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Five Best 8-Inch Jointers- Buying Guide and Reviews

There are instances when buying a 6-inch jointer makes sense, but an 8-inch jointer is a real deal when you want to take your woodworking projects to the next level. That is what I discovered when I discarded my JET – JJ-6HHDX 6-Inch Long Bed Helical Head Jointer for the 8-inch option. That is not to say that it was straightforward though. In my search for the best product in this category, a realized how hard it is to single out the best. As the size for jointers increases, it becomes more difficult to choose because the featured brands are fewer. My thorough selection of the best 8-inch jointers is based on features, user-friendliness, power, and price. I believe the resulting list of products and the accompanying buying guide will make your shopping experience less strenuous.

Best 8-Inch Jointers

Here is our list of the top 8 Inch Jointers on the market.

1.    Jet 718250K JJ-8HH 8 Jointer with Helical Head Kit in Woodworking, Jointers – Best for the money

For slightly less than $2,000, you can own a quality tool from one of the most reliable brands. I consider the JET JWJ-8HH 8″ long bed jointer a bang for one’s buck because it has so much value- two-degree stops, power, dust port and so forth. What I love the most is that it is a bettered form of the JJ-8HH, which is also on this list.

A helical insert cutter-head with staggered carbide inserts coupled with a quiet and smooth-running 2-hp motor make this industrial-grade tool outstanding. Since the jointer comes with heavy-duty cast iron infeed and outfeed tables that are machined to the highest precision, you can use it for effective jointing of longer boards.

Professionals and DIY users alike find this machine extremely easy to use since its three knives on the helical cutterhead are easy to fix in an out. The adjustment hand wheels make corrections smooth and swift. It handles bevel operations and has a rigid fence.

Pros

  • Relatively light
  • Quiet
  • Powerful/durable
  • Impressive 5-year warranty

Cons

  • Basic wheel mechanism

2.    Jet – JJ-8HH; 8-inch Helical Head Jointer

You need to consider this unit if you are interested in a stationary unit that offers quiet and reliable performance. This product is in the high-end side, but it carries a number of features that justify the price tag. Strong, accurate and large, this jointer is perfect for sizeable boards.

This tool has a helical insert cutter-head with staggered carbine inserts, which makes the 2hp motor hardly produce any noise. The motor has the capacity to handle tasks involving heavy wood.

For smoother bevel and versatile performance, the unit boasts of positive stops at 90 degrees and 45 degrees.  A pair of mounting options means that you can turn on/off on the in-feed table or at the base.

I found the tool quite user-friendly, with the built-in dust chute collecting debris very effectively. Table adjustment is also flawless.

Pros

  • Powerful but quiet motor
  • Smooth cuts
  • Large tables

Cons

  • Installation of drive belts a bit challenging
  • Rigid locking levers

3.    Powermatic 1610086K Model 60HH 8-Inch 2 HP 1-Phase Jointer with Helical Cutterhead – Best Overall

For users who constantly do a lot of jointing, I suggest a powerful, handy and durable joint that also happens to the best overall in this list- the Powermatic 1610086K. The product is pricey, but you get as much value from it. Add to it an optional mobile base and you increase the portability of this 518-pounds tool.

With its 230-V, 9A and 2-hp motor, this product is suited for consistent performance on sizeable pieces of lumber. Such workpieces receive adequate support from the extra-long tables mounted on dovetailed ways.

This jointer may be high capacity, but it is so easy to adjust, owing to its superior capability for fine-tuning and lever adjustment. It can respond to a wide range of accuracy or convenience requirement.

Pros

  • 5-year warranty
  • Large and powerful
  • Durable

Cons

  • Expensive

4.    Grizzly Industrial G0490X – 8″ x 76″ Jointer with Parallelogram Beds and Spiral Cutterhead- Best for the Professional

Grizzly has been producing quality industrial tools for a long time. The Grizzly Industrial G0490X – 8″ x 76″ Jointer is a display of the understanding the company has about professional requirements. As has been the case for most of their products, this jointer is affordable and loaded with features.

Grizzly Industrial G0490X – 8″ x 76″ Jointer with Parallelogram Beds and Spiral Cutterhead is one of the best options for the professional woodworker. The 76-3/8″ table with extra-long in-feed table and huge fence are enough ammunition for flattening the widest pieces of wood, making the device extremely dynamic.

The jointer features a powerful 3 HP, 240V, single-phase motor. It can offer a 1/8 depth of cut and ½ rabbeting depth. The 3-3/16 inches diameter cutter-head runs at 4800 RPM, so it makes fast and smooth cuts.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Easy to operate
  • Sturdy
  • Low vibration
  • Durable

Cons

  • Assembly somewhat challenging
  • Quality issues

5.    Shop Fox W1857 8″ Dovetail Jointer with Mobile Base- Best for Budget

Finally yet importantly, I present this reliable but affordable unit from Shop Fox. Regarded as one of the best power jointers from the popular tool manufacturer, the Shop Fox W1857 8″ Dovetail Jointer with Mobile Base is packed with handy features that would suit anyone willing to step up his or her woodworking.

A built-in mobile base within a sturdy cabinet is one of the highlights that really impressed me. Many of its parts are ruggedly designed. Combined with heavy-duty cast-iron hand wheels, all these features prove that the tool is designed to offer many years of seamless performance.

