Router Forums banner
1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've used my JessEm Master Lift II for some time. I realized when I first used it that the "Cam Lock" didn't lock anything; that is, if I think I know what it's supposed to lock.

The instruction manual reads, "To lock your lift, turn lift handle clockwise to the "LOCKED" position. To unlock your lift, turn lift handle counterclockwise to the "UNLOCKED" position.

Well, on my unit the arrow on the wheel turned by the lift handle never leaves the locked side of the top; that is, the arrow only moves (using an analogue clock face as an explanation) from about 12:15 PM to about 6:45 PM. And while turning the mechanism with the lift handle, I don't feel anything locking.

I've called JessEm multiple times, but they seem to always be "out to lunch!" Today, February 3 they still have their Holiday phone recording.

Can anyone offer some advise other than to keep on calling JessEm?

Oh, by the way, I installed the JessEm lift on a General cast iron top with the same plate opening dimensions as the JessEm top...and it didn't fit. I had to mill the top to make it fit. And I had to file the lift handle down to make it fit into its corresponding socket to lift and lower the router. Everything I hear about JessEm is not true...other than they have the worst customer service ever.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
508 Posts
Sorry to hear this - I’ve got the Rout-R-Lift II, their lighter built Bosch-specific model. I also had to route 1/16th of each edge of the phenolic base to fit it to the Bosch RA1181 table cavity, but other than that it has been fine. I wrote them an email suggesting a Bosch-specific model but haven’t heard anything, which I expected at least a ‘thanks, but no thanks’ at the very least.

I did learn that the lock on these rigs can be adjusted and a part may wear enough (a cam?) to need replacing but that’s only if you work it to death, I assume.

Build quality is there with no operating issues on my end, so it should be something you can fix, if they’ll just help you out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,589 Posts
Keep trying to get through. Eventually they will answer.

I have that lift, well the Incra branded version but it's the same mechanism. The lock "dial" doesn't turn that far past the divider between unlocked and locked but it definitely is locked. Also, it doesn't have a positive click when locking or unlocking, just kind of mushes into place. I'm very happy with mine, especially because of the Incra clean sweep plates that allow DC at the router bit.

Good luck and keep us informed of what happens.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,042 Posts
Jose sorry to hear your troubles but your experience is far different than mine in that while I have both the Mast-R-Lift II and Rout-R-Lift II they both have the same locking mechanism and it's clear when the far right wheel is turner to the lock position it is indeed locked. The resistance is clear and I believe it is turning a cam. Should e easy enough to see if you lift the plate with the lift attached off the table and look. As for getting them on the phone, it can be tricky but they don't answer the phone at lunch and you can leave a message otherwise. I have had occasion when it was difficult to contact them but always left a message and they got back to me.

Contact info:

Customer Service Hours
Monday - Friday
9 am - 4:30 pm. (EST)

(Please note we take lunch between 12pm - 12:30pm EST)

Telephone: (705) 726-8233
Fax: (705) 327-0295
Toll Free: 1-800-436-6799

General Inquiries: [email protected]

As mentioned above they are on EST time so take that into account.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, I figured out the "problem" with my JessEm Mast R Lift II cam locking mechanism thanks to a YouTube video of a guy from England having the same "problem" with the same lift, and tech support from Incra. Yes, I did mean Incra, and not JessEm.

The cam does lock, but it requires much more force to lock/unlock than I thought initially. So, I just put a bit more muscle into the turning of the provided long Allen wrench, and that fixed that.

Meanwhile, I learned that Incra is selling the JessEm lifts in their router tables, so I sent an email to Incra. Would you believe it that they responded within one day?

But the lock/unlock indicator was still pointing in the wrong direction. I emailed Incra explaining this, and I was informed that all I had to do was apply lots of pressure on the turning dial to move it to where it should be pointed. I did, and now everything is fine.

Oh, by the way, after I had all issues resolved I finally got a phone call from JessEm. I was polite, but JessEm was "too little, too late" to help me.

Conclusion: If you are going to buy a JessEm product, buy it from a reseller with better customer service.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,264 Posts
Oh, by the way, after I had all issues resolved I finally got a phone call from JessEm. I was polite, but JessEm was "too little, too late" to help me.

