As your woodworking skills improve, so does your need for high-quality, specialist tools.
A biscuit joiner (or plate joiner) isn’t an essential woodworking tool but it will certainly help you get the job done with speed and precision. Any woodworker worth his salt will almost definitely have one of these tools in his workshop.
A biscuit joiner’s function is to hold two pieces of wood together by using a combination of wood biscuits and glue. The biscuit joiner makes an internal plunge in the wood, which the wooden biscuits will fit inside, making a seamless and secure join that looks fantastic.
They are commonly used for jobs such as:
1. Creating Tabletops – great for attaching boards in a side by side fashion, in a way that looks slick and professional.
2. Working with Corners – a very common use in the woodworking game. Whether you are working with drawers, cabinets, frames, or more – you are going to come across corners. Biscuit joiners make joining these corners much easier and neater, giving your project greater support and stability.
Making sure you have the right biscuit joiner for the job is going to save you a lot of time, money and headaches. With that in mind, we’ve compiled this list of the top biscuit joiners available on today’s market. Keep reading for our in-depth reviews and recommendations, as well as our handy buying guide and frequently asked questions section at the end of the list.
And as usual, for those short on time, here’s a quick run-through of our top 3 picks when it comes to the best biscuit joiners available for you to purchase.
One of the best biscuit joiners available on today’s market. The hugely popular and highly rated DF500Q, made by one of the world’s leading power tool manufacturers is designed to get the job done fast and with precision. A favorite among professional contractors and DIY enthusiasts across the globe.
Top Value Pick
DeWalt DW682K Plate Joiner Tool
This Dewalt plate joiner is our top pick when it comes to value for money. Cheaper than equivalent models from other brands, the DW682K is a powerful and precise tool built by industry leaders DeWalt. A top choice among home renovators, DIY enthusiasts, and professional craftsmen.
Top Budget Pick
Gino Development 01-0102 Biscuit Plate Joiner
A powerful joiner for under 100 bucks, this biscuit joiner is sturdy and reliable. Everything you need in a basic biscuit joiner. Perfect for beginners and DIY enthusiasts.
Best Biscuit Joiners with Reviews
- Motor: 420 Watts
- Dimensions: 15.5 x 11.5 x 6.4 inches
- Weight: 13.3 lbs
- Included: Domino DF 500-Plus Joiner, cutter D 5mm, operating tool, T-LOC Systainer #2 storage container, support bracket, trim stop, plug-it power cord, and cross stop
- Warranty: 3 year limited
– Accurate and efficient cutting
– Choice of 5 mortising depths
– Rotating and oscillating spiral cutter
– Create angled mortises from zero to ninety degrees
– Vac not included
– Kit doesn’t come with sample tenons but are available for purchase
The Festool Domino Joiner really is ahead of the game when compared to other competitors. This top-quality tool allows users to experience the revolutionary Festool cutting method which creates mortises that can be used for Beech and Sipo tenons – also referred to as Dominos. This is a simple process that is accurate, smooth, and fast. Helping you to get this part of the job done in no time and focus on other important aspects.
The Domino system allows you to improve efficiency by performing a repetitive job in less time. It also features quick and precise adjustments that allow you to utilize five different mortising depths. This is relative to the tenon size you require for the job.
Angled mortises are achieved with the use of a pivoting fence, and these angles range from 0-90 degrees. It features three positive stops at 22.5 degrees, 45 degrees, 67.5 degrees. This wide variety of adjustments makes it is easy to use this joiner on a variety of projects both at home or on the worksite. Additionally, the mortise width is also adjustable, allowing for easier alignment when joining panels together.
Another great feature of the Festool Domino DF500Q is the patented routing technique which features a spiral cutter that both rotates and oscillates. This helps the tool to create perfect, professional mortises.
And while it might be true that this joiner will set you back more than other biscuit joiners available on the market, if you are looking for quality, whether you are a professional woodworker or amateur, it is definitely worth the forking out the extra bucks for this tool. It’s a hard task to find another biscuit joiner with the same features for less money.
