What machine for cutting down 6x6 posts?

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Hello group:
I'm more of a metal worker than a woodworker, but every now and then I do have to make something in wood. I need to replace some rotted out posts for a railing. I need a size something less than 6x6 to exactly replace what was there before. This size is not commercially available, so I thought I'd cut down some 6x6 cedar posts. Couldn't find anyone in my area to do the job for me so I guess I'll have to buy a machine and do it myself.
I don't want to spend big bucks as I probably won't use it that much. Is what I'm after a thickness planer and if so, what size do I need to do a reasonable job on these 6x6's? The posts will be short, only 3 feet or so long.
Thanks in advance for any and all help.
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Find a millwork shop locally and they can mill them down to the size you need for just a few bucks or maybe a sixpack or two.
Bowhunter
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Just to throw out some ideas -- Fencing places usually carry 5" diameter round posts (treated wood). You could get a cheapo portable planer to remove 1/4 to 1/2 inch from the width of a 6x6. Dick

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On Wed, 10 Nov 2004 02:57:42 GMT, "C.A. Decker"

All timber is available in all sizes - you just need to find a supplier that machines timber, rather than just being a retail shop. Find a better timber yard, ideally the one who is making these posts.
--
Smert' spamionam

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You could send me the posts, I can do them on my table saw. I have a nice jig arrangement that allows me to cut them by using multiple passes and flips.
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"C.A. Decker" wrote in message

Find someone with a planer. Just about any place that sells hardwood lumber should be able to do the milling for you.
--
www.e-woodshop.net
Last update: 11/06/04
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Oh man - you just died and went to heaven. You have all the right reasons for a buying spree. "Hon, I *need* these tools to get those posts down to the right size so that everything looks right." Start with a new table saw, then a jointer, a planer, a bandsaw, a new drill press (don't want to use that oily metal one). Man, if only I were in your shoes...
--

-Mike-
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somebody do the millwork for you. Many of these charge a minimum fee amd flat hourly rate. With the right equipment, a job like this would probably be done inless than an hour. I have done this a number of times when I didn't have a shop handy. I even did it when I had a shop but didn't have the tools do do a particular operation.
Some cabinet shops may be able to do it for you. Some lumber yards have a millwork operation where you buy the lumber and have it milled. Or even ask around for somebody with a well equipped shop.
I know full well the differences between metal and wood shop. I love woodwork but end up doing more metal work because I design things that need to be made from metal. And it takes a large space and bigger investment in equipment to do both well.
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You should be ashamed of yourself recommending he spend all that money on a few tools. Can you imagine the mess he is going to make with the planer? Now if you were to add a 1 1/2 HP dust collector. Long Ranger and . . . . . . . . .
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wrote in message

I hang my head in shame. But honest - it's only because I don't have a dust collector myself and I just couldn't bear the thought of him getting one and me still sweeping up my messes.
--

-Mike-
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On Thu, 11 Nov 2004 03:32:52 GMT, "Mike Marlow"

I picked up a sheet of 1/4" hardboard at HD today for drawer bottoms, and the guy mentioned that it was a slow day, and if I wanted any cuts made, he'd do it free... I thought that he was kidding, so I said "yeah, I need three 11" x 8' sections cut out of the sheet, then the 3 sections cut to 14 1/2 x 11" drawer bottoms"... damned if he didn't say "no problem" and put it on the panel saw (several times) and did my work for me... the panel saw didn't really impress me, but the dust collector on that sucker was awesome... It mush have been 6 feet tall and had a blower the size of my router table.. I WANT IT!
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Perhaps I need to clarify. I'm replacing posts for a porch railing, not putting up a new fence. The railing is fine, I just need to replace the posts, which are square in cross section. In order to reuse the railings (this is an old house), and in order to maintain the same spacing between railing sections so that everything goes back in the same place, I have to use posts with the exact same dimensions. These posts are not a standard size, so no, they are not available commercially. I live in Southern Ontario in an urban area, and all that the lumber yards here carry are 4x4's and 6x6's.
Also I "cannot" get anyone in my area to make them for me. I've been to every mill and lumber yard and they are not interested in such a small job, or they overquote to such a high price that it's apparent they don't really want to do the job but are more than willing to rip me off if I do use their services. Yes I know, it's pathetic, but unfortunately that is the situation in this neck of the woods. Good supplies and customer service mean little any more.
So ....... if I need a thickness planer then that is what I'll have to do. By the time I run around trying to find someone to do the job and pay them, it'll probably be cheaper for me to do it myself. Thanks again.
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hi decker, get one of these electric hand planers. you only have to plane 2 sides to bring it to size. just buy the lumber larger than your finished size. I have one of these hand planers and they work really great. another thing is that when your planing a huge piece of lumber it is so heavy that you can't really use a benchtop jointer or even a 6 inch jointer cause of the weight. here is a link to the electric hand planer. http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber2222 good luck yor friend in Christ, Gregory :)

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is there a woodworking hobby club in your area? how about a custom cabinet maker?
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"C.A. Decker" wrote:

If you could narrow Southern Ontario down a bit perhaps someone read this news group could help you out. Are you anywhere near Buffalo, NY?
-- Jack Novak Buffalo, NY - USA (Remove "SPAM" from email address to reply)
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On Thu, 11 Nov 2004 00:11:39 GMT, "C.A. Decker"

there is a pretty good selection of portable thickness planers available, at a pretty wide price spread. if you're going to do this one job and you're pretty sure you'll never use it again you might want to either rent one if you can or buy one for the job and sell it when you're done. I don't know what the used tool market is like where you are- you might be able to get a good deal on a used one. don't forget to compare the cheapies when shopping. the harbor freight stuff doesn't have the features or build quality of the name brand machines, but will still do what you need for a pretty low price.
good luck.
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If you have to take off 1/2 inch or more consider renting a 16" circular saw. Most rental outlets carry the makita 16" timber framing saw. Rip the posts down to size and beltsand. b
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Perhaps you can make box-columns, like box beams, using two 2x8s ripped down to 6" wide and two 2x4s ripped to 3" wide, or four 2x6s ripped to 4 1/2" wide.
Gluing them together would be a good job for a biscuit joiner.
--

FF

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C.A. Decker wrote:

You don't say what tools you have. There may be a way to do this with an inexpensive accessory for something you already have, but until we know what you have making such a suggestion would be shooting blind.
--
--John
Reply to jclarke at ae tee tee global dot net
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If I understand your description of the problem, you do not need to match the size of the total post. You only need to match the size where the railings join. Thus you can use an oversize post and remove material only where the rail joins. You can remove material in a restricted zone with a router or with shallow cuts with a saw.
Dick

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