it. The streaks people talk about from insert cutterheads are present on this machine as well. I measured the streaks from peak to valley using a dial indicator and they measure less than a thousandth of an inch. That’s right in line with my Byrd shaper cutterhead.
I made a video review of this machine and another video showing its operation. I hope you find them helpful.
Video Review: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIAqz8qBU1o
Operation Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zgi_NRlV17Q