Graphical Construction Glossary >> Woodwork. >> Power Tools >> Biscuit Jointer
As far as I know Lamello invented these machines, they were the first and there are many more other manufacturers making them now. When I bought my old Lamello Top above it was considered a very expensive machine for such a small item. So why did cabinet makers all over the word buy them?
This is a tool that has made the modern frameless cabinet easy to build. The use of MDF sheets with or without melamine faces changed cabinetmaking forever. The change from building cabinets with a wooden frame with plywood or panel inserts required quite a few innovations.
It needed new hinge systems and other hardware and it needed a good way of joining the sheets. The biscuit jointer does just that.
This jointing system is accurate and the assembled joints are perfect, but unlike systems that use dowel joints there is a sideways tolerance built in. There is no need for absolute accuracy across the depth of the panel. This makes for faster machining and faster assembly
The blade is TCT and it is exactly the right thickness to suit the biscuits. The biscuits are mass produced out of a very dense composite wood fibre. They are strong and take to glue well.
The normal position for the blade is retracted and the operation is to place the machine in position and then press on the body slowly and the cutter moves into the work
From the photo above it can be seen that the machine makes a slot in the shape of a segment of a circle. When the machine is set correctly it makes a wider cut than the biscuit is long making it possible to move and adjust the alignment of the faces of the panels as they are being assembled.
The system is well thought out and there are many possible adjustments that can be made for the position and type of joint and also the thickness of the board. All the modern jointers have similar specifications. Here are the main ones:-
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"When we build, let us think that we build for ever."John Ruskin 1819-1900
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