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How to Buy a Mortising Machine

10 min read


Mortising Machines for DIYers Table

A mortising machine is a great tool for any DIYer.

It lets you drill angled, precise holes into wood quickly and easily.

That can come in handy for a variety of projects, from creating precise joinery to fancy wood projects like boxes.

Benefit Description
Ease of use Quickly create angled, precise holes into wood
Versatility Great for a variety of projects & wood working
Precision Creates and maintains clean and precise joinery
Efficiency Drills faster than other methods

Defining the Mortising Machine

A mortising machine is a special tool used in woodworking that creates holes of a specific size and shape.

With its powerful drill bit, it carves along the grain of the wood to create a rectangular hole.

It is often used to attach hinges and locks to doors and furniture.

Mortising machines are used in many places including homes, workshops, and large construction sites.

The machine can help save time and create the perfect mortise every time.

Mortising machines come in different shapes and sizes, and they are often powered by electricity or compressed air.

Our Goal

Our goal is to help you find the right mortising machine to fit your needs as a do-it-yourselfer.

We’ll show you what to look for when shopping for one and teach you how to use it effectively.

You’ll learn about different types of mortising machines so you can select the one that suits your individual project needs.

With the right machine, you’ll be able to take your home-improvement projects to the next level and create something beautiful.

What Sets Mortising Machines Apart


Mortising machines offer many great advantages over other types of tools.

For one, they provide a higher level of accuracy and precision that can’t be obtained with a generic tool.

They can also create a much smoother finish than what manual tools can achieve.

You also don’t have to worry about your cuts being too deep or having too much waste.

Mortising machines also reduce the risk of error in the shop by allowing you to quickly and accurately adjust and cut angles and depths.

Additionally, they are quicker than manual tools and can help increase productivity.

All in all, the advantages of using a mortising machine make them a great choice for any shop.

How Mortising Machines Work

Mortising machines are special tools that cut a rectangular hole called a mortise into woodwork.

They use a powerful drill bit to bore out the hollow space while two chisels cut away the sides.

This allows you to create strong joints to attach two pieces together, making the entire structure much more durable.

Mortising machines work by feeding the drill bit and chisels into the wood at an angle and at a consistent, steady rate to ensure precision.

They also feature adjustable settings that allow you to adjust the depth, width, and angle of the hole depending on your needs.

This makes mortising machines incredibly precise and reliable.

Features to Look For

When shopping for a mortising machine, there are certain features you should look for.

It can be beneficial to get a machine with an adjustable variable speed, as this allows the user to adjust the rotational speed of the chisel.

The table should have a sturdy construction, with slots to accurately position the workpiece.

Look for a machine with a rack-and-pinion head and side-lock system for fast, smooth operation.

Make sure it also has a locking handle for precise depth control.

Finally, look for a machine that uses a depth stop or toggle clamp to control the depth of the mortise.

These features will ensure your mortising machine is reliable and long-lasting.

When to Use a Mortising Machine

Common Applications

A mortising machine is commonly used for making joints for furniture, cabinetry, and frames.

It can also be utilized for creating hinges, and repairing damaged wood pieces.

It is also used in the construction of window frames, doors, and other items that require mortises.

Mortising machines are used to create precise holes in thicker pieces of wood, making it easier to assemble and connect pieces together.

The machine makes precise and accurate cuts with ease, allowing you to save time and energy.

Mortising machines are a great addition to any woodworking shop, giving you professional and perfect results.

Mortising Machines In Your Workshop

Adding a mortising machine to your home workshop can bring great versatility and convenience to your projects.

Drilling holes for dowels, tenons, and other joinery techniques made easy with a handheld drill can be sped up and made more precise when you use a mortising machine.

With the ability to make a wide variety of mortise and tenon joinery, you can make fine furniture and cabinetry faster than ever before.

Mortising machines also work great in combination with biscuit joiners to create very tight and sturdy joints.

Also, when used properly, you can make decorative cutouts on your projects.

So bring the mortising machine to your workshop and see what you can do!

Techniques and Tips

Mortising machines can be tricky to use if you aren’t familiar with carpentry equipment.

Here are a few tips to get the most out of your machine.

Before you start, be sure that all the machine’s fasteners are tight.

Mark the wood with a pencil so you know where the machine will have to cut.

Make sure the router bit you are using is adjusted correctly.

Test the machine’s speed to make sure you won’t be overcutting.

When you are ready to get started, keep your hands and other body parts away from the cutting area.

Wear protective eyewear and a dust mask to protect yourself.

