I spent a little time with the Jet “10 Jointer-Planer last night. To make sure the blades are aligned, you first take off the front panel, then turn the pulley so the blade’s edge reaches its highest point. Taking off the panel revealed that one of the main gears is made of plastic. That wasn’t great to see, but I'm ok with it. It’s one of those things you should expect from such an inexpensive machine.
With the blades set, I installed the dust chute. It has a microswitch that won’t let the machine turn on unless the chute is installed. It took me a while to figure out how to attach the dust chute but that was because I didn’t read the instructions. Duh! After reading them, it was very easy to do and I can see that changing the chute from jointer position to planer position will be very easy.
With everything set up, it was finally time to turn the thing on. I grabbed a rough piece of butternut for the first test because butternut starts off very fuzzy but is very easy to work. I set the table height to a very shallow cut. The first time through was very smooth. The second one took a bit more effort than I expected, but nothing crazy. After three passes, the butternut was completely clean and flat over the whole length. There was a little tear-out over some particularly gnarly spots, but not a big deal. I have a jointer!
My next task will be to install the planer outfeed table. I think I’ll save myself 20 minutes and read the instructions this time! Then I’ll run some tests to see how the planer works. My wife wasn’t home when I tested the jointer last night, so I don’t know how loud it was in the house. The cats were totally relaxed (maybe too relaxed), so that’s a good sign.