Best way to make stringers?

Hi,
I'm new to the group, and have a question about making the stringers for some "mission" style furniture.
I've built a few classical guitars, and have rented shop time at Woodcraft, getting use of their drum sander (Jet). Slick tool. But they don't have one anymore. As I prepare to build several pieces of furniture for the house (coffee table, computer desk, bedroom set), I thought I would suck it up and just buy my own Delta or Performax drum sander. But a local dealer suggested the new Dewalt thickness planer (DW 735) is what I really want (yes, he sells Delta stuff too). Says the 735 will churn out shiny/smooth sticks of oak better and faster than the sander, and would cost $300 less. In addition to the stringers, I will be making the desk and table tops by ripping 1x1 oak strips from flat-sawn boards, then rotating the sticks 90 degrees, and gluing them together, thus having a laminated plank that appears quarter-saw. I would use the sander (or planer) to work these pieces too. Obvious advantage of the sander is the greater width capacity.
So, not having worked much with oak, what would YOU use to make these pieces? A luthier friend tells me you cannot mill quarter-sawn pieces with a knife, that you need abrasives (i.e, drum sander) to avoid tear-out. The local Delta/DeWalt dealer says this is true of older planers, but not the new generation. A friend has a two-year old Rigid planer that I can borrow if needed . . .
Thanks for any ideas!
Scott
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Scott,
Both are nice to have. Most of the time I do not get tearout on the DW733 planer but get some wild grain stock and no matter what you do, you'll get divots. Hence the need for the Performax 16/32. I initially mill my stock down to within an 1/8", let it set for awhile then run it thru the planer using very light cuts for final dimensioning. If it starts to tearout, I finish up on the drum sander.
Using the drum sander to dimension stock takes a bit of extra time but the result is worth it in my estimation since I can use wild-grain woods and not have to worry about tearout. So if you have access to a planer, get the drum sander and share with your friend.
I think someone telling you that a 3 bladed planer (DW735) is going to eliminate tearout is putting his own twist on the manufacturer's hype. It may reduce it somewhat but I've not heard anyone say it's eliminated it. If they (DeWalt) guarantee's that - I'll go buy one today and sell my 733.
Bob S.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snip..

Just thicknessed some leftover oak flooring on the 735 real smooth except where there were knots and wild grain. There was some minor tearout, but I was using the low speed and about 1/16th depth for speed of working. The oak is not being used for fine finish, but a quick pass with the ROS would clean it up nice. So not up to a guarantee, but real good.
Jerry
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
and we have one confirmation....;-)
Thanks,
Bob S.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"Scott" wrote in message

What the hell does a luthier know about oak?
When you say stringers, do you mean slats, or spindles, as some folks call them?
I make a good deal of Mission style furniture and use a 13" Ridgid planer to make the slats/spindles, usually planed to 1/2" from 3/4" stock, or resawn on the band saw from 5/4 and then planed ... with sharp planer knives, I rarely have a problem with QSWO and tearout.
That said, I would dearly love to have a drum sander and would use just about any excuse I could to justify one, including convincing SWMBO that I couldn't do slats/spindles without one ... but then I would need a bigger shop ... and I've already done too many to get away with it.
--
www.e-woodshop.net
Last update: 1/02/04
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

A fair bit, even has a significant stash he sawed up years ago. That and loads of cedar, englemann, rosewood, etc. But I don't know if he has made as much furniture as some of you.

Yeah, thems the ones.

Guess I should just try some oak on my friend's Rigid planer before deciding. OR, a better idea: buy that new Dewalt, AND the sander! Hah, what a dreamer! But maybe: the guy at Woodcraft said Performax has a new 10-20 sander, for $400 plus change. Siad it has much better adjustability than its big brother. If I thought this would work for me (and it would for all but the table tops), then planer+sander would cost about the same as one of the 16-32 units . . .
Cheers,
Scott

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I think I've talked myself into buying two new tools: the Performax 10-20 sander, and the Dewalt 735 planer. Between the two I shuld be able to make lot's of dust. And maybe the 'ol tax return will cover the cost! The bigger 16-32 sander would be nice, but it IS bigger, and my shop space is not. That, and 95% of my work can be run through the smaller sander; indeed, it will be just perfect for guitar building (the drill press drum attachment is a PITA to do +/- 0.001" work). I can borrow a friend's planer, but in reality, building a full set of furniture for the house is going to take 1-2 years, and one shall not abuse a friend's tools . . . or generosity!
Thanks to all for your inputs,
Scott
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 8 Jan 2004 08:02:35 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@att.net (Scott) wrote:

the best I've been able to get with my performax 16-32 has been about +/- .005.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 7 Jan 2004 08:17:13 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@att.net (Scott) wrote: milling anything that's quartersawn can be problematic in terms of tearout. Oak isn't so bad but cherry is a bitch. Budget some time for scraping and sanding.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.