5 Best Benchtop Jointers 2019 – Reviews & Ultimate Guides
I’m confident you’re a detail-oriented carpenter. And that means you have an obligation to the carpentry industry. You should only deliver products showcasing experience and finesse in woodwork. What’s more? To do so, you will need to start by using the best tools and kits for the right tasks.
For instance, when you buy rough lumber to use on your projects, you may receive boards with twists or bows. And for them to work on other machines, such as the table saw, you’ll need to have their edges square and faces flat. For that reason, the first machine you’re going to need should solve that twist. And that is where the best benchtop jointer comes into play.
- Comparison chart of top 5 best benchtop jointers 2019
- The Best Benchtop Jointer Reviews
- What is a Benchtop Jointer used for?
- Jointer vs Planer
- Types of jointers
- Parts of a jointer
- How does a jointer work?
- How to choose the best benchtop jointer?
- How to use a jointer?
- Jointer safety
Comparison chart of top 5 best benchtop jointers 2019
|PORTER CABLE PC160JT 6″|
|Cutech 40180HC-CT 8|
|RIKON 20-600H 6|
|Shop Fox W1829 6|
The Best Benchtop Jointer Reviews
PORTER CABLE PC160JT 6″ Benchtop
Porter Cable PC160JT is my most recommended and number 1 suggestion because it epitomizes state of the art benchtop functionalities and also packs one of the most powerful motors with 11,000 Revolutions per Minute. At first glance, you’ll notice that this product retails with a two knife inbuilt cutter head and a large table for your work support.
Even better, this optimal benchtop jointer provides you with a performance level that borders no other jointers in its class. It’s loaded with a myriad of features designed to make your work easier and efficient. Better yet, it is extremely easy to operate this equipment, which is a big plus if you are a newbie at woodworking. If you choose this product, you can rest assured that all your projects will come out smooth and consistent, thanks to the dual cutting fence and heads.
Pros and cons of Porter Cable PC160JT
- Comes with a large dust port
- Includes a long 30-inch table
- Powerful 2HP motor
- Boasts a lightweight and compact jointer
- Has the rare variable speed function
- Utilizes outdated straight blades
- Cheap aluminum fence
Cutech 40180HC-CT 8″ Benchtop Jointer
We know that the biggest commercial woodshops require massive jointers, but what about small-scale woodshop owners? Well, if you’re one of these small-scale owners, I haven’t left you out in the cold. In fact, I bring you the best solution for your needs; the Cutech 40180HC-CT from Cutech Tools LLC.
This unit runs on a 1-phase, 115 volts, and 12 AMP motor that powers a-12,000 revolutions per minute cutter head. The cutter head boasts16 2-sided HSS inserts that can cut a maximum cutting width of 8 inches and a cutting depth of 1/8 inches.
The fence is 4.38 inches long whereas the table is 33.5 inches long. In other words, you can cut a lumber that is approx. twice the length of the bed. The fence also offers you stops that extend from 90 degrees to 135 degrees quickly.
Pros and cons of Cutech 40180HC-CT
- Light aluminum construction
- Adjustable fence
- Spiral blades with carbide tips
- Powerful and fast motor
- Comes with an Extra-long and extra wide jointer
- The extensions do not function properly
- The infeed table is not aligned
RIKON 20-600H 6″ Benchtop Jointer
This Rikon product puts heavy emphasis on compact and lightweight build, as you can tell from its weight of 36lbs. It’s a standard six-inch benchtop jointer designed with home woodworking shops in mind. Rikon fit this equipment with helical cutting blades boasting a max cutting depth of 1/8 of an inch.
It also boasts a 19-inch long fence with adjustable points. The equipment has an electrical rating of 120 volts. Better yet, the 1200 watt motor is also capable of hitting speeds of up to 11,000 revolutions per minute. Rikon offers a 5-year guarantee for this device.
Pros and cons of Rikon Power Tools 20-600H
- Includes a 5-year long warranty
- Long table
- Easy to access blades
- Lightweight and compact
- Made of durable steel
- The fence adjustability needs improvement
- Dust collection is underpowered
Shop Fox W1829 Benchtop Jointer, 6″
This Shop Fox W1829 jointer comes from one of the most renowned Woodstock International product lines. Backed up by two decades of experience and a proven customer service record, it’s quite easy to tell where this top-notch jointer draws its mesmeric features from.