Customers and industry professionals overwhelmingly agree that this joiner justifies the price tag. And we have no problems labeling this tool as the best biscuit joiner you’ll find on the market today.
It’s a straight forward tool that is simple to operate, even if you’ve never used a biscuit joiner before. This tool has been referred to in the past as a “game changing” biscuit joiner. Find out what this means today. You won’t be disappointed. It comes with a 3 year limited warranty.
2. DeWalt DW682K Plate Joiner Tool
- Motor: 6.5 Amp
- RPM: 10,000
- Weight: 10.5 lbs
- Dimensions: 15.8 x 6.4 x 6.8 inches
- Included: DeWalt DW682K Plate Joiner, carbide blade, vacuum adapter, dust bag, Torx key, wrench, plus kit box
- Warranty: 3 year limited
– Accurate and precise cuts
– Powerful and durable
– Great value
– Features dual rack and pinion fence system, allowing the blade and fence to always remain parallel
– Dust collection bag is subpar
DeWalt is one of the most trusted and respected names in power tools and that high-quality and attention to detail found in all their tools certainly isn’t lacking when it comes to the DW682K plate joiner. Right off the bat, it’s plain to see why this is tool stands out from the competition. It features an excellent design that utilizes a dual rack and pinion fence system that allows the blade and the fence to remain parallel at all times during use.
Additionally, it comes with a fence that is adjustable from 0 to 90 degrees. One of the key differences of this and other joiners is that the fence is a one-piece component, critical for achieving that parallel between the blade and fence. This tool can also be used to achieve flush cuts at 0 degrees without having to remove the fence.
Another great feature is the heavy-duty, non-marring aluminum shoe that keeps the wood safe from marks and scuffs that can occur during biscuit plunging. This is particularly important when working on a job where the wood will remain with a natural finish. This shoe can also be clamped to a work surface, providing stability, and easier and faster completion of stationary jobs.
A lot of users are impressed by the preset depth stops for common biscuit sizes of 0, 10 and 20, finding them to be very helpful during operation. These stops allow for a quick and easy setup, getting the job done with speed and accuracy. This comes in very handy for beginners, as it helps to eliminate the guesswork associated with determining the correct depth.
The DeWalt DW682K features a 6.5-amp motor that pumps out 10,000 RPM, allowing you to cut at depths of 20mm into the hardest woods, including maple, poplar, and oak. There is also a 45-degree locating notch on the fence which allows for easy indexing on the outside surface of a mitered joint.
If you are a dedicated fan of DeWalt power tools like myself and are looking for a moderately priced biscuit joiner, you can’t go wrong with the DW628K biscuit joiner.
DeWalt products are held in such high regard in the power tool industry because the quality and design of their tools is always five-star. Reading user reviews of this product, the words “accurate”, “high-powered” and “reliable” were frequently used by users to describe their experience. This is a high-quality, reliable joiner that is built to get the job done. It comes with a 3 year limited warranty.
3. Gino Development 01-0102 Biscuit Plate Joiner
- Motor: 8.4 Amp
- RPM: 11,000
- Blade size: 4 inch
- Weight: 8.3 lbs
- Dimensions: 19 x 6 x 7 inches
- Included: Gino Development 01-0102 TruePower Biscuit Plate Joiner, 4″ 6T C2 Tungsten Carbide tipped blade, and dust collector
- Warranty: 1 year limited
– Budget-friendly price
– Features 0-45 degree fence tilt
– Dust collection system included
– Basic options and settings
– Not as accurate as high-end models
Purchasing a budget power tool doesn’t necessarily mean that you must sacrifice on quality. And the Gino Development 01-0102 biscuit plate joiner shows us just that. Sure, buying a lower-cost tool will most likely mean that you will lose a few features and settings found on the higher-end models, but a good budget tool is designed to still give you quality results but in a more basic form.
Gino Development probably isn’t one of the top-name brands that you’ve previously heard of but a quick scroll through the user comments shows that this is a brand you shouldn’t ignore or overlook. The big plus here is the price and the fact that they have created a quality biscuit joiner that is both affordable and works well.
