What Does a Jointer Do in Woodworking?

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Jacky C

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A jointer is a woodworking machine used to create a smooth, flat surface on a piece of lumber. In this article, we’ll show you how a jointer works and what it’s used for.

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Jointer Basics

A jointer is one of the most important pieces of equipment in any woodworking shop. It’s used to make sure that two pieces of wood are flush with each other and form a perfect 90 degree angle. This is done by running the wood through the jointer and then making a pass with a second piece of wood.

What is a jointer?

A jointer is a tool used in woodworking to create level, flat surfaces on boards or lumber. The workpiece is placed on the infeed table, against the fence, and then fed through the cutting blades, which are mounted on an arbor. The blades remove material from the sides of the workpiece to create two flat, opposing faces.

The outfeed table supports the workpiece as it exits the cutting blades and helps to level off the newly cut surface. The fence is adjustable and is used to control the depth of cut. Jointers are larger and heavier than most other woodworking machines, and are designed to be used in a shop environment.

Most modern jointers have powered infeed and outfeed tables, which makes leveling off surfaces much easier and faster than using a hand plane. Some models also have helical cutting heads, which can produce a smoother surface than traditional straight cutting blades.

What are the different types of jointers?

There are three main types of jointers:

1. The hand-held jointer is the most basic type. It consists of a blade set at a fixed angle that is pushed along the wood surface to create a smooth, even joint.

2. The benchtop jointer is a larger, more powerful version of the hand-held jointer. It is mounted on a table or workbench and has a blade that can be adjusted to different angles.

3. The stationary jointer is the most powerful and expensive type of jointer. It is usually found in commercial woodworking shops and is not typically used by hobbyists or DIYers.

How do you use a jointer?

A jointer is one of the first machines that you should buy for your woodworking shop. You can use it to square up stock, create faces that are straight and flat, and joint edges that are straight and true. Jointing the edges of your boards is an important first step in most woodworking projects, because it allows you to create miters and other joinery that would be impossible with warped or cupped lumber.

There are several different types of jointers on the market, but they all work in basically the same way. The biggest difference is in the size of the machine; some small benchtop models can only accommodate boards that are a few inches wide, while larger floor-standing models can handle boards up to 8 inches wide or more.

Most jointers have a cast-iron table that is flat and level. The table is supported by a set of columns, one in front and one in back. The front column has an adjustable fence on it, which you will use to guide your lumber through the machine. The back column has an adjustable height mechanism, which you will use to set the depth of cut for your jointer knives.

The heart of the jointer is its cutterhead; this is a cylindrical housing that contains a set of two or more spinning knives. As your board passes through the cutterhead, the knives remove small chips of wood from the surface to leave a smooth, level surface behind.

To use your jointer, start by setting the fence at 90 degrees to the table. Then, adjust the height of the cutterhead so that the knives protrude about 1/8 inch below the surface of your stock. Now you’re ready to begin jointing!

feed your stock into the machine at a consistent rate, using gentle pressure to keep it flat against the cutting surface of the fence. As your board exits the cutterhead, it should have a nice clean edge with 90-degree corners.

Jointer Uses

A jointer is a tool used in woodworking to create a flat surface on a piece of lumber. It is typically used to prepare lumber for use in other woodworking projects, such as creating a smooth, flat surface for gluing pieces of wood together. Jointers can also be used to create decorative patterns on the surface of wood.

Straighten boards

A jointer is a power tool that is used to create smooth, flat surfaces on boards of wood. The tool is also used to square up the boards, meaning that the boards will be the same width and thickness from one end to the other. This is an important step in woodworking, as it ensures that your finished product will be level and even.

One of the most common uses for a jointer is to straighten boards that may have been warped or bowed. By running the board through the jointer, you can remove any twists or bends in the wood, and create a surface that is perfectly level.

Another use for a jointer is to create beveled or chamfered edges on a board. This can be done by adjusting the cutter head on the jointer so that it only removes a small amount of material from the edge of the board. This is a great way to create decorative edges on furniture or other woodworking projects.

Flatten boards

One of the main uses for a woodworking jointer is to flatten the face of a board. If you start with a piece of lumber that’s bowed or cupped, it will be very difficult to get one flat side on it with a hand plane. A hand plane can only remove so much material at a time, so even if you’re patient, you’ll never get a completely flat surface this way.

However, a jointer can quickly remove enough material to flatten the face of the board in just a few passes. You’ll still need to use a hand plane or sandpaper to get an ultra-smooth surface, but using a jointer is the best way to get one flat side on your board.

Edge jointing

One of the main uses for a jointer is edge jointing, which is the process of making two pieces of wood flush along their edges. This is done by running one or both pieces of wood through the jointer with the face of the board against the jointer’s fence. The result is two boards with parallel, flush edges that can be glued together.

Edge jointing is especially important when making projects that require miters, such as picture frames, because it ensures that the miters will fit together perfectly. It’s also helpful for joining boards together end-to-end to create longer boards.

