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AT260PT sniping in thicknessing mode

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Quickben

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Gentlemen,

Just got one of these machines (when it arrived it was actually a AT107PT...) and it has snipe while thicknessing out of the box.

It's absolutely spot on while planing, flat, true and snipe free. While thicknessing, however, i get snipe at both ends of the workpiece. The table has been waxed, I lock it every time after adjusting the height etc.

I'm thinking its the tension on the rollers tilting the table very slightly when there's only one acting on the workpiece at either end. So I'm going to completely detension them and work back from there.

Has anyone sorted this in the past ? How much tension is correct for the rollers ?
 

Trevanion

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I find most of the cases of snipe are down to bad technique rather than the machine itself. Are you supporting the workpiece properly as you feed it in and extract it from the machine, I.E. a little upward hand pressure from the underside of the workpiece against the force of the rollers?

If that doesn't solve it, I doubt it would be the table tilting, and if it was it would be the table that is the problem and not the rollers. I would advise against de-tensioning the rollers as if you set it weaker they'll probably not feed the timber through properly and you'll spend hours getting it back adjusted properly, have you tried contacting Axminster?

Edit: Steve beat me to it about bad technique, his video explains it well.
 

Quickben

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I’m not keen on lifting the workpiece as it comes out, to be honest, as even a tiny over deflection will cause more issues. How do I ensure I’m applying the same amount of lifting force every time ?

Also, on my last PT, this never happened as, I believe, the table was supported at each corner and not just by a central column like the new one.

Anyhoo, I’ve completely removed the spring tension from the rollers and it has definitely improved things, just not completely eliminated it. There’s still a very small amount on the trailing edge of the workpiece. The rollers still have quite a lot of tension on them, especially the outfeed roller which I believe is causing the trailing edge snipe.

It gets pulled through, no problem.
 

Quickben

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Sorted.

It was a combination of the rollers having too much tension (they now have the minimum amount of tension on the springs) and the table support column not being secured.

At the base of the column there is four M8 cap head bolts with accompanying M6 adjustment studs. All were slightly loose. Basically as if they’d been nipped up tight and then backed off a turn.

Now I just feed it wood and it does it’s thing. No need for a “technique”..
 

Trevanion

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Was there really a point to this thread?

You asked for advice and pretty much dismissed everything suggested by a couple of people with a fair bit of experience and went about it the hard way. As I suggested in my first post, the problem was with your table and not the rollers if it wasn’t bad technique, which subsequently a loose table mounting was the problem.

It’s not “a technique”, it’s standard practice.
 

Quickben

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Of course there was a point to the thread.

There’s lots of Axminster enthusiasts on this forum and I thought try and find out if any of them had similar issues with this machine ie. if it was a common characteristic coming fresh from the factory and subsequently if there was an unofficial “user setup”.

Failing that, I hoped someone may have experience from the other “107” clones out there.

As for dismissing the advice given, I had previously watched Steve’s video, but my issue was happening on short workpieces as much as long ones, so no dice. As suggested, I tried adjusting the outfeed guide roller until it was flush with the table, but didn’t make a difference. I brought it up so it was a tiny bit proud but that just exacerbated the trailing edge snipe so I backed it off again.

As for supporting the workpiece as it exits the machine being a “standard practise”: surely if the machine is set up properly there’s no need to interfere with process ? Therefore not doing this can’t be seen as “bad technique” as you put it.
 

Trevanion

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Quickben":3l4mrhos said:
As for supporting the workpiece as it exits the machine being a “standard practise”: surely if the machine is set up properly there’s no need to interfere with process ? Therefore not doing this can’t be seen as “bad technique” as you put it.
What happens is on longer pieces when entering the machine it will be only contacting one roller for a period up until it contacts the outfeed roller and the same will happen when exiting the machine when it comes off the infeed roller, if the weight of the workpiece in the open air is allowed to pivot on the end of the thicknessing table it will lever the workpiece up against the roller which will overcome the tension of the roller springs and cause snipe by the workpiece being raised into the cutterhead on the ends by the levering effect. The simple solution is to simply support the workpiece so that it is level with the thicknessing table and keep a gentle pressure to the underside of the workpiece with your hand. Obviously, you don't wrench the workpiece up to the point where you're actively counteracting the roller springs otherwise you end up with scalloping rather than snipe where it starts off with a horrible, deep gouge in the workpiece and gets gradually better as it's fed on/off the machine. It was one of the very first things I was taught as an apprentice.

I've calibrated a few planers/thicknessers now and have even completely rebuilt a couple and bad technique will still cause sniping even on the most perfectly set up machines.
 

Quickben

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I understand that and I’m not discounting it. It’s what Steve’s video explains, after all.

However, that’s not the issue I was having.

Anyway, it’s sorted now and I’m a happy man. It’s really made my workflow better, as I now don’t have as much remedial work to do after gluing up boards and for cutting accurate mortises. Really happy with it.
 

woodbloke66

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Quickben":2dthhqr1 said:
As for supporting the workpiece as it exits the machine being a “standard practise”: surely if the machine is set up properly there’s no need to interfere with process ? Therefore not doing this can’t be seen as “bad technique” as you put it.
Sorry, but it is standard practice. You don't need much upward pressure as the board exits the machine; just a very gently 'uplift' using one finger is usually enough. It works - Rob
 

Quickben

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woodbloke66":36ienuee said:
Quickben":36ienuee said:
As for supporting the workpiece as it exits the machine being a “standard practise”: surely if the machine is set up properly there’s no need to interfere with process ? Therefore not doing this can’t be seen as “bad technique” as you put it.
Sorry, but it is standard practice. You don't need much upward pressure as the board exits the machine; just a very gently 'uplift' using one finger is usually enough. It works - Rob
...... when thicknessing long boards to minimise rear end snipe. Yes. I’ll accept that, as I can see benefit.

That was not the problem I was having, though.
 

Trevanion

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Quickben":3hcwcd87 said:
That was not the problem I was having, though.
Yes, but you didn't mention that it was happening on short pieces or the fact that you previously already had a thicknesser in your first post which is why it would be the first thing experienced people would suggest before thinking anything was wrong with the machine itself.

It's trickle-up problem solving, you try the simplest solutions first, and eventually, you'll find the real problem.
 

Sgian Dubh

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woodbloke66":122ljuwc said:
Quickben":122ljuwc said:
As for supporting the workpiece as it exits the machine being a “standard practise”: surely if the machine is set up properly there’s no need to interfere with process ? Therefore not doing this can’t be seen as “bad technique” as you put it.
Sorry, but it is standard practice. You don't need much upward pressure as the board exits the machine; just a very gently 'uplift' using one finger is usually enough. It works - Rob
It is, I agree, But I think we'd all be remiss if we didn't point out that there's another standard practice frequently employed, one I sometimes use when working alone at high speed shoving through a large volume of wood pretty much nose to tail leaving too little time to run around to the outfeed table to provide the support, and only just enough time to snatch the finished piece out to prevent it getting trapped by the following piece. In this case the 'standard practise is to just leave the wood about four inches or so overlength and cut the snipe at one or both ends off. Yes, it can be wasteful of wood, but that happens every now and then, unfortunately.

Then there's multiple and continuous feeding of wood through machines fitted up with segmented feed rollers, which can be fun also causing the single operator to sometimes run around a bit like the proverbial blue ar sed fly, ha, ha.

Some machines are inherently worse than others for snipe I've found, and no tinkering with the set-up seems ever make those truly bad snipers work completely snipe free. Other machines are really very good from new and seldom suffer much snipe at all. Slainte.
 
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