For less than 100 bucks you’ll get a functional kit that includes a 4 inch tungsten carbide tipped blade and a dust collector. This joiner delivers an impressive amount of power with the 8.4 amp motor that operates at 11,000 RPM, allowing users to make biscuit cuts in a fast and easy fashion.
Weighing in at a little over 8 lbs, it’s quite easy to handle and maneuver and is comfortable to hold. Despite the low price tag, its dust collection system seems to work better than most systems offered by higher-priced models. This tool suits users who are new to the woodworking game or who only need a biscuit joiner to complete occasional jobs. We wouldn’t recommend this machine for professional or heavy use.
It features a maximum cutting depth of 0.55” and can also cut miter angles from 0 to 45 degrees. This comes in very handy when making miter joints, butt joints, edge-to-edge cuts and also T-joints. It also comes with preset depth stops for 0, 10 and 20 biscuit sizes, making it simple to use, even for those with no biscuit joiner experience.
If cost is something holding you back from achieving your woodworking dreams, this budget-friendly tool is the perfect fit for your tool collection. It is one of the lowest cost options available on the market that still features good user reviews and recommendations.
Despite its low-cost price tag, this tool gets some solid user reviews. Many users commented on the solid feel of the product and commented that it was powerful enough to perform heavier workloads than expected. Users also commented on the good range of power and concluded that it’s a great lower-cost option for their basic needs. It comes with a 1 year warranty.
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4. PORTER-CABLE 557 Plate Joiner
- Motor: 7 Amp
- RPM: 10,000
- Weight: 7.5 lbs
- Dimensions: 18 x 13 x 8 inches
- Included: Plate joiner, centering plate, 4-inch blade, dust bag, chip deflector, carry case, allen wrench, and operating manual
- Warranty: 1 year
– Two blade system featuring both a 4 inch and 2 inch blades
– Features seven different cutting systems
– Fence system with pivot point for accurate height readings
– Good value for money
– Some users reported adjustments are difficult to make
The PORTER-CABLE 5577 is a fantastic mid-range tool for those looking to spend a little more than what you’d pay for a budget model. It features an extra blade that is primarily designed for cutting FF mini-biscuit slots. The blade changing process is straightforward and easier than you’d expect and is clearly described in the operating manual.
The 135-degrees fence on this joiner is versatile and simple to adjust for angles over 90 degrees. You’ll also notice that this is a lightweight option when comparing it to many other tools on the market. The design also features comfortable handles that make it a breeze to use and the dust port adapts to a one inch vacuum hose, giving this tool a superior dust collection system.
Accurate height settings are achieved with the pivoting fence system and it also features a fencing plate set up to enhance stock stabilization, spacing, and centering. It comes with a powerful, 7-amp, 120-volt motor that will get the blades spinning at 10,000 RPM.
In addition, the seven-setting rotating depth stop works with standard 0, 10, and 20 biscuit sizes as well as with Simplex, Duplex, and Max (#6) joins.
The kit comes with a sturdy carry case that fits the tool and all its accessories inside and is designed to be tough and sturdy, great for long-term use. It also comes with a centering plate, 4 inch blade, dust bag, chip deflector, allen wrench, and operating manual
This biscuit joiner is a user favorite, with heaps of users agreeing that it is well-built, sturdy, powerful and simple to use.
This is a fantastic, value for money biscuit joiner that won’t let you down and is still easy on the budget. It comes with a one year warranty.
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- Motor: 5.6 Amp
- RPM: 11,000
- Weight: 5.5 lbs
- Dimensions: 11.825 x 6.4 x 6 inches
- Included: plate joiner, 4 inch carbide tip blade, angle guide, dust bag, set plate, 3” x 3/4” steel locknut wrench, and tool case
- Warranty: 1 year
– Excellent Value
– Powerful motor
– Ergonomic and comfortable design
– Many adjustments for easy customization
– Dust collection is subpar
The Makita PJ7000 plate joiner features a powerful 5.6 amp, 11,00 RPM motor, that gives this tool the grunt required to get the job done, while at the same time remaining relatively low cost. This top-quality biscuit joiner is designed with a small circumference, making it easy for those with even the smallest of hands to grip this tool securely and comfortably. It weighs just 5.5 pounds, making it even easier to operate, causing less user fatigue, while at the same time providing great overall control.
