OT: Curiosity, no Japanese commerical woodworking equip. sold in the US?
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    Default OT: Curiosity, no Japanese commerical woodworking equip. sold in the US?

    More specifically: Sliding table saws, shapers/table routers, planers/thicknesser, sanders. Equipment to compete with the likes of Martin, Altendorf, SCM, Butfering, Timesaver,Griggio etc..
    Since the Japanese are huge in the machine tool business, I would have expected them to be dominant in the industrial/commerical woodworking segment too.

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    I can only think of CNC routers but Shoda and Hein both are well represented in the US market.

    Steve

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve in SoCal View Post
    I can only think of CNC routers but Shoda and Hein both are well represented in the US market.
    Heian, not Hein...but yeah, that's about all I can think of as well. I thought maybe the Maka mortiser was Japanese but it seems to be German. I suppose the little Hitachi resaw sold in the 1980's was Japanese. I suspect some of the "super surfacers" were Japanese (single knife planer) But can't recall ever seeing a proper Japanese sliding table saw or larger planer...only the little Hitachi stuff.

    It is interesting that the Italians had, and still have, such a major presence with the commercial woodworking machines. Why not Spain, for instance...why Italy ?

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    coming from that industry i can tell you that most woodworkers get more than enough precision and the level of quality they desire from the 'standard' stuff and when the higher end stuff is needed guys just turn to Festool, at least from an in the field perspective. Shop guys, cabinetmakers, caseworkers, etc. are usually a different animal. The woodworking industry isnt as involved with 'continuing ed' as we are so guys would seem to get stagnant with known and trusted manufacturers. My old foreman is still using the Hitachi 8.5" & 10" slide saws that i was using in the mid-late 90's, they do super high end reno, and sadly there is really no reason for him to upgrade.
    I would order Japanese and German stuff fairly regularly from diefenbacher tools out of Germany (no clue if they're still around) but it was mostly hand tools.

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    Regarding Italian machinery; it may have to do with the boat and ship building in Italy.

    Steve

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    Quote Originally Posted by vanguard cycle View Post
    coming from that industry i can tell you that most woodworkers get more than enough precision and the level of quality they desire from the 'standard' stuff and when the higher end stuff is needed guys just turn to Festool, at least from an in the field perspective. Shop guys, cabinetmakers, caseworkers, etc. are usually a different animal. The woodworking industry isnt as involved with 'continuing ed' as we are so guys would seem to get stagnant with known and trusted manufacturers. My old foreman is still using the Hitachi 8.5" & 10" slide saws that i was using in the mid-late 90's, they do super high end reno, and sadly there is really no reason for him to upgrade.
    I would order Japanese and German stuff fairly regularly from diefenbacher tools out of Germany (no clue if they're still around) but it was mostly hand tools.
    Back in the late 90s and early 00s, I noticed that Japanese hand pull saws attained a cult following. It seemed to be the in thing in fine woodworking. 'Course they might have been popular even back in the 80s, but I didn't pay much attention to woodworking magazines back then. I think to myself now, that if there was such a thing as a Hipster woodworker, they would be using said Japanese handsaw. My Hispter humour isn't meant to imply that Japanese pull type handsaws don't have practical benefits.

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    The basic style of Japanise machine is loosly based off the classic 2030. (or vice-versa)



    Makita, Hitachi, and others all make big stationary machines following the same outline. A single shaft powering the blade arbour, jointer and planer, with the jointer and planer having separate knifes.

    Like so.



    Very cool machines from a culture with centuries respect for carpentry. (If upon mostly conifiers).

    The saw is most frequently left handed.

    Completly different culture of woodworking.

    Rgds
    <jbc>
    .

    https://www.google.com/search?q=万能木工機+site:.jp

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spud View Post
    Back in the late 90s and early 00s, I noticed that Japanese hand pull saws attained a cult following. It seemed to be the in thing in fine woodworking. 'Course they might have been popular even back in the 80s, but I didn't pay much attention to woodworking magazines back then. I think to myself now, that if there was such a thing as a Hipster woodworker, they would be using said Japanese handsaw. My Hispter humour isn't meant to imply that Japanese pull type handsaws don't have practical benefits.
    ha! getting OT but...
    i was around when that was happening, you can thank (my hero) Mr. Norm Abrams for that one
    my boss and i were some of the first guys in town, that i knew of, to use those pull saws. Super handy for undercuts on knock down jambs and all kinds of uses in staircase building. I went as far as to make a special compartment under my bench that held the 4 i would regularly use. The rough carpenters, framers, siding/porch guys etc. were always intrigued by our set up and would come hang out with us and shoot the shit. Somehow a bet started that i couldn't cut through a 2 x 8 in under 20 seconds, and make it clean.. they would line up thinking it was some kind of trick and plop their $5's on my workbench only to be spanked by the power of a sharp well made Japanese or German pull saw. That tradition continued for years after and always got good laughs followed by a few "where can i get one of those!?". I still have most of mine and use them around the shop when i need to cut a dowel or something.
    those memories make me miss the old termite days of coming home covered in sawdust and smelling like oak.

