..Kev

Triton Dual Dowel Machine

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Before anyone jumps on this bandwagon, take a look at this review.  There's actually 3 videos and in the third one he compares it against a Mafell which might seem a little unfair considering the price points.

To be honest, I had never considered one of these machines because I have the Domino but, a friend of mine asked me my thoughts on them so, started doing some looking.

 

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I couldn't make it through all the videos (too frustrated) and I am not an owner of this tool nor do I plan to buy one, but my goodness this guy drove me nuts. He spends the entire first video complaining about fit and finish and even starts to modify the tool without ever using it. Once he does use it in video 2, all the problems he complains about with the plunge action are absent. Instead he runs into issues of calibration and now apparently all his willingness to modify the tool is gone as he continues to use the tool in different ways to show how the obviously out of calibration tool performed. I get that he likes nice tools he apparently owns multiple ways to make this same loose tenon/dowel joint, but I also can't help but feel this was a pretty far from fair review. If I were to ever buy something like this I would want to see someone else's review first.

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Looks kinda underwhelming to me. Exactness is one of the reasons I went from a Lamello biscuit machine to the Domino.

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Other than a bit of speed, I'm not sure I understand the benefit of the duo-doweller over a simple drill guide. At least for a hobby shop.

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Marc had done a brief review on the last guild meeting.  A few of the comments he had were that it was hard to plunge, the fence had enough play in it that he would be nervous about how accurate it would be.  He used a scrap piece of walnut and on the first plunge he could smell the bits already burning, so he mentioned that you could not make on continuous plunge, that you would have to keep backing it out like you would with a drill bit.  He said the build quality reminded him of his DeWalt biscuit joiner.

 

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Looked at the first two Triton videos and started on the Mafell video until I looked at the price.

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33 minutes ago, mat60 said:

Looked at the first two Triton videos and started on the Mafell video until I looked at the price.

Yea, you could buy either Domino for that but, it is a nice machine.

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I found the video posted above really unfair. Maybe I'm the lucky one : mine is not that bad. It's definitely not a high quality tool like Festool, Mafell or Bosch (blue), but it's not in the same price range too. Comparison is a no sense.

I Bought this machine eight months ago. I've done several projects with it. I have to sharpen the bits one time because it started to be dull, but I had to work a lot with cheap melamine which contains stones, steel chips, and ruins any cutting tool quickly. Mine have a minimal play in the plunging part. Reading this topic, I measured 0.2mm in the groove. Actually, I did not worry about the play because the parts I joint remains dead flush, and the dowels are not loose. If the play starts to grow, I guess it's no big deal to shim it up. It would be unacceptable for a 1000€ Domino, but come on, this is a 150€ tool. What would you expect ?

I do not regret this buy. It was meant to help me for some kitchen cabinets bulk build only. Now that work is done, I'm still glad to have it on the shelf, and finally it helps a lot in the shop. The Triton TDJ600 is a pretty interesting machine IMO if you know how to build with dowels. Dowels are probably the cheapest floating joint : you can buy 1000 dowels for less than 20 bucks. Dowels can be very strong if you use enough dowels on a joint, forget 2 dowels per panel, Ikea alike. For the price of a biscuit jointer, you have a machine able to make pretty strong joints. The TDJ600 bits are at a distance of 32mm, so you can use it for System 32 holes. It took a few hours to organize the work flow with the Triton, but once you're used to it, you can work really fast. Surprisingly, my brushes are still good, I did not expect them to last that much on a so cheap tool.

What I don't like about th TDJ600 are limited to two points. First, the plunge spring is uselessly too hard. And if you do a long dowel drilling job, it's really some workout. Second, Triton do not provide spare 6mm dowels. Hopefully, the bits are the same kind as Mafell's which provides 6mm dowels, but around 30€ which is not cheap. I would probably buy Mafell's bit in the future. The provided 8mm is the right size for 25mm stock (1") but this is too thick for 18mm (3/4") boards. Working with hardwood, you will probably use 10mm dowels anyway, that's why I bought extra 10mm bits with the machine. I would like the Triton's bits to be a better quality, but once again, this is not an expensive tool, so you really can't complain about it. Fist price Skillsaws don't have premium blades too...

Is the Mafell better ? Sure ! But it's 10 times the price of the Triton. Would you buy a Domino or a dowel jointer ? Well, if the Mafell and the Festool are in the same price range, dowels is definitely much affordable. You can reduce the cost of dominoes by making them. But you won't do that with dowels, because they're really cheap. Is a domino much stronger ? Well not really. If you use enough dowels for a joint, and dowels of an appropriate dimension for the pieces to joint, I believe the strength is comparable.

