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Why is there such a disparaging difference in price in the Powermatic Jointer line up

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Forum topic by ScottKaye posted 03-17-2018 01:24 PM 4925 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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ScottKaye

618 posts in 1916 days


03-17-2018 01:24 PM

I left scratching my head after browsing Powermatics 8” Jointer lneup. Can someone in the know possibly explain to me what the difference is (if any) between the helical and non-helical versions of their Wedge based and Parallelogram based jointers are?
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“60C 8 JOINTER, 2HP 1PH 230V = $1979 everywhere online
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“60HH 8 JOINTER, 2HP 1PH 230V, HELICAL HEAD = $2279 everywhere online
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As far as I can tell, these jointers are identical except for of course the cutting heads. For an extra $300 who wouldn’t take the Helical version? To me, that’s a no-brainer.
Now here is where the head-scratching part comes in.
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PJ882 JOINTER, 2HP 1PH 230V = $2279 everywhere online (Straight knife, my choice by the way)
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PJ-882HH JOINTER, 2HP 1PH 230V = $3099 everywhere online (helical head)
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So am I missing something here? The difference between the helical and the non-helical version of this beefier style parallelogram jointer is $820!!! As near as I can tell, everything else is identical between these two jointers except again the cutting heads? Interestingly enough, Byrd sells a Shelix for this machine for $420. So of course, this is the route I’m going to take—- eventually! Need to recover from the initial investment of buying the PJ882 first. So is there a difference between these two larger machines or is Powermatic just charging an exorbitant premium to get the best of the best (in their line up anyway)

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"


18 replies so far

View Aj2's profile

Aj2

1352 posts in 1761 days


#1 posted 03-17-2018 02:04 PM

I think you would be wise to buy the machine with a bred head installed. If you have your heart set on it.

-- Aj

View ScottKaye's profile

ScottKaye

618 posts in 1916 days


#2 posted 03-17-2018 02:18 PM

Id rather s


I think you would be wise to buy the machine with a bred head installed. If you have your heart set on it.

- Aj2


I’m pretty mechanically inclined. I’d rather save $400 and install it myself. Besides, the Woodwhisperer did a video on how to install a Byrd cutterhead in this exact same model. It would be easier for me to outlay $2299 and then $420 later rather than $3099 all at once for the HH version.

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

View CharlesNeil's profile

CharlesNeil

2385 posts in 3833 days


#3 posted 03-17-2018 02:19 PM

ever how you do it , the byrd head it the cat’s “meow”.

View JBrow's profile

JBrow

1345 posts in 883 days


#4 posted 03-17-2018 02:39 PM

ScottKaye,

After a few months agonizing over the decision and some of the same questions you are asking, I threw in the towel and purchased the PJ-882HH. Major factors in my decision were that I wanted the ease of setup that comes with the parallelogram design and the helical cutter head without spending time retrofitting the machine with a less expensive helical head. The sting from writing that big check has passed while I continue to enjoy the performance of the machine.

I suspect the Powermatic helical cutter is a different design from the Byrd since Powermatic claims 54 cutters while claims 52 cutters.

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Aj2

1352 posts in 1761 days


#5 posted 03-17-2018 04:36 PM

I figured you were inclined to say that. Thats what everyone says.
But what are you going to do if the bryd head is not in line with the tables? Knifes are set from the outfeed table so it doesn’t matter if the heads journels are not.
With a bryd head it does. There’s no adjustmenting the cutters.

-- Aj

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JBrow

1345 posts in 883 days


#6 posted 03-17-2018 05:30 PM

Adjusting helical cutters to the outfeed is critical for good results. The outfeed table of the PJ-882HH can be adjusted coplanar with the infeed table by using the parallelogram mechanism on the outfeed table and/or infeed table. Once coplanar, the outfeed table can be adjusted up or down with a lever. However I cannot say whether the outfeed table of the PJ-882HH has sufficient range of adjustment to accommodate an after market helical cutter head.

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Aj2

1352 posts in 1761 days


#7 posted 03-17-2018 06:04 PM

I’m guessing the extra cost the op is seeing is to have a tech with skill and precision tools set up the machine. Would you trust some poor soul in china that gets paid 20$ a day to do it right.

