JessEm Mast-R-Lift ll question - Router Forums
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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 01:32 PM Thread Starter
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Default JessEm Mast-R-Lift ll question

I recently purchased a JessEm Mast-R-Lift 2 and I was surprised when I opened the box and the surface of the router plate seemed (to me) very different than any of the JessEm lifts I had seen online. I had spent a lot of time researching before buying and I had looked online at lots of images and as many videos as I could find. In every instance the router plate appeared to be smooth and black. Some images were not excellent, but many of them were well-lit and I could examine the plate quite closely. The plate on the router lift that was sent to me had a series of approx. 2" wide "stripes" running vertically across the surface of the plate. They were obviously formed by some kind of milling/buffing operation. I got in touch with JessEm and they assured me that all of the plates look this way. I went back and searched for ONE image that resembled mine, but I couldn't. I wasn't that concerned about the cosmetics of the plate, but the thing that seemed very strange to me was that if I ran a finger across the plate (and across the "stripes") it actually tracked kind of like a needle on a record and wanted to veer slightly every time it met a new stripe. Of course it was subtle, but it seemed very strange that the work surface of a power tool would have any effect at all on an object passing across it. If I lightly pushed a piece of wood lightly across the plate it would also tend to "wave" back and forth slightly according to the pattern. I am curious to what others think. Are their JessEm plates the same as mine? I realize that it might seem I'm being fussy or difficult, but I can't get over the fact that I can't seem to find a plate that looks like mine as hard as I try. Any thoughts/comments? thanks
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 02:11 PM
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after a few uses that plate will look a whole lot different...
more like you have been using your tool...

you will clean and wax the plate before use and periodically there after I trust...

This would have been the week that I'd have finished chewing thru the restraints...
If only new layers hadn't been added....

Stick....
Forget the primal scream, just ROAR!!!
"SNORK Mountain Congressional Library and Taxidermy”
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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 06:50 PM Thread Starter
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...I'm not so sure that the plate will be much different after use. The "buffing" marks I'm talking about are not on the surface. They are "baked in" to the plate. I don't think they will wear off, we'll see. As for cleaning and waxing the plate-in a way that's exactly why I thought it so strange that JessEm would sell a plate that had surface marks that can actually influence the travel (I admit, very superficially) of the workpiece. A lot of people put time, effort and $ into reducing friction on a work surface and the way JessEm machined this router plate they increased the friction!
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 10:17 PM
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Those almost look like CenterLine scribes for centering the plate in the table.

Herb
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 10:21 PM
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wow!!!

This would have been the week that I'd have finished chewing thru the restraints...
If only new layers hadn't been added....

Stick....
Forget the primal scream, just ROAR!!!
"SNORK Mountain Congressional Library and Taxidermy”
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 10:39 PM
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Return it. A brand new router plate should arrive absolutely flat and in perfect condition.. And, you will never quite trust the thing.

You might also consider getting a Triton TRA001 router, which has a built in lift and probably costs less than the lift you are unhappy with. I had a lift, but got rid of it and went with the Triton and a WoodPecker's aluminum plate, which is overpriced, but very nice because of its twist lock inserts, which can be ordered in any number of opening sizes. I don't know what you paid for the JessEm, but the Triton is about $289 on Amazon, and a Bench dog plate is about $45. The JessEm on Amazon is about $345.

The Triton TRA001 is a terrific table router so I retired my 1617 to hand held use. No regrets and I like how powerful it is. My thoughts on the matter at any rate.

The more I do, the less I accomplish.
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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 11:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertRatTom View Post
Return it. A brand new router plate should arrive absolutely flat and in perfect condition.. And, you will never quite trust the thing.

You might also consider getting a Triton TRA001 router, which has a built in lift and probably costs less than the lift you are unhappy with. I had a lift, but got rid of it and went with the Triton and a WoodPecker's aluminum plate, which is overpriced, but very nice because of its twist lock inserts, which can be ordered in any number of opening sizes. I don't know what you paid for the JessEm, but the Triton is about $289 on Amazon, and a Bench dog plate is about $45. The JessEm on Amazon is about $345.

The Triton TRA001 is a terrific table router so I retired my 1617 to hand held use. No regrets and I like how powerful it is. My thoughts on the matter at any rate.
And I thank you Tom for the lift, I use it every day.

Herb
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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-08-2016, 10:48 AM
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@matsyl great pictures!

  • Accident free since 10/27/12 at 3:58 pm.
  • Cursing free since 10/27/12 at 3:59 pm.
  • ...it happened in Everett, WA USA
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-08-2016, 03:53 PM
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I have a MRLII. It did not have those marks out of the box and does not have them now. You are paying premium $$ for that lift, expect perfect.
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Measure twice, cut once and CROSS OUT THE WRONG MARKS.

Visit my shop website.
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 05-08-2016, 07:41 PM
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Same as Phil here, I also have the MRLII and it's very smooth. I can see the large bands you show in the first photo (I see more than 4 in the photo), but the surface is very smooth. Send it back.

Rob
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