Would I recommend this machine ? Well, the TDJ600 represents a good value for money, that's an argument. I've done some heavy duty jobs with it, and I believe you can expect it to last. Biscuits joiners helps for alignment, but cannot provide joints as strong as with dowels. Definitely. Actually, if you're looking for a jointing machine at reasonable price, I'm afraid this is the only machine in this price range. If you're a professional or if you're rich enough, buy the Mafell. If you don't use this kind of jointing machine often, or if that quality is good enough for your work, don't be afraid by the Triton, it will help you a lot. If, like me, you're a CNC mill user, the triton will be the perfect companion of your CNC to drill matching dowels along the edges. To me the Triton TDJ600 worth the price and do a decent job.

 

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38 minutes ago, bleedinblue said:

If I didn't have a Domino already, I'd probably get one though. 

I don't have a Domino but I still don't think this provides anything that I want.

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I am retired so taking the time do do mortise and tenon and other traditional joinery is no big deal.  I have a biscuit joiner that I use for alignment in panel glue ups.  I am happy with the process.

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9 hours ago, Jean [Fr] said:

What do you want exactly ?

What I don't want is what's in those videos.

I'm glad you got a decent machine and are happy with it.  In the end, that's all that counts.  However, if I were in the market for any of these machines, the issues pointed out in the videos would be very concerning!  I would definitely be expecting square and without alignment issues.  If I bought the machine and had these issues, it would be immediately returned.

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1 hour ago, TIODS said:

If I bought the machine and had these issues, it would be immediately returned.

Yep, you're right, I would have done the same. But the youtuber didn't.

Just few questions :
- if you had, like him, the DD40 and the Domino, would you be interested by a Triton ?
- Would you film Triton vs Mafell, then Triton vs Festool and avoid Mafell vs Festool ?

The TDJ600 is on the videos only to highlight the expensive machines.

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2 minutes ago, Jean [Fr] said:

Yep, you're right, I would have done the same. But the youtuber didn't.

Just few questions :
- if you had, like him, the DD40 and the Domino, would you be interested by a Triton ?
- Would you film Triton vs Mafell, then Triton vs Festool and avoid Mafell vs Festool ?

The TDJ600 is on the videos only to highlight the expensive machines.

No, I would have no interest in the tool at all.

However, if I were doing tool reviews, then yes, I would want the tool and compare it to all of them.  Yes, it's on the lower end of the price chart compared to all of them.  But, if it won't produce acceptable results then, any amount of money is wasted.

I've never watched this guys videos before and he may very well be a Triton hater but, he did point out legitimate issues with the tool.  

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38 minutes ago, TIODS said:

 

I've never watched this guys videos before and he may very well be a Triton hater but, he did point out legitimate issues with the tool.  

I watched these videos and I wouldn't buy based on this review, however he may have gotten a complete lemon.  I thought he mentioned he didn't own any Triton tools.  I have seen a bunch of his videos and he uses a fair amount of festool and other higher end brands.

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I had seen Marc's review of this before these videos and he always seems to give tools the benefit of the doubt and take into consideration the price.  I think he does a pretty fair job and he was kind of "Meh" on the tool.

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Hi members, I'm just wondering if anyone on the forum can confirm if the Mafell 800mm jig can be used with the Triton TDJ 600 Dowel jointer. 

I found DEWALT DW682K slightly better, which is currently cheaper than TDJ600

Replies appreciated, thanks

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4 hours ago, Serhij said:

Hi members, I'm just wondering if anyone on the forum can confirm if the Mafell 800mm jig can be used with the Triton TDJ 600 Dowel jointer. 

I found DEWALT DW682K slightly better, which is currently cheaper than TDJ600

Replies appreciated, thanks

Can't say about the Mafell vs. the Triton, but I can say that a dowel joint is different than a biscuit jointer. The biscuits really provide very little strength, and are most useful as alignment guides for glue-ups, not for strength. 

Also, based on the price I'm seeing for the Mafell, I think many here would guide you towards a comparably priced Domino joiner from Festool. 

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14 hours ago, Isaac said:

The biscuits really provide very little strength, and are most useful as alignment guides for glue-ups, not for strength. 

