Has anyone come across an article that compares and contrasts various power
feeds across various applications? Of particular interest is the use of
power feeds on shapers (3 HP), table saws (3 HP), and also for use on large
bandsaws (e.g., 36" 5 HP) for resawing. I didn't find anything like this
on the FWW or PWW sites though Lonnie Bird's book on shapers discusses power
feed use but in generic terms...
What, specifically do you have in mind as points of comparison?
For anything of the size of 3 HP and larger the question of trying to
get by with 120V instead of 240 is just silly unless there's some
really, really, really unusual reason. If one has access to 3 phase one
can find much cheaper deals on used gear because the general population
of potential purchasers goes way down which if one is looking for
acquisition can make up for a large part of the cost of a converter.
As for controls, it's also just silly to not put LV controls on any and
everything of such size...
But, if there's something else bothering you, ask away... :)
If you are asking about the usage on various pieces of equipment I have an
"opinion" so a "comparison" of usefulness if that is what you are after.
Lots of good reasons to use them on shapers and I would always go to the tr
ouble if I had one available. I think more wheels are better than wider whe
els but the choices are pretty slim anyway. They all work.
Table saws not so much except for real production work and even then a rip
saw with a chain feeder would be better .
Resawing for sure if you do it a lot and have some level of production. Har
dly worth the effort for a one-off cut but slicing 1/4's off of raw stock o
ver and over it is a dream. However, I think the resaw feeders are the most
expensive of this expensive group of machines. I think you can use a stand
ard feeder for resaw but I am talking about the dedicated versions. Never w
orked with a regular on setup like that.
On Thu, 10 Oct 2013 17:23:44 -0400, John Grossbohlin wrote:
I haven't seen any articles, but I have used power feeders a lot.
On table saws they do increase setup time to the point that I wouldn't
consider using one for less than 30 pieces and depending on the job
might stretch that out to fifty pieces.
On a shaper though there are jobs that I would set one up for a one
off, such as profiling a round table top edge, with straight work
it would be much the same as table saw work.
Yes when I used to get mags I had read one. Can't remember which it was.
Made me want one due to the ability to dial one in for the perfect feed,
no burn on cherry ..
wish I could tell you which mag it was.
Can't answer your question directly; however, some info that may be of
A few weeks ago saw an old tape of a "This Old House" program that
CNC controlled machining center that reminded me of a typical Warner &
Swasey Wiedeman CNC Turret Punch except instead of cutting metal it
was cutting wood.
Given what I saw, the day of the individual machine ranks right up
there with the dodo bird in a production operation.
The typical CNC machining center will have a turret containing at
least 90-135 separate tools and can easily eliminate routers, shapers
and most table saw functions.
This will show an old Warner & Swasey Wiedeman Model W-3050 CNC Turret
Punch in action.
I saw that episode of TOH also... it got me thinking about a couple projects
where CNC methodology would be fantastic for work with sheet goods. I
suspect it is perhaps not so good with solid woods due to the grain... which
metals don't have from a machining perspective. Yes I know metals have grain
but the grain in metal generally does not affect its machining the way grain
affects the machining of wood (try jointing the end grain of wood vs.
running steel in any orientation through a milling machine if you don't
believe me... ;~) ).
If my project involving the sheet goods turns into mass production (ha ha
ha...) I'd certainly go with the CNC so that whole sheets could be slapped
on a vacuum table and CNC machined into finished parts!
I had automotive customers that had maybe 20-30 Wiedeman's in their
Today, Warner & Swasey is gone from E55th & Carnegie in Cleveland as
well as Wiedeman.
Cleveland had many machine tool builders in the 50's and 60's.
To the best of my knowledge, all are gone.
Points of clarification:
I've got several projects in mind. One involves making thousands of square
feet of flooring from cants and bolts. Thus lots of resawing (for the bolts,
after squaring) and lots of shaper work, both of which would clearly benefit
from power feeding the stock. What makes this viable is that the cants and
bolts would be practically free. Another project involves relatively small,
but relatively frequent, production runs of parts made from sheet goods
(nominal 16" x 32" and 12" by 32") which is where the table saw comes in.
I've considered also setting it up on the 8" jointer for face jointing as I
think it would work fine with relatively short stock (3-4 foot long). The
thickness planer has it's own feed!
The comparisons I am curious about involve the X & Y adjustments across
various feeders, how much HP is needed for various tasks, and what wheel
composition and number of wheels seem best for various tasks.
See... simple questions where there would be utility in having a real
On Thu, 10 Oct 2013 21:20:31 -0400, John Grossbohlin wrote:
That is in my mind plenty of work to justify buying a really nice
heavy duty power feeder and with the need for production work
later on, something you want ever regret.
All the feeders I have used were either three or four wheel models,
with table saw and shaper work any number of wheels and hp will work
fine. Resawing and jointer work will benefit from having the longest
body, most wheels and as much horsepower as you want to invest in.
One of the great benifits to power feeders is the fact that feather
boards, holdovers, holddowns and all such similar devices are
not needed, properly set the feeder will take care of all these
I have never used one of the track feeders that are available now, and I
don't see the need for a track feed. Could be that I am clueless about
some magic property they have.
Get one of the universal mounting arms, easily adjustable six ways from
Sunday. makes life much simpler. These will require drilling mounting
holes in tops and or fashioning heavy mounting brackets along side the
top of any machine you want to use it on. Some will cringe at the idea
of drill ing holes in tablesaw tops, it is done as a matter of course for
any need that arises in production work, and no one bats an eye-YMMV.
Everything is relative, how sharp everything is, speed at which you want
to work, cost of equipment etc. I don't think you'll find a chart that
factors in how fast you and a helper can comfortably feed and restack
the material. :) A good tablesaw, sharp blade, and almost any size
power feeder will keep you hustling handling material.
This is high on my list of reasons for pursuing power feeders... No matter
what I do on the shaper I cannot help but think that the consistency of
feeding the stock with electrons vs. with meat would lead to better and more
I'm not clear on "why" either... haven't seen any that explains the
Are you referring to something different from what comes with the Delta 1/4
This could lead to additional purchases... e.g., stock tables that lower
from tool top height by the thickness of the stock with each completed piece
that is added. ;~)
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