In fact, Shop Fox W1829 falls in the more affordable range of jointers that offer users sufficient power. Under its hood, this stroke of genius houses a 1.5 horsepower motor that makes it the ideal tool for your workshop as well as home applications.
The motor also powers a two-knife cutter head operating at a max speed of 10,000 revolutions per minute. This is the approximate going rate for most benchtop jointers in the marketplace.
That said, the power on this product is non-adjustable, but it’ll provide you with a performance speed of approx. 20,000 cuts per minute. Utilize the unit’s infeed table knob to tune the jointer’s cutting depth.
Pros and cons of Shop Fox W1829
- Includes a knob to tweak the cutting depth
- Provides decent value at an affordable price
- Boasts a durable cast iron build
- Comes with a powerful 1.5 Horsepower motor
- Features misaligned tables
- Lacks appropriate documentation
- The piece gets chipped on occasion
Delta Power Tools 37-071 6″ MIDI-Bench Jointer
The Delta Power Tools 37-071 is a durable, revolutionary, and highly efficient joining system by Delta. It boasts one of the most powerful motors with 10,000 revolutions per minute.
Delta has been known to manufacture some of the most reliable power tools in the marketplace, and even though benchtop jointers are the most affordable jointers, the 37-071 remains on the high end of the general market.
This product also costs a bit more compared to most benchtop jointers because it boasts a sturdier build quality and provides cleaner cuts. This is a heavy duty product, and it should be one of your first considerations if you would like to spend your hard earned dollars on a premium benchtop jointer.
Pros and cons of Delta Power Tools 37-071
- Retails with a five-year warranty
- Boasts a powerful motor
- It’s a compact equipment
- Absorb vibes better compared to lighter machines
- Cast iron durability and solidity
- Uses straight blades
- A bit too heavy
- Weak dust port
What is a Benchtop Jointer used for?
A benchtop jointer is a woodworking machine used to create a flat surface along any lumber’s length. As a jointer, the apparatus operates on the narrow edges of boards to prepare them for use as butt joints or prepare them for gluing into panels.
Jointer vs Planer
One of the most common questions among new woodworkers is “what’s the difference between a jointer and a planer?”
Well, the difference is simple.
Jointers allow you to take a warped or curved piece of wood and straighten its edges such that they’re flawlessly level.
A planer, on the other hand, achieves a slightly distinct purpose. You use a planner when you want to cut two, already straightened pieces of wood to the same thickness.
For small garage/workshop, you can use a jointer planer combo
Types of jointers
There are different kinds of jointers and each type is designed for specific types of projects. Most importantly, each jointer in this enumeration provides a distinct kind of finish depending on the job type.
- Open stand jointers: this kind of jointer is among the least expensive and is easy to transport. That said, it can also be a bit noisier compared to other jointers with closed cabinet machines.
- Closed stand jointers: this is the most renowned jointer in the marketplace today. It retails in 4 distinct sizes namely 16, 12, 8, and 6 inches. The jointer is also less noisy because it retails in an encircled space to house the motor while at the same time protecting it from dust.
- Benchtop jointers: benchtop jointers are the baby versions of closed stand table jointers and they work on smaller projects. If you would like to work on a larger or stronger board, a benchtop jointer may not be able to accommodate it. This equipment’s max cutting width is only 6 inches or 8 inches.
Those are the main types of jointers but you can find more in the market depending on your locations. We further categorize them into the following;
- Heavy duty
- Interchangeable (which comes in four sizes)
- Barrel (which comes in one size only)
- Grapevine (which comes in one size)
- Bit grapevine (which comes in three sizes)
- Brick Jointers (which comes in twelve sizes)
- Acrylic Jointers (which comes in four sizes)
- Flat combination jointers (which comes in two sizes)
Parts of a jointer
- Cutter head: the cutter head’s function is precisely what it sounds like; it does all of the cutting. State of the art jointers’ cutter heads are usually driven by electric induction motors but older versions were driven by belts from line shafts.
