What to do with my 1hp delta shaper?

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I have been thinking about a new router table for some time now, as well as buying a 15a router for it. My old table is mediocre, and the Bosch 1617 really won't handle raised panels. (Yeh, I know, many small passes...)
I bought a 14.4a shaper, for less then even the cheapest 15a router would cost. It was 20 years old, but he used it twice right after buying it, and it has sat in his basement since. There was a little rust on the table, but that cleaned up easily enough.
Four problems with it. 1) The hole is too small for large cutters. Getting a larger hole seems prohibatively expensive, so I was thinking putting a second surface over the top. The bearings ought to be robust enough to handle a little more extension without excessive runout, no? 2) The table is too small. So I was thinking of solving 1&2 by using a large sheet of corian I was planning on using for the router table; gluing a piece off plywood to the corian, with a cut out for the old table, with a large opening to accomodate large cutters. Is this reasonable? I could run some supports from the base to the edge of the corian/plywood table, but it ought to be strong enought with them. 3) Sealing the front and sides to hook up a dust collector is easy enough, but the back would be a little trouble because of the motor and pulley. Also, the fence doesn't lend itself to easy DC connection. Has anyone found a clever way to do this? 4) I foolishly thought I could use my router bits in it, but now find I would have to buy a $90 adaptor. That $90 would pay for a couple cutters. Am I better buying the adaptor, or just going with shaper cutters. (I will be building a small router table to go in the left TS wing for small stuff)
Or with all of these problems, maybe I should unload it and just do the new router table as I originally intended. At an auction last week, the same shaper went for 50% more than I paid for mine, despite being in worse condition.
Oh, all the decisions....
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Sell the shaper. Without being familiar with your particular model, they usually match all components together when making or designing a purpose built machine.
So, it was probably never intended to swing a large bit. Bearings may be too small, could be some torque issues (reulting in final cut finish issues) for the motor that are generated on the end of a 3" cutter that the machine never had when spinning its maximum designed (smaller) size.
Then there is the cutter shaft size, whether or not you will get the quality of cut you want with an after market adapter on top of the shaft (are you SURE it mates and lines up perfectly?).
I guess the last thing for me is thinking of making a machine do something like >spinning a cutter< that it simply wasn't designed to do. I wouldn't think of increasing a cutter size on a tool just because I could because of saftey issues.
Besides, if you can sell the thing for more $$$ than you have in it, you should take the dough and buy the machine you really need/want.
Just my .02.
Robert
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

It's the Delta LD 1/2" spindle shaper...

Precisely...
Don't have a clue what you're driving at here...there's a Delta-manufactured router bit collet available for the shaper which is what Toller's talking about. It works just fine w/ the caveats previously discussed of spinning a router bit at roughly 1/3 the speed of a shaper cutter.
For larger diameter router bits, however, there's probably adequate tip speed except that many/most router bits are two flute as opposed to three. It is also necessary to use a 1/4" auxiliary table w/ the router collet if one needs the cutter plane at the table surface since the spindle height adjustment isn't sufficient to lower the collet to the table height w/o the auxiliary table.

That's the major problem w/ larger shaper cutters on the LD shaper that have cutting radius greater than the machined cutout in the table...the weight is more than intended and it isn't a safe operation--one needs a 3/4" spindle minimum to handle such cutters.

Similar to my thoughts...if you don't know what you're going to use a new machine or tool for _before_ purchasing it, why buy it???? (Other than the obvious one of it just seemed like too good of a "deal" to pass up....but even then, if you don't have a clue of what to do w/ it, it must not be much of a need....)
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wrote:

thought something that heavy could do anything; but I am thankful to find out now, before I put work into it.
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Toller wrote:

Depends on how large a cutter diameter you intend to use. But no, it isn't intended to run anything larger than what it's designed for. There are some cutters available w/ 3/4" bore that are supplied w/ 1/2" bushings that I would feel safe in using. If they're larger than about the 3" opening I'd not feel comfortable using them on mine even though they would _probably_ not twist off the spindle, I'm not comfortable...
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wrote:

