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Whats the correct way to use an electric planer

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Scouser

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Hello

I am new to making bits and bobs from reclaimed timber. I have used electric tools before while doing up the odd house but Im not a pro and pretty much make it up as I go along (making sure Im safe of course)

While doing more planing of old scaffold boards I generally just set the plane on max depth and go at it to remove old dirt, cement etc. but I was wondering if I should maybe finish off on a minimal level of cut depth before sanding.

I can play with this tomorrow but just thoiught Id ask

(Its a cheap plane by the way so not worried about blade damage and boards are checked as much as poss to remove nails etc)

Thanks
 

Hudson Carpentry

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As a rule I never set any tool at max cut. Knock it down a touch and if you think the finish after the first pass could be improved with a second then go for it. I do suspect your blades will blunt quickly with the dirt and cement so I think I would only do one pass then belt sand then sheet/orbital sander as unless your planer passes are uneven your blades will probably not improve the finish much.

How ever its very much a do what you think as you can see it and I can't.
 

Blister

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to remove old dirt, cement etc.
:shock: :shock: :shock: Have you any blades left after doing this

Best to remove any non friendly items including nails and screws first " use a hand held metal detector " and to my thinking you would be much better of with a planer thicknesser , and please take it easy , not to full depth in one go :lol:
 

Scouser

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Thanks lads

I have though about sand blasting the boards as the finish may be quite good (for my needs anyway)

I read here that to use a planer/thicknesser is really bad on yoru blades and besides I dont really have a lot of room,

My blades are the worst, blunt and chipped. Im buying a new one (cheapo) and will have a play

Thanks again
 

Hudson Carpentry

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I would never put scaffold boards through my T/P. Blades cost to much and the down time to my business wouldn't be worth the risk at all. Which reminds me the spare set of blades still need sharpening.
 

AndyT

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I think you are adopting a sensible approach - a cheap electric plane with disposable blades is an appropriate tool for this rough work, not a p/t which deserves to be set up to work precisely. If the motor can cope (which is easier if the blades are new and sharp) it makes good sense to take a thick cut at first, and so cut underneath any grit, into the clean wood. I suggest doing that all over, then swapping to a new pair of blades (only £4.80 from Axi) for a finer finsihing cut.
I've done something similar when re-using old floorboards to make a picket fence.
 

dickm

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One other suggestion, based on experience cleaning up old maple flooring out of a jute mill. Makita do a ferocious rotary brush machine, with wire bristles. Running one of these over the surfaces of the boards makes a good job of cleaning off the worst grot before planing. Not sure if you can hire these things, as mine was £20 from the local car boot. But make sure you wear ear, eye and respiratory protection while using one, as who knows what is lurking in the grot.
Actually, the same would apply while planing, as all sorts of nasties could get ground into the wood surface waiting to leap out into unsuspecting lungs.
If you can't access the Makita beast, maybe a wire brush in an angle grinder would be at least as effective.
 
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