If you have the regular three-knife model, the Shop Fox W1857 is the ideal upgrade with its four-knife cutter-head. This design offers 25% more CPM. Boasting of a fully adjustable 4-5/8″-by-38″ cast-iron fence, this tool is capable of edge jointing, surface planning, rabbeting and bevel cutting. Other notable features include positive stops, dust port, and free safety blocks.

Pros

  • Safety- thermal protection switch
  • Durable
  • Faster and finer cuts

Cons

  • Manual not appropriate enough
  • Extremely heavy

Buying Guide for the Best 8-Inch Jointer

When you are buying an 8-inch jointer, you are probably thinking long term because the tool can accommodate larger pieces of lumber without the need for extra tools, as a 6-inch jointer would demand. That is why I think a few considerations are important before settling on any of the options in the market. Before we check these factors, let us review some basics about a jointer.

What makes a good 8-Inch Wood Jointer?

A jointer (not to be confused with a planer – Which can be found here) is a tool that enables you to achieve two things on your wood: square the wood pieces so that they can join easily and flatten the pieces for a smooth finish. Jointers are designed to work with woods of various sizes, but I am concentrating on products that hold up to 8 inches width.

As you might expect, there are various types of best 8-inch jointers. I like this categorization of three: Closed Stand Jointer, tabletop jointers and open stand jointers. The closed stand jointers seem more popular and are available in four sizes: 6, 8, 12 and 16 inches.  Since locations and applications differ, you may find other categorizations in the market. The thing is that each of the product types offers advantages and disadvantages that the user must notice.

It is important to recognize and know the functions of some of the parts of a jointer. The guard is your best friend because it keeps hands away from the blade. To know the depth of cut, use the depth scale. An 8-inch jointer has several controls, but the most important is the ON/OFF switch. The fence lock determines the width of the board to be jointed. When it is at the extreme end, the tool can joint an 8-inch board. Essentially, that is how we arrive at jointer size. Other interesting parts of this tool are outfeed table, infeed table, lowering control and push blocks.

When I was comparing different potential buys, I looked at the following factors:

Factors to Consider When Buying the Best 8 Inch Jointer

Power

When buying the best 8-inch jointer, check the power type and rating. For a powerful commercial-scale product, three-phase power is used. Most jointers are designed for single-phase power though. Indeed, most have a 1-hp motor, which is good enough for most projects. That is not to say that you should shy away with 3-hp motors. A more powerful motor means you can handle much more.

Bed Width

There is a reason an 8-inch jointer is often pricier than a 6-inch one. A large bed width means that the product can hold larger pieces of lumber. Once you get an 8-inch jointer, your work becomes more effective and easier. With time, you might decide to get an even bigger product, but 8 inches is ideal for more people.

Cutting Depth

This determines how many passes you will need to get the desired surface. Most of the best 8-inch jointers have ½-inch cutting depth, so they are able to achieve the required surface in a single pass. Machines that do two or more passes achieve 5/8-inch depth of cut, or thereabouts.

Fence

I cannot reiterate enough the importance of a quality fence for any jointer. The wood piece must be aligned correctly when it moves along the blade so that the proper flatness can be achieved. Furthermore, it should be adjustable so that the user can angle the flatness as desired. Generally, an adjustable fence brings the versatility that every woodworker yearns.

Price

As the size of the jointer increases, you can expect to pay more because you are getting better quality.  For jointers, the price is a good indicator of quality. Avoid the lowly priced products to avoid countless visits by the maintenance technician. For most people looking for a good balance, mid-range products have always been the answer. They offer good quality, yet their prices are within reach.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are some of the benefits of a wood jointer?

Many buyers have found their wood jointers to be crucial in the workshop. First, the tool is easy to use, so even inexperienced owners are able to do something. The biggest benefit I have realized with my jointer is money savings. My local store often runs discounts for twisted and warped wood. I buy this wood, fix it with several runs on my valued 8-inch jointer, and then create an attractive piece with it. I end up saving a good number of dollars in the process. Imagine how much this would translate to for a large-scale project.

As a woodworker, times come when you inevitably have unused wood that stocked up for so long that it warped. You do not have to throw away such wood. With a good 8-inch jointer, you can salvage a substantial amount of the stock.

  1. Do I need eye and ear protection when using a jointer?

Wood debris and dust can scatter and endanger the eyes during the jointing process. Therefore, have eye protection always. While some products have noise-reducing features, it is important to wear ear protection too to prevent damage ear damage.

  1. What makes an 8-inch jointer better than a 6-inch jointer?

Some woodworkers have the tricks and skills to flatten wider boards on a 6-inch jointer, but an 8-inch jointer makes the work flawless, especially for an averagely experienced user. It is a way of saving time and materials.

  1. Who sells good 8-inch jointers?

In the review section, I have suggested different products from leading brands. Chances are that you will pick the best 8-inch jointer from the list. If you wish to analyze further, the leading brands include Powermatic, JET, CuTech and Grizzly Industrial.

  1. Are 8-inch jointers affordable?

The price range for jointers can be significant, regardless of the category. Some items are available for as low as $700 and some go beyond $2,000. This difference is an indication of the varying buyer preference. Some of the best cheap jointers can be found in this article here.

Conclusion – My top pick for 8-inch jointer

Since all the jointers featured here give the requisite 8-inch cut, there is a reason to look beyond this factor. When choosing the best product in this category, you want to look at other things like motor power, fence quality, construction, and price. My preference is the Powermatic 1610086K, which I consider a winner because of the positive reviews and my test. Which of the items suggested here are you considering buying? Would you suggest any other product for this list?  Let me know in the comments section.