The fence system on the PJ7000 is designed with two main components: a removable angle guide and the fence. The angle guide allows users to make height adjustments for use on various work material thicknesses and is adjusted by moving the angle guide up and down the rack-and-pinion gear system.
The fence pivots in a fixed position, making it perfect for making angled cuts and also features three inbuilt options for 0, 45 and 90 degree angles. It is also designed with six depth settings featuring one-touch stops for 0, 10, and 20 biscuit sizes plus other common biscuits sizes. The large and simple to use cam locks are designed to help you achieve perfect and exact fence adjustments.
All adjustments on this joiner are simple and easy to make, helping you get the job done fast, with little frustration. An additional adjustment that can be made on this tool is the Max (20mm), D (14.7mm) and S (13mm) settings designed for use with other Lamello fasteners and hinges. Additionally, setup is simple and it features easy to read and understand scales.
The large top grip handle coupled with the slimline and ergonomic body design, makes this plate joiner comfortable to hold and operate, giving users superior handling and control. The high-quality design, top-notch Makita build and very reasonable price tag make this biscuit joiner a fantastic option for both DIY enthusiasts and professional tradesmen alike.
If you are chasing a well-designed and easy to handle tool, capable of smooth and accurate cuts, this is the biscuit joiner for you. Just check out the many positive user reviews this Makita receives from satisfied users over the globe. Users comment on the excellent accuracy and precision of this product and are overall very happy with its performance. It comes with a one year warranty.
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6. Silverstorm 128999 Biscuit Cutter Tool
- Motor: 900 Watts
- RPM: 10,800
- Weight: 7.9 lbs
- Dimensions: 16.14 x 7 x 7.9 inches
- Warranty: 3 year
– Great value for money
– Easy to use and operate
– Works on both hard and soft woods
– Excellent warranty terms (if you remember to register – see below)
– Not covered by warranty unless you register your tool (so don’t forget to)
– Some users reported biscuit cuts being a little tight for the biscuits.
Last but not least of our biscuit joiner reviews we have the Silverstorm 128999. Another great entry-level option.
While this tool is marketed as an industrial-grade joiner, we should point out that this claim is a little dubious. The price tag alone should set off alarm bells for those looking for a true heavy-duty, professional joiner. However, if you’re a keen home woodworker, this is an ideal tool for you and should give you no issues regarding build quality or durability.
The Silverstorm 128999 works great with both hard and soft wood and while it might not come with all the bells and whistles, it is a powerful tool that is designed to get the job done. The cutting range is quoted as being ¾ inch and you’ll get more precision than you might expect from a budget tool.
The strong and sturdy motor gives you the grunt needed to power through cuts for all biscuits sizes from 0 through 20. So, whether you are doing anything from making cabinets to building furniture, this joiner will get you working with speed, accuracy, and control.
Included in the kit is a dust extraction port and bag, allowing you to work cleanly and safely, without having to breathe in harmful sawdust, reducing the risk of lung damage.
For home hobbyists and DIY enthusiasts looking to speed up the awkward and time-consuming process of creating biscuit joints, this is a fantastic, affordable option that is well worth a look.
Most user reviews for this product are very positive with users realizing the price range this product sits in and the limitations that can come with that. It all comes back to the old saying, you get what you pay for. It comes with a 3 year warranty. But just a note on the warranty – remember to register your tool so that you are covered by the warranty terms.
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Biscuit Joiner Buying Guide
You probably noticed that we used both the terms biscuit joiner and plate joiner in the above reviews. Many biscuit joiners are referred to as plate joiners. Hence why our reviews include a mixture of both. What is the difference between a biscuit joiner and a plate joiner? Nothing. They are the same tool but just known by different names. The term biscuit joiner derives from the thin, oval-shaped slices of wood that are used to hold the joins together. Essentially, a biscuit joiner cuts the slots that the biscuits fit into.
