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Mighty Mortise and Tenon

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Forum topic by lumbo posted 05-17-2020 02:50 AM 713 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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lumbo

5 posts in 409 days


05-17-2020 02:50 AM

Topic tags/keywords: router mortise

A bit of help speeding up mortise and tenon from members who have done this a long time. I just ordered a PowerMatic 719 Mortiser http://www.powermatic.com/us/en/p/719t-mortiser-1hp-1ph-115-230v/1791264K , I put it on hold as i am coming to my senses, the pantorouter https://pantorouter.com/ looks like the one to rather invest in, the $ aside and the space consuming aspect aside… any thoughts on maybe an alternative like pantorouter. I am in two minds about the Festool Domino… Pro + Con.

Objective is to speed up mortising and tenon (no problem on tenon, can do on table saw + bandsaw) it is the mortise that is the time consuming aspect. I do have some feature projects with crazy angled mortises.. doing it with combo by hand mortise chisel and plunge router at the moment, when it gets to accuracy it is an time consuming exercise I am endeavoring solving.. Doing it with the old fashioned mortise chisel is noisy as can be…i rather just get something to speed it up and be done quick and not drive the family nuts with all my chopping.

I love working hand tools as well and are learning to be more efficient as i go… TheEnglishWoodWorker seems to love the idea of the hollow chisel mortiser https://www.theenglishwoodworker.com/hollow-chisel-morticer/ (the site seems to be down at times)0.556


11 replies so far

View WoodenDreams's profile

WoodenDreams

1165 posts in 799 days


#1 posted 05-17-2020 05:16 AM

If you want speed with a square mortise, then you want a mortising machine. Especially if you plan on doing a lot of mortising and tenons. I don’t do a lot of mortises. But thought of getting a mortise machine often. I got a mortising jig about three years ago, opened it up to check it out. Put it back in the box and it’s been sitting on the shelf unused since. The mortises I’ve been doing are with the drill press or on the router table. Lately I’ve been checking out plans to build a horizontal router table for doing mortises.

Festel Domino would be nice to have, time saving but expensive. Maybe I’m just too cheap.

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

6493 posts in 1462 days


#2 posted 05-17-2020 04:35 PM

So many ways to do M&T joinery, or something that mimics it. All of them can work. Having several of them. I have routers, a horizontal table, a Mortising machine, plenty of hand chisels, drill bits, and a drill press, probably more, and all of them can work.

I can tell you after years of finding workarounds I bought a Domino late last Winter, and really wish I had gotten it a long time ago. So very fast from layout to popping them in, strong, and did I say fast? Once you determine it’s just MONEY, it’s pretty sweet.

Still I think for the most part it’s about HOW many M&T’s ya gotta do? 2 or 3, and I find nothing as rewarding as a mortising chisel, a whammer, and whacking them out. I can’t say for you, but for me the thrill is gone after about 8 or 10 of them. You start talking about 30 to 50 of them, and I wants a machine. The Domino is by far the fastest of the machines.

-- Think safe, be safe

View LesB's profile

LesB

2634 posts in 4331 days


#3 posted 05-17-2020 05:26 PM

I have the PantoRouter and it works great for mortise and Tenons, including angles ones that a straight mortising machine can’t do. In addition it can make dowel type mortise and tenon, double or even tripple mortise and tenons joints, and even some fancier shapes for through mortises. Plus it is great for dovetails and box joints and with a good imagination many other router jobs. I have even had my 9 and 11 year old grandsons making their own finger joint and dovetail boxes on it.
It is a bit pricy to start but doesn’t take a lot of space and the versatility makes it worth the price. Because it makes repeated cuts so easy it would be great in a small production shop too.

I was skeptical at first but my wife saw me looking at it on the internet and offered to buy it for my birthday (a couple of years ago). I have gotten a lot more use out of it than I expected to.

NO, I don’t have any financial connection with this product.

-- Les B, Oregon

View AndyJ1s's profile

AndyJ1s

466 posts in 643 days


#4 posted 05-17-2020 05:32 PM

It really depends on whether you want square mortises or not. Particularly if you do many through-tenon joints (i.e. where the geometry of the joint remains visible after assembly.)

The panto-router looks nice, but I see a lot of aluminum (rather than iron/steel), and a lot of extra-cost templates and guides. I guess, like any other mortiser, if you can fixture the workpiece at an angle, it will do an angled mortise (I assume that’s one reason you were looking at the 719T).

If you need compound angled mortises, I suggest you look at the tilt-spindle mortisers from Grizzly, et al. The spindle tilts left/right, and the table fore/aft. However, the ones I have seen are limited to +/- 22.5 degrees in each axis.

The 719T table tilt range is 0-30 degrees left/right. I’d rather tilt the table than the spindle, since that keeps the angle to pull the lever vertical too. Again, you can fixture the workpiece with a wedge or cradle to give you fore/aft angled mortises.

If not for square mortises, I’d rather have a Domino.

-- Andy - Arlington TX

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

6493 posts in 1462 days


#5 posted 05-17-2020 08:14 PM

I guess there, if you made all through M&T joints, then yes, square is where it’s at. On all the non through, which for me is 90% or better you would never know if it was a square, or a Domino once it was closed, and the glue dried. For the few through M&T’s I do. I’ll whack them out with hand tools, that keeps the caveman part of me cavey. :-)

-- Think safe, be safe

View lumbo's profile

lumbo

5 posts in 409 days


#6 posted 05-18-2020 04:22 AM

Many thanks, much appreciate all the comments! I will give all the comments some serious thought…!