I strongly disagree with this. If biscuits are used properly, with plenty of glue applied to both the biscuit add slot, they make a very strong joint. Not as much as a mortice and tenon though. I've been using them on sheet good for over 25 years and they are an excellent solution. Breaking apart a joint results in destruction of the materials on both sides of the joint. I rarely use them for alignment and have occasionally used then in place of mortice and tenon and never had a failure.

Again, thorough gluing is key.

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9 hours ago, drzaius said:

I strongly disagree with this. If biscuits are used properly, with plenty of glue applied to both the biscuit add slot, they make a very strong joint. Not as much as a mortice and tenon though. I've been using them on sheet good for over 25 years and they are an excellent solution. Breaking apart a joint results in destruction of the materials on both sides of the joint. I rarely use them for alignment and have occasionally used then in place of mortice and tenon and never had a failure.

Again, thorough gluing is key.

Long joints between sheet materials is where biscuits are primarily used. Of course long joints like that are strong with just glue, so adding the biscuits won’t hurt. 

 Do you actually use biscuits for things like connecting the rails and stiles of a door frame? That seems like a really poor technique to me. The problem is the biscuits themselves have minimal strength and can be readily split by hand along the grain which coincides with the very same plane which will span between the two pieces of base material that are being joined. The same cannot be said for a dowel, domino, or mortise and tenon. 

 

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8 hours ago, Isaac said:

Long joints between sheet materials is where biscuits are primarily used. Of course long joints like that are strong with just glue, so adding the biscuits won’t hurt. 

 Do you actually use biscuits for things like connecting the rails and stiles of a door frame? That seems like a really poor technique to me. The problem is the biscuits themselves have minimal strength and can be readily split by hand along the grain which coincides with the very same plane which will span between the two pieces of base material that are being joined. The same cannot be said for a dowel, domino, or mortise and tenon. 

 

I've used them for apron to leg joints and had good luck. I broke one set of legs off but that wasn't because of biscuit failure. The glue didn't adhere to the wood and the whole thing pulled apart. I may have also been using that table improperly as a ladder and somehow got it up on 2 legs when my foot went through the top.

I feel biscuits get a bad rap. They aren't the best but they are better than end grain to long grain. Though there are a lot of elitist types out there that will do with nothing less than a piston fit M&T joint ... even thought that's not the best either so you gotta take the internet stuff with a grain of salt.

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1 hour ago, Chestnut said:

I've used them for apron to leg joints and had good luck. I broke one set of legs off but that wasn't because of biscuit failure. The glue didn't adhere to the wood and the whole thing pulled apart. I may have also been using that table improperly as a ladder and somehow got it up on 2 legs when my foot went through the top.

I feel biscuits get a bad rap. They aren't the best but they are better than end grain to long grain. Though there are a lot of elitist types out there that will do with nothing less than a piston fit M&T joint ... even thought that's not the best either so you gotta take the internet stuff with a grain of salt.

I don't think anyone would really argue they are better then having no connection at all save for glue. I also agree with a point that you often make that many of our connections do not get fully stressed, so many connections will probably suffice. That being said, most biscuits I have seen have the end grain running along the length (from tip to tip of the football, so to speak) or at something close to 45 degrees. For that reason, they are easily friable when folded and torn in half when bent along this axis. Unfortunately, that is the same axis, or close to the same axis, that coincides with the joint line. 

If you get the grain running perpendicular to the joint, you'd have a skinny, loose mortise and tenon, and I'd agree, that has the potential to be a fairly robust joint.  Alternatively, you can double up biscuits, which also increases the strength. but that also doubles the time invested.

Anyhow, I don't think this is just an internet thing, and it is certainly not a crazy Isaac thing. This is the consensus I've seen from established woodworking experts:

https://www.thewoodwhisperer.com/articles/are-biscuits-strong-enough/

So take it up with them I guess?

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5 minutes ago, Isaac said:

This is the consensus I've seen from established woodworking experts:

Doesn't Darrell Peart make alot of his furniture with biscuit joints? What kind of experts are we talking about? I respect Marc but i'm not sure i'd call him an expert on stuff like this, mostly because he claims not to be an expert. His words not mine.

I"m not saying that it's good by any means but does the term good enough when used properly enter, yes. Is it better than Walmart particle board with those awful cam locks? Yeah probably. Would i use them to make something with a very delicate design no. A lot of what woodworkers do is overkill to the extreme. Justify it how ever you want. 

I do find it interesting that he claims T&G is stronger.... i disagree with that. I'd call biscuits and T&G roughly equal in an end grain situation. There isn't a lot of glue area and the sides of the groove break off fairly easily.

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