jointer planer options
#8
  
I'm thinking of upgrading my 8 inch jointer to a 12 inch capacity.  J/P combo machines seem to be the way to go.
Budget is roughly 3k, so Jet and Grizzly are on the radar.  The JJP-12 with Black Friday sales looks attractive, but I have to wonder why the next level up in jet is 1200 dollars more.  Grizzly is also backordered.

Any sage advise would be appreciated.  Open to alternatives as well.
Thanks...
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#9
  Re: jointer planer options by Demps (I'm thinking of upgr...)
I have no experience with a combo machine, but I know it wouldn't fit my work flow.

I've always viewed combo machines as applicable when space is an issue, but I've seen them used in commercial shops.

In my work methods, I am often going back and forth between planer and jointer, so converting would be a pain.

Then again, we all adjust our methods and work flow to our machines and shop set up, don't we?
Everything is a prototype so its a one of a kind.
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#10
  Re: jointer planer options by Demps (I'm thinking of upgr...)
(11-24-2020, 09:13 AM)Demps Wrote: I'm thinking of upgrading my 8 inch jointer to a 12 inch capacity.  J/P combo machines seem to be the way to go.
Budget is roughly 3k, so Jet and Grizzly are on the radar.  The JJP-12 with Black Friday sales looks attractive, but I have to wonder why the next level up in jet is 1200 dollars more.  Grizzly is also backordered.

Any sage advise would be appreciated.  Open to alternatives as well.
Thanks...

I have had a combo jointer/plan er in my workshop for the last 35 years. I started with a 10 1/4" Inca 570 and loved the little machine. I did a lot of work on it. As my work progressed to larger projects, I decided to upgrade to a more robust machine. I bought a Hammer A3-31 12" jointer/planer. It is a much heavier machine than my Inca with a more powerful motor. It is a workhorse and I've been very happy with it. I use a combo machine because my shop space is limited. With the Hammer I get a relatively large capacity, industrial quality machine that works well in my space. Yes, I'd love to have separate 12" machines (or larger); but I have gotten used to the combo over the years, and I've learned to tailor my work flow to minimize the inconvenience of having to change from one function to the other. The change-over, however is fast and easy, it takes me about 45 seconds to a minute and a half to swap functions, so it is seldom a problem. I've looked at the Jet and Grizzly combos and they look like good machines. I just like the fit, finish and precision of the Hammer. I think it's a cut or so above the others - but it's pricier too. I'd buy it again in a minute. Mine is an older model with straight knives. If I were buying new, I'd certainly get a spiral cutterhead.
My $.02.
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#11
  Re: jointer planer options by Demps (I'm thinking of upgr...)
I have a Hammer A3-41. It cost a ton of money and I was worried I'd have buyer's remorse. That went away the moment I ran the first board through it. It is everything I could have possibly asked for in my given circumstances of limited space and the need for mobility. I feel like it very easily does the work of the two large separate machines I could have bought for the same, or possibly less money, but with a lot less space consumption.

People often wonder how miserable it is to crank the table up and down, or worry about the workflow or inconvenience of not being able to keep settings across two different machines. I worried about it, too, but it turns out not to have been an issue. My workflow adapted really quickly, and I can dial it back to a particular setting on their manual depth wheel to within the nearest thousandth with ease.








I truly believe this is a no-compromise machine in terms of functionality per space consumed, as long as you are willing to pay the price for having both of these things at the same time.
Math is tough. Let's go shopping!
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#12
  Re: RE: jointer planer options by JohnnyEgo (I have a Hammer A3-4...)
Like Hank, I've been using a J/P for over 35 years.  I, too, started with an Inca that I bought used.  The 10-1/4" jointer made up for any issues the short tables presented which, it turns out, really weren't many.  I regularly jointed stuff over 6' long on that little machine and it did a great job.  I had that machine for 25 years and built dozens of projects with it and it never let me down, but as I got older jointing long, heavy stock became more difficult so I looked for a larger machine with longer tables.  I found a used MiniMax FS35 with a 13-3/4" cutterhead.  I went from a 100 lb machine to one that weighs 750 lbs.  It's a 1984ish machine that I paid $2K for about 5 years ago.  If you are looking for a J/P I recommend you look for a used one rather than pony up more than 2X for a new one.  Yes, it would be nice to have a segmented head on mine, but the straight knives cut fine and when I get tearout I take care of it with my drum sander.  If you can find a machine with a Tersa head that would be even better because the knife changes take about 5 minutes and there is no setting required.  Just slide them in and go.  

