Jointer Planing

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amateur woodworker here who has found that I'm going to need a planer and jointer if I'm ever going to have any square projects
my question is can you plane wood sufficiently on one of those 6 1/8" table top jointers?
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yes, if your are careful and use the right technique.
Len

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6" table top jointers come in various lengths and quality. This is another case of getting what you pay for. Some of the cheapo's with inadequate table adjustment mechanisms will lead you to never-ending frustration. However, there are some good table top or stand mounted machines offered by Delta, Jet and others.
Actually 6" is a pretty common jointer width for hobby and some pro shops. I have a heavier 6" Powermatic 54A and love it.
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I don't know about that. I went from a 12 inch behemoth to a 6 inch Delta portable with the aluminum tables and I can make it work just fine. Of course I can't joint a 10 foot 4x6, but have been doing fine with 4 foot lengths so far and probably could go further if needed. max

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Yeah - That is what I like about the Powermatic 54. The 60+ inch table lets me work with longer stock pretty easily. Kinda crowds my garage shop, but worth it.
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Tim wrote:

Sort of, but...
A) these benchtop machines really are pretty seriously crappy, and all but useless (mine is the cheapo Delta with crappy aluminum tables)
B) jointers are for jointing, not planing. Their job is to get something flat. What they can't do securely is get two faces of a board parallel to each other. That's what a planer is for.
I don't have a planer, and neither room nor money for one. I'm not very good at getting a dead flat perfect surface with hand planes, but so far the stuff I'm doing only demands that one side of the board be perfect anyway. So what I'm doing is face jointing one face, then marking off the other face with a marking gauge, and hand planing that face down to the line.
This would work better if I had a real jointer. This one leave streaks on the faces of the boards. I think it's actually the counterweights on the cutterhead burnishing the wood. All in all, this jointer was a pretty regretable decision. I might well be better off with no jointer at all, which would force me to suck it up and waste wood until I finally get the knack of (hand) jointing an edge square to the face properly.
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On Fri, 03 Dec 2004 00:24:58 -0500, Silvan
<snip>

<snip>
thanks, you answered my question...
seems to me that planers are for face and jointers are for edge, but not having either yet, I'm only going by knowledge got here..
sort of like asking if you can play ping pong with a golf ball.. same shape and about the same size, but designed for different tasks..
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wrote:

Not quite.
Jointers are for faces *and* edges: make a face straight and flat, then make an edge straight and square to the face.
Then you take the board to the planer, to make the *other* face parallel to the one you jointed.
Finally, it goes to the table saw, to have the other edge ripped parallel to the jointed one.
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mac davis responds:

They are designed for different tasks, but a jointer works on the face, too, removing cup and similar affliction. They just cannot reliably produce parallel sides, so a planer is needed.
Charlie Self "Ambition is a poor excuse for not having sense enough to be lazy." Edgar Bergen, (Charlie McCarthy)
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Universal, apply anywhere answer: It depends. On your jointer. On your technique. On your workpiece. On your stock. On your experience. On your goals.
Max can do a lot of things, that others of us 'find challenging'. That comes from a career as a craftsman in wood. Many of the rest of us take things more slowly, and set our sights accordingly.
Can you get good results from a modest machine? May I refer you back to the recent thread "A poor workman and his tools..."
Patriarch, learning to love the older, longer Stanley products...
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I missed that thread. There are some good thoughts there (not to mention some of the usual, but benevolent BS). One of the themes probably applies here. A good workman probably researches and then selects the best tools that he can afford, even if he has to wait a while on the 'afford' part.
The predecessor to my Powermatic 54A was a mid-50's vintage Craftsman 4" tabletop, mounted on a wooden stand. It might not be considered desirable by today's standards but the old machine was built like a fireplug and could cut a pretty good edge. I could even surface one side of 6" or 7" wide material, good enough for the surface planer - if I held my tongue right and was careful. Joining longer stock over 5 or 6' was possible but I might put more wood on the floor before I was pleased. Overall It did the job if I did my job with diligence.
Now that I have had the Powermatic for a few months would I take the Craftsman back?
Well, Hell NO!
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but, as I think that thread covered, with your skill and experience, you have a much better chance of producing quality work with the Craftsman than someone like me would have with your powermatic...
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table
Geeze Tim, I can't believe anyone hasn't suggested that you might want to look at what else might be going wrong if you can't get a square project at this point. Jointers and do their job and there are a lot out there that will do it well, even for small money, but I'd start looking closer to home for problems. If you're using finished lumber from the store instead of rough cut lumber, I sure wouldn't jump into the purchase of a planer.
Square - how about your saw? You should be able to get a cut from your tablesaw that will all but eliminate the need for a jointer. If not, it's time to look at the set up of your tablesaw or your technique. You'd be surprised at how well a well tuned saw will produce an edge ready for glue up. Planers do a good job of sizing the thickness of wood but is that what you need? Do you build a lot of things that require wood that is not of a standard dimension?
I wouldn't be spending more money on jointers and planers if you're having problems with fundamentals. Chances are you'll still have those problems even with the new tools. Especially with the jointer. If your cuts with a table saw are giving you problems, you're probably going to have like problems with a jointer. It's not a wonder tool, no matter how good the jointer is. I'd go back to the basics.
Now on the other hand, if your post is an exaggeration, in the time honored manner of justifying the purchase of new tools...
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Buying S4S from a dealer is no guarantee of getting lumber that's straight, flat, and square. All you can depend on is that the two faces are parallel, and that the board is the same width along its entire length. No guarantee that the edges are truly square to the faces. No guarantee that either the edges or the faces are straight.

