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Jointers: Powermatic 6 " vs grizzly 8"

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Forum topic by ChrisCarr posted 08-10-2012 12:18 AM 4187 views 0 times favorited 35 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1548 days


08-10-2012 12:18 AM

Hello I am looking at buying a new jointer.
The two main ones i am looking at are the Powermatic 54a ( 6 inch) and the grizzly G0656P (8 inch).
I would like everyones opinions on the machines, mainly which I should spring for.

The powermatic is $999 and i can buy it locally from woodcraft (20 minutes away). Its a 6 inch
The grizzly is 8 inches and will cost $865 total, I will have to have it shipped, and get off from work to receive delivery, so I doubt its any cheaper since I’ll loose work hours.
Woodcraft has given me great service and help so I wouldn’t mind buying there

I want a good machine, no fine tuning, just assemble and go.
I am looking for accuracy more than capacity. I can make do with 6 inches, if it is higher quality than the 8 inch.
I have heard some bad things about jointer tables not being coplanar or flat out the factory, I don’t want to buy something i’ll have to fuss with customer service to get replaced.

Also the powermatic comes with a 5 year warranty (for non-commercial use), the grizzly only comes with a one.
I want this machine to last a LONG time. The heavier duty the better

Do you guys think the powermatic is of better quality than the grizzly?
Anyone own one of these models?
Which should I buy?


35 replies so far

View pmayer's profile

pmayer

572 posts in 1715 days


#1 posted 08-10-2012 12:26 AM

I think Powermatic offers better quality, but I also think Grizzly is more than adequate quality and will last for many years. I upgraded from a 6” Jet to an 8” Grizzly 490 and think the difference in capacity is incredible and I appreciate it on nearly every project. I would suggest going with the 8” Griz.

-- PaulMayer, http://www.vernswoodgoods.com

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

5451 posts in 2025 days


#2 posted 08-10-2012 12:35 AM

The PM won’t be very useful on a 7” board, and there are lots of rough sawn boards between 6” and 8”....I’d go for the capacity. The Griz should be more than accurate enough for woodworking.

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

View dbhost's profile

dbhost

5383 posts in 1882 days


#3 posted 08-10-2012 12:39 AM

You very rarely hear of anyone complaining about their Grizzly jointers, and let’s face it, you’ll be cussing yourself out every time you try to face joint a 7” board on that Powermatic…

-- My workshop blog can be found at http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com

View Mike's profile

Mike

302 posts in 1337 days


#4 posted 08-10-2012 12:51 AM

get the grizz. I have a 6” jointer and I would love to have gotten the 8” instead.

-- look Ma! I still got all eleven of my fingers! - http://www.termitecrafts.com

View Shabahfan's profile

Shabahfan

1 post in 766 days


#5 posted 08-10-2012 01:31 AM

Sounds like you’re leaning towards the pm. I have the griz 490….fantastic machine. Get the Grizz…

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1548 days


#6 posted 08-10-2012 02:09 AM

The Grizzly is 220v ONLY, I’ll have to wire a 220 outlet. The breaker panel is in my work area however. I dont have any electrical experience, just hours of reading about it, so it will be a hassle.

I have heard about grizzly shipments getting damaged and their tables also coming out of coplanar straight from the factory. Both brands have mixed reviews, more people seem to complain about grizzly though.

I might be more likely to buy grizzly if I could see it first but I cant, no showrroom near me

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11657 posts in 2338 days


#7 posted 08-10-2012 02:25 AM

I have the 54A and unless you’re planning on milling a lot of long stock , they take up a lot of real estate in your shop when they’re idle. If you’re going to spend that much money on a jointer , you might as well get the 8” version.
There are so many good used jointers available on Craigslist , I would never buy a new one : )
Just my 2 cents .

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1548 days


#8 posted 08-10-2012 02:39 AM

I can never find any good used ones in my area, just short old king seeley craftsman ones.

I was going to buy a 6 inch grizzly for about 450$ but i thought 46” was too short of a bed. Most my stuff would only be 4ft long max however.

View Everett1's profile

Everett1

208 posts in 1184 days


#9 posted 08-10-2012 02:40 AM

I have the 656p

Love. It.

I had to run 220 from my basement. So worth it.

Only problem I had was ups messing up and not sending a lift gate truck on the first try (well got the 15” planer at the same time)
Tables where complaner and knives set right out of the box

I used to have a small 6”. Get the 8

-- Ev in Framingham, MA

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11657 posts in 2338 days


#10 posted 08-10-2012 02:44 AM

I’ve jointed a lot of 4’ stock on an older Rockwell Delta jointer that was way shorter than that.
You can always make yourself an outfeed table or use roller stands for the occasional longer pieces : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View pmayer's profile

pmayer

572 posts in 1715 days


#11 posted 08-10-2012 02:47 AM

BTW, you can probably arrange with the shipper to pick up the griz from a local delivery hub if there is one nearby. That is what I ended up doing, as the warehouse was right near work for me.

You mentioned a coplanar issue on Grizzlys. This is not uncommon on many jointers, and dealing with it on a jointer with dovetail ways can be a pain. That is the main reason I went with the 490, as it is much easier to deal with this on a parallelogram jointer. I did have to make an adjustment, and it wasn’t pain free, but it was a lot easier than trying to shim your way to perfection.

-- PaulMayer, http://www.vernswoodgoods.com

View Sawdust4Blood's profile

Sawdust4Blood

348 posts in 1671 days


#12 posted 08-10-2012 02:56 AM

I own a couple of different PM machines (although neither is a jointer). While I love PM’s quality, I truly wish my 6” jointer were an 8”. I tell everyone that the determination of which make/model tool is the best tool for you is always based on what kind of woodworking you do. I can certainly say that for me, the extra capacity of an 8” jointer would out-weigh the higher quality of a PM machine. I’m not saying that Grizzly are a poor quality machine because I think that they are a very good value machine. I think that PM are higher grade machines but I don’t know that the additional quality will provide enough real benefit to merit passing on the very real benefit of upgrading from a 6” jointer to an 8” jointer for the same price.

-- Greg, Severn MD

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Manitario

2331 posts in 1533 days


#13 posted 08-10-2012 03:46 AM

I have a good 6” jointer but I’ve found often that I wish I had an 8”. The Grizzly 8” jointer is a fine machine and you’ll read many good reviews of it on this site.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1548 days


#14 posted 08-10-2012 12:25 PM

My feeling is that i shouldn’t have to buy a expensive parallelogram design just to get perfectly coplanar table. I know a dovetail jointer might need shimming, it just shouldn’t need it straight from the factory. If it does then it seems like poor quality control to me.

The PM doesn’t come with a mobile base,thats an issue since they sell it for $189 extra!!
Also i am possibly getting a $200 credit to woodcraft, the PM 54a would now be $799.

My dream jointer would be a Northfield but they are $10,000+ new. I have been living on ebay and my local craigslist but nothing is in my area or with cheap ($100 or less) freight has came up.

View ChrisCarr's profile

ChrisCarr

196 posts in 1548 days


#15 posted 08-10-2012 01:32 PM

Well I emailed grizzly seeing if they’d give me a different (custom) motor with g0656p, that can run on both 110v/220v . Worth a shot. Just want to see what they say. I hope they respond, Delta ignored my 2 emails about buying a new top for my old contractor saw.

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