Building A 12 Inch Jointer Homemade Machines & Jigs

I started this project back in October of last year with the idea that I could work on when I had the time, between other projects. I just finished building it, so I figured I’d put together this article to organize the videos that I made that cover the progress.

In this first video, I machine down the end of the cutter head that came from my old thickness planer to accept a standard size V pulley:

After the shaft was the right size, I had to make a key from a piece of steel to lock the pulley onto the end of the cutter head. The bearing on the end was sound dry, so I heated it up and worked some oil into it to reactivate (hopefully) the grease that was in there:

Next operation is to make the bearing blocks for each end of the cutter head. These were made from flat steel and hard maple and will be bolted down to the structure of the jointer:

In this one I decide on the motor I will use for the jointer, looking at two of the bigger ones that I have. I also get started on the structure of the jointer by making the two main side rails from plywood:

I added threaded studs to the side panels to mount the bearing block in this video. I also show the plan I have drawn up for the jointer to this point and go over some of the details:

With the cutter head temporarily installed on the side rails, I added a panel to the bottom to mount the motor:

The cutter head is permanently installed in this video, and hardwood blocks are added to lock those in place on the side panels. I made the outfeed table next and got that put in place:

I cut out the steel top for the outfeed table in this one. I also add the adjustment bars to the sides of the outfeed table to accurately position it:

Next, I build the infeed table after adding some critical bracing to the frame of the jointer:

It’s now four months later and I talk about the problems that have slowed the project down, in particular the steel tops and how they are not flat enough. I also start up and use the jointer for the first time:

In this final build video, I add the power cord, switch and the belt guard. I also make and install the fence:

The jointer is now finished, but I may make some improvements to it in the future and will add any updates to this article as they happen.

If you are interested, a SketchUp model is available for my original design:

12″ Jointer

You will need to have SketchUp installed on you computer to view the model. Note that it is just a model, not a full plan.