If you’re looking for a lightweight benchtop jointer that won’t let you down in terms of finish or pace, you might want to road test this RIKON.
We’ve attempted today to bring you a broad spread of jointers so there’s something for all needs and budgets. If you have a limited amount to spend but want a solid and dependable jointer capable of a very smooth finish, read on to see if the RIKON 20-600H might be the perfect solution…
Benchtop jointers are a space-saving solution if you want to plane boards without spending a fortune on a hulking machine that’s awkward to house in the workshop. Even by the standards of 6-inch benchtops, the RIKON is extremely compact. While your scope of work will be limited, the 20-600H will take up remarkably little space while delivering a wonderful finish.
In common with all 6-inch benchtop jointers, you’ll get a maximum depth of cut of 1/8 inch.
The 10-amp motor will spin the cutterhead at a pacey 11,000RPM. It’s a helical cutterhead with 6 rows of high-speed steel inserts. This design will impart a smooth finish and the nature of the layout is helpful in another way beyond speed and smoothness…
The inserts are sharpened on both edges which effectively doubles their lifespan. All you need to do in the event of wear or damage is to rotate it and reveal the fresh edge rather than replacing it. When it is time to swap them out completely, you can access the blade with ease. Also, the nifty inserts are auto-indexed so they don’t need the same height adjustments as cutterheads with straight knives call for.
The 30-inch table gives you more wiggle room than many small jointer tables so you’ll be all set for most normal home woodworking without feeling cramped.
You can adjust the fence from 90 degrees to 135 degrees. This measures 19 ¾ inches by 4 3/8 inches so it’s fairly substantial and offers reasonable support.
Depth setting is child’s play and the scale is clear and easy to read,
Dust collection leaves something to be desired. The wood chips tend to accumulate quite rapidly so you’re well advised to hook up the RIKON to a shop vac if you want a safe, debris-free working environment.
Thinking of safety, there’s a handy On/Off switch within easy reach at the front so you can conveniently kill the power in the event of an emergency without fumbling around.
Amazingly for a machine at this price point, you’ll get a class-leading 5-year warranty. This is comforting and something you’d expect only on more expensive jointers. You’ll also get some push blocks and hex wrenches thrown in which might not seem like much but it’s a nice and unexpected touch.
A couple of things to be aware of with the RIKON…
Any kind of adjustment function is to some degree a matter of personal preference. While many users are completely content with the way you fine-tune the fence, others berate it for being fiddly and awkward to manipulate.
Another point worth making is that there are only 2 blades per channel which some users have found rather underwhelming. In our opinion, performance is more than acceptable for an inexpensive and compact jointer so, again, make your own mind up with regard to this.
Overall, the minor bugbears are more than compensated for by a reliable jointer that’s ideal for the hobbyist and devoted home woodworker alike.