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Hammer A3-31 Helical Head Streaks

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Forum topic by Matt Przybylski posted 12-29-2015 01:12 AM 705 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Matt Przybylski

528 posts in 1838 days


12-29-2015 01:12 AM

Hello,
I purchased my A3-31 in early winter end of 2014 but didn’t actually take delivery until April 2015 as I had my second child last November and with winter and the second baby I knew there would be no time for woodworking so I held off. It turns out that even after it was delivered I didn’t get much time until now since the baby is 1 and I have a bit more free time in the shop. I’m now starting to put the machine through its paces and really getting a feel for it.

I was jointing some wide (8”+) stock today and noticed some streaks/peaks being left in my wood. I thought maybe something is wrong with the jointer table because there was absolutely no visible wear on any of the cutters in the spiral head so I tried to plane the wood. Same result, streaks in the wood. I’ve attached an image showing what I’m talking about (the lines are straight because this came from the planer mode where the wood stays pretty much in the same spot going through. From the jointer they were wavy because of the nature of jointing and moving the stock around by natural human movement). Every piece of wood, jointed and then planed, is showing these streaks.

I’ve looked up and down the cutterhead and see absolutely nothing that looks like it would be causing this. There are no chips anywhere on any of the cutters or anything of that sort.

What am I missing? Is it possible that they didn’t torque down the cutters properly at the factory or they got loose somehow or something else? I wouldn’t even know how to check that properly or what the best way to fix it would be even if it were the case. Any suggestions on that would be wonderful if the line of thinking is that this is the case.

I have no clue at this point.

-- Matt, Illinois, http://www.reintroducing.com


16 replies so far

View Kaleb the Swede's profile

Kaleb the Swede

1727 posts in 1429 days


#1 posted 12-29-2015 02:26 AM

Hi Matt,

Might be a really dumb question but does it happen with wood not as wide?

How about different wood other than maple?

To me it looks as if maybe a couple of the corners of the cutters are damaged slightly (I’m shooting in the wind here)

Hammer should have pretty decent customer service, maybe give them a try.

Other than that, send it to me and I’ll keep it for a few years to see if it gets any better. Just kidding, you have a dream machine of mine.

Congrats on your kid. I’m in a similar boat. It’s great being a dad

-- Just trying to build something beautiful

View Matt Przybylski's profile

Matt Przybylski

528 posts in 1838 days


#2 posted 12-29-2015 02:40 AM

@Kaleb the Swede: I also thought it was just on a specific species at first (I was doing Ash first) and then tried the Tiger Maple shown so it does it in all woods I would assume. As for the corners being damaged, I thought so too which is why I inspected it closely. I didn’t use a magnifying glass but there was nothing to the naked eye that showed any type of wear or damage (mind you this is basically a brand new machine minus sitting in my shop since April with a few 2×4s run on it for testing, and yes, they did not have nails or anything in them).

Someone on SMC replied that they have a Byrd shelix head that also does this and its easily sanded out. I figured it would be easy to sand down relatively quickly but for the price you pay for these machines/heads you’d figure you wouldn’t have “problems” like this. It’s quite disappointing.

I emailed Hammer a link to this thread so I’m hoping they either reply to my email or here with some input.

I’d love to ship the machine to you but it’s a bit heavy, you’d have to come pick it up. Of course, I wouldn’t open the garage for you to get it, but ya know how that goes :)

Thanks and congrats on your kid(s?) as well. They are fantastic little things that just run around the house and demand things but I wouldn’t have it any other way. It definitely cuts into my shop time but I think I’m ok with that :) My 4 year old is starting to want to come out to the shop with me here and there so I’m hoping to get her working on some basic stuff in the next few years.

-- Matt, Illinois, http://www.reintroducing.com

View Matt Przybylski's profile

Matt Przybylski

528 posts in 1838 days


#3 posted 12-29-2015 02:46 AM

I guess one thing to add is that these are the only 3 lines that appear on the whole 8” width of the board, concentrated in a mostly middle, maybe off to the side a bit area. The rest of the board is flawless.

-- Matt, Illinois, http://www.reintroducing.com

View jbay's profile

jbay

807 posts in 359 days


#4 posted 12-29-2015 02:57 AM

I don’t know the machine but it looks like dents, not cuts, could it be on the rollers? They look pretty evenly spaced apart.

-- My “MO” involves Judging others, playing God, acting as LJs law enforcement, and never admitting any of my ideas could possibly be wrong or anyone else's idea could possibly be correct -- (A1Jim)

View Matt Przybylski's profile

Matt Przybylski

528 posts in 1838 days


#5 posted 12-29-2015 03:04 AM

@jbay: They are peaks, not valleys. They are not on the rollers because in jointer mode you don’t use the rollers but I still get the peaks when jointing.

