The planer is a machine to get the correct thickness of a piece of wood. in order for us to get a good parallel surface on a piece of wood we must have a good working face. Do not try and use the jointer to do your planing work for you. The surfaces will not come out parallel. Sometimes it is easier to call this a thickness planer if it will help you to remember. We have 2 different planers. A 20" and a  12 1/2" planer.



Safety Rules for the Planer

bullet    Wear safety glasses.
bullet    Never look into the planer.
bullet    Never stand directly behind the planer.
bullet    Make sure to check for nails or screws.
bullet    Make sure the board is at least 14" long.
bullet    Make all adjustments with the machine off.
bullet    The depth of cut is 1/16" in our shop.
bullet    Never reach across the planer.
bullet    Get help if planing long boards.
bullet    If the board sticks, shut off planer and lower table after cutterhead has stopped.
bullet    Keep hands away from board once it starts feeding into the planer.

Parts of the Planer

Study the parts of the planer below and familiarize yourself with the parts and their function.

1. Turns machine off and on.

2. The infeed table is where the wood will be placed to feed into the machine. Not showing in the picture is   the outfeed table. The working face goes down.

3.  The height adjustment wheel is how we will control the depth of cut of the machine. 1/16th of an inch is our largest cut we can make.

4. The depth scale indicates the finished thickness of the wood to be planed.  

5. The height adjustment lock or the table lock holds the table height constant while the machine is in operation.

6. Height adjustment lever is different on the smaller planer. We now raise and lower the cuttinghead instead of lowering or raising the table.

7. On/off switch controls the power to the machine.

8. Infeed table is where the work piece is placed with the working face down.

9. Depth scaled indicates the depth of cut being made.

10. Cutterhead lock keeps the cutting head in place while in operation. When adjusting this machine you only need to to loosen the lock 1/2 turn.

Numbers 11-16 perform all of the same operations as mentioned previously in the 12.5 and 20 inch planers.

How to use the planer

The most important thing to remember before using the planer is that you have a good working face. As you approach the planer you should know the thickness of the piece you want to plane. Loosen the table lock or cutterhead lock, depending on which machine you are using. Set the depth scale to 1/16" below your measured piece. Lock the table or cutterhead. Turn the machine on. Place the working face down onto the table. With both hands, slowly feed the work piece into the  planer. Once the feed rollers grab the work piece, clear your hands. Remember, do not stand directly behind your work piece. Stand to one side or the other. As your piece feeds through the machine, walk around the machine and retrieve your piece. Shut the machine off, make your height adjustments. One turn of the wheel or lever equals 1/16th of an inch.

If you are planing several pieces that are all different thickness, you start with the thickest one. Do not try to plane them all at once. You have to work your way down to the other pieces thickness.




Copyright 2007 The Wood Shop Guy