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Mortising and Tenoning Machines: Frequently Asked Questions

Tenoning creates tenons, which are inserted into mortises to form mortise and tenon joints. Prized for their strength and aesthetics, mortise and tenon joints can be made using a variety of machines, including: jigs, table saws, tenoners, mortisers, or a machine that combines a tenoner and mortiser in one unit. If you are considering investing in a mortising and tenoning machine, but you have questions about its operation, applications, or specifications, the answers below can help:

Can tenons and mortises be produced simultaneously?

Yes. A mortising and tenoning machine can produce mortises on one side of the machine and tenons on the other side. The operator inserts the wood and monitors the production process, which can be controlled by computer. This type of machine is beneficial for companies producing a medium to high volume of mortise and tenon joints. Because it combines two machines (mortiser and tenoner) into a single machine footprint, it also beneficial for conserving floor space.

Are the machines available with CNC technology?

Yes. The machine described above is an example of a CNC mortising and tenoning machine. Most woodworkers upgrade to a CNC mortising and tenoning machine when the production demand for mortise and tenon joints cannot be met with other machines, such as wood boring machines, jigs, tenoners, mortisers, etc.

What types of joints can the machines produce?

Mortising and tenoning machines can produce four types of mortise and tenon joints, of which there are several varieties:

• Stopped – the tenon does not extend to the other side of the mortise.
• Through – the tenon extends to the other side of the mortise.
• Angle – an angled tenon fits inside a straight mortise, or vice versa.
• Shoulder – the width and thickness of the tenon is less than the rest of the work piece

Stopped joints and angle joints are commonly used in fine furniture. Through joints are commonly used in rustic furniture and outdoor wood products, such as swings and play sets. Shoulder joints can be used to hide imperfect joinery.

What is the price range for the machines?

The price of a mortising and tenoning machine depends on at least three things:

• Construction grade – hobby grade, mid grade, or industrial grade
• Technology – CNC technology or conventional technology
• Production capacity – low, medium, or high production

An industrial grade CNC mortising and tenoning machine has the highest price tag, which could easily reach the six-figure mark.

Is it sensible to buy the machines used?

Depending on its age, condition, and construction grade, buying a used mortise and tenon machine could be the best decision. An industrial grade machine that has an excellent maintenance record and at least a quarter of its projected lifespan remaining is an example of a machine that is worth buying used.

Conclusion

If you use wood boring machines, jigs, table saws or other tools to produce mortise and tenon joints, upgrading to a mortise and tenon machine can increase the number of joints you produce and improve their quality. To learn more about mortising and tenoning machines, contact RT Machine today.

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