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    Quote Originally Posted by <jbc> View Post

    Completly different culture of woodworking.
    Silly to follow up my own post, but here are some joint cutting machines '仕口加工機'







    Not much use for these in the U.S. of A.

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    It's been almost 20 years since I did serious woodworking. At the time, the Japanese offered in the US some premier heavy resaws, as well as the "super surfacer" power planes. One issue with the super surfacers was that they were designed for the Japanese market, and thus set up primarily for softwoods. They didn't work nearly as nicely on hardwoods requiring higher blade angles.

    Of course, various hand tools, too. Pull saws, chisels, water sharpening stones, ...

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    The japanese like to buy Japanese made tools, and they are willing to pay high dollar for them. And they do a very particular type of woodworking there- nowhere near as much particle board case goods as we do- instead, much more timber framing. The three joint cutting machines above are all more what we would call timber framing machines- and there are probably not more than a dozen shops in the whole USA that could see spending 20 or 30 grand for one of those, and my guess is that they cost in that price range.

    So, the Japanese make expensive specialized machines that do certain jobs very well, and they are mostly jobs we dont do.

    When you see japanese machine tools here, they are both more generic, and the result of a specific export oriented marketing campaign. Same thing with those little jointers and planers that Makita and Ryobi do sell here- more generic, and export engineered.

    In japan, you can still buy a new manual mill that is more like a K&T number 2 than a Bridgeport- but you will pay maybe fifty grand for it. And you can still buy a nice manual drill press that is much better made than a chinese import- for 2 to 4 thousand dollars. The japanese routinely pay these kinds of prices. We wont. We have been spoiled by low end chinese stuff, and the market here has either very inexpensive stuff, or full on CNC, and not much in between.

    Also, many japanese companies are quite small, and dont even think about export or marketing internationally. In Japan, where almost everything is a one day drive or less, a small company making, say, a really great timber notcher and miter cutting saw, can sell to every contractor in the entire country, with maybe ONE salesman. For them to ramp up and try to sell in the USA would be very expensive, with no real guarantee that a lot of their specialized stuff would appeal to our market.

    If you walk around the more industrial areas of Tokyo, you see lots of specialized woodworking shops, making shoji screens, or picture frames, or doorways, or wooden gravestone markers, or furniture, and all of them are tiny, with all japanese made little machines that are very nice, and very expensive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ries View Post
    The japanese like to buy Japanese made tools, and they are willing to pay high dollar for them.
    I don't agree, in most cases there are such high duties places on product that what you think might be high priced, might not be so...foreign products have had 200% duties on them.

    Much of the woodworking is done by hand. Not only is space limited but much of the woodworking is done by hand that is not modern dimensional construction, and even then the carpenters come from the "old school" in the sense of how they dress, tools they use, etc...modern construction is done with handheld power tools for the most part.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ries View Post
    So, the Japanese make expensive specialized machines that do certain jobs very well, and they are mostly jobs we dont do.
    Yes, exactly. The temple and shrines are all traditional timber frame, as is much of the doors and even the tatamis are still made by hand for the best one. The homes are much different, these days. They are all modern dimensional and concrete with steel. Nice places will get some traditional style joinery, but most residential doesn't these days. Again, most all of it is done with "light machinery". Think chop saws, cordless drills, circular saws, etc...the rest is done offsite and brought in finished. I'm sure there are some fair shops in Japan, but I saw few...most of those small shops you mention don't have much machinery. Some have small stuff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ries View Post
    If you walk around the more industrial areas of Tokyo, you see lots of specialized woodworking shops, making shoji screens, or picture frames, or doorways, or wooden gravestone markers, or furniture, and all of them are tiny, with all japanese made little machines that are very nice, and very expensive.
    Those areas will do most all the work for the areas, and Japan is very centralized in the sense of industries. All woodworking is done in a given area, music instruments sold in a given city, electronics in a city. The thing is that you don't see very much of that type of manufacturing using machines, in my experience. Things could have changed since I left, in the late 80s. I just think their woodworking needs are much different than the needs of other countries, which you also mention above.

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    Quote Originally Posted by <jbc> View Post



    Makita, Hitachi, and others all make big stationary machines following the same outline. A single shaft powering the blade arbour, jointer and planer, with the jointer and planer having separate knifes.

