Popular Woodworking 2001-06 № 122, страница 22

Popular Woodworking 2001-06 № 122, страница 22


This machine is similar to the JSI00, with the addition of an improved fence that allows for angled biscuit cuts and an easily read scale for height, angle and biscuit size.The fence size has not been improved, however, still making it awkward to steady the cut. Also improved over the JSI00 is the blade-changing process, made almost as simple as that on the Lamello or Makita machines.This is an affordable machine with good performance, and only a few deficits, as noted earlier.We consider it a best value.

Lamello Classic C2

Selling for $129 more than its nearest-priced competition (the Porter-Cable 557),expectations were high for this machine.The fence is a two-piece version with a dovetailed auxiliary fence for height adjustment.Though the fence functions much better than those on the Freud tools, there is no scale to tell you which angle you're cutting at.The performance of this machine is good, the ergonomics comfortable, and it is generally a user-friendly tool (though depending on your grip you can bang your knuckles during cuts).With the purchase of an auxiliary blade, you can cut slots for face-frame biscuits.This tool is very well-engineered and has a very smooth plunging action and cut. However, unless you're making your living with this tool, we feel the cost is prohibitive.


Once you purchase the perfect biscuit joiner, you need to buy a good box of biscuits. If you have any experience with these little guys, you know that some boxes of biscuits contain a bunch of freaky beech. Most will fit fine, but some are too thick and will only fit with a hammer. Others are stamped wrong, broken or splintered.

To see who made the best-fitting biscuits, we tested l00 biscuits from five major manufacturers.Two testers put each of the 500 biscuits into a standard-size biscuit slot. Each biscuit was then placed into one of three categories.

Fit perfect: Both sides of these biscuits went in and out of the slot easily.

Press fit: One or both sides of these biscuits required moderate hand pressure to insert into the slot.We considered all of these biscuits to be ultimately usable.

Didn't fit: These biscuits wouldn't fit into the slot for a variety of reasons.

Either they were misstamped, too thick or splintered in such a way as to be unusable. Biscuits that were both broken and unusable were also included in this category.

As we gathered information for this article we noticed that the Porter-Cable biscuits were made from birch instead of beech, which is the species used by all the other manufacturers in this test.We also learned from the manufacturer that the Porter-Cable biscuits weren't compressed when stamped, unlike all the other biscuits in our test. So we decid -ed to see how much each biscuit would swell when it came in contact with moisture. We measured the thickness of each biscuit with a dial caliper.Then we submerged the biscuit in water for one minute, let it sit for another minute and then we measured its thickness. Finally, we let the biscuit sit

Lamello Top 20

Priced significantly higher than any other tool in this test, the Top 20 was expected to perform head and shoulders above the competition. Performance was indeed excellent, and the knob-adjustable blade height makes this a unique and highly accurate machine.This tool offers an unusual blade technology to improve the efficiency and accuracy of the cut by providing two teeth sized to cut the desired kerf thickness, while the other teeth serve more as undersized rakers to clear the material.The tool comes with a wood carrying case and an auxiliary face-frame blade. The Top 20 is operated using a paddle switch.The fence angles are conveniently marked, and the fence operates smoothly and is very accurate.This is an excellent tool with superior performance and deserves special mention. But $600 is too much for a biscuit joiner unless it is imperative to your livelihood.

for five minutes and measured it a third time.

We were surprised by the results. The American-made Porter-Cable biscuits fit better than any of the oth -ers in our test. Every one of the biscuits in the tube of 100 was usable.When exposed to moisture, the Porter-Cable biscuits swelled up more than the Lamello or the Ryobi biscuits. Here's the best part: Porter-Cable biscuits are a bargain.A box of 1,000 Porter-Cable

32 Popular Woodworking June 2001

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