I added an absolute DRO to my machine.  I can repeat any setting to with a couple of thousandths.  Changeovers are less than one minute, honestly.  It's no big deal.  Dust collection is top notch in either mode.  

Buy used.  Hammer, Felder, MiniMax, Robland, et al.  You can't wear any of them out in a lifetime of hobby use.  If you buy used you can go see the machine run before buying it.  That eliminates the potential for shipping damage on a new machine, and you will see if the machine performs as it's supposed to.  If it doesn't you are out only your time.  Problems with new machines run rampant as often gets documented here.  Buy big.  You can never have too much jointer width and the wider the machine the longer the beds will be.  Personally, a 16" combo is my dream machine.    

John
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#13
  Re: RE: jointer planer options by jteneyck (Like Hank, I've been...)
I won't disagree with John that if you can find a good used one, go for it.  I couldn't so I bought the Jet JJP-12 with the straight knives.  Getting the jointer tables exactly coplanar can be a bit of an issue because there are a number of steps involved, and minute changes in one of the screws can have a big impact, so you have to adjust a fraction, retighten, check, loosen, and repeat, but once you have it aligned, it is great.   I put a Wixey on it,  and use a cordless drill to raise and lower the planer table, so changeover is very quick.  If I had the space, I may have gone with separates, but not only would they take up more floor space, you need enough room to feed in the lumber and retrieve it.  If you are working with 6 foot boards, that means you need over 12 feet to just barely work a board, probably more like 13 feet or more, for both the jointer and the planer.  The other nice thing is the jointer is massively wide compared to what you would normally get for that money getting standalones.  One downside, to me, of the Jet is the jointer tables are pretty short.  For longer , heavy lumber -  I have been doing some 8/4  6  to 6 1/2 foot long boards for tables,  you need to set up roller extension, or make up a table extension to get good results. 


After many years, and reading of conversions done for a few posters here,  I took the plunge and converted to segmented head.  I didn't notice a great decrease in noise as some have, but it is nice not to ever have to deal with adjusting the outfeed table after honing and replacing the straight knives.
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#14
  Re: RE: jointer planer options by barryvabeach (I won't disagree wit...)
(11-24-2020, 08:37 PM)barryvabeach Wrote: I won't disagree with John that if you can find a good used one, go for it.  I couldn't so I bought the Jet JJP-12 with the straight knives.  Getting the jointer tables exactly coplanar can be a bit of an issue because there are a number of steps involved, and minute changes in one of the screws can have a big impact, so you have to adjust a fraction, retighten, check, loosen, and repeat, but once you have it aligned, it is great.   I put a Wixey on it,  and use a cordless drill to raise and lower the planer table, so changeover is very quick.  If I had the space, I may have gone with separates, but not only would they take up more floor space, you need enough room to feed in the lumber and retrieve it.  If you are working with 6 foot boards, that means you need over 12 feet to just barely work a board, probably more like 13 feet or more, for both the jointer and the planer.  The other nice thing is the jointer is massively wide compared to what you would normally get for that money getting standalones.  One downside, to me, of the Jet is the jointer tables are pretty short.  For longer , heavy lumber -  I have been doing some 8/4  6  to 6 1/2 foot long boards for tables,  you need to set up roller extension, or make up a table extension to get good results. 


After many years, and reading of conversions done for a few posters here,  I took the plunge and converted to segmented head.  I didn't notice a great decrease in noise as some have, but it is nice not to ever have to deal with adjusting the outfeed table after honing and replacing the straight knives.

That's another reason to buy used.  You'll know if the tables are coplaner when you go look at a used machine rather than get a disappointing surprise that the new ones aren't.  The tables on my 1980's MiniMax were as perfect as I could measure when I looked at the machine.  I brought it home and had to nearly completely disassemble it to get it down into my shop.  After putting it back together the tables are just as perfect with no shimming or adjustment required.  They built to old ones well.  

John
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