Mostly, these biscuits are made from compressed beechwood and are glued into place in a slot at the edge of a board that then connects to a slot cut into another board. This tool is extremely helpful when making tabletops, cabinets and many other things in the workshop.
Check these criteria when deciding which joiner is the right tool for you.
As is evident in the above reviews, biscuit joiners come in a variety of price ranges. From entry-level, budget-friendly models to top of the line professional tools. When looking for the best biscuit joiner, it’s always helpful if you can splash a little extra cash on a higher-grade model. The more you spend, the better the tool, is a general rule of thumb among all tools, but there are always outliers to that rule. Therefore it’s important to do your research first, so you don’t end up with an expensive dud. Generally, well-known and respected manufacturers are a good option for quality and reliability.
Also, the more you spend, the more features your tool will probably have, making operation easier and smoother.
No matter which price range you decide on, it’s important to make sure your joiner has the guts to get the job done. Without the right amount of power, you’ll struggle to get a clean and usable cut.
Don’t just look at the size of the motor but also the RPM’s of the model. The higher the amp draw, the higher the overall power of the tool and when that is combined with high speed, you’ll be able to cut biscuit grooves faster, making your work easier and more efficient.
This is one of the most important features of a biscuit joiner. The fence guides the saw blade while cutting slots into the wood. A well-designed fence will allow users to adjust the fence to multiple settings and varying angles. The more options your fence has, the more groove types you can cut.
Another important factor to consider is the depth of the slots your joiner will cut in your material. Selecting the right equipment is vital for your project, so it’s important that you choose a model which features various groove depths, giving you the flexibility you need to get your project done.
Overall, the larger the biscuit slots you can create with a joiner, the larger the pieces of wood you can join. If your projects involve large pieces of furniture, you should look for a model that allows you to cut slots in a wide variety of sizes.
Ease of use
Nobody wants an overly complicated or poorly designed tool in their collection. Therefore, it is important that the model you choose is simple to set up and easy to operate. An ergonomic shape makes it even easier and more comfortable to use when working for extended periods of time. Choosing a lightweight tool means that you’ll feel less fatigued during use. Rubberized and vibration-absorbing grips are also a great option that adds to the overall comfort.
Dust collection system
Any tool that cuts wood is going to leave you with dust and wood chips. It’s just the nature of the job. For your own safety and the durability of your tools, it is important to use a dust collection system. As you noticed above, all the reviews offered this system, even the budget-friendly models. Some are just better than others. And price doesn’t always have the final say in how well the dust collection system will operate.
A good dust collection system also makes clean-up much quicker and easier.
Tools are built to be used in tough environments and pushed to their limits of use, so it’s important they stand up to the task. Expect that your tool is going to come in contact with oils, dirt, dust and other materials that can break down your tool over time.
The best joiners are built to stand up to these conditions, so if you purchase a biscuit joiner from a well-known manufacturer, this shouldn’t be a problem you need to worry about. Top biscuit joiner models are made from high-quality materials and are designed to last. Look for materials such as polymer plastics or corrosion-resistant metal as your optimal choices. These features help to ensure that your joiner has a better chance of lasting no matter what you throw at it.
Your biscuit joiner should come with at least a one year warranty. All the joiners in this list come with at least that. But that is just the minimum you should look for when considering your options. To be on the safe side, I usually only buy products that come with a minimum of 3 years worth of warranty. I trust companies that are willing to stand by their product. Popular brands usually have good warranty terms and helpful customer service should anything go wrong.
It’s also important that you look for a warranty that will cover the whole tool, not just a few selected parts. This gives you the peace of mind that you are covered no matter what happens.
How To Operate a Biscuit Joiner
So, you’ve settled on the best biscuit joiner for your needs. Next, you’ll need to know how to use it. Honestly, there’s not much to it and you’ll consider yourself an expert with a plate joiner in next to no time.
Follow these simple steps to give you successful biscuit joins time and time again. Simply:
- Position the two boards you want to joint on the work table in their final place. Make sure they are correctly aligned.
