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Makita 2040 planer, how short is too short?

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Forum topic by BlasterStumps posted 05-09-2017 03:39 PM 1001 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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BlasterStumps

863 posts in 560 days


05-09-2017 03:39 PM

I have an older Makita 2040 planer. I was looking thru the manual and it says for minimum board length not to feed shorter pieces than the width of the cutter head +2”. (not verbatim) So that would make it 17” minimum length on what I could feed safely thru, according to the manual. I’m not disputing this, although by virtue of my own ignorance, I bet I have fed shorter thru in the past. What I am wondering though is how they make that determination. I can imagine there are several factors at play. Anyone care to share their knowledge of what all plays a part in the minimum length determination? For my own piece of mind, I would like to know more so I understand it better.

-- "I build for function first, looks second. Most times I never get around to looks." - Mike, western Colorado


8 replies so far

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eflanders

310 posts in 1971 days


#1 posted 05-09-2017 03:51 PM

Feeding stock that is too short into the planer can cause the stock to catch the hold down rollers or anti-kickback devices not allowing the material to feed through smoothly if at all. Your stock could break inside the machine causing you and or your machine serious harm. The minimum length is usually based on the distance between the centerpoint of these hold downs.

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Rich

3548 posts in 710 days


#2 posted 05-09-2017 04:05 PM

Like eflanders wrote, it has to be held down by one of the feed rollers at all times, so basically you could measure that distance, and add a couple of inches to be sure. I go shorter than 17” often on my DeWalt.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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crank49

4032 posts in 3091 days


#3 posted 05-09-2017 04:32 PM

Needs to be at least 2 times the distance from the cutter to the hold down roller.
Any less than this gives the cutter a mechanical advantage (like a lever) to resist the hold down’s force.
So I take 2 times this distance and then add a little more for safety.

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Rich

3548 posts in 710 days


#4 posted 05-09-2017 04:38 PM



Needs to be at least 2 times the distance from the cutter to the hold down roller.
Any less than this gives the cutter a mechanical advantage (like a lever) to resist the hold down s force.
So I take 2 times this distance and then add a little more for safety.

- crank49

Yeah, but there are two rollers, front and back. Any board you put through there is only held down by one of them at the start and end of the cut (hence the snipe). What’s critical is that you don’t run a board through that is so short it will not be held down by a roller, since, like eflanders mentioned, will result in a dangerous situation.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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BlasterStumps

863 posts in 560 days


#5 posted 05-09-2017 07:05 PM

Thanks to all for your input. I got a better understanding now. I changed out the feed rollers some time back but I think I will lower the table down to where I can get an updated view of things in relation to the cutterhead. Thanks again.
Mike

-- "I build for function first, looks second. Most times I never get around to looks." - Mike, western Colorado

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crank49

4032 posts in 3091 days


#6 posted 05-12-2017 02:57 AM


Needs to be at least 2 times the distance from the cutter to the hold down roller.
Any less than this gives the cutter a mechanical advantage (like a lever) to resist the hold down s force.
So I take 2 times this distance and then add a little more for safety.

- crank49

Yeah, but there are two rollers, front and back. Any board you put through there is only held down by one of them at the start and end of the cut (hence the snipe). What s critical is that you don t run a board through that is so short it will not be held down by a roller, since, like eflanders mentioned, will result in a dangerous situation.

- RichTaylor


What I said is still exactly correct. I know there are two rollers but the distance from either roller to the cutter should be doubled. Assuming the two rollers are the same distance from the cutter; otherwise use the longer distance and double it. Think of the hold down roller as a pivot point. On one side you have a cutter trying to pick up the board, on the other side you have the feed table opposing this force. If the distance from the pivot point to the lifting force is greater than the distance to the opposing force the lifting force has a mechanical advantage. The two distances must be at least equal, hence one distance doubled.

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MrUnix

6891 posts in 2319 days


#7 posted 05-12-2017 03:12 AM

Sounds weird… on my 2030, the manual states that you shouldn’t run anything shorter than 5.5 inches (140mm) through the planer, although that to me seems too short (and I’ve never tried anything that short either). It really has nothing to do with the length of the cutter head, but the distance between cutter head and rollers (both feed and table rollers).

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

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Jim Finn

2670 posts in 3042 days


#8 posted 05-12-2017 01:37 PM

I ,regularly, run 8” boards through my DeWalt with no issues.

-- No PHD just a DD214 Website> craftingcouple.com

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