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Why Buy a Jointer

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Forum topic by gmaffPappy posted 05-02-2019 09:19 PM 637 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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gmaffPappy

78 posts in 2543 days


05-02-2019 09:19 PM

Topic tags/keywords: jig question jointer plane milling

I was talking to the guys at Rockler, this afternoon, about Jointer/Planer Combos. I said I like the idea of the bigger Jointer to match the planer’s width. They liked them, but asked why I even needed the Jointer. They didn’t use them. They used their Planers only. They said it may be better to put that $ into a bigger and better planer and use a jointer jig to joint boards with the planer and a table saw.

This has me seriously thinking, and wanted to hear your guy’s thoughts. If I go this route, I can process even bigger stock than t Jointer/Planer?

-- If it's easy to do, you haven't spent enough time over engineering it.


17 replies so far

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pottz

6383 posts in 1496 days


#1 posted 05-02-2019 09:33 PM

you might want to search this because their has been a lot of debate on this very issue lately here.for me i wouldn’t be with out one,i use it every time im in the shop,much easier than messing around with jigs or sleds.the one benefit of the combo machine is space saving if you dont have much of it.just my personal preference.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

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Jared_S

219 posts in 471 days


#2 posted 05-02-2019 09:55 PM

Jointers make boards flat.. there is a reason they were invented, and still exist. They are still the best way to make a board flat.

There are other ways, but the jointer is the fastest with the best results (certain s4s moulders are a close second)

Now realistically i dont run every board across my jointer, but if i need a flat face/edge I do.

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Delete

439 posts in 884 days


#3 posted 05-02-2019 10:11 PM

Even with jigs the planer can only do a limited amount of work, its main job is to give you a board that is smooth and has an even thickness. Depending on how much cupping it will take most of it out in multiple passes, crook can’t all be taken out with jigs, better on the table saw, but it would never be as accurate or easy as on the jointer. Bow and twist can’t be completely taken out on the planer at all, these are jobs for the jointer. In addition the jointer can do many other jobs such as beveling, rabbiting, and tapering.

If I had to choose between the two, I would choose the jointer first. If you are working with wide boards then a planer comes in handy but you will not be able to do edges even with jigs, most planers only open to 6”.

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AZWoody

1461 posts in 1736 days


#4 posted 05-02-2019 10:43 PM

I could never live without my jointer.

I started with a 6”, then to an 8”, then to a 16” and now, I’m restoring an old 24”.

I also have a 25” planer to match up with the jointer. You’re on the right track with thinking the widest is best to match up with the planer you will get but there is no substitute for a good jointer in terms of speed and efficiency.

Sure, you can flatten a board with a jig but how many projects will you do that only needs one or two boards only?
Imagine having to setup a planer jig for 10 boards as each board more than likely will have it’s own contours that you will have to set up on the jig.

Even if I were to buy lumber that’s S4S, it would still get a pass on the jointer to make sure it’s flat. You can’t trust their lumber to always be flat, especially when it’s usually milled in a different climate than where you live and will be using your lumber.

In my opinion, the jointer is the most important tool in the shop. Without a flat face and a 90 degree edge, none of the other tools can do their job properly.

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SMP

1394 posts in 417 days


#5 posted 05-02-2019 11:11 PM

It depends on what you will be doing. You could also flip the question around and ask why by a planer if you have a jointer? And if you only ever work with 3/4 s4s wood you could theoretically get away with a 1” jointer if it existed. And none of the tools listed are “needed” . All that said I have a 6” jointer I use all the time, and have never owned a planer. This is something if you ask 100 people you will get 102 different answers.

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clin

1067 posts in 1508 days


#6 posted 05-02-2019 11:30 PM

I think it comes down to convenience. I don’t have a jointer and have had great success using a planer sled. But there’s no question there’s more fiddling around using a planer sled. In the end the results can be the same, but will take longer, due to setup, with a planer sled.

I approach it this way, I can “joint” with my planer, I can’t thickness plane with a jointer. If the day comes when I’m jointing often enough that the extra effort of using a planer sled is too much work or time, I’ll consider getting a jointer.

I’ve never used a combination planer and jointer, but my experience in general is that this is likely not going to be a great jointer or a great planer. Jack of all trades, master of none. But maybe these combo jointer/planers are the exception.

I’d certainly get a planer before a jointer. Make a planer sled and if the day comes this is too much hassle, then invest in a jointer. That day may never come.

Another point is even a small planner with a sled, can do what requires a relatively large jointer.

-- Clin

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BalsaWood

157 posts in 1670 days


#7 posted 05-02-2019 11:49 PM

I guess it all comes down to why get any power tool? There are multiple ways to mill wood. You can use all hand planes. You can use a combination of hand planes and a planer. I knew a guy who would use his jointer first and then use handplanes on the opposite face to finish milling which I found strange but it worked for him since he didnt have a planer. Or you can just get S4S lumber straight out and not worry as much about milling lumber though S4S does move as well.