- Make pencil marks across the joint in even spaces. This will be where each biscuit on the board will fit.
- Using your biscuit joiner, place the guide fence flat on top of a board’s surface. Next, line up the cutting guide with your pencil mark. Work on one board at a time.
- Power-up your saw and insert the blade into the board up to the stop line.
- Repeat this with every pencil mark.
- Once you’ve made all the cuts, place glue in the slots of both boards. Next, insert a biscuit into each slot and then slide the second board onto your biscuits, joining the two boards.
- Hold the joints together with clamps while the glue dries. Make sure you don’t over-tighten the clamps and squeeze out the glue.
While using a biscuit joiner is considered safer than many other tools, it’s still important that you maintain safety procedures and keep concentration when using any power tool. The cutting occurs inside the casing of the biscuit joiners, so it’s not likely that you will cut your hand or any other body parts while using this tool. But still, keep in mind that a plate joiner is a powerful tool and needs to be respected at all times. Here are some tips to help you remain safe while operating a biscuit joiner.
Always Wear Appropriate Safety Equipment
Consider wearing eyeglasses and other PPE whenever you are working with power tools. It is also wise to remove any jewelry or hanging articles of clothing that could get caught in the blades.
Secure the Wood In Position
It’s important that the material you are planning to cut is held tightly using a vise or clamp whenever you cut a slot. And always choose the appropriate kind of wood for your project. A lot of joiners feature a minimum thickness guideline which often restricts the type of wood you can use.
When the joiner and wood are both secured, you should feel confident that you are working safely and correctly. Still, avoid putting your hands near the blade at any time during operation. Any flaw in the wood could cause that blade to move or shift while operating.
Whenever using a power tool, it’s important to maintain concentration at all times and make sure you are confident in the correct operation of the machine.
What is the difference between a plate joiner and biscuit joiner?
Nothing. “Biscuit” and “plate” are interchangeable terms used for the same tool. The name “biscuit joiner” is more commonly used in the United States.
Can’t I just use dowel rods instead of a joiner?
You sure can. And actually, this is one of the most popular methods for joining materials. The problem with doweling is, you need to cut, drill, and align them perfectly. Also, the joins don’t last as long or are as effective as biscuit joins.
What is a biscuit?
A biscuit is a thin, oval-shaped piece of wood, usually comprised of compressed beech. The biscuits are glued into a slot on a wooden board that is cut with a biscuit joiner. Another board then fits into the other side of the biscuit, joining the two pieces together.
Can you use any size wood with a joiner?
No. Biscuit joiners specify a minimum thickness. Going below this minimum will cause trouble on your project.
Do you get any form of dust extraction with biscuit joiners?
Most joiners come with a small dust bag or the option to hook up to a dust collection system such as a vacuum, helping to keep your work zone debris-free.
Choosing the biscuit joiner that suits your needs can be a little confusing at times. With so many great options out there it can get a little overwhelming. I hope this list has helped to narrow down your options and has given you a clear guide as to what features to be on the lookout for.
My first choice for a top-quality and well-built plate joiner is the Festool 574432 Domino Joiner DF 500 Q. It’s an industry-leading joiner that is chock-a-block with features that give a powerful, professional, and seamless cut, making your job a piece of cake.
If you are after value for money, I highly recommend the DeWalt DW682K Plate Joiner Tool. It comes with that DeWalt quality that makes their tools so popular and respected in the industry but in a more budget-friendly package. It’s a superb addition to your tool collection and is great for home renovators, those serious about their DIY work, and professionals alike.
And for those on a budget, don’t forget about the Gino Development 01-0102 Biscuit Plate Joiner, a bargain for under $100, with the grunt behind it to get the job done. Nothing fancy, just a tough, basic biscuit joiner.
A biscuit joiner is such a great time saver when it comes to woodworking jobs like cabinetry and furniture building. While not an essential tool, it’s certainly an invaluable addition to the tool collection of anyone with a passion for woodworking. I hope that you found this guide informative and it makes your decision a little easier to make. Thanks for reading and I’d love to hear what you have to say about your biscuit joiner experiences in the comment section below.