Ummmm.... no, not at all. If you don't joint one edge of a board straight, how on earth are you going to get a straight cut from the table saw?
And I haven't seen a table saw yet, that's capable of producing a straight, flat _face_ on an uneven board.

*If* the board is straight, flat, and square to begin with -- which of course is the reason that jointers and planers exist.

The only way to be sure of getting wood that is straight, flat, and square is to joint and plane it yourself. Every hardwood dealer I know of will plane wood to any thickness you want, but I haven't encountered one yet that will joint it first.

IMO that conclusion, while possibly correct, is completely unwarranted by the scant facts provided in the OP. He could very well be having trouble with his table saw cuts precisely because he _doesn't_ have a jointer. If the wood isn't flat, it's not possible to get consistently good results on the table saw no matter what you do.
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straight,
parallel,
There's no guarantees of anything in life Doug, but 99% of the time one can purchase any lumber they need from local suppliers, ether BORG or smaller suppliers, that is finished ready to go. Faces are parallel, edges are true and square.

how
Lots of ways. Many here do not joint for glue up. You can tack or tape a guide board to the material to be cut, for example. I have cut thousands of linear feet of lumber - at least many, many hundreds this way, and glue up was just fine. It is categorically not an absolute requirement to run a board through a jointer. The other alternative is to touch it up with a plane, which admitedly is jointing, but the point remains that a jointer and a planer are not necessarily must have tools given the brief description of the problem the OP gave.

straight,
Come on over.

glue
course
Bad assumption. Use the saw to make the board straight and square. The jointer, as a tool, is no better for making square than a table saw is. They both rely on a fence that is perpendicular to the cutting surface and they both use adjustable fences. Square requires attention to detail in setting the fence. For flat - select lumber better. Granted, the planer will make bad lumber better, but that's not the original point of my reply.

a
is
will
Our experiences differ then. I've had great success in getting S4S that met your criteria. Didn't require much more than going to the store and buying it.

having
a
the
his
table
That's just a bad assertion Doug. Agreed the facts were scant so our responses are subject to our interpretation of what the OP meant by what he said, but what you're suggesting above is a wood problem. In my first paragraph I put in the assumption that he was using S4S and if that's the case I still contend that 99% of the time he does not need a jointer and a planer to make this wood ready for use. Rough cut is a different story, but I did not address that. In fact with rough cut, he can have it planed by the supplier and easily cut it true with his table saw. I have a jointer and I seldom use it for this application. In fact - I seldom use it. If I had to get rid of one of my power tools it could easily be my jointer that would be the first to go with little impact on my ability to produce quality work.
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If you think the S4S lumber from the Borg is flat, then your definition of flat is a little more generous than mine.

And how do you get a straight edge on that guide board?

And what about the faces? You simply can't make a twisted or bowed board flat without jointing it in _some_ fashion. It doesn't matter whether you use a jointer, or a jointer plane, or a sled in a planer, or whatever -- you still have to joint the wood _somehow_ if you want to be sure that it's straight and flat.

