Porter-Cable - Biscuit Joiner 557 - Fine Woodworking Tool Review
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Biscuit Joiner 557

Porter-Cable - Biscuit Joiner 557

Porter-Cable’s biscuit joiner features a micro height-adjustment knob and an adjustable-angle fence

$200 (As of 10/1/2006)

(15 user reviews) Write a Review

Editor Choice-Best Value

Editor's Review: Biscuit Joiners

by Gregory Burr

review date: October 1, 2006

This tool comes with an extra blade for cutting FF mini-biscuit slots. Changing the blade was easier than on most of the others and is described in the well-illustrated manual. The versatile fence reaches 135° and is easy to adjust to angles over 90°. The included thickness plate can be used to locate biscuits in the center of 1/2 in. stock. This tool is a bit larger and heavier than most, but it has comfortable handles. The dust port is sized to accept a 1-in. vacuum hose, which improved dust collection.

Also Reviewed by Roland Johnson, 10/1/2001

Woodworkers in the market for a biscuit joiner have many models from which to choose, so Fine Woodworking decided to test a dozen of them. Results showed that the features to look for include a comfortable handle; an easy-to-operate switch; an adjustable fence that works smoothly, offers good support, and adjusts for angles you need; a turret stop that adjusts for the biscuit sizes you use; and a grip system that keeps the tool from sliding.

The Porter-Cable scored well in the parallel test. It has a switch location that makes good sense. The fence pivots to 135° . A 2-in.-dia. blade is included for cutting smaller (#FF) biscuits.

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Editor Test Results:

Parallel Test Using fence: 0.005 in.; Using base: 0.001 in.
Noise Rating 96 dB (no load)

Manufacturer Specifications

Manufacturer Porter-Cable
Manufacturer's Web Site www.deltaportercable.com
Manufacturer's Phone Number 888-848-5175
Biscuit Sizes 0, 10, 20, D, M, FF
Fence Features Adjustable-angle fence: Yes
Amps 7.5 amps

The mechanism works smoothly, slots are cut at a consistent height and the extra small slot cutter that is supplied is particularly useful when joining smaller pieces. Overall, I am very satisfied with this machine.

Nice Smooth and Accurate. Nice to dial-in.Porter Cable has a winner in this machine.

This is one of the coolest tools I have in my shop. I have used several different brands of biscuit joiner but this one blew them away as far as accuracy, smoothness, and power.The ability to change the fence to an acute angle is the greatest thing for building boxes or cabinets with mitered corners....just hook it over the edge, there is no slippage, and the corners are incredibly tight even when dry fit.I highly recommend this tool. It sold me on Porter-Cable hand helds but see my review on the 891 router.

While the Lamello is a bit higher quality, for the price the Porter Cable is far and away the best value. If you have to have the best, for an extra $150 the Lamello is your tool.


This is my second biscuit joiner and I'm very impressed. It's easy to set up and the dust extraction using the shop vacuum attachment is far better than I expected.

Before buying this tool I was skeptical of biscuit joiners in general because I thought they were for making adequate rather than fine cabinetry. I now use this tool often, especially for panel glue-ups.I bought this biscuit jointer on the recommendation of a sales person. Not only did it have many extra features, but he said it was the most precise and well designed of the bunch. I haven't tried any other biscuit joiners, but I have been impressed by the fit and finish of this tool. The cuts are repeatable and there is little or no slop in the adjustments. I'm impressed.

The best biscuit joiner I have ever used

This is the only biscuit joiner I have owned or used. It's been wonderful. One of the best thing you can say about a new tool is that there are no unpleasant surprises, only happy ones. The only drawback I've found is that chip collection is miserable. It's easier for me to wear a mask and leave the chute open. It's the only way I've found for it not to clog, save tying it to a vacuum hose and making it cumbersome. If given the opportunity to choose again, I'd make the same one.

It lives up to its reputation!

I have had this machine for 3 Years and it has never missed a beat, I had a Makita before this, but the switch location is much better positioned on this machine, and a better fence system.Also unless the Makita was connect to a dust collector it would clogg up every 2 cuts which this machine does not do, I also use the small blade with the FF biscuits for face frames. Overall an excellent machine and one I would certainly buy again

Great tool had it for 5 years. The only problem was the screw holding the blade in place, seemed to be jammed, I had to soak the screw for three days to loosen it up. Other than that a very good, easy to use, well thought out product.The best!ss


I have had this joiner for about five years, it has worked very well, alignment is a snap, biscuits fit tight. I like the micro adjustment and the joiner fits nicely in my hand. I have had no reliability problems, would purchase this again. Gary

I have had two other Biscuit Joiners - Ryobi and Dewalt - while the Dewalt has similar qualities - I found the micro-adjustment on the Porter Cable much easier to use right out of the box. The construction of the tool far exceeds the other two joiners that I wasted time and money on.

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