I am a novice woodworker who has so far constructed all my projects of
dimensioned pine. Now, I want to move on to hardwoods, but have realized
that the local stock of hardwoods is not truly 3/4", as was the pine I have
been using. It appears most of the hardwood I have checked is from
13/16"-7/8" (4/4), and to get it to a uniform 3/4" I am not sure what is the
best tool or procedure.
The woods I have been looking at are in need of a bit of surface
finishing, seemingly a little more then a ROS would provide. Any information
to help a struggling novice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.
Once you have the planer you will want to buy rough sawn lumber that
will be close to an inch thick at 4/4. The extra thickness will allow
you to take out cup and twist in the boards after they adjust to the
humidity levels in your shop and end up at your desired 3/4 thickness.
It seems whenever I buy S4S 4/4 lumber it ends up closer to 1/2" thick
by the time I get it flat and square.
It is good that you are getting away from strictly pine. You will not
regret that move.
For Oak, pine and any other not-so-figured wood, a 12 inch single speed, two
bladed planer is ok.
If you get into Birds eye maple, Curly Maple and figured woods, it helps to
get one of the newer two-speed planers. Three blades would be a definite
Word of caution, even with the two speed planers, you will still get tear
out on some woods, for example, high grade birds eye maple and curly maple.
That's where the drum sander comes in handy; you plane down to within 1/32
and then finish up on the drum sander.
I do not dimension wood on the drum sander; it takes too long. AND, you
don't want to put pine thru a drum sander anyway, it gums up the sand paper.
Bottom line, get a nice planer and make some pretty pieces.
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Two other observations:
I haven't seen anyone mention a jointer in this thread, and that tool
is every bit as important for dimensioning stock as the thickness
planer. I know it's easy to spend someone else's money, but you'll
never get cup or twist out of a board with a thickness planer alone.
And, unless you REALLY like to sand, you might think about obtaining
one or more good, quality hand planes. That lightly scalloped surface
you'll see after wood comes off the planer or jointer isn't really a
decorative effect - it, too, needs to go away. You will save a ton of
time (to say nothing about the dust, and the noise) in your final
surface preparation by doing a good job with a hand plane before you
get out the sandpaper.
While I did buy a jointer last december for myself, and it makes quick
work of making a board flat, I went 2 years without one, and many times
cup or twist can be elimated by running the board through the planer a
little bit on each side, flipping it back and forth.
Well, my thanks to all for your input! It was extremely valuable and
gave me something to think about. Looks like I'm going to get a nice 2-speed
planer (Delta 22-580, I think). My birthday is coming soon and my fiance was
asking what to buy (she already has gotten me a spindle sander, dust
collector, and 1/2 sheet PC sander), so I think I have an answer!
I have made some furniture and other items already, though only in pine,
so I am looking forward to working in maple and oak now. My thanks again-a
great bunch here in the rec!
http://www.knight-toolworks.com/ The coffin smoother would be my first
For when you want a finish that's glass smooth. Not a lot of money, and a
real quiet joy to use.
You could send her there for many birthdays to come.
yes, power tools have their place, too.
On Wed, 09 Mar 2005 23:04:04 -0600, the inscrutable Patriarch
I have one (in Bloodwood) coming with a Japanese iron RSN.
Whenever you're too tired to Neander. Unfortunately for me,
that's becoming far too often...
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Forget the sander...a name brand planer would be my tool of choice.
Once you go that route I would strongly advise you to be looking for
at least a 6 in jointer...then you can buy rough sawn lumber at 1/2
the price or better then the price you are now paying for S4S
hardwoods...those savings alone will pay for the Planer and the
Lots of luck...hope you enjoy the hobby as much as I have..
I would recommend the DeWalt DW735 model. It's 13", two speed, three
blades, and it works quite well even on figured woods like birdseye and
flame maple with no tear-out so far. I've put a fair amount of maple,
rosewood, walnut, koa, and purple heart thru it in the 7 or 8 months
I've had it. Excellent machine. More expensive than most of the
"portable" planers, but it was worth it to me for extra width, slower
second feed rate, and three-blade cutter head.
The suggestion someone eles made is a good one--take a woodworking
class, or do some careful independent study so that you understand what
each of these power tools is capable and not capable of. Also, focus on
safety--these things can remove a finger (or a hand) so fast you
wouldn't believe it! There have been more than one story told on the
Wreck about how one careless moment has been a life-changing event for
one of us. Not me so far--praise the Lord!
Bob G wrote:
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