ROTFLMAO.
Please describe how you would make a bowed board flat, using a table saw.

I didn't claim that it was, but rather that a jointer *will* make straight *and* flat, a board that isn't. A table saw will not.

True, but not really relevant.

No, for flat, buy it rough and surface it yourself. The stuff you buy from the Borg isn't flat.

No, you've had great success in getting S4S that meets *your* criteria. And if the wood you're buying is good enough for your purposes, more power to you.

Depends on your definition of "ready for use" I guess. The lumber at the Borg apparently meets your definition. It doesn't meet mine; that's why I buy my lumber rough, and surface it myself.

Yes, he can -- but if it isn't flat before being planed, it isn't going to be flat after planing either. That's what a jointer is for.

That's amazing.
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wrote:

I don't know what you look for then Doug. I have certainly found plenty of flat - by anyone's definition at places including BORGs. Maybe you are pushing the point to rediculous levels?

a
Come on Doug. You can't find a straight piece of wood? Without a jointer? If not, then your standards far exceed the tolerances applicable to woodworking and are therefore excessive, or you're being difficult.

up
and
of
flat
still
and
You didn't read what I have posted throughout this discussion. You're focused on picking on minutia and ignoring the point of the conversation. We're not talking about - nor have been talking about taking a twist out of twisted boards. You're throwing that in again as a red herring.

Maybe you need a new saw.

There you go again. Do you really feel the OP was frustrated because he was using bowed and twisted wood and at wit's end because he couldn't turn out a square project?

Never said it would - you are the one that threw that into the discussion even though it's totally irrelevant to the point under discussion.

and
Amazing.
the
Just what micro measure of deviation are you seeing Doug? You either look for the worst pieces so that you can comment on them or you don't have the same quality of lumber in your area that I do.

met
buying
And if

you.
Fine. If your criteria is so strict that thousands of an inch are all that critical to you, then more power to you. Has it occurred to you that perhaps the OP might not be quite that picky and that he doesn't need the feeling that it's somehow now flatter, just because he ran it through his own planer?
Honestly Doug, if you're seriously contending that one cannot purchase flat lumber at the BORG or anywhere else, as I had originally contended, then by all means, plane your little heart out, but don't bother to suggest that the standards of others is somehow less than yours because of this.

problems
with
the
by
with
wood
he
a
Borg
my
Good for you. A world of people around you turn out craftsman quality pieces with this stuff though so I'll chose to not credit your point.

be
You keep coming back to this point and I just don't understand your insistance on it. I'm making the assumption the OP is not trying to build something with twisted, bowed stock and you're making the assumption he is. Impass.

I
that
quality
Nah - that's life.
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You have to look at the wood before you buy it- you can't just grab it and run, but there's always at least a few that are flat as can be. At the supplier I get my wood from, it is always flat- they have own a millwork shop in another city, and both joint and plane it after kiln-drying it and before putting it in the rack because they care about the wood.

With your saw. I kind of get the feeling you're not getting everything you could be out of your tablesaw.

Mine can do it, and it's a just a benchtop. You can't do it with a 6" wide piece of stock, but it'll work on plenty of narrower boards.

Attach it to a flat board with some double-sided tape and run the guide board along the fence, removing a little at a time until you've got a straight face.

It sure can be.

The one I buy from joints the wood first. Perhaps you need a better supplier?

It's certainly cheaper that way, and a great way to buy wood. I just don't see why you're arguing that you can't buy decently prepared S4S anywhere. It's expensive, and you have to look at it before you buy it, but there's straight, square S4S in any place that sells wood- even Menards, and they're the worst supplier of wood I've ever encountered anywhere.

Why is that amazing? I don't have a jointer at all, and don't plan on getting one. If a board needs straightening, I use a hand plane- but I usually just try to buy decently prepared S3S stock in the first place. The extra cost is well worth the space that a jointer is not taking up in my shop to me!
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On Fri, 03 Dec 2004 13:20:20 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@milmac.com (Doug Miller) wrote:

<snip> or the friggin ends!! I buy S4S or better due to lack of tools... and it's really rare that either end is cut square in either direction..
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mac davis wrote:

I saw a real gem today. Walnut. Put one end flat on the floor, and it made a great big (. Quality.
--
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