Wow, I'm surprised and really very pleased that my original post
generated so much traffic. Let me clarify my situation somewhat. I
realize that a new 12" jointer will run me at least $2k, and that it
will require help to place, move, and power. I'm not independently
wealthy, but I do believe in saving up and buying the tool that will do
what I want and last me for a good long time.
I do have a good 13" planer (Christmas present), and I've been very
impressed with the way that it produces a finished plank from a flat,
rough-sawn piece of lumber. But I'd like to be able to remove the cup
that so often shows up in wider lumber, and the planer doesn't do much
of that. You can, I've read, stick some shims against the concave side
of the board before sending it through the planer, but the planer has
enough work to do just feeding and cutting a wide piece of hardwood.
I do build a lot of shelves and I'd like to start selling them, since
quite a few folks have asked me to make them for them, and books are a
big industry here in Charlottesville. I use a PC plate joiner and some
clamps that I made myself (from 2x4's and threaded rod-they work great)
to put them all together, but I'd like to avoid having to join two
narrow pieces for the sides because 1. it's a bit of a pain, and 2. it
doesn't look as nice even with two halves of the same original board,
thanks to the kerf.
If I can remove the cup from a wide board with an 8" jointer (and it
sounds to me like I can) then obviously I'd rather save the extra
thousand dollars for lumber, electricity, and food. 8^)
Oh and, though I'm not trolling, I AM making a 7' by 30" bookcase out
of walnut at present. I can get it from the local mill for $4-6 per
b.f., which isn't too bad when I can find enough flat stock. Lowe's
wants almost $4.50/bf for clear pine, so it's not all that much to pay
for such gorgeous wood. I'm going to make the normally unseen back
halves of some of the shelves out of a cheaper wood and join them with
Thanks very much for all the info; I'm going to read it all carefully.