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Oaktree11

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Bear in mind that a spiral cutter block needs that much more power to plane timber as the cutter block is in constant contact with the timber as opposed to a traditional HSS knife cutter block which strikes only as many knives are in the block per revolution and doesn't require so much power whilst being able to take a much larger cut at the same time. Anything that's around and over 2kw really needs to be run off a 16A supply, and any half-decent PT is going to be that much.

I'd personally shelve the spiral cutter idea and just get a machine with a traditional cutter block, the spiral cutter really only has a massive advantage when working extraordinarily hard and non-compliant timbers that the likes of Custard would be using with a small positive of being a bit quieter, they're only a lot quieter than a brushed motor lunchbox thicknesser, when compared with a like for like machine and the ony difference is the block there isn't a hell of a lot in it.

Good machining practice with a traditional cutter block will have much the same results as a spiral, at a fraction of the cost.
Hi there,
I am afraid that I disagree. I changed from a Record Power PT260 to the spiral head Axminster PT. the difference in noise is massive. It makes a huge difference to me as my workshop is close to houses and I no longer have to worry about causing a disturbance. I would also take issue with the hardwood thing. I run mostly softwood and it is so much easier and produces a great finish. No massive build up of gum on the head.
For me, there is no competition with the proviso that you pay a premium and, for most non commercial use, really good results can be obtained from bladed PT’s if noise is not an issue.
John
 

Trevanion

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Hi there,
I am afraid that I disagree. I changed from a Record Power PT260 to the spiral head Axminster PT. the difference in noise is massive. It makes a huge difference to me as my workshop is close to houses and I no longer have to worry about causing a disturbance. I would also take issue with the hardwood thing. I run mostly softwood and it is so much easier and produces a great finish. No massive build up of gum on the head.
For me, there is no competition with the proviso that you pay a premium and, for most non commercial use, really good results can be obtained from bladed PT’s if noise is not an issue.
John
Whilst I've never had a great amount of experience with spiral cutters I have been in workshops with them in and given them a little bit of a test spin, I personally didn't hear much difference between a machine with a spiral fitted and one with a tersa fitted. There's probably a big difference if you've got a traditional planing block with the knives projecting too far out of the block causing a lot of air disturbance.
 

Coyote

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Seb, if noise disturbance is one of your biggest factors/ limiters on machine choice could you not focus more on improving the sound insulation of the garage? There's probably quite a lot you could do to reduce the noise getting out, which would open up the range of machines to consider and allow you to work around your other limitations (i.e. electrics).
 

Doug B

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Bear in mind that a spiral cutter block needs that much more power to plane timber as the cutter block is in constant contact with the timber as opposed to a traditional HSS knife cutter block which strikes only as many knives are in the block per revolution and doesn't require so much power whilst being able to take a much larger cut at the same time. Anything that's around and over 2kw really needs to be run off a 16A supply, and any half-decent PT is going to be that much.

I'd personally shelve the spiral cutter idea and just get a machine with a traditional cutter block, the spiral cutter really only has a massive advantage when working extraordinarily hard and non-compliant timbers that the likes of Custard would be using with a small positive of being a bit quieter, they're only a lot quieter than a brushed motor lunchbox thicknesser, when compared with a like for like machine and the ony difference is the block there isn't a hell of a lot in it.

Good machining practice with a traditional cutter block will have much the same results as a spiral, at a fraction of the cost.
Completely disagree there Trev, a spiral block is more efficient so uses less power as only one tip is in contact with the timber at any time, the noise reduction is up to 50% at best & as for matching finish I’ve used plenty of standard blocks including Wadkin skewed blades & the finish is no where near as good as off a spiral block.
 

Trevanion

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Completely disagree there Trev, a spiral block is more efficient so uses less power as only one tip is in contact with the timber at any time
I may be totally wrong and I'm willing to be proven wrong, but I think it's common knowledge they require about 25% more power to run and can't take the same amount of depth of cut as a straight knife cutter block can.

I was talking to someone who services machines a while ago about what the blocks might be like on a four-cutter because the whole "cutters last practically forever" thing was pretty appealing and I was told "don't even bother thinking about it" several companies had tried it, and went back to straight knives in the machine because the machines went from being able to handle a 10mm cut all-round no problem to struggling to get over 5mm without the motors bogging down.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not totally against them, I can appreciate there is a noise reduction and a benefit when working very knarly timbers but I don't for me think the pluses outweigh the minuses in my head over a tersa set-up or even a traditional style cutter block, so I don't really see why a hobbyist needs to be pushed down that path other than making the whole thing silly person-proof.

When I get my laser planer I'll show you all...
 
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Doug B

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I may be totally wrong and I'm willing to be proven wrong, but I think it's common knowledge they require about 25% more power to run and can't take the same amount of depth of cut as a straight knife cutter block can.
Well according to Felder it’s less power Silent-Power® spiral blade cutterblock | Felder Group you’ll have to scroll down.

