I am working on the base for a workbench, and being the stingy guy I am, I
purchased a couple of douglas fur 4x4x8 for the legs. The rest of the
workbench is red oak dimension lumber and plywood.
The douglas fur, while practical, does not look right next to the red oak
stringers. I want to face the pieces with red oak veneer, cut from
dimensioned planks. I want to be able to round over the edges when done. So
I am thinking that the thinest I should make the facings are 1/4".
Question: Has anyone used a sled in a benchtop planer for really thin pieces
of wood? I have seen articles describing this, but wonder if the veneers
would simply slide around on the sled. Do I need to use some carpet tape to
make sure they do not? Anyone done this before? Please respond ASAP as I
would like to do this tomorrow....thanks..
1/4" is not veneer, your planer will have no problems planing that thin
without a sled.
What planer do you have? Most will go down to ~1/8" before you need a sled.
Every neighbourhood has one, in mine, I'm him.
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Yeah my old Delta portable - long since made obsolete with cutterhead
lock/no-snipe models - goes down to about 1/8".
Would just securing a melamine-type aux. bed (effectively raising the
bed in relation to the cutter head) inside the planer serve the same
purpose as running a sled through? Would the less than 1/8" wood move
through well enough or does it need to be fixed to a sled for support?
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Offering a shim for the Porter-Cable 557 type 2 fence design.
FWW had an article on cutting your own veneers last issue (or the one
before) and it showed planing after cutting to size by sticking them
to some melamine with double sided carpet tape. Sounds like it would
work pretty well. If you used MDF or something instead the tape would
pull parts of the MDF up each time and eventually you'd end up with a
non-flat surface, so thus the melamine I would think. Haven't tried
it, but should work.
Mike & All,
A couple of suggestions . . .
I use something called 'Whiteboard' or 'Tileboard' for my 'drawing'
templates. It's about 1/8 in thick with a white 'Melamine-like' surface.
Pretty cheap stuff because the surface is some kind of a painted material.
For my 'router' templates I use 1/4 in Hardboard; I think of it as 'thin
In either case, because I want to use the stuff repeatedly, I will either
apply several coats of 'Seal Coat' dewaxed shellac and/or water based Poly
to the back. This gives a smooth, hard, surface that will take tape 'ad
Simple, effective, cheap, and relatively quick.
Regards & Good Luck,
The biggest part of using thin woods in a planer is to select them for grain
parallel to the faces, and not to plane them thinner than a couple of annual
rings. If you do, even with backing, you're asking for trouble.
In any case, if the legs are to be covered, cover 'em, then plane the whole
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