-- Aj

View ScottKaye's profile

ScottKaye

618 posts in 1916 days


#8 posted 03-17-2018 07:49 PM

everyone brings great points. yes, the pj882 is adjustable in every plane thanks to its parallelogram design. No, it doesn’t look like much fun to tackle. But for $400 Id tackle it! Plus I have friends that are even more anal than me (hope they don’t read this) who could help me dial it in should I not be able to! The PJ882HH is the bee’s knees. It’s a fantastic machine. My issue is I just cant outlay that much cash at once that’s why I want to save $820 initially and go with the straight knife cutter head. When I have recovered enough financially from the initial hit of the Pj882, ill upgrade to the Byrd Helical head.

What I’m failing to understand is how there is only a $300 difference in price between the helical and non-helical wedged/ dovetail based Jointers, while there is an $820 price difference between helical and non-helical in their top of the line 8” parallelogram based jointer. It really looks to me like both Helical Jointers (wedge/dovetail and parallelogram) use the same 54 knife cutter. Are they really charging an $820 premium for the Helical upgrade while only charging $300 more for the same helical cutter head (if it is the same?) in their lower end wedge/dovetail based jointers?

Scott

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

View ScottKaye's profile

ScottKaye

618 posts in 1916 days


#9 posted 03-17-2018 08:02 PM

Once you get into the 3k range, you start opening 12” Helical Head possibilities. There’s plenty of Taiwanese/Chinese knock-off brands that make them in that price range. Anyone know where Powermatics are made? I’d rather keep in the 2k range for now (watching desperately for that ever elusive 15% sale)

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

View Aj2's profile

Aj2

1352 posts in 1761 days


#10 posted 03-17-2018 08:36 PM

They are made in China or Taiwan. Northfield is the only one making wood jointers in the USA.
How did you get your finger stuck in your face? ;)

-- Aj

View AandCstyle's profile

AandCstyle

3023 posts in 2220 days


#11 posted 03-17-2018 08:57 PM

Scott, no matter which one you select, I will be envious. haha

-- Art

View ScottKaye's profile

ScottKaye

618 posts in 1916 days


#12 posted 03-17-2018 09:32 PM

Its still gonna be a while. A little birdy told me PM might be having a sale in May. I’ll need a $249 mobile base as well as I know of no other mobile base that will fit the unique shape of the PM’s base.

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

View XiaoWuGui's profile

XiaoWuGui

1 post in 33 days


#13 posted 03-17-2018 11:34 PM

I too am looking at this same jointer and noticed the price difference. I have decided to go with the straight knife version and upgrade to the Byrd head at a later date. The Wood Whisperer video makes the process appear very simple. The manual also features a section with directions for removing the cutterhead.

ScottKaye, do you have anymore details of the May Powermatic sale you heard about? The only news I have heard coming from Powermatic is indicating there will not be a sale until November, and that sale is not certain.

View ScottKaye's profile

ScottKaye

618 posts in 1916 days


#14 posted 03-18-2018 12:13 AM

I heard it from a gentleman that works a retail store. I prefer not to say which or whom as I don’t want to get anyone in trouble :) Having said that he could have just been talking out his arse to make himself sound “in the know” By the way, I got the same stone wall from Powermatic that you did.
From the research I have done it is very rare for them to NO have a spring sale as well in conjunction with their annual Black Friday sale.

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

View Kazooman's profile

Kazooman

996 posts in 1915 days


#15 posted 03-18-2018 12:21 AM

Have you contacted Powermatic and asked then how they justify the huge difference? Absent their rationale we are left wondering how it can be possible. They just might see your rationale as making sense and work with you.

I recently went through a bathroom upgrade. Bought about three grand of fixtures, toilets, shower valves, etc. from one manufacturer. Everything in satin nickel. Turns out the small escutcheon around the toilet flush buttons is standard in chrome. To buy this PLASTIC part in satin nickel? $120! As a replacement part the satin is thirty dollars more than the chrome. That is in line with the difference between the finishes on the other pieces. I offered to pay the difference for the upgrade as I had done for every other piece in the bath and was told that was not possible. If you buy a $400 shower valve, the upgrade to satin nickel is $20 – $30. Only for the flush valve do they have this huge penalty! “Chrome is the industry standard”. Bullsh*it! After several rounds of discussing this ridiculous pricing scheme, the representative decided to just “send me the satin nickel part to make certain that I was happy with my purchase”. They did not want me to send the original $90 piece of plastic back to them.

Contact Powermatic and ask THEM to justify the obvious price discrepancy. The rest of us are left in the dark to speculate.

PS: Anyone care to make an offer on a CHROME two button flush actuator? I have one in mint condition!

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