Poking around I found some instruction on Jesada's website for raised panel cutters. They are used upside down, with the panel face up! So the hole in the table is irrelevant, as the cutter never goes near the hole. Is that how you use them?
I emailed half a dozen shaper manufactures asking if their products are safe to use on a 1/2" 1hp Delta shaper. We'll see what they say.
Incidentally, I measure the amperage with no load at 11.5a. While taking 1/8" off of 6/4 oak at a fairly high feed rate, it went up to 12.1a. Since it is rated at 14.4a, this suggests it is capable of doing some pretty heavy cutting.
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NOOOOOOO! Use the table boost and keep your cutter under some extra wood. One pinch and the whole shebang comes in the direction opposite the rotation if the cutter is above and open. Not to mention that the front of the panel is the view side, where consistency counts. I can pass right over the cutters with the panel and my hold-downs when it's beneath the wood. Can't feed that consistently or positively with that big whirring mess staring at you in the middle.
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Toller wrote:

Some do, but not freehand. If you run them w/ the panel face up, you _must_ imo use a power feeder both for safety and for any chance of getting a decent finish surface. See George's additional remarks in that regard...

I would assume if they sell them w/ a 1/2" insert, they'll have to say they're ok to use on a 1/2" spindle, wouldn't you? :)
I personally don't have the required "pucker power" to turn it on w/ anything much over a 3 to 3-1/2" OD. As noted before I _know_ a 1/2" steel shaft is pretty strong and should take the load, but I just can't make myself do it--it just doesn't "look" safe (to me) and I don't feel safe, whether I am or not...
If I didn't have a larger shaper, _perhaps_ my feeling would change, but I doubt it...

Power won't be much of an issue imo...
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Toller wrote:

The shaft is only a 1/2" shaft. Any 3/4" shaper cutter _sold by the manufacturer_ w/ a 1/2" bushing is ok, but even there I'd err on the side of caution (having the same machine)....

I simply made an auxiliary table around the shaper table itself. If you add the extra table you may then run into the problem of not having sufficient spindle height adjustment. That depends on what you want to actually do.
I use the LD shaper for stick and cope cuts and, for the most part, leave it set up simply to handle the undercut of the full-length tenon w/ the stub spindle while using the larger shaper for the actual other cutting. This saves a somewhat touchy setup issue when using the same shaper for both cuts.
When had only the one, of course, had to do so so it made planning ahead to minimize the number switchovers much more a significant issue.
I still suggest planning on using cutters which do fit within the machine's intended capability. It is truly unfortunate that Delta stopped production of the 1/2" cutters for the LD shaper. It would be nice if Grizzly or some of the others who still make a 1/2" spindle shaper would pick up the niche.

Not effective. When shaping, I accept that there will be chips...

When in Rome... :)

As I noted in an addendum/response to Marty's answer, I wonder why buy a piece of gear if not sure what one wants to do w/ it...
Overall, a large router is undoubtedly more flexible and has advantages to a part-time/hobby woodworker over a spindle shaper. For architectural work or for production cabinet work, the shaper properly set up can't be beat....
IMO, YMMV, $0.02, etc., .... :)
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Aux table required for clearance on the big bit. No hill for a stepper. Make it with locating bars on the miter gage groove and limit bars on either end that butt against the iron table. I made two, because I have two panel raising cutters, and I could make the fence cutouts with minimum clearance to control chipout.
Magnets work great at holding DC or vacuum fittings to the table, and they are thrown, not dropped, so no real need to enclose anything. It'll only make it more difficult to clean out the dust that will somehow find its way in.
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thought it was a bad idea. Does it have the power for it? Thanks.
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Toller wrote:

I have done raised panels, but you keep talking about _large_ diameter cutters. I've simply stated that you must keep the cutter appropriate to the 1/2" spindle.
1 hp is ok for what it can (safely) spin...
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Toller wrote:
<<So you are doing raised panels on a 1hp shaper? The other respondants thought it was a bad idea. Does it have the power for it? Thanks. <<
You can do raised panels on the shaper with a 1 hp motor. In regards to my earlier comment where I was not clear, there were a number of posts here (I'm almost sure it was here) about the newer manufactured collets not fitting and holding as well as they liked. So before I get burned to the ground by the Delta guys, it could have been an isolated incident, and I would like to point out that there have been after market adapters from others.... no manufacturer or brand was specified in the original post.
As far as the tip speed goes on the large bits, the shaper should have plenty of speed. However, on an older machine (he states it is 20 years old) that I am not familiar with, I am thinking of the amount of leverage that a large bit can generate against the motor/shaft to bog it down > at the slower speeds required by the router bits< he desires to use on his shaper. Careful, multiple cuts will probably work just fine.
And yes, you can make any table you want, and spin a bit the size of a frisbee and have it work as long as you are willing to do all the necessary things to protect yourself like new hold downs, and the patience to make 7 - 8 passes for a door.
Still, I am wondering why you would put another $90 in a machine for parts, take the time to make a perfectly flat table, make new hold downs for the shaper, and in the end have a new machine that may not do what you want. Remember, you are starting with a machine that was designed primarily to use bits designed for shapers, and this model was designed primarily as a molding shaper.

architectural work or for production cabinet work, the shaper properly set up can't be beat.... <<
Probably should have said that first, because that really sums it up nicely.
Robert
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I would include a heavy piece of shrapnel-shielding material between me and the spinning potential lethal weapon to put a _very_ large shaper cutter on a LD 1/2" spindle shaper. :(
A router bit for a 1/2" router in the 1/2" collet is one thing, a large 3-wing shaper cutter that might be 2-3x the diameter and weight is something else entirely. I've no clue what Toller _really_ has in mind as he's not provided a specific cutter but to say the cutout in the table isn't big enough makes me nervous even here that the launched might come out of orbit in my shop.
I've seen one such incident in a high school shop and after watching it go through a cinder-block wall about 30 ft away, I don't want to see anyone take a chance.
Fortunately in the particular instance it was launched directly away from the operator and was also away from the rest of the occupied classroom as well--but that it wasn't at 180 degree from where it went was pure blind luck (or intervention if you're of that mindset) and it would have gutted the kid running the shaper for sure.
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14.5 amps - 1.5 HP nominal. not that it makes a big whoop. The 5" cutters work just fine. I adjust my feed rate rather than taking two passes. You can do two passes if you'd like. Note that 15 amps is 3HP in my Hitachi, 5 at Sears....
It is a pucker factor ten on a cutter that big, so guard it, and feed with paddles and wooden fingers.
Nice being able to run 80 feet of oak molding without fear of burning out the router. Used the Ogee panel raiser to make the cuts.
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George wrote:

You run 5" OD cutters on the LD 1/2" spindle???? Man, you got more _xxx_ than I... I wouldn't have the courage to turn it on. Guess I'm leery owing to experience in HS shop--see story in reply to nailshooter
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Well, the one in the HS shop was an old RI Delta Milwaukee with a half inch spindle, so no gain there.
You can make something foolproof, but you can't make it _damnfool_ proof.
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George wrote:

Just got new Wooddorkers Supply catalog so was thumbing through it last night and happened to notice the Freud panel raisers for 3/4" spindles are now (or maybe have been for quite some time and I never noticed before since already had what I need in 1") being shipped w/ 1/2" bushings and they're 5" OD.
One of those things where my mind knows that 1/2" of steel spindle is adequate but my belly wouldn't let me do it. :)
I got the Model 27 w/ 3/4" - 1" interchangeable ages ago so use the LD guy almost exclusively for the stub spindle to undercut the ends for the full-length tenons for doors and windows...
I've been wistfully eying the 3-spindle Woodcraft but can't really justify it w/ the volume of work but would be convenient...
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wrote:

I got my set about 3 years or so ago and it shipped with 1/2" bushings then. So it's been a while.
+--------------------------------------------------------------------------------+ If you're gonna be dumb, you better be tough +--------------------------------------------------------------------------------+
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Mark & Juanita wrote:

...snip prior discussion re: large OD cutters on 1/2" spindle LD shaper...

Do you actually use them on a 1/2" spindle?
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