Adjust the depth of the mortise according to your needs.

Monitor the cutting process, and stop if you notice any inconsistencies.

Once you have finished, check for accuracy and brush away any leftovers.

Following these techniques and tips can help make mortising faster and easier.

What To Look For In A Mortising Machine

Mortising Machine Options

Mortising machines let you cut mortises easily and quickly.

There are several different types of mortising machines available, from upright, bench-top, and portable models to specialized models for mall-making and pattern-cutting tasks.

Each one has its own advantages and drawbacks.

You should decide what kind of mortising tasks you will be doing before deciding which style of machine is best for you.

Some tips to start off with are to choose a mortising machine with a powerful motor, as this will help you make cleaner, more precise cuts.

Also consider if your machine will have a variable speed—if you need to make a lot of cuts quickly, this is a must-have.

Finally, remember to check what type of bit you need for your project—many mortising machines come with interchangeable bits, but you don’t want to buy a machine that won’t work with the type of bit needed.

Choosing the Right Mortising Machine

When buying a mortising machine, there are some key considerations.

Firstly, consider the size and power you need.

If you’re doing a larger project, like making many mortises, you’ll want a more powerful one.

Secondly, think about the type of mortising machine you need.

Stationary models are typically more powerful than benchtop models.

Thirdly, figure out how you are going to control the machine.

Will you use a foot pedal or an electronic switch? Finally, look for features like easy depth stops and adjustable fences.

These can make your mortising job go smoothly and quickly.

Do your research to make sure you get the right machine for you.

Brand Reliability

When it comes to shopping for a mortising machine, many shoppers look to brands for quality assurance.

Popular brands that are reliable are Delta, Jet, Powermatic, Rikon, and Shop Fox.

Delta is one of the leading companies in the power tool industry and their unique range of mortising machines is some of the most durable.

Jet, which has almost a century of experience in the power tool market, is a great choice for sturdy, hard-wearing mortisers.

Powermatic has been a standard in machinery for over a hundred years and with a mortising machine from this company, you’ll get top-quality results.

Rikon and Shop Fox are also reliable brands known for their comprehensive and lasting mortising machines.

With any of these brands, shoppers can depend on machines built for durability.

Safety Measures and Precautions


When buying a mortising machine, it is important to consider the troubleshooting process.

Common problems with these machines include jamming of the spindle, knocking of the parts, botched drilling and alignment of parts, and incorrect settings for power and speed.

To fix these issues, it’s advised to check that all parts are properly mounted and lubricated.

Additionally, make sure drilling is done at the right speed and setting.

If there’s too much resistance on the spinning parts, adjust the lubrication system to reduce friction.

Finally, check the settings of the power and speed to ensure they are correct.

With proper troubleshooting and maintenance, your machine should work as expected.

Maintenance and Upkeep

It’s important to keep your mortising machine running smoothly.

To do this, regularly inspect the saw blade for wear and damage.

Change the blade if it has become dull or has started to show signs of excessive wear.

Check the power cord for any extreme wear or cracks, and make sure it’s firmly connected to the power supply.

Remove any dust or debris from the moving parts, and if necessary, use a machine oil to lubricate them.

Tighten any bolts that have become loose and examine all the parts of the machine for any damage.

Lastly, always unplug the machine before you make any changes or adjustments.

Following this routine maintenance will ensure maximum performance from your machine.

Staying Safe

When buying and using a mortising machine, it is important to keep safety in mind.

Wear safety glasses and hearing protection to protect your eyes and ears.

Wear sturdy shoes and tie back long hair.

Make sure the work environment has good lighting.

Use a dust mask if there is excessive sawdust.

Use the proper drill bit for your task.

When starting the machine, always stand to the side and step away until the blade stops spinning.

When using the machine, keep your hands away from the rotating blade and make sure your clothing is securely fastened.

Always unplug the machine when not in use and be sure to keep the work area clean and free of debris.


Buying Your Mortising Machine

When shopping for a mortising machine, make sure to think about the features you need and the product’s overall value.

Consider the size, weight, speed, model type, and material and construction quality.

Don’t forget to factor in what you need the machine for, as well as its budget.

Research different brands and models online and read customer reviews.

Check the warranty coverage and customer support options.

Think about whether you’ll need additional attachments and if the machine is compatible with any of them.

Be aware of any special features the machine might have.

Finally, prioritize safety features and make sure the machine meets all local safety codes.

All of these factors can help ensure you’re getting the best mortising machine for the job.

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