Mortising solutions from JJ Smith

For many joinery and furniture manufacturers, mortising is still a ‘bottleneck’ in the production process. Despite investing heavily in sophisticated CNC machining centres, mortising is still regarded as the ‘poor relation’ with old hollow chisel or chain machines still widely being used. Generally these are all manually operated and the pieces to be mortised require pre-marking out, all of which takes time and is open to errors being made. The solution to these problems is the Centauro BETA CNC fully programmable horizontal swing chisel mortiser.


With the BETA no manual marking out is required, and the complete mortising operation, once the piece is loaded, is automatic from start to finish. The movement of the chisel head in three axes is via precision ball and screw and the addition of DC drives means it’s possible to achieve a high degree of repeat machining accuracy. The machine is easily programmed thanks to the colour touch screen controller, which incorporates pre-installed macro templates. All the operator has to do is program in the position and dimensions of the required mortise slots and the machine does the rest. Other functions allow for left- or right-hand working (e.g when mortising a pair of door stiles) and there is a macro to produce a combined mortise and haunch. There is no limit on the length of piece to be mortised thanks to automatic movement of the workpiece.

When there is requirement to produce small mortise slots for glazing bars, there is an option of a totally independent programmable hollow chisel head. To date, exclusive UK distributor JJ Smith have supplied over 60 BETA mortisers throughout the UK and Ireland. When the requirement is for high volume production of mortised parts, with mainly the same size/position of mortise slots, then the Deltawood LB3 multi-head machine is an ideal choice, particularly for products such as gate or fence posts. As standard, the machine has a 3m long bed capacity with three oscillating horizontal swing chisel mortise heads, each of which is manually set in the ‘X’ and ‘Z’ axis.

As all mortises are machined at the same time, the LB3 is very productive. On request, additional mortise heads – up to a total of six – can be specified. Deltwood also produce CNC mortisers with automatic loading and discharge systems, again for volume production, but more versatile than the LB3 model.

Contact JJ smith by calling 0151 548 9000, email [email protected], or visit the website:

JJ Smith Woodworking Machinery Ltd
Moorgate Point, Moorgate Road
Knowsley Industrial Park, Kirkby
Liverpool, L33 7DR
0151 548 9000