    Like so.



    Very cool machines from a culture with centuries respect for carpentry. (If upon mostly conifiers).
    That's the most impressive looking multi woodworking machine I've ever seen. Still a bit silly concept though, especially the tablesaw part...but man, what a nice looking heavy duty one...puts a Felder to shame.

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    Quote Originally Posted by traditional-tools View Post
    Those areas will do most all the work for the areas, and Japan is very centralized in the sense of industries.
    Nagasaki was known for its torpedos...was.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Milacron View Post
    That's the most impressive looking multi woodworking machine I've ever seen. Still a bit silly concept though, especially the tablesaw part...but man, what a nice looking heavy duty one...puts a Felder to shame.
    Heavy Duty is what I thought too , quite susbtantial and solid looking.

    The paner and jointer look quite capable , large enough to function like some standalone machines BUT that table saw looks woefully inadequate .

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    The best thickness planer I had ever seen was here on Vancouver Island, I will try and get a picture. Just beautifully made. It was brought over by a Japanese woodworker and sold off when he passed away, the machines were in storage for many years. Not sure of the makers name.
    I also know of a Japanese made square chisel morticer. Really, really nice on that one too, it was small but very capable with excellent well thought out features. I know where it is and can try and get a picture of it as well.
    I had not thought about those machines for a few years until I saw this thread and I have wondered why more of their excellent woodworking machines didn't make it over to North America. It appears that they did sell metalwork equipment as I have seen a few Japanese metal lathes etc...but why no big beefy cast iron woodworking machines?
    Some of the arguments against seem a bit farfetched, surely if you are a big enough company to make that Nishino multi machine then you are big enough to sell into North America. It is quite possibly more political than anything else.

    Looking forward to more info on this topic.

    Michael

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    Quote Originally Posted by Milacron View Post
    Still a bit silly concept though, especially the tablesaw part...but man, what a nice looking heavy duty one...puts a Felder to shame.
    Nothing silly about the jointer having its own blades. Completely superior to the european machines that run the jointer and planer off the same cutterhead.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spud View Post
    .. BUT that table saw looks woefully inadequate .
    These are not panelsaws, nor are they for crosscutting. The saw is for ripping and has the same power available as the planer. They will swing quite large diameter blades.

    The ideal companion saws for one of these would be a Streibig (and a Bäuerle PKS).




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    Quote Originally Posted by <jbc> View Post
    These are not panelsaws, nor are they for crosscuting. The saw is for ripping and has the same power available as the planer. They will swing quite large diameter blades.

    The ideal companion saws for one of these would be a Streibig (and a Bäuerle PKS).



    The blade does not tilt then? So the machine is made for truing up lumber and getting the desired dimension only?
    Were Japanese WW machines imported officially ? Are these (and other Japanese WW machines) very rare over there?
    Whats the machine in the background?


    Re. Bauerle, thats a radial arm saw?

    Graule is the ultimate radial arm saw? Spendy saws, been looking at their prices on Ebay.de from few years back.

    Ablängkreissägen, Gehrungskreissägen, Kappkreissäge, Gehrungskreissäge, Ausklinksägen, Ausklinkfräsen - Graule Maschinen GmbH

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spud View Post
    Re. Bauerle, thats a radial arm saw?

    graule is the ultimate radial arm saw? Spendy saws, been looking at their prices on Ebay.de from few years back.
    The Bäuerle is a Pendelkreissäge, or pendulum circular saw. They have a pantograf rather than slideways. They are quite a bit more powerful and robust than the Graule.
    Last edited by jCandlish; 08-18-2012 at 08:25 AM. Reason: xlation

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    Quote Originally Posted by <jbc> View Post
    These are not panelsaws, nor are they for crosscutting. The saw is for ripping and has the same power available as the planer. They will swing quite large diameter blades.
    Obviously, but still pretty limited in rip width possibilities and if running off the same motor as the planer then it must be tilting table for angle rips, which is downright dangerous compared to modern tilting blade saws. If no clutches to disengage planer and jointer you are also turning and wearing extra bearings for nothing compared to separate machines. Also, extra noise. The later model Felder's have separate motors and switches for most of the functions other than the jointer/planer.

    Re Euro planer/jointer combos, main advantage of using same cutterhead is the ability to make the machine more compact. Main disadvantage is you have to raise lower the jointer table depending on use. You also have to fit in place a separate dust hood for the planer if you have dust collection when changing from jointer to planer on the Euro designs.

    But if desperate to save room the Euro concept is ok. The Nishino in contrast saves very little room compared to simply having a seperate jointer sitting beside the planer, which is the way Martin planer/jointers are often arranged...nested together, but two separate machines.



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