-- Matt, Illinois, http://www.reintroducing.com

View jbay's profile

jbay

807 posts in 359 days


#6 posted 12-29-2015 03:12 AM

Ok, I see what your saying. That’s weird. Don’t see how it can leave lines/peaks like that with the helical head.
Good luck with it.

-- My “MO” involves Judging others, playing God, acting as LJs law enforcement, and never admitting any of my ideas could possibly be wrong or anyone else's idea could possibly be correct -- (A1Jim)

View RobS888's profile

RobS888

1984 posts in 1305 days


#7 posted 12-29-2015 03:57 AM

Have you tried removing, cleaning and re-installing the cutters that would touch that position? I mean if the line is 2 inches from the fence put a chalk mark on the out feed table and rotate the head and any of the cutters that could touch the line should be cleaned and reseated.

-- I always suspected many gun nuts were afraid of something, just never thought popcorn was on the list.

View skippysg's profile

skippysg

2 posts in 807 days


#8 posted 12-29-2015 04:02 AM

Hi Matt! Your old dewalt planer is working great for me. I have a 17 month old and another arriving in February so I know exactly what you mean about limited shop time. Good luck figuring out this problem.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3926 posts in 1953 days


#9 posted 12-29-2015 12:17 PM

Never seen or touched a Hammer, but what you see there is common with the Byrd helical head. On my planer I was able to eliminate it by removing each insert, cleaning the seat and bottom of the insert with MS, reinstalling and properly torquing it to spec. My jointer (8” Jet) was doing the same thing, but that remedy didn’t work on it. I don’t worry about it, since my lines go away with (literally) 2 passes with an ROS…..but I think it’s the nature of the spiral head. It’s mentioned a lot in the few reviews I’ve read, and i think at one time I read that Byrd was doing some tweaking to their design to eliminate it.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Slemi's profile

Slemi

103 posts in 1001 days


#10 posted 12-29-2015 12:18 PM

I would get someone to help me. Take this board and start planing it and in the midle have the person beside You stop the machine and wait for it to stop and then turn the board around and see where the streaks end and this is where the problem is.

Also this would be my dream machine too. :)

View finns's profile

finns

99 posts in 2576 days


#11 posted 12-29-2015 12:57 PM

I’ve ran across this several times with my Grizzly helical planer and found small chunks of wood trapped between the guide rollers and the bed. The obstruction was raised just enough to scratch the bottom side of the board. As advised, stop the process while the board is being planed and inspect the knives. I’ve also seen build up on a blade cause the same thing.

View Matt Przybylski's profile

Matt Przybylski

528 posts in 1838 days


#12 posted 12-29-2015 02:33 PM

@RobS888: I have not but I’m thinking I will have to. What is the best tool/way to do this to make sure everything is torqued down properly when re-installed?

@skippysg: Hey! Glad to hear everything is working well for you! Good luck with the little ones :)

@Fred Hargis: This seems to be consensus in what I’m reading, unfortunately.

@finns: I’d probably try this if it was only in planing mode. In jointing mode the guide rollers do not come into play so I’ve eliminated that situation.

My gut tells me that something is wrong with the cutters at those positions and I just need to figure out what that is. I think my best bet is taking them out, cleaning them, and re-seating, I just have to figure out what the best tool for the job is and how to best go about it.

-- Matt, Illinois, http://www.reintroducing.com

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3926 posts in 1953 days


#13 posted 12-29-2015 03:40 PM

Other than a torque wrench that reads the proper scale, you shouldn’t need much. The Byrd inserts are installed with a version of a Torx screw, and are torques to 45 INCH pounds. A lot of guys use a HF torque wrench; I happened to have a screwdriver type of one that I used for my rifle scope mounts.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Spam77's profile

Spam77

2 posts in 800 days


#14 posted 12-29-2015 06:09 PM

Matt- Check out this blog series by Rob Porcaro on the Heartwood blog his technique for setting blade height works for me. I have an a-41 with the Silent Power block, getting the knife heights even across the table is worth the effort.
http://www.rpwoodwork.com/blog/tag/jointer-planer-combo/

Also the the torque for the knives is 5.0Nm (Newton Meter). When changing or adjusting blades I use a 5Nm clicker T wrench, if you can not find one PM me as I don’t check on this site often and think it will send me an email if you do.

https://www.hoffmann-group.com/US/en/hus/Modular-machining/Indexable-milling-cutters-GARANT/Torque-screwdriver%2C-fixed-setting-0%2C45-Nm-GARANT/p/211750-5,0

Hope this helps.

View Matt Przybylski's profile

Matt Przybylski

528 posts in 1838 days


#15 posted 12-29-2015 08:21 PM

Thanks everyone. I spoke with the Felder rep on the phone and he confirmed what some have stated regarding removing, cleaning, and reseating the cutters in line with the marks. I ordered a 5nM torque driver on Amazon and will be getting it in a few days so hopefully I can get this all fixed up by the weekend.

Appreciate everyone’s help!

-- Matt, Illinois, http://www.reintroducing.com

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