Spiral blocks aren’t a new thing they’ve been used in engineering for decades & are known for their efficiency, a long straight blade coming into contact with a material all at once is really inefficient no doubt why Wadkin came up with a skewed block.
As for being only good for knarly hardwood this to is a fallacy as pine can be terrible for tearing out on conventional blocks, the spiral block reduces this considerably.
As for getting bogged down on 10mm cuts I have no knowledge of this but then again have never worked on a machine that could make such a cut & certainly neither of the machines Sebastian is looking at could.
.
 

Trevanion

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Spiral blocks aren’t a new thing they’ve been used in engineering for decades & are known for their efficiency, a long straight blade coming into contact with a material all at once is really inefficient no doubt why Wadkin came up with a skewed block.
As for being only good for knarly hardwood this to is a fallacy as pine can be terrible for tearing out on conventional blocks, the spiral block reduces this considerably.
As for getting bogged down on 10mm cuts I have no knowledge of this but then again have never worked on a machine that could make such a cut & certainly neither of the machines Sebastian is looking at could.
.
Buggerydoo, I remember seeing a test somewhere where they compared both cutter blocks on the same machine and the spiral was pulling a lot more amps on the same depth of cut but I cannot for the life of me remember where I saw it.

I need to get one and get some experience in with it, then I'll tell you what I think! But for now, I'll bow down to the man with more experience with them.
 

Doug B

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I sold my first spiral block machine a stand alone 410mm wide thicknesser to a friend who’s a fairly sceptical accomplished furniture maker, he’s now won over by them.
It was a pretty daunting large leap (as @jackenglishmachines likes to remind me) many years ago when I got rid of all my wadkin gear & moved over to modern machines but on the whole I’ve not regretted it.
 

ScottandSargeant

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Can't recommend the iTech 260s - I got a 310s from Scosarg (who graciously took it back for free) - whole host of issues, primarily the outfeed table wasn't at the right height and isn't adjustable. Other than that, some cutters appeared to be blunt (left rough streaks in the wood), rollers seemed to make a mess of the wood, paint flaking off in places etc and alu fence was (slightly) twisted. As far as I know these are most likely all issues from the factory so, can't recommend them personally.
We had some problems with a very small percentage of the 310s version of the 260 spiral planer... The 260 spiral planers have been brilliant, great value for money and performed really well with lots of happy customers. The 310s model has now been replaced with the new 300C. The 300C planer has a heavier frame, tables, adjustments and an upgraded fence system. Sadly it is more expensive, but we think it's the right thing to do for a 300mm machine where the loads are greater. We are constantly trying to improve our machine range.
 

moosepig

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My itech 260s arrived about 3 weeks ago. All good no issues.
Happy to answer any question you might have.
Hi,

Any chance you could post the width and depth of the base unit please? I have one of these on order and wish to make my own mobile base in advance of delivery (March 2021 so I have plenty of time!!)

Thanks in advance.
 

Bristol_Rob

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Hi,

Any chance you could post the width and depth of the base unit please? I have one of these on order and wish to make my own mobile base in advance of delivery (March 2021 so I have plenty of time!!)

Thanks in advance.
Or you could buy the Axminster base that I did. After cutting the length down a bit it fits perfectly.



Product NameSKUPriceQtySubtotal
Axminster Heavy Duty Mobile Base - 400kg 105071 £59.96
  • Ordered 1
£59.96
 

Terrytpot

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Or you could buy the Axminster base that I did.
Product NameSKUPriceQtySubtotal
Axminster Heavy Duty Mobile Base - 400kg 105071 £59.96
  • Ordered 1
£59.96
I don't know when you got yours but they seem to have increased the price a fair chunk...think I'm going to be welding one up myself.
Screenshot 2020-12-04 at 18.40.07.png
 

moosepig

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Another quick question for anyone owning the iTech 260S, if I may be so bold...

With the fence fitted and set at 90 degrees, how high is the overall unit above ground level?

Many thanks!
 

Mooose

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I make it about 98cm to the top of the fence brackets - they stand about 4cm above the fence.

Screenshot 2021-01-15 at 19.40.57.png
 
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starlingwood

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My itech 260s arrived about 3 weeks ago. All good no issues.
Happy to answer any question you might have.
Hi Bristol_Rob, I'm looking for a TH/PL and am considering the ITECH 260S. How is it fairing up now you have it had a few months? Did you buy from Scott Sargent?
 

Bristol_Rob

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Hi Bristol_Rob, I'm looking for a TH/PL and am considering the ITECH 260S. How is it fairing up now you have it had a few months? Did you buy from Scott Sargent?
Hi there
Yes I bought direct from S&S.
For me, it hasn't missed a beat. I have the ITECH extractor (with micro filter) about 5 feet away with a very short hose. No issues (works as advertised)

I really like the counter on the handle - I feel I get really accurate readings/results on mine, and it makes it really easy to just take 1/2 of a mm or even a 1/3rd of a mm when thicknessing.

So far so good - no issues. (y)
 
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Bristol_Rob

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Another quick question for anyone owning the iTech 260S, if I may be so bold...

With the fence fitted and set at 90 degrees, how high is the overall unit above ground level?

Many thanks!
I measured mine which is on the Axminster Heavy Duty mobile base and I read about 1 m from ground to the top of those fence brackets.
 
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