- Infeed table: this is the platform (looks like some sort of a table) where you place the lumber before pushing it into the cutting machine.
- Outfeed table: this is the platform that supports or catches the wood getting cut as it moves along the saw blade.
- The On/Off switch: you’ll notice a switch placed on the side of the jointer. Use that to turn the equipment On/Off.
- Fence: this is the moveable guard and guide on the jointer. Usually, the fence is set perpendicular to the table, but some models might allow you to adjust it to various angles.
How does a jointer work?
The lumber is pushed past the 1st table(known as an infeed) across the cutting head and onto the 2nd table, known as the outfeed. The outfeed table’s height is the same as the top of the jointer’s cutting head whereas you can adjust the infeed table’s height to determine the amount of material you would like to shave from the cutter.
The jointer is also fitted with a fence that permits you to bevel or square up the edge of the timber. When you set the fence perpendicular to the cutter and table, pushing the stock against the fence while making consecutive cuts ultimately squares up the 2 adjacent planes of the board.
How to choose the best benchtop jointer?
Even though the marketplace boasts different types of jointers, the best choices obey the factors below.
- Cutting Depth and Bed Width: the bed width is a prime factor that determines the general price of the jointer and what you’ll be able to accomplish using it. About 6 to 8 inches is a sufficient bed size for most people’s needs. In regards to the cutting depth, this determines the number of passes you’ll need to make to a wood piece to get it completely straight.
- Fence: a good jointer should have a fence with adjustable positive stops. Being able to tilt the fence to keep the jointer accurate is an imperative factor.
- Motor Horsepower: approximately 1 horsepower is sufficient for a jointer. This offers sufficient power to even out softwood, hardwood, and even exotic woods.
- Dust collection: using a jointer will no doubt generate lots of debris and dust. You ought to ensure the jointer you are considering retails with a dust collection system.
- Manufacture and Warranty: ensuring the equipment you are considering is designed by a reputable manufacturer is critical. In addition, the manufacturer should offer an upstanding warranty of approximately five years to keep you shielded from factory defects.
How to use a jointer?
If you master how to use a jointer, do it right, and you’ll be rewarded with a lifetime of impressive joints. Here are several recommendations for how to use a jointer.
- Know the machine: start by understanding the machine you’re going to work with. Most jointers retail with convenient features that can help make the jointing procedure extremely easy. Ensure that you know how to tension the drive belt, change blades, set depth of cuts, adjust the fence, etc. the more familiar you are with the machinery, the easier your work will be.
- Ensure Coplanar tables: a nicely tuned jointer is crucial. Utilize the best straight edge you have to make sure that the table is set as perfectly parallel (coplanar) as possible.
- Square up the fence: use a digital angle gauge or machinists’ square to set the fence to a perfect square position. Without a square fence, the jointer will just drive you nuts.
- Comprehend your stock limitation: your jointer’s capacity boundaries are limited by the width and length of its beds. As a safety precaution, you should set a lower limit size on the board based on the lumber you’ll run through the jointer.
- Upper limits: the upper limits of what a jointer can handle are less of a safety issue and more of a quality standard. I suggest that you limit the length of the stock to no more than twofold the length of the infeed table.
- The depth of the cut: set the depth of the cut such that it makes perceptible progress with each pass without burdening the motor. I, for instance, usually set the depth of cuts to approximately 1/32” and make only two passes to remove enough stock and produce a perfectly square edge.
Even though each jointer should come with a spring-loaded blade guard that shields the exposed cutting head, you should take steps to keep your clothing and hands away from the blades. This is particularly true if you’re joining thin pieces of lumber.
Utilizing wood paddles or a plush stick will help you stay clear of the cutter. When appropriate, use a feather board to hold the piece of wood firmly against the table or fence.
As I already mentioned, there are lots of bench top jointers to choose from in the marketplace. And my aim is to make your selection procedure easier. In addition to that I invested more than 40 hours reviewing these products so I hope the post helped you move a bit closer to your pick for the best bench top jointer that’ll help you pursue your carpentry dreams.