I am frustrated and feel limited without having a surface planer. I
have a substantial pile of wood (birch, walnut, oak, and elm) which was
given to me, but without a planer to dimension any of it, my projects
have been limited to what dimensioning I can do with my TS, jointer,
and ROS. Unfortunately, spending even $200 is not an option within the
next 12 months, so I can't just go out and buy a planer. Does anybody
have any experience in surfacing lumber with just a TS and jointer? I
feel like no matter how much I practice, I'm not going to be able to
get smooth parallel surfaces.
Perhaps you could see if there is a woodworking club or group in your
area and if so then maybe you could ask someone to plane the wood for
you for a nominal fee or in exchange for a few board feet??? Check the
bulletin boards at a woodworking supply store or lumberyard. Or if you
don't mind living on credit then go to a BORG store and charge a planer
that you don't have to make payments on for 6-12 months. Where are you
On Jan 24, 7:52 pm, email@example.com wrote:
On 24 Jan 2007 19:52:24 -0800, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
I'm going to guess you don't have a great TS, but if you can get it
set up well enough you can do the following:
Joint 1 face
Joint 1 edge
Rip on the TS with the jointed face down and jointed edge against the
Run the board through on edge with the jointed face against the fence.
You can make multiple passes and flip the board end for end to come in
from the opposite edge.
This is highly dependent on the setup of the TS and having a good
blade on it, and good technique feeding the board through. Attaching
an auxilliary high fence to your fence will help a lot.
This would work, but will not leave a very good surface, and isn't
particularly safe; there are any number of ways to get hurt. I wouldn't do
it. Okay, I have done equally dangerous things, but try not to.
It's not really any different than resawing with the TS, except the
blade is partially exposed on the edge instead of being inside the
board. Which perhaps looks more dangerous, but isn't really when you
think about it. With the high fence you've got something to hold the
top of the board against, and you've always got at least half the
width of the board to hold with your push block.
Alternatively you could make a sled that either rode against the fence
or on the fence that would be something like a taper jig, but just a
square tube with a fence on it. Clamp the board to it and run it
through, with your hands safely on the other side. Would only work
with relatively short boards though.
As far as the surface it leaves, the main issue is any ridge in the
middle caused by any misalignment or deflection of the blade. Again,
setup is crucial. You can get it pretty good, nothing that a ROS
I don't have a planer, but I buy S4S or S3S and just have to correct
whatever warping has happened. And I have my drum sander, but that
takes rather a long time to thickness anything :)
I resaw on the TS quite often, and think it is quite different.
Resawing has material the near side of the blade, so it is much more stable.
Planing leaves that big exposed blade, with little option but to use your
hand near it (unless, as you say, you build some sort of sled).
I am not saying it is hazardous, because with care it shouldn't be, but it
is just more dangerous than woodworking ought to be.
Before I got my planer I did all my dimensioning on the table saw, and
my thoughts are as follows:
It takes a lot more time than a planer.
For me, no matter how well it was set up and how careful I was, it was
really really scary.
It did leave a less consistent finish than the planer, which I took
care of with hand planes.
If I didn't have this planer I'd still be using the TS to bring the
wood to size, but boy do I appreciate this tool. Having an 8'' jointer
and that discontinued DeWalt 733 planer have been a joy. Only use them
at the beginning of the project but they make the whole project so much
faster and so much less frustrating.
That said... I know I appreciate them so much because I made do with
the TS and the hand planes for so long.
On 25 Jan, 03:52, email@example.com wrote:
Take up making medieval repro work. Great fun and a good excuse to only
rough-surface things by hand!
You need a good workbench, robust enough for planing and with good
_end_ clamping, such as dogs in movable dog holes (or else plywood
scraps and G clamps)
You also need a scrub plane. Make one if you have to, by taking a cheap
Stanley #4 and re-sharpening it with a wide mouth and a crowned iron.
Use the worst old (or new!) beater you can find and don't be afraid to
file the mouth wider.
Finally you need a set of winding sticks. Make your own, either
beautiful mahogany ones with ivory inlay, or else some bits of
aluminium extrusion from the window factory scrap-bins with black
marker pen scrawled on them.
A copy of the old '50s Record handbook "Planecraft" is worth reading,
otherwise Jeff Gorman's web site. Web searching will give you details
on the tools.
Now go to work
Examine the board. Use the winding sticks, if appropriate. Look to see
if there's cupping, twist or taper (either direction. Find an easy
board first, one that has no more than mild cupping and not twist.
Ignore the awkward boards. Save them until you have a thicknesser, rip
them smaller and easier to work with, or just find some better timber.
Twisted timber isn't usually worth the effort, unless it's exotic or
Do the first face on the jointer (as a surface planer). This gives you
one accurate reference surface. I'd usually start from the concave side
as this tends to sit on the planer bed more stably. If cupping is bad,
knock the high spots down by hand first.
Now turn it over and start making it equally thick all over and taking
out any twist or cup. Do this manually and it shouldn't even take long.
Use your winding sticks to check how you're doing. Taper is your enemy
here, as that means lots of hand planing. Don't worry about surface
When it's done, stick your second face through the jointer (again, as a
surface planer). This will give you a smooth surface. If it was
parallel to begin with, then enough machine surface planing to make iit
smooth shouldn't put a taper onto it. It won't _remove_ taper, but nor
does it create it (for light cuts, with reasonable technique).
Snap a chalk line down the best edge, rip it and joint it. Only bother
ripping one edge, because you don't know how wide the finished stock
needs to be. I don't even do this much, until I'm ready to use the
board. Much of my stock is stored as either 2" rough sawn waney edge,
or dried and resawn S2S and still with the waney edges.
This effort can be reduced enormously by setting up a real scrub plane
for fast stock removal.
The skill required can be reduced by using the planer to make it smooth
and shiny afterwards, just using the manual effort to get the
dimensions and shape right.
On Jan 24, 10:52 pm, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
I'm not trying to be a smart aleck, but is there anyway you could get a
part time job on saturday nights or something like that, if money is
that tight? Even at only $5-6/hour, it wouldn't take that long to save
up $200-300. I think you are going to waste a lot of wood and have a
lot of frustration otherwise.
Good point. Woodworking can be an expensive hobby. A planer is only
Good wood is pricey. More for some than others, but still..
Then tools, tools and more tools. Depending on the particular
project, there's always something needed.
On Jan 24, 10:52 pm, email@example.com wrote:
I used a jointer and TS for years and never even considered a planer.
The only limitation, of course, is the width of the finished piece.
Another thought is to use eBay or Craigslist to search for a planer.
I'm sure there are plenty of them knocking around doing nothing useful.
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