Another use for a jointer is surface jointing, which is the process of flattening one face of a board. This is done by running the face of the board against the jointer’s revolving cutter head, with the board’s edge held against the jointer’s fence. The result is a flat surface on one side of the board.

Surface jointing is important for creating flat surfaces on rough lumber that will be used for tables, countertops, and other projects where a smooth surface is required. It’s also helpful for preparing boards for edge jointing, as it ensures that both faces of the board are flush and level before they are joined together


Rabbeting is a woodworking operation in which the edge of a board is cut away to form a recess or notch. This is typically done to allow another board or piece of material to fit into the rabbet. Rabbets can be cut with hand tools or power tools, and they are a very common operation in woodworking.

There are many different types of rabbets, and they can be used for a variety of purposes. The most common type of rabbet is the stopped rabbet, which is cut into the edge of a board and then stopped before it goes all the way through. This type of rabbet is often used to create shelves or to join two boards together at right angles.

The through rabbet is another common type of rabbet, and it’s exactly what it sounds like — a cut that goes all the way through the thickness of the board. This type of rabbet is often used for drawer bottoms or for creating tabbed dividers.

Rabbets can also be blind, meaning that they don’t go all the way through the thickness of the board. Blind rabbets are often used to create secret compartments or hidden hinges.

No matter what type of rabbet you need to cut, there’s likely a tool that can help you do it. For simple stopped rabbets, a chisel can be used. For through rabbets or blind rabbets, you may need to use a router or other power tool.

Jointer Safety

A jointer is a woodworking machine used to create a flat surface along the length of a board. The board is fed into the jointer along an infeed table where a set of blades cuts away small pieces of wood. As the board moves through the jointer, the blades remove small pieces of wood until the desired surface is achieved.

Read the manual

Most woodworking machinery comes with a manual that contains safety information. Read it before using the machine. The manual will tell you how to set up the machine and use it properly. It will also explain the ways to avoid accidents.

If you are unsure about how to use a machine, ask someone who is experienced in woodworking. They will be able to show you how to use the machine safely. never use a machine without understanding how it works and what the potential risks are.

Use proper PPE

When operating a jointer, it is important to use the proper personal protective equipment (PPE). This includes safety goggles or glasses, ear protection, and a dust mask.

It is also important to dress properly. Do not wear loose clothing or jewelry that could get caught in the machine. Wear closed-toe shoes with non-slip soles.

Before starting the machine, clear away any clutter and make sure the area around the jointer is clean and unobstructed.

Keep the blades sharp

Use a sharpening stone to keep the blades of your jointer sharp. A jointer is a woodworking tool that is used to create a smooth, level surface on a piece of wood. If the blades on your jointer are not sharp, they will not be able to create a smooth surface on the wood.

Jointer Maintenance

Jointers are one of the most versatile tools in woodworking. They are primarily used for cutting and shaping wood. Jointers can also be used for other tasks such as planing, sanding, and even routing. In this article, we will be focusing on the maintenance of your jointer.

Cleaning the jointer

One of the most important aspects of jointer maintenance is keeping the machine clean. A build-up of sawdust and wood chips can cause the blades to lose their sharpness and the jointer to lose its effectiveness. Cleaning the jointer after every use will help to keep it in top condition and prevent any problems from arising.

To clean the jointer, first remove any loose debris from the surface with a brush or vacuum. Once the surface is clear, use a damp cloth to wipe down the table and blades, being careful not to touch the cutting edges. If there is a build-up of sawdust or wood chips on the blades, use a blunt knife or scraper to remove it. Be sure to unplug the jointer before cleaning or performing any maintenance tasks.

Adjusting the blades

One of the most important aspects of jointer maintenance is keeping the blades sharp and properly adjusted. The blades should be checked for sharpness regularly and replaced or resharpened as needed. You’ll also need to adjust the blades from time to time to ensure they are parallel to each other and positioned correctly in relation to the outfeed table.

To adjust the blades, first loosen the blade clamping screws and then use a feeler gauge to measure the gap between the blades and the outfeed table. The ideal gap is 1/8 inch (3.2 mm). If the gap is too small, the blades will rub against each other and produce a poor finish on your workpieces. If the gap is too large, the blades will not cut evenly, resulting in an uneven surface.

Once you have adjusted the blade gap, tighten the blade clamping screws and then use a sharpening stone or file to sharpen the blades. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when sharpening or replacing your jointer blades.

Replacing the blades

Most jointers come with two sets of blades, which can be rotated to extend their life. When it’s time to replace the blades, you’ll need to remove the guard and belts first. With the guard off, you should be able to see four bolts holding the blade holder in place. Remove these bolts and washers and lift out the holder.

The next thing you’ll need to do is remove the set screws that hold the blades in place. With the set screws removed, the blades can be lifted out of their slots. When installing new blades, be sure to put them in with the sharpened edge facing out. Then replace the set screws and tighten them down before reassembling the rest of the machine.

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