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It`s hard work PARing

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al3ph

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Hi all,
Just started turning my 3 cft oak waney timber into PAR planks for my AV unit, there`s not a huge amount of wood in the structure, but bloody hell it`s heavy work planing and truing the oak.

It`s 2400x190x27mm I`m planing/thicknessing down to 1400x150x20mm and other smaller sizes, I`m guessing my cheap tools aren`t helping £150 planer/thicknesser is struggling a bit, doesn`t help the beds aren't quite right :(

Been at it two days, and produced not a great deal of timber, I guess better tools would help as I`m having to do a lot of passes, curious as to how quickly other people can machine the their timber ?

Currently I`m cutting the wood to length +10%, then cutting to rough width, plane it so there`s a fairly good face, then thickness down to 20mm flipping the wood each pass(roughly), finally cut one edge on benchsaw, plane it on router table so it`s true, back on bench saw to cut other edge to size then back on router to finish the edge. After that I usually have a PAR plank to my required dimensions.

Not sure if the above steps are correct, but I can`t think of a better way to do it.

Any comments would be appreciated, as this is my first attempt at the above.

cheers

al
 

Cheshirechappie

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I thought the idea of a planer-thicknesser was to take the hard work out of it.

Try it with a scrub plane and jack plane - that IS hard work, on oak anyway. Not so bad on redwood, though.
 

al3ph

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Lol, yeah I guess it`s all relative (hammer) , sort of hoped I`d get it done in a week, but I`m almost half way though and I`m still preparing the wood :cry:

Cheshirechappie":31rk62cl said:
I thought the idea of a planer-thicknesser was to take the hard work out of it.

Try it with a scrub plane and jack plane - that IS hard work, on oak anyway. Not so bad on redwood, though.
 

9fingers

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Depending on how well your thicknesser is set up, it is likely that you will get snipe on the ends of the boards. To avoid too much waste, it is normal to keep the boards as long as possible until they are thicknessed and then cut to length.
Other than that your methods sound similar to mine other than using the planer to get one straight edge instead of the router.

Maybe once you have completed this project, you could consider devoting some time to setting up your p/t so that next time you will be able to rely on it more for accurate work.

hth

Bob
 

RogerP

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9fingers":3868bb77 said:
Depending on how well your thicknesser is set up, it is likely that you will get snipe on the ends of the boards. To avoid too much waste, it is normal to keep the boards as long as possible until they are thicknessed and then cut to length.
Other than that your methods sound similar to mine other than using the planer to get one straight edge instead of the router.
Maybe once you have completed this project, you could consider devoting some time to setting up your p/t so that next time you will be able to rely on it more for accurate work.
hth
Bob
Al,
I don't have an expensive P/T (SIP 01550) but it isn't as much hard work to produce some dimensioned timber as it seems you're having. As Bob says spending some time setting your P/T up properly would probably save you a lot of grief in the long run.

I find careful feeding of the timber into the thicknesser (use roller stands if possible) and making sure all the timber's weight is taken at the outfeed can eliminate snipe almost all the time. I was told by a very experienced professional wood machinist that snipe is mainly operator error.
 

Jacob

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9fingers":mx5t3j11 said:
......... To avoid too much waste, it is normal to keep the boards as long as possible until they are thicknessed and then cut to length......

Bob
Sorry Bob - absolutely wrong.
Starting with a cutting list taken from the rod taken from finished design of the item - everything should be sawn to length, width (and thickness if possible), plus suitable allowance for planing and error, before it goes anywhere near a plane. You might make an exception of small widths/lengths, combining them into convenient sizes near 3ft if doing it by hand, or a bit longer if using a machine.

A lot of beginners fall into this trap (I did too) as they are used to buying PAR from timber yards and assume that they must produce their own PAR when they buy sawn timber. In fact small workshop practice is entirely different and a lot less wasteful and more efficient/effective in the process.
 

woodbloke

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Agreed, keep the wood as long as possible, but snipe can be minimised or almost completely eliminated by 'lifting' the wood from underneath (the light pressure of a couple of fingers) as it feeds into the cutter block and doing the same as it exits the machine - Rob
 

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woodbloke":11a00obs said:
Agreed, keep the wood as long as possible, but snipe can be minimised or almost completely eliminated by 'lifting' the wood from underneath (the light pressure of a couple of fingers) as it feeds into the cutter block and doing the same as it exits the machine - Rob
... which is more or less what I do - plus rollers stands for bigger stuff.

everything should be sawn to length, width (and thickness if possible), plus suitable allowance for planing and error, before it goes anywhere near a plane.
Sorry Jacob, can't agree.

Say you have a design calling for a dozen one foot pieces, would you cut them all to length and then thickness them? Surely not - you'd thickness the complete board and then cut the short pieces.
 

9fingers

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RogerP":152k4obs said:
Sorry Jacob, can't agree.

Say you have a design calling for a dozen one foot pieces, would you cut them all to length and then thickness them? Surely not - you'd thickness the complete board and then cut the short pieces.

That was my thinking too Roger. The only time that I would reduce the lengths before thicknessing would be if the boards are either twisted or bowed where the waste in flattening the board would out weigh the loss due to snipe.

Bob
 

Jacob

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RogerP":95gd2vzr said:
...

