Jet VS Powermatic planers

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Forum topic by pontic posted 12-16-2017 03:46 PM 6187 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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801 posts in 1464 days

12-16-2017 03:46 PM

In the coming months I’m going to purchase a Helical head 15” planer. I’ve narrowed it down to either Jet or Powermatic.
Anyone have any thoughts on which is better?
What you like about yours what you don’t.

Don’t try to sell me a Grizzly.

-- Illigitimii non carburundum sum

11 replies so far

View LesB's profile


2606 posts in 4298 days

#1 posted 12-16-2017 07:28 PM

I have the Powermatic with the spiral blades. It is a great planer; probably the best on the market and also about the most expensive….and prices have gone up a lot since I bought mine. I looked into changing the head to helical at $600+ and decided to stay with what I have. The only problem I have had is the digital read out on the height adjustment just quite working but I seldom used it anyway. I measure all my thicknesses by hand with a caliper.

Jet is Powermatic’s second line (so they must be cutting costs somewhere) and for the amateur/hobbyist it would be just as good.

-- Les B, Oregon

View DocSavage45's profile


9017 posts in 3698 days

#2 posted 12-17-2017 12:28 AM

OK I won’t LOL!

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Manitario's profile


2816 posts in 3738 days

#3 posted 12-17-2017 02:31 AM

I’ve had a Powermatic 20” for ~5y now. Other than a slightly annoying procedure to get the extension tables level, it’s been a great machine. Only things I would change on it would be a helical head, and I wish the DC port was 6” instead of 5”.

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

View Roy Turbett's profile

Roy Turbett

176 posts in 4435 days

#4 posted 12-21-2017 11:54 PM

I have a lunchbox 12” Delta planer and a 15” Jet planer. I know its an apples to oranges comparison because the Jet is much more powerful and beefier. But there is one feature on the Delta that I like better. The cutter head assembly moves up and down on the Delta but is stationary on the Jet where the table moves up and down. This means that you have to adjust the in-feed and out-feed roller stands with every cut if you want to keep them parallel to the planer table. I don’t know if any of the larger planers have stationary tables but that’s a feature I would look for if I were in the market for a new one.

View eflanders's profile


326 posts in 2706 days

#5 posted 12-22-2017 01:49 AM

I had an older Delta Rockwell unit that I sold to get a used older Powermatic 15” unit as the drive system is much better. I had a both a Cutech and a Delta lunchbox unit before I bought the Rockwell. I miss the helical head cutter and hope to add one to my Powermatic someday. I have used the HH PowerMatic jointer and planers and are the best I’ve ever used. It’s true that Poweratic and Jet are now owned by the same holding company. I’ve not used the Jet or Laguna HH units. The Grizzly / Shop Fox units I have used were decent for their cost but not as well built for the long term as the Delta or Powermatic machines. All of the aforementioned machines I’ve owned were not made in the USA. You can tell a quality built machine when you try to fix or rebuild them. I really dislike trying to rebuild any Shop Fox and Grizzly machines. The Cutech unit did not last more than 2 years and wasn’t worth rebuilding. I still use the small Delta unit for when I need a portable unit at a jobsite.

View msinc's profile


567 posts in 1359 days

#6 posted 12-22-2017 02:41 AM

I am partial to Powermatic,most of my equipment is PW. Based on my experience with both I seriously don’t think you would be disappointed with either one. Never used a Jet machine yet that I didn’t like and was not impressed with, Powermatic might be finished a little better and maybe a slight edge on resale value. I will say that Powermatic has first rate customer service, but I am sure Jet is just as good like everyone says…I have used PW CS, never had to use it for Jet.

View AlaskaGuy's profile


6009 posts in 3164 days

#7 posted 12-22-2017 04:54 AM

I guess at this point everyone knows Jet, Powermatic and Wilton is the same company.

some interesting “stuff” in the thread.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View msinc's profile


567 posts in 1359 days

#8 posted 12-22-2017 08:03 AM

I guess at this point everyone knows Jet, Powermatic and Wilton is the same company.

some interesting “stuff” in the thread.

- AlaskaGuy

I actually didn’t know it…at least not until this thread came along. I also didn’t really care. That said, they all may be owned by the same company, but I doubt the same assembly line is producing all three.
Beretta owns many gun manufacturing companies… but just for example, FN guns are not “made” by Beretta, except to say indirectly. It’s not always this way though, Oldsmobile is in fact made by GM. The big question is what effect being owned by the same company has or doesn’t have on quality and service.

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6009 posts in 3164 days

#9 posted 12-22-2017 08:25 AM


-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View Tennessee's profile


2901 posts in 3370 days

#10 posted 12-22-2017 12:25 PM

I’d take a real good look at both in terms of any differences in the helical head, (like number and pattern of cutters), adjustments for things like snipe, table adjustments, etc.
Some are easy to adjust, some are a bitch and tend to come out of adjustment every few months.
Assuming Jet and Powermatic are the same company, (didn’t know that), they probably share some engineering designs, so it might just come down to money, unless you are in some kind of production mode.

On the other hand, when I went looking for a smaller bandsaw as a second saw, (My big one is a Grizz), I ended up buying the Powermatic with the riser and really, never regretted the few extra hundreds. What a bandsaw…

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

View pontic's profile


801 posts in 1464 days

#11 posted 12-22-2017 03:35 PM

Got a chance at a floormodel powermatic for about the same price as a Jet. Leary of floor models because they are usually put together without adjustments. Many times missing something.

-- Illigitimii non carburundum sum

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