Do You Have a Jointer? If Not, How do You Get By?

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Forum topic by seabiscuit posted 11-19-2011 08:25 PM 3784 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View seabiscuit's profile


95 posts in 2661 days

11-19-2011 08:25 PM

I don’t have a jointer and have no idea how to get by without one at the moment. I also don’t have hand planes and the jointer hand planes seem about as expensive as a bloody jointer.

I tried setting up my router to be a jointer but after a few hours of adjustments, I couldn’t get a perfect edge. I’ve seen a few other setups using sanders and such, but it appears to take a significant amount of time to build and setup (aka, probably better off buying a jointer).

For those of you who make due without – how?
For those of you with one, is there an inexpensive one that doesn’t weigh much (I’m in my second floor bedroom that already has a band saw, DC, oscillating spindle sander, belt sander, miter saw, table saw, etc and can’t keep adding weight by the hundreds of pounds). Inexpensive to me would be around $200 used.

Craigslist blows. MN = craftsman only or 200 year old Delta’s with more rust than iron.

Thoughts? Or am I stuck buying piss poor quality, pre-laminated boards from Home Depot?

7 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5148 posts in 4198 days

#1 posted 11-19-2011 08:58 PM

I use a “slave board” on my planer. It has served me well.
On big stuff (table tops), I use hand planes, but that is just my addiction. Sorry. NOT!!!!!!


View QuangFromCalgary's profile


35 posts in 3236 days

#2 posted 11-19-2011 09:05 PM

I don’t have jointer either due to lack of space. I also tried edge joint using router without much success (it works for short piece of wood, but does not seem to work for longer one ).
There are other ways that i am using now. I built jointing jig for my table saw. It works fine. I also joint edges with hand plane. My Reocord jointer plan cost 70 bucks from craiglist works perfectly. Actually this is the way I prefer to joint wood now. No noise, no dust with good result. Just a bit of practice, you can do it for the rest of your life. It’s cordless, quiet and addictive.
You have table saw, you can build a jig that costs under 30 bucks. There are many articles show you how to do that.

View knotscott's profile


8178 posts in 3613 days

#3 posted 11-19-2011 09:05 PM

You can edge joint with a router or a TS, but neither of these techniques flattens the face of the board, so there’s no guarantee that the edge will be a consistent and true 90° to the face.

A planer with a sled (or slave board as Bill has) will allow you to flatten a face with a thickness planer, then you’ll get 90° edge joints from the TS or router.

In the end, there’s no better tool for flattening a face and edge jointing a board than a jointer.

Without a jointer, planer sled, router jig, or hand planes, you’re more restricted to predimensioned stock.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View CharlieM1958's profile


16281 posts in 4456 days

#4 posted 11-19-2011 09:07 PM

Are you talking mainly about face jointing? My solution for that is to buy flat lumber, or use the planer as Bill suggested.

For edge jointing, I find a good-quality table saw blade works just fine.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View RibsBrisket4me's profile


1554 posts in 2743 days

#5 posted 11-19-2011 09:43 PM

I “made do” for a couple years by using my router table and a table saw sled for edge jointing. You can also make a sled for your planer if you have one. I saved $$, and got some Sears gift cards for Christmas and one day on a Craftsman club sale was able to get my jointer for $344 out the door. Pics on my link.

I have to say, I use that tool ALL the time. I think now looking back I rather even have a benchtop jointer than no jointer at all. Still a stationary jointer is the way to go. I know everyone raves about an 8 inch, buy my 6 inch jointer has been all I have ever needed.

Best of luck.

View Don W's profile

Don W

19045 posts in 2805 days

#6 posted 11-19-2011 10:16 PM

you can buy a fairly decent Stanley #6 for $50 or less, go for a lesser name brand, (still made by stanley probably) for even a bit less. If you don’t mind a little cleanup, you can even get a #7 size for that. I sold a Winchester 3020 (#7 size) that went for $35. It worked perfect.

I have a jointer, and still use my hand planes to joint most of the time. All of the time if I’m gluing up panels.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View derosa's profile


1590 posts in 3073 days

#7 posted 11-19-2011 10:43 PM

I use my planer for most boards that are 18”-4’. I found that by running the board through then flipping it over and running the other side through without dropping the blade it would start to get rid of things. If the board seems especially springy I’ll run it through 3-4 times before dropping the blade. That allows the board to push its self against the rollers and not the rollers compressing the board. Shorter then 18” I use hand planes, just don’t have a real bench to do any bigger. Longer then 4’ I don’t have a solution.

-- A posse ad esse

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