The Editors Mailbox

The Editors Mailbox

A man and his jointer

comments (0) March 5th, 2009 in blogs

MKenney Matthew Kenney, senior editor
thumbs up 16 users recommend

This beauty is a beast. Dont let the beauty of this 16 in. Oliver jointer fool you, it is one beastly machine. It does its job and does it well.
If only this were me. In my opinion Tony is one lucky guy to have this jointer. It has 16 in. knives, and a deck big enough to land planes on it.
This beauty is a beast. Dont let the beauty of this 16 in. Oliver jointer fool you, it is one beastly machine. It does its job and does it well. - CLICK TO ENLARGE

This beauty is a beast. Don't let the beauty of this 16 in. Oliver jointer fool you, it is one beastly machine. It does its job and does it well.

Photo: Matt Kenney

As an editor at Fine Woodworking, I travel a fair amount to take photos for the articles I edit. And let me tell you, I've come across some quirky (but cool) things, and some down right odd ones. I am still a bit floored, but also charmed, by the fact that a parking garage is called a parking ramp in Minnesota. And I'll never forget the bacon topped doughnut I saw in Louisville. But every now and then you come across something that is near transcendent. I found such a thing in Pennsylvania this week.

Tony O'Malley is a cabinet and furnituremaker. He has a great shop. It is large (around 4,000 sq. ft.), with high ceilings, more natural light than south Florida, and some great tools. I'm a sucker for Martin sliding tablesaws, and Tony has a great one. But the biggest treat by far, at least for me, was his 16 in. Oliver jointer. It is a true beauty.

I love old woodworking machines. They were, by and large, made entirely of cast iron. Big heavy brutes indeed. They were made to last, and many are still in use today. But best of all is their style. They have beautiful curves and lines. They seem almost to be unique individuals.

Tony's jointer is a perfect example of that style. It is a gorgeous machine. That's all I can say.

Well, perhaps I should also mention that it runs beautifully. When he was using it, I could barely hear the motor or knives. And what I did hear sounded like the siren call of a beautiful temptress. If only I had three phase power in my garage! I'd find one for myself.



posted in: blogs, woodworking, Jointer, Machines


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