Powermatic 26 Spindle Shaper

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Forum topic by BBOSIDE posted 07-13-2012 03:39 PM 10964 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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7 posts in 1852 days

07-13-2012 03:39 PM

Topic tags/keywords: tool question shaping

I’m considering buying a used Powermatic 26 shaper 3 HP.
The machine was new in 85± It’s in very nice condition was only used once.
On one pair of kitchen doors back when it was new.
Person I’m buying it from bought it new and was a hobbyist.

It has been sitting ever since.

My question is what is a machine like this worth today?
What would people be willing to send on a machine like this.

The machine comes with 1/2” and 3/4” spindles. Both manuals come with the machine.

I understand this machine is no longer manufactured.

Any thoughts are welcome on this machine.
Looking for feedback from people that own one and have experience using this unit.
I’m a very small start up shop and can not afford to make a mistake buying a machine.

This will be my first shaper I will own and I’m making the change from a bench type router table.
I understand the tooling will not interchange.
This will be my first used purchase.

All thoughts and feed back are well come.

13 replies so far

View waho6o9's profile (online now)


7275 posts in 2088 days

#1 posted 07-13-2012 04:05 PM

I would ask Powermatic on the availability on parts and ask any concerns you might have on the shaper.
Purchasing a good shaper is wise, but if there are no parts for it when something goes wrong, what are
you going to do?

Then again, the odds are nothing is going to go wrong because it is a powermatic.

Keep us posted and good luck my friend.

View BBOSIDE's profile


7 posts in 1852 days

#2 posted 07-13-2012 04:20 PM

I spoke with Powermatic parts are available for this model. They made it for a long time.
The maxim spindle diameter is 1”. Should I look at the 27 model this machine has 1.25” spindles.
The machine I’m looking at is 1986.

I’m not sure of my future plans. Just looking to have a well rounded work shop.

I was looking into new router tables and 3 hp router. This becomes expensive fast.
I thought shaper could be the better long term investment.

View Bertha's profile


13005 posts in 2204 days

#3 posted 07-13-2012 04:30 PM

It’s a nice machine. I both owned and sold one in the span of a year after I completed a large molding project. Knives, ESPECIALLY custom knives drive the price up really quick. I miss the power of the shaper but the router table with a 3hp router gets me by now. If the price is right and you’ve got the floorspace, I think you’ll have this tool for a long, long time.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Bertha's profile


13005 posts in 2204 days

#4 posted 07-13-2012 04:32 PM

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View BBOSIDE's profile


7 posts in 1852 days

#5 posted 07-13-2012 05:22 PM

How was the dust collections on this with a 4” hose attached?

Why did you sell your machine?

What do you mean you miss the power? 3 hp should be 3 hp not matter the machine?
maybe I’m wrong dont have enough experience.

View Bertha's profile


13005 posts in 2204 days

#6 posted 07-13-2012 06:00 PM

Well, 3hp = 3hp, that’s true. But the stationary shaper just seemed to plow through stock much easier. It may be that I’m hesitant to abuse my 3 1/4hp table router, not sure. Perhaps it’s an amperage thing, I’m not sure.
I sold mine simply because I completed my molding project and I only had enough room in my tiny shop for one shaper/router. I could put the router in my tablesaw wing and entirely free up the shaper’s footprint. That’s all. I had no complaints whatsoever with the machine and I’ve like older PM stuff ever since.
Oops, forgot: I don’t recall how I connected the DC (this was about 6 years ago). I don’t recall dust being a really big issue, so I think it must have worked OK. I would have been using a JET 2hp at the time.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View PurpLev's profile


8524 posts in 3159 days

#7 posted 07-13-2012 06:11 PM

thats a nice machine. too bad the spindle only goes to 1” as most higher grade cutters mfg. today are bored 1-1/4” you should still be able to get 3/4” bored tooling for it though.

As for 3hp = 3hp – that is referencing the electrical input of the motor, but what is very different between a universal motor (that screams) to a belt driving induction motor (that hums nicely) is how much of that electrical energy is transferred to the cutterhead. a 3hp router can be bogged down, something that is unlikely to happen with a 3hp shaper. the shaper simply has a TON of torque – so be careful with it, cause it won’t stop for anything.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

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2387 posts in 3058 days

#8 posted 07-13-2012 11:54 PM

I cannot say enough good things about our Grizzly 3 hp shaper, could not have done near what we have done without it. I now want a 5 hp shaper addition for panel raising. My advice is to get that shaper if the price is right and the condition is good.

It is my understanding Powermatic made some real quality machines back in the 80s. If it has been owned by a person doing things as a hobby I would think the shaper has tons of life left.

Parts replacement availability would be my biggest concern.

As for the value, I would begin with comparable new prices, go to about 50% the new cost and begin deducting for things such as age and condition. Just as a ball park figure, based on listings I have seen in my area, I would likely attempt to get the shaper some where around 400.00 +/-. I know a brand new Grizzly 3 hp can be bought for around 1,100.00 or so shipped. So in my mind if the price begins getting too steep I might as well go with a new machine.

Don’t know if this helps any or not. I just know as a buyer, my goal is to get the machine as cheap as possible while remaining fair.

-- .

View Loren's profile


8399 posts in 3159 days

#9 posted 07-14-2012 12:38 AM

Worth at least $500 but if you have to buy accessories
that are missing that’s a bummer. Does it come with
cutters? If so, big bonus ‘cause they are spendy.

Those basic shapers by Powermatic et al may not really be
much better than the imported ones. I paid $250 awhile
back for a 3HP Shop Fox and it was a helluva deal. I check
my local listings most days for shapers and prices vary but
pro shops seem to offload them for around $400 in general
for the Lobo and Grizzlys, etc… common imported brands
used in smaller cabinet shops.

Getting a shaper with less than a 3HP motor is creating
more work for yourself. In a shaper the difference between
1.5HP and 3HP in terms of ability to just hog off the wood
is big.

View Loren's profile


8399 posts in 3159 days

#10 posted 07-14-2012 12:41 AM

@PurpleLev – I have a 2HP overarm router and it is about
3 times the power of a big 3 hp handheld router. Just
scary really and only 2hp.

View SnowyRiver's profile


51452 posts in 2991 days

#11 posted 07-14-2012 02:59 AM

I would love to have the PM 26. I think up to $800 if its in good shape would be reasonable. You wont have problems with parts. I have been watching for one locally for a year or so now. Let us know what you decided.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View AHuxley's profile


558 posts in 2832 days

#12 posted 07-14-2012 03:18 AM

First there is NO comparison between a 3hp universal motored router and a 3hp induction motored shaper, at LEAST twice the power.

I suggest looking for a shaper that takes a 1.25” spindle, my first choices on the low budget end would be a PM 27 or Delta HD. Of the two the Deltas tend to sell cheaper. Thats is the reason I wouldn’t recommend a Grizzly G1026.

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 1712 days

#13 posted 07-14-2012 08:03 PM

It would be a good shaper and as for the spindle issue I would just get a good pair of t-bushings for it so you can use the 1.25 cutter heads easy enough.

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

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