I do like through mortises i have about 12 chairs with each 12 – 18 mortises in mind with some angles which is why i did look at the powermatic 719. I will be 25/75 with trough mortise/hidden mortise over longer term.

Anybody tried joinery with this handheld https://www.shapertools.com/en-us/ ? it looks interesting and being in software might be a great fit (living 0 and 1)

Domino or Pantorouter be about 500 more comparing to powermatic, but might be worth the investment considering time… i do agree with just a few mortises by hand. After my work bench build with some 5’’ deep mortises.. i am endeavoring to make any more mortises as efficient as possible.

View lumbo's profile

lumbo

5 posts in 409 days


#7 posted 05-18-2020 04:14 PM

Some unedited options =
Mortising Machine
Powermatic 719T Mortiser
http://www.powermatic.com/us/en/p/719t-mortiser-1hp-1ph-115-230v/1791264K
Why = https://www.theenglishwoodworker.com/hollow-chisel-morticer/ and flexabality with tilt table getting into angled mortises. Can sharpen chisels , the EnglishWoodworker likes the idea https://www.theenglishwoodworker.com/hollow-chisel-morticer/ , Tom from EpiceWoodworking got one in his shop https://www.epicwoodworking.com/
Why Not = Space + a One Trick Pony = Still doing Tenon table Saw + bandsaw which i am ok with.
Router Based
Horizontal Slot Mortiser
a. https://www.grizzly.com/products/Grizzly-Horizontal-Slot-Mortiser/G0846
b. http://maksiwa.com/usa/mortiser-fh16c.html
c. Felder FD 250 which purely a production shop https://www.felder-group.com/en-us/products/boring-and-mortising-machines-c1959/horizontal-mortiser-fd-250-p3016
Why = Higher volume ,
Why Not = Router based, dust control issues
Pantorouter
https://pantorouter.com/
Why = Can do tenon + dovetail + box joints
Why Not = Longevity of the tool, template restrictions, through mortises extra work.
Multi Router
https://multi-router.com/product/multi-router/
Why = DJMarks got one for his shop, high quality precision with wearable parts unlike pantorouter.
Why Not = this is in the price of CNC ShaperTools which is what i would go for if i have to chose between this and CNC.
Router Boss
https://www.chipsfly.com/router-boss-digital.html
Why = Space Friendly, More flexible than a pantorouter template based system.
Why Not = By the time i add all the accessories needed i am at the pantorouter price, also not sure how dust control can work for this unit
CNC
a. Hand Held https://www.shapertools.com/en-us/
Why = Flexible, design and repeat
Why Not = Not sure how this will work on bigger mortises..
b. Laguna CNC, I believe Laguna is designing a end table to go with their CNC Products (not sure where that is at, i hear they moving to Texas from CA)
Why = Repeatable,
Why Not = Massive space requirements, High Price tag and for small shop the shapertools looks like the answer for CNC.
Alternative
Drill Press + Chisel
Why = Cheap, Drill Press serves many other functions, No need to sharpened hollow chisel, just buy a new Bit or run it through a cheap Harbour Freight sharpener. Sharpening chisels is easy and produces clean mortises, still a bit more time consuming but maybe not that much more since one still have to clean up the hollow chisel mortises. Ideal for small shop.
Why Not = Angled mortises be a bit more tricky, need DP with good swivel table., Still a bit time consuming
Router + Chisel
Why = Little Space requirements, save some $ for another tool like the Shapertools
Why Not = Repeatability requires jigs, or some process thought which is OK, cost of router bits will add up over time.
Mortise Chisel
Why = Fun to use, no dust, can feel grain better and it definitely teaches you a lot more than just the square hole, can do any angle.
Why Not = More than 4 mortises it becomes very time consuming. For accuracy need about 100+ mortises with this method to get good at it, Need another level of sound dampening as it drives the household nuts if i am banging mortises all day long on a weekend.
Loose Tenon
Domino from Festool
Why = Speed and accuracy
Why Not = not my style… but will consider as a second option to knock out assemblies, removing the design element like through mortises, not sure how this will work for angled projects.

View mitch_56's profile

mitch_56

36 posts in 1361 days


#8 posted 05-18-2020 05:24 PM



Objective is to speed up mortising and tenon

There’s no M&T tool that’s even on the same planet as the Domino when it comes to speed. If that’s truly your objective, your search is over, imo.

View WoodenDreams's profile

WoodenDreams

1165 posts in 799 days


#9 posted 05-18-2020 09:47 PM

Lumbo, with your last comment, sound like you thought things out. I guess we all research the heck out of things. Then don’t do it, or think, better do more research. Now I wonder why I don’t have the project done yet.

View lumbo's profile

lumbo

5 posts in 409 days


#10 posted 05-19-2020 05:12 AM


Objective is to speed up mortising and tenon

There s no M&T tool that s even on the same planet as the Domino when it comes to speed. If that s truly your objective, your search is over, imo.

- mitch_56


Thanks Mitch, curious as to which size Domino you like, the 500 or 700.. i went to my local WC to see how it feels in hand, the 700 weighs quite a bit more but seems to have more range for the bigger size projects.

View lumbo's profile

lumbo

5 posts in 409 days


#11 posted 05-20-2020 07:53 PM

End Result, thanks for all the advice/comments, all extremely valuable,

I cancelled my order for the PowerMatic 719T and will get the Festool Domino XL in a while, I will see if they run a combo deal in upcoming months. I will use my noisy plunge router with some jig for through mortising in combo with the chisels. As $ allow, I have the shapertools https://www.shapertools.com/en-us/ router on my hotlist :-)
Again, thank you all!.

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