Porter Cable Omni Jig Dovetail Machine

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Forum topic by normrep posted 08-02-2012 04:05 PM 1979 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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21 posts in 2393 days

08-02-2012 04:05 PM

A neighbor wants to sell a 16” omni jig dovetail machine purchased in 2001. It looks like it’s in good condition, but I am unfamiliar with dovetail jigs and wondering what your experience has been. Should I go for it? Stay away from it in favor of something else? Are there parts and accessories that I ought to be aware of to make sure they are included with the sale? And If you think this is a good machine for a beginning woodworker to start making dovetails – what would you think is a fair price to offer if it’s all together and in good condition?
Once again, I am appreciative of all the input from those of you who have had more experience than I. Thanks!

6 replies so far

View Everett1's profile


213 posts in 2531 days

#1 posted 08-02-2012 04:11 PM

what’s the model number and how much is he asking for it?

-- Ev in Framingham, MA

View jdmaher's profile


427 posts in 2577 days

#2 posted 08-02-2012 04:42 PM

I have the PC 4216 jig, which is the 12” with all the options (notably, the mini-dovetail accessories).

New, its about $175.

I’ve used it a few times, and I like it. I suspect that the set-up time is not very cost-effiective for small projects (say, just a couple of drawers) – which is mostly what I do. Also, what I have is for fixed width dovetails. If you want infinitely variable, mine ain’t the one.

Would I do it again? Probably NOT at full-price. I believe I’d be better off practicing to do it by hand.

But if I could have gotten the jig for about $75 . . .

-- Jim Maher, Illinois

View BenI's profile


332 posts in 2176 days

#3 posted 08-02-2012 05:10 PM

I should start out by saying I don’t own any dovetailing jigs, like to but the money’s not there. Having said that, even the 16” version of the Omnijig is around $400-$500 new so take that into account, especially if it’s in good condition with the accessories but pay what you can/want to.

I’d recommend looking up what normally comes standard with the jig and make sure that it’s all there. If something isn’t mention it and take the price down.

As far as it being a good jig for a beginner, because you can adjust the width yourself, I’d imagine it might be somewhat complicated BUT that’s how it is was anything new, especially a dovetail jig. Always a learning curve.

Hope that helps some, good luck with your buying (or not).

-- Ben from IL

View Loren's profile (online now)


10385 posts in 3645 days

#4 posted 08-02-2012 05:12 PM

They are simple and very heavy-duty. Templates are what
counts. You can only make the joints you have templates
for. For half-blind dovetails you just need one template,
and that comes standard with the jig. For through dovetails
you need 2 matched templates.

I’d guess $150 for the jig with the half-blind template and
each pair of through dovetail templates would be worth
another $100 or so at auction.

The old Omnijig is not the most creatively flexible tool for
dovetails. It’s a production tool for pro shops.

View normrep's profile


21 posts in 2393 days

#5 posted 08-02-2012 09:45 PM

Thanks for all the excellent replies. Everett – the model number is 5116 and we have not discussed pricing, but he thinks he paid about $300.00 for it new. I think his asking price will be about a third or less. He is wanting to get rid of a lot of things due to failing health. So, I’m always happy to get a bargain, but under the circumstances, I would like to help him out a little too.

View crashn's profile


528 posts in 2463 days

#6 posted 08-03-2012 01:29 AM

where are you at? so I can figure in shipping.

-- Crashn - the only thing I make more of than sawdust is mistakes

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