Used Jointer Duel: DJ-20 or PM60

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Forum topic by Menner posted 09-21-2016 09:03 PM 169 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 29 days

09-21-2016 09:03 PM

Topic tags/keywords: jointer

Help a girl in the hobby out. I’m ready to level-up in my woodworking and am searching the classifieds for 8” jointers.

Problem is, I’m a newbie at this. (Brand new to LJ!) I have a couple of old American made Delta machines, and they’re fine. I don’t know much about tuning up or maintaining old tools, but am starting to learn.

I’ve found an old American made DJ-20 for $900 or an old Powermatic 60 for $750. The Delta isn’t really in the same league as the PM is it? Are these reasonable prices? They both seem to be in great condition, tuned up, and working fine. If the sellers have accurately represented them, in any case.

Which would you buy?

4 replies so far

View MrUnix's profile


4020 posts in 1616 days

#1 posted 09-21-2016 09:12 PM

This isn’t the first time the two have been contemplated:

Vintage Powermatic 60 or Delta DJ20 8 inch Jointer?

Both are workhorses and you should be happy with either.


-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View Menner's profile


2 posts in 29 days

#2 posted 09-21-2016 09:21 PM

Hey, thanks! This didn’t show up in my search results!

View pintodeluxe's profile


4823 posts in 2230 days

#3 posted 09-21-2016 10:37 PM

No the Delta isn’t in the same league… it’s actually better! I have the DJ-20, which is a parallelogram style jointer, and I can tell you it is a solid machine. Compared to other dovetail-way style machines, the Delta is more robust and always holds its settings.

When I had my DJ-20 loaded onto a trailer, it was forklifted hanging from straps attached to the infeed and outfeed beds. When I got it home, I was expecting quite a bit of adjustment. To my surprise, the beds were still within .002” of coplanar!

I’m not a Delta fanatic, but parallelogram jointers really are an upgrade. It is easy to adjust and maintain, and holds settings well. The levers are large and easy on the hands.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View HokieKen's profile


1516 posts in 555 days

#4 posted 09-21-2016 11:14 PM

I have no experience with either jointer but based on CL and auction prices in my area, those both seem a bit high. I’d say they’‘re worth the $ but can probably be had in the $550-$600 range if you’re not in a hurry. Prices on used machines vary quite a bit by region of course so YMMV.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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