Conclusion: If you are going to buy a JessEm product, buy it from a reseller with better customer service.
glad ya got your table resolved...
as for JessEm CS/TS.. I or no one I know has ever had that kind of issues w/ them...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,589 Posts
That's good to hear. I think if some one is going to buy the MasteR Lift II, they should buy it from Incra. Not only because of better support but for the magna lock plates that don't need a special tool AND support clean sweep plates for better dust extraction. From JessM, it's a good lift, from Incra, it's a great lift. Perhaps the best out there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
508 Posts
So, does Incra modify the Jessem lift, or what? I don’t need to apply any heavy twist to the lock either. There is no dial to turn as the indicators are engraved in the top. Seems like a lot of trouble to get this lift working. Hope you have no further issues...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,589 Posts
So, does Incra modify the Jessem lift, or what?
Yes, the Incra version uses a different insert plate - magna lock, they call it. The insert plates are steel and there are little magnets in the base that hold them in place. To remove, you put any long tool (like the lift crank) in the hole and pop it off. No special tool needed. They have replacement plates (clean sweep) with holes that allow DC vacuum to pull the chips down. They have a shroud that you can put under the table that allows a DC hook up or you can build it into your router table like I did. Like I said earlier, it makes a good lift great. The DC is fantastic with it. They sell an upgrade plate, though it's > $100 so probably few takers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
508 Posts
Yes, the Incra version uses a different insert plate - magna lock, they call it. The insert plates are steel and there are little magnets in the base that hold them in place. To remove, you put any long tool (like the lift crank) in the hole and pop it off. No special tool needed. They have replacement plates (clean sweep) with holes that allow DC vacuum to pull the chips down. They have a shroud that you can put under the table that allows a DC hook up or you can build it into your router table like I did. Like I said earlier, it makes a good lift great. The DC is fantastic with it. They sell an upgrade plate, though it's > $100 so probably few takers.
The idea of a loose insert plate with a router motor turning 18,000 rpms kinda scares me. The shroud sounds great as my setup does not pull sawdust worth a hoot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,589 Posts
the plate isn't loose at all. the magnets hold it quite tight and it takes a very good pry to get it off. I'd guess at least 20 to 30 lbs of force. Plus, it's recessed so no lateral force could move it. 7 years of use and one has never come off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
205 Posts
Interesting thread, especially since Jessem is located an hour and some north of me/Toronto.
I am a proud Canuck and it upsets me when I hear a Canadian company not doing their thing......

I was at Incra / Taylor Design in Dallas, TX last week and got a tour of the place. Super nice folk, they are a small specialty design and precision manufacturing house with about 30 employees, a couple of CnC milling machines and some assembly areas. The extrusions are of their design but produced and anodized offsite. High standards for sure.

I recently purchased and rebuilt an older Jessem high end miter gauge and needed a missing part. They were very quick to answer the phone, put me thru to Patti and... voila, all done in about 10 minutes. Shipped out the following day and got the brass pin that was missing. Can't say a bad thing about that experience.

Have also been at the Woodpecker facility outside of Cleveland several times. Big, clean, impressive precision manufacturing......explains the price........along with dedicated friendly employees as well.

Have to think there was some explanation as to why you were treated poorly. Sorry to hear and please accept a Canadian apology on their behalf.

You also bring up a good point - the whole internet/Youtube video explanation of various things is so good now.....I recently couldn't re-assemble a Snap On ratchet I had disassembled and cleaned (after doing 5 other I have)......Garage Journal had a thread about this and magically I learned something without having to spend money for a service tool lol.

What a great time we all live in......
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,956 Posts
The idea of a loose insert plate with a router motor turning 18,000 rpms kinda scares me. The shroud sounds great as my setup does not pull sawdust worth a hoot.
Do you have DC both above and below the table? That is a must ,but router tables are a hard one to confine all the sawdust. Just about the time you think that you have done it, the next set up allows the chips to fly a different direction. I think making rabbets and dados are the hardest to contain, some people drill holes in the table top to pull the dust down, But I have found that is only a moderate solution as the chips find a way to fly.
Herb
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,264 Posts
The idea of a loose insert plate with a router motor turning 18,000 rpms kinda scares me. The shroud sounds great as my setup does not pull sawdust worth a hoot.
Have a look see on dust collection...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
508 Posts
Do you have DC both above and below the table? That is a must ,but router tables are a hard one to confine all the sawdust. Just about the time you think that you have done it, the next set up allows the chips to fly a different direction. I think making rabbets and dados are the hardest to contain, some people drill holes in the table top to pull the dust down, But I have found that is only a moderate solution as the chips find a way to fly.
Herb
Guess I’m fortunate in that the vacuum pulls debris off the table top and the rest just falls underneath my Bosch table, which holds it just fine for vacuum cleanup after cutting. Don’t have a dual vacuum of any kind so I’ll live with this, I guess.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top