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One Step Forward, Two Steps back

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Blog entry by Manitario posted 1277 days ago 6786 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a tale of two back injuries, a planer, a jointer and a small garage. The story starts with me buying the Dewalt DW735 13” planer. I had bravely planned to keep it under my bench, and haul it out when it was needed. Seemed like a good plan at the start. I was a little worried by it being listed as weighing 92lbs, but I reasoned that “hey, I’m a young guy and yeah, 92lbs is heavy but I’m strong.” Fast forward to me bringing the planer home and lifting it out of the box onto my bench, and my lower back just ever so slightly protesting. I have learned to listen to my back after several past injuries; when it starts to protest, I pay attention. So…I needed an alternate plan. My garage is too small for a dedicated planer stand, but I have seen several nifty projects on LJ’s for “flip” planer stands. Seemed like a perfect idea; I would build a planer stand that would double as an outfeed table for my TS, with my planer stored upside down underneath when not in use. Then, when I rotated my planer upright, I could use my TS surface as an outfeed table for my planer. “Brilliant” I thought. One day’s work later, I had the flip stand assembled and two coats of urethane on it and was feeling pretty good about life.
Part 2: Concurrent with buying the planer, I have begun the planning stage of buying a jointer. My new tool buying process is fairly simple: 1) Convince myself that I need a new tool 2) Convince myself that I have the money 3) Stay up late many nights researching on the internet the available choices and ability for me to get something shipped to i)Canada ii)the remote part of Canada I live in. 4) Figure out how I’m going to fit the tool in my garage. 5) Buy the tool. Step 4 was where I was at today with my jointer buying process. In the process of trying to heave my 500lb TS across the floor to see if I could fit a jointer alongside it; my upper back began to protest. As I stopped and cursed my small garage and my heavy TS I realized that the answer, as so many of you with small shops already know, is to give my TS a mobile base and simply move it out of the way when I want to use my jointer. Not convenient, but the best solution until I have a bigger garage. So, off to the local tool store for the General International mobile base (I’ll have to review it sometime). Several hours later, and much fiddlng with the base, I had the TS on it, and back into place. Then came the discovery that is the “two steps back” portion of this blog: the mobile stand lowered the TS 1/2” so now my carefully constructed outfeed table was higher than the TS surface, and the flip side planer surface was now 1/2” above the TS surface. Needless to say, the rest of my night has been taking apart my planer stand to cut it down 1/2”. Sigh. Hopefully back in business tomorrow.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil



9 comments so far

View Greg The Cajun Box Sculptor's profile

Greg The Cajun Box Sculptor

4744 posts in 1811 days


#1 posted 1277 days ago

I had the same situation of having purchased a mobile base for my table saw that lowered it 1/2” lower than my outfeed table. I took the saw back off the mobile base and cut a piece of 1/2” plywood that fit inside the mobile base. It raised the saw back to where it needed to be without having to shorten the outfeed table height.

-- Every step of each project is considered my masterpiece because I want the finished product to reflect the quality of my work. http://www.FineArtBoxes.com

View rivergirl's profile

rivergirl

3198 posts in 1341 days


#2 posted 1277 days ago

Hey Doc- Take 600 mg of Motrin and call a collegue in the morning. :) And then try and remember not to lift heavy stuff. Your shop is coming along so nicely that pretty soon it will be so full of beautiful cabinets and tools that there will be no room for you or your boards. So, that being said- take a break from all that planning and make some sawdust. That will give your back some rest and it will make you feel happy happy happy. I will be anxious to see your newest creation on the projects list. Doctor’s orders.

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View stefang's profile

stefang

11824 posts in 1837 days


#3 posted 1277 days ago

You are definitely on the right track by putting everything you can on casters Rob. This not only saves your back, but is also ideal for a small shop where you might have to frequently reposition your machine tools, outfeed tables and other pieces to suit different projects and also to just to allow sweeping the floor.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3808 posts in 2524 days


#4 posted 1262 days ago

I too have gone through the nightmare or marrying up the tool surfaces with casters and mobile bases.
I’m nearly finished for now ( got to do my lathe). I don’t think a have a single machine that matched the height of any other. It’s sweet when you get it all lined up though as it feels like the space is double it’s size.
One thing I know now is to use the largest casters you can afford within reason. I had to redo some of my cabinets that I cheaped out on the casters with.

-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

4746 posts in 2215 days


#5 posted 1247 days ago

Could you have raised the tablesaw 1/2 inch? It may have been easier.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View rivergirl's profile

rivergirl

3198 posts in 1341 days


#6 posted 1247 days ago

awwwwwwwwwww.. Mark- the old raise the table saw trick… Now that was a good thought…. :)

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3808 posts in 2524 days


#7 posted 1247 days ago

A piece of 1/2” playwood in the mobile base would have solved one of your problems.
A story stick instead of a tape measure would go a long way to solving the other. ;-)

-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View Manitario's profile

Manitario

2181 posts in 1386 days


#8 posted 1247 days ago

Ahem…I’m embarrassed to admit that in my frustration all I could think of was lowering my outfield table. I agree it would have been a lot easier to just slip some plywood under my TS….
I’ve realized after the fact though that my garage floor (which is plywood) flexes under the weight of my TS; so depending on where I put the TS in my shop, its surface is at different heights, kind of making my efforts at lining up the surfaces pointless.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View rivergirl's profile

rivergirl

3198 posts in 1341 days


#9 posted 1246 days ago

That’s okay Manitario—you can’t help it you have a high IQ and therefore sometimes can’t figure out the simple stuff. It happens all the time. Take my neighbor the multimillonarie, hotel owning super attorney for example…. He ran his riding lawnmower over a large piece of that plastic mesh stuff that he uses to cover his shrubs. (He thinks the deer won’t eat the shrubs if the plastic mesh is on there… hehehehe) Naturally, the mower conked out and then Mr attorney just stood there and stared at it as if that would solve the problem. I let him stew for a while, then went over, took my scissors and clippers and utliity knife, lifed the mower deck and cut off all the melted plastic from the blades and then restarted the mower for him. The best part is, I just returned from a wedding and was wearing a dress and heels. LOL So, that’s okay you didn’t think of the plywood lift. We will forgive you – especially when we need our heart started or fingers reattached. No worries Mate! :) PS- to “repay” me for my efforts – (not necessary of course) the attorney went to the butcher shop and returned with 4 fat delmonico black angus steaks. I tried to refuse his generosity- but he insisted. So Len and I ate well that night. And there you have it. LOLOLOLOL

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

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