Say you have a design calling for a dozen one foot pieces, would you cut them all to length and then thickness them? Surely not - you'd thickness the complete board and then cut the short pieces.
Short lengths combined to some extent as I said above, but otherwise everything cut first. This is standard proper practice for a number of very good reasons.
By hand or machine. It makes everything a lot easier.
 

al3ph

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I`m giving a bit extra length to deal with snipe, sadly the planer is rubbish, you can`t adjust it ie. the beds are not parrallel 3 mm drop on in-table, I`ve got the thicknesser close but it`s also bloody tricky to setup properly. It`s one of those chain sprocket screw setups.

9fingers":ia0ijg67 said:
Depending on how well your thicknesser is set up, it is likely that you will get snipe on the ends of the boards. To avoid too much waste, it is normal to keep the boards as long as possible until they are thicknessed and then cut to length.
Other than that your methods sound similar to mine other than using the planer to get one straight edge instead of the router.

Maybe once you have completed this project, you could consider devoting some time to setting up your p/t so that next time you will be able to rely on it more for accurate work.

hth

Bob
 

al3ph

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Yep that`s pretty much what I`m doing, I`m also having to help feed the wood a bit, I`m guessing the wait on the table it to much for the rollers, I`ve WD40`d the tables, maybe something else might help.

woodbloke":27x0b7oe said:
Agreed, keep the wood as long as possible, but snipe can be minimised or almost completely eliminated by 'lifting' the wood from underneath (the light pressure of a couple of fingers) as it feeds into the cutter block and doing the same as it exits the machine - Rob
 

woodbloke

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It's horses for courses. If you've got a whole load of stuff for a project that's say 30mm thick and it'll all come out of one board, you'd be potty to cut it all to individual (or even 3'ish) lengths and then stuff it through the thicknesser. That is of course, with the proviso that you're not worried about the grain orientation. If the way each piece of wood looks is paramount, then you may well have to cut each individual piece (or thicker piece and then bookmatch) and machine it rather than do the whole lot in one operation - Rob
 

Karl

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Jacob":l0ky87q0 said:
RogerP":l0ky87q0 said:
...

Say you have a design calling for a dozen one foot pieces, would you cut them all to length and then thickness them? Surely not - you'd thickness the complete board and then cut the short pieces.
Short lengths combined to some extent as I said above, but otherwise everything cut first. This is standard proper practice for a number of very good reasons.
By hand or machine. It makes everything a lot easier.
Coincidentally i've just posted a query over on WWUK, but how do you safely rip the timber if it isn't flat?
 

Jacob

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Karl":2hxp2p5k said:
Jacob":2hxp2p5k said:
RogerP":2hxp2p5k said:
...

Say you have a design calling for a dozen one foot pieces, would you cut them all to length and then thickness them? Surely not - you'd thickness the complete board and then cut the short pieces.
Short lengths combined to some extent as I said above, but otherwise everything cut first. This is standard proper practice for a number of very good reasons.
By hand or machine. It makes everything a lot easier.
Coincidentally i've just posted a query over on WWUK, but how do you safely rip the timber if it isn't flat?
Concave side down as they have all said over there. Not a problem. Very worst case you might want to pin on a block or two to keep the workpiece sitting solidly on the machine bed, but can't say I've ever needed to do that.
With riving knife, push sticks, sharp blade, fence set to just past the cutting edge, dexterous handling can do anything!
 

Karl

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Jacob":1xkxe0fw said:
Concave side down as they have all said over there. Not a problem. Very worst case you might want to pin on a block or two to keep the workpiece sitting solidly on the machine bed, but can't say I've ever needed to do that.
With riving knife, push sticks, sharp blade, fence set to just past the cutting edge, dexterous handling can do anything!
"All" is a bit of an exaggeration - 2 out of 3.

Anyway, that's what i've done in the past, but it didn't feel particularly safe with the timber rocking on the t/s surface. Even worse if there's twist involved.

Good tip about supporting the workpiece with pieces clamped to the t/s bed.
 

9fingers

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Jacob,

I presume that from combining your responses above that it would best to cut a non flat board to the nominal lengths first as this will both ease any problems in ripping on the table saw but also minimise waste when flattening the board?

Bob
 

Jacob

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woodbloke":38zwcssk said:
It's horses for courses. If you've got a whole load of stuff for a project that's say 30mm thick and it'll all come out of one board, you'd be potty to cut it all to individual (or even 3'ish) lengths and then stuff it through the thicknesser. That is of course, with the proviso that you're not worried about the grain orientation. If the way each piece of wood looks is paramount, then you may well have to cut each individual piece (or thicker piece and then bookmatch) and machine it rather than do the whole lot in one operation - Rob
If it's already bent at all (most wood is) you have to take more material off to get a long piece flat and thicknessed, compared to short pieces. Then when you come to rip you may find the pieces springing out of square as internal stresses relieved. This sometimes happens even with cross cutting. Snipe is usually reduced with smaller pieces as there is less weight going off the end etc.
If hand planing all the same things can happen, plus it's just so much easier to hand plane shorter lengths (within reason).
I'm surprised that Rob doesn't know these woodwork basics. :roll:
Cutting to size before planing is just fundamental stuff which everybody should know. Only timber yards (and Rob) do long random lengths of PAR!
 

Jacob

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Karl":14kvjj66 said:
...

Good tip about supporting the workpiece with pieces clamped to the t/s bed.
Only If you have a sliding table, otherwise pin pieces to the workpiece.
 

Karl

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Jacob":dgrq1h3r said:
Karl":dgrq1h3r said:
...

Good tip about supporting the workpiece with pieces clamped to the t/s bed.
Only If you have a sliding table, otherwise pin pieces to the workpiece.
Yes - blonde moment.
 
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