I think the best way is to use both a jointer and planer. I started off with a planer and used a sled and it was alright. After getting a jointer, milling became quicker and more fun. I also use the jointer more often than the planer since I like to edge joint boards on it. Overall I think the jointer \ planer are two great machines to have.

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OSU55

2407 posts in 2501 days


#8 posted 05-03-2019 12:48 AM

This is a never ending debate because there is no right or wrong answer – it is solely dependent on the individual’s wants and needs. I’ve made plenty of very nice furniture and never owned a powered jointer. A planer and sled will produce a flat face, and then the planer will thickness. A ts will give a straight edge that I then joint with a hand plane. Using a jointer is faster, but in the overall scheme of a given project it isnt a lot of time, not for the typical hobbyist. Even a one person production shop will benefit from having a powered jointer. So for the hobbyist, no, a powered jointer is not necessary. IMO a planer is, but thats me. Some around here use handplanes instead. Just a matter of time, space, $, and how a person wants to work. Just how big of a planer do you want or need? 30”? How do you flatten a 36” dining table? A 13” bench top gets me by, and I can flatten any size with hand planes. Are there other tools you could use like a bandsaw, floor drill press, routers, shapers, etc?

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runswithscissors

3072 posts in 2537 days


#9 posted 05-03-2019 01:37 AM

I have the 12” Jet combo, and love having the 12” jointer. Changeover isn’t as bad as you might think.

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

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CWWoodworking

528 posts in 691 days


#10 posted 05-03-2019 02:20 AM

I personally would skip both the planer and jointer. I would put that money towards other things. For me that was a drum sander and finish equipment.

My supplier has a Northfield planer that gives the proper thickness in 2 passes with a pretty decent finish. They have a straight line rip saw that puts a perfect edge every time. I can pick up a 14 ft board knowing it has a perfect edge. I dont even check anymore. I cant own these types of machinery for the pennies they charge.

Doing it this way is incredibly efficient and it works for me.

I wouldn’t let me or anyone at woodcraft talk you out of anything though. If you want to do it the traditional way, a jointer is the way to go.

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Mainiac Matt

9314 posts in 2840 days


#11 posted 05-03-2019 02:25 AM

The jointer-planet-table saw triad is the foundation of most any serious power tool shop.
It makes trueing up rough cut stock into perfectly flat and square parts quick and easy.
If you know what your doing, you can true up a pile of rough cut hard wood in minutes.

-- Matt -- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

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ArtMann

1435 posts in 1328 days


#12 posted 05-03-2019 02:38 AM

I only buy rough sawn and skip planed lumber. I build things from material that isn’t 3/4” thick. I resaw lumber a lot. It is necessary that I have both a jointer and a planer. You can get by without either one if you only buy finished lumber in standard thicknesses. I can get more accurately machined lumber in whatever thickness I choose if I machine it myself and I save money by doing it that way.

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therealSteveN

3902 posts in 1086 days


#13 posted 05-03-2019 03:02 AM

The guys working at the Rockler in Cinci, where I go have a full shop and they don’t NEED anything. That shop has a huge jointer in it too. The only reason why they might be able to go without one at home is because they edge, and face joint a 90 corner, take it home and rip to width, and then run it through their planer.

Next time your in there don’t ask if they own a jointer, ask them if they use a jointer.

-- Think safe, be safe

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therealSteveN

3902 posts in 1086 days


#14 posted 05-03-2019 03:09 AM


I also use the jointer more often than the planer since I like to edge joint boards on it. Overall I think the jointer planer are two great machines to have.

- BalsaWood

Yes this^^^^^

So many uses that are NOT dimensioning wood from rough. If you resaw, you will likely rejoint a face after running it through the BS, many times after both router, and shaper runs I have trued up an edge on the jointer. There are days I use the jointer more than any other tool. Indispensable since I owned my first one. I just shake my head when I see these threads. I have no reference points against having one.

-- Think safe, be safe

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SMP

1394 posts in 417 days


#15 posted 05-03-2019 05:22 AM


I also use the jointer more often than the planer since I like to edge joint boards on it. Overall I think the jointer planer are two great machines to have.

- BalsaWood

Yes this^^^^^

So many uses that are NOT dimensioning wood from rough. If you resaw, you will likely rejoint a face after running it through the BS, many times after both router, and shaper runs I have trued up an edge on the jointer. There are days I use the jointer more than any other tool. Indispensable since I owned my first one. I just shake my head when I see these threads. I have no reference points against having one.

- therealSteveN

Another use I get is when i rip on the tablesaw and the piece is a hair too big. My jointer can take off a 1/64” no problem, where i wouldn’t try on the TS.

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