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Reviews: Hollow-Chisel Mortisers

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Harbor Freight Mortising Machine

Harbor Freight Mortising Machine

01-28-2015 06:47 PM by MrRon | 3 comments »

I bought a Harbor Freight mortising machine around 5 years ago and have not used it on a project, other than to test cut. I now have a project that needs mortising, so I tried it out and I was surprised as to how well it worked. I did have to tweak it and make some modifications which are common to most HF tools. I bought an X/Y cross slide vise and mounted it in place of the hold down device. The bit and chisel was not very sharp, so I diamond honed the chisel and the bit. It now cuts quite ...

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Jet / Powermatic X-Y Mortiser

Jet / Powermatic X-Y Mortiser

01-14-2015 08:29 PM by pintodeluxe | 12 comments »

I started with a Delta benchtop mortiser, and found the need to upgrade to a bigger machine. The Jet JFM-5 is basically the same as the Powermatic 719-A. The longer handle and the 1 hp motor make this machine easier to use than benchtop mortisers. I realized that most benchtop units don’t hold the workpiece very well, and require you to use your hand like a clamp to hold the workpiece in place. The Jet solves that problem with a sturdy face clamp. CLAMPThe clamp keeps the workpiece...

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Rikon Mortiser with XY Table

Rikon Mortiser with XY Table

01-01-2015 06:07 PM by panofish | 9 comments »

I really wanted to give it 4 stars, but the inconsistency of the chuck and the weak motor left me wishing for more.If I had $1200 to burn … I’d prefer the large standing Powermatic mortiser, but unfortunately I have to make due with this $300 mortiser from Rikon. The table and clamping mechanism are great however. I made a video review on youtube… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K3ta3OTK5Wg

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Review of the Harbor Frieght/Central Machine Mortising Tool

Review of the Harbor Frieght/Central Machine Mortising Tool

03-27-2014 03:59 PM by jerrells | 8 comments »

I had been looking at the ability to make mortise and tendon joints for some time. Now the products I build are small mostly doll furniture. A lot of the pattern calls for this type of joint. I had been drilling dowel holes and using a cut in half dowel pin. There were some alignment issues. I researched the add on product for a drill press. I found both good and bad reviews. Therefore I was not convinced this was the way to go. After seeing a post suggesting the Harbor Freight/Central Mac...

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Shop Fox W1743 Mortiser & Grizzly Star-M Mortise Chisels

Shop Fox W1743 Mortiser & Grizzly Star-M Mortise Chisels

02-08-2014 05:52 PM by darthford | 6 comments »

I finally got to use this new Shop Fox mortising machine cutting some slots into the wood fences for my radial arm saw. The good, the impressive, the FACE PALM here we go… The “finest” is that so, we’ll see. These ‘premium’ mortising chisels are not cheap, the 1/4” chisel pictured below is $33 and the price goes up from there. I shopped chisels all over the interweb so a word of advice, dig until you find the country of origin because the vast majo...

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steel city mortising machine

steel city mortising machine

07-22-2012 05:52 PM by tchaser | 9 comments »

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 plac...

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Workable, but certainly not great.

Workable, but certainly not great.

04-11-2012 07:05 PM by dbhost | 19 comments »

For starters let me say, my 2 star rating is indicative of the fact that this machine is below average for what it is. I picked my Central Machinery #35570 up second hand, but New In Box and unused in trade for a cleaned up curb find of a Delta 10” miter saw that I fitted with a takeoff blade from another long gone saw. So effectively this machine was free to me. So now that is’t in my shop, and I have it set up and running for a while, let’s get down to the review…...

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Mortiser Falls Short on Key Features

Mortiser Falls Short on Key Features

10-29-2011 01:21 AM by pintodeluxe | 13 comments »

When I first got this it was the best thing since fancy cut pickles. Since then (5 tables, 8 chairs and and an entertainment center later), I have had the chisel stuck in my workpiece more times than I can count. I can tell you why… it has no roller wheels or clamps to hold the workpiece tight against the fence. Thus when you try to remove the bit, it rocks the workpiece and binds the bit. Problem #2 : The hold down clamp rod does flex quite a bit. I think this could be solved w...

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Great Mortiser - Wow, makes square holes!

Great Mortiser - Wow, makes square holes!

02-06-2011 12:23 AM by Terry Burks | 12 comments »

After recently completing a project that required creating more than 20 mortises using a drill press and chisels, I decided it was time to seriously consider getting a bench top mortiser. After reading a number of reviews online, I visited my local Woodcraft store and looked at the Jet, Delta and Shop Fox models they had on display. Based on what I saw, discussions with the salesman, features and price, I decided that the Delta was the best they had. I was told that upcoming sales would br...

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Delta 14-651--Looks Good

Delta 14-651--Looks Good

12-28-2010 08:55 PM by Geedubs | 4 comments »

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Clause…or at least a facsimile of him. Like many, I used to ogle the mortising machine Norm would use on New Yankee Workshop and say (to myself of course), ‘Yah, right, like I’ll ever have a machine like that!”. Well, thanks to some unexpected events, I recently found myself with a little extra cash and combined that with the sudden passion to own something I thought I would never have. Caveat—-had to be a good deal. So I start...

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