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#26181 - 04/11/11 06:38 PM 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane
134V Offline
Member

Registered: 04/10/11
Posts: 8
Loc: New England
Hi All,

I'm new to the forum. I have a little experience, built one frame (a barn) a while ago and now another. I'm planing my timbers this time (White Pine and Hemlock). I did a ghetto mod on an old Delta 12" table top planer: took the base off. Hose clamp the cutter head to the four posts a third of the way down, put 1/32" shims under the in and out feed rollers.. ect. It works but not particularly well. I'm spending a lot more time planing than I'd like. I get end snipe and it's pretty cumbersome to re-position at the end of each run down the beam.

I'm looking at the Makita 6 3/4" and 12 1/4" planers. One's cheaper and lighter but won't do an 8" or 10" beam in one pass. The other is more than twice as expensive and weighs twice as much but will work on the beams I'm using...

I'd like your input. What would you buy?

Thanks

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#26183 - 04/11/11 09:16 PM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane
Joel McCarty Offline
Member

Registered: 03/13/02
Posts: 344
Loc: Alstead Center NH USA
I'd like to see a picture of your modded Delta

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#26185 - 04/12/11 04:02 AM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane
Gumphri Offline
Member

Registered: 01/18/08
Posts: 83
There are a few important factors when making the choice between the two machines.

1. How heavy of a tool can you work with? At 19lbs the 6 3/4" is a big tool to be using all day. The 12 1/4 is 40lbs. It does however travel fairly well on the timber with the roller in the front.

2. How much are you willing to spend? Last time I checked you could get 3 6 3/4" planers for the price of a 12 1/4"

3. How much time will you spend straightening timber? The 6 3/4 works great for making your winding sticks parallel. It can be done with the 12 1/4 but its more work. I'm currently contemplating a jig that would make short work of straightening timber with a 12 1/4.

4. How much time do you want to spend on the end of a planer. The 12 1/4 can do in one pass what takes 2-4 passes with the 6 3/4. You also get a crisper finish. The 6 3/4 gives you a bit of a rounded profile if your not careful.

I recently bought a used 12 1/4 planer after working on a frame one summer with a 6 3/4. I chose a 12 1/4 planer with a boring machine, when I could have bought a mortising machine and a 6 3/4 planer. I often work with a carpenter that has both the mortising machine and the 6 3/4 planer so the boring machine and the 12 1/4 planer bring more variety to the table when we work together.
In time I hope to get the mortising machine, the 6 3/4 inch planer and a large circular saw. But not for my next project.
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Leslie Ball
NaturallyFramed.ca

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#26192 - 04/13/11 02:07 AM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane
134V Offline
Member

Registered: 04/10/11
Posts: 8
Loc: New England

Thanks for your thoughts.

After reading them I'm leaning toward the 12" because I'm already making multiple passes, and finishing w a hand plane using the setup I have w my Delta.

Keep me / us posted on the jig...

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#26193 - 04/13/11 02:13 AM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane
134V Offline
Member

Registered: 04/10/11
Posts: 8
Loc: New England
Joel,

I'll post some pics or a link to some pics of the mods I made to my Delta, but probably won't get to it until the weekend.. I was going to document the mods when first did them but I never thought that they'd actually work smile

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#26195 - 04/13/11 01:27 PM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane
daiku Offline

Member

Registered: 04/16/02
Posts: 893
Loc: Minneapolis, Minnesota
You may also want to investigate the option of having the mill plane them. If they have a 4-sided planer, the results are fantastic. True dimensions, square corners, etc.

Sure it will cost more, but don't forget the cost of your labor, as well as the equipment and upkeep. CB.
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Minneapolis
Proud Member of the TFG

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#26223 - 04/17/11 01:36 AM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane [Re: Joel McCarty]
134V Offline
Member

Registered: 04/10/11
Posts: 8
Loc: New England
I took some pics and a very short video today and posted them here: Delta Mod Pics .

It works but there are lots of limitations. The biggest one is that there's no sole to stabilize the planer. You only have the ~5 inches between the feed rollers to stabilize it. You have to shut the planer off with the on / off switch or it will run off the end of the beam. If you time it right it will stop about 5" before the end of the beam. so I have to hand plane the last 5 inches.
If you misjudge you have to kind of catch it before it falls off the end of the beam.

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#26225 - 04/17/11 02:18 AM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane
D L Bahler Offline

Member

Registered: 05/17/10
Posts: 946
Loc: Indiana
could you not place a block on the end of the timber to let the planer run out past?
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#26226 - 04/17/11 03:10 AM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane
Gumphri Offline
Member

Registered: 01/18/08
Posts: 83
I had a thought on modifying a planer like that too. I usually work on a mule setup. I was planning on setting up tracks on either side of the timber. I would make them out of straight lumber. I would have cut out the middle of the base and put rollers on the bottom of the two sides to assist in its travel. The timber could then be shimmed on the corners to make it stable if it has a little twist.

Now that I have the makita 12 inch, I will probably attempt the same rail system. But, I will use blocks clamped on either side of the planer. I should only need to shim the front of the planer so I just might make rollers that attach to the same screws that the front handle is attached to. With the beam shimmed to the right height, This should plane out any twists or crowns.
_________________________
Leslie Ball
NaturallyFramed.ca

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#26239 - 04/20/11 01:28 AM Re: 6 Inch vs 12 Inch Power Plane [Re: Gumphri]
brad_bb Offline
Member

Registered: 01/24/07
Posts: 603
Loc: Joliet, IL.
I take it 134V's purpose is to get a straight, flat face as opposed just getting a better surface finish. The problem with hand held planers is that they will not flatten a timber in and of themselves. I found this out when I got my first Makita 6-1/4. You have to determine where more material needs to come off and work at it. The way to get it flat without having to study each piece, is to have the workpiece stationary and the planer stationary in the vertical as you make a pass. I've also seen a couple of people modify bench top planers. The problem with that is power and speed- not enough of either. The real answer is a setup that does what a joiner does. The one tool I've seen that does this is a Norwood LM410 log molder. You can install straight planer knives, or any of dozens of shaped knives for log or beam molding. Yes it costs about $5K, but can work on a number of 2 rail mills like Logosol, Woodmizer, and others. I plan to get one in about a year. They can come with Gas engine or electric, but so far those sold in the US have all been ordered with gas engine so far. Here's a vid from Norwood:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M680oDt7zqM

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