fletcher underpinners by Pilm


CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Jul 24, 2004
Round Pond, ME
Anyone familiar with these? I'm just opening a frame shop in Maine and buying equipment. Have decided on a Framesquare saw..... and now for the underpinner....want perfect miters, no gaps. Any advice?
I have been very pleased with my foot powered under piner by Cassess.The only draw back is the size of frame that it can join. But It has been very easy to mantain and there is no compresser to give me any trouble. I changed to this after I started with a thumbnailer. It got the job done but was time consuming. But My shop is a fairly small shop so I would make a different choice if my volume was larger.
Jennifer, Tn
Hope this is a help. The only company that I know of that has these under piners is G&G moulding in North Carolina.
Please let us know if you attain perfection in your perfect miters, no gaps, every time.

It has been my experience that good framing equipment is only as good as the framer operating it...

Best of luck!

Welcome to the Grumble

My old underpinner a Manual Euro (the second one I had) model got tired and this year I bought a Cassese C88 foot operated machine http://www.cassese.com/encrdang/assemblang/88.htm I cannot fault it...as a get you started machine it will serve you well……there is very little that can go wrong with it.…..there is a C79 model but this is a bit lightweight…….my friend has a C79 and he is planning to change it soon…..

This is the link for the instruction manual for the C88 http://www.cassese.com/et/manuels/manuels/88-89/expcs88-89.pdf

I personally like manual machines as I feel you have more control when dealing with dodgy or difficult mouldings…..though there are many who swear by there pneumatic machines.

I’m not familiar with the Pilm machines what model are you looking at…..I did find some information on them and the manual model looked a bit like the Euro machine I started framing with
My Fletcher model 5700 arrived about a week ago. It's quite a machine.

I've been using Miter-Mite/Amp/Putnam/Alfamacchine v-nailers since 1990; first a VN2+1, and most recently a VN-42. They're good machines, but they can't match the features of the Fletcher.

The 5700 is designed similar to the VN-42, and both are made in Italy. But there are a few features the VN-42 doesn't have:

1. Two independently-adjusted vertical hold-downs, one of which may be turned off if not needed for joining a particular moulding. The single hold-down on the VN-42 has limited adjustment, and has always been inadequate for oddly-shaped mouldings, which are difficult to hold properly. I have all kinds of home-made spacers & jigs to adapt the hold-down on the VN-42.

2. No more changing the operating head to fit the v-nails, which is done with an Allen wrench on the VN-42. The 5700 has convenient steel filler-sticks for various length v-nails, slipped into place as the nails are loaded. Very quick & convenient.

3. The v-nail magazine opens pneumatically & has easy access. No more pulling VN-42's the spring-on-a-string (my string broke last year).

4. Two pneumatic pressure adjustments. In addition to the one for the hammer, similar to the VN-42, the 5700 also has a separate air pressure adjustment for the hold-downs. That's handy for mouldings with delicate gesso or compo.

5. Adjustable speed of descent for the vertical hold-downs. This minimizes the possibility of damage to delicate mouldings, and allows verifying the hold-down positions just before contact is made, as the vertical hold-down moves slowly into place. Or fast, as you see fit to adjust it.

I've only had this machine for a week, and I'm still learning about it. But so far, it's everything I expected, and more. :D