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Forum topic by William Shelley posted 02-15-2018 10:45 PM 891 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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William Shelley

572 posts in 1495 days


02-15-2018 10:45 PM

Hi all,

I recently relocated my 16” Jointer/planer to be up against the wall of my shop. This means I can’t use the stock fence for the jointer because it requires 16” of clearance behind the machine for the fence to be pushed back all the way.

Also, the fence system it came with was absolute junk and I could never rely on it to be accurate. However the actual fence part it had was fine, a nice long piece of really heavy aluminum extrusion that was ground to be dead flat.

So then I came up with a CRAZY idea, right? What if I just held the fence onto the cast iron table with a magnet???

I had an electromagnetic door lock leftover from a different project a long time ago. It runs on 12V or 24V DC and has 600lbs of holding force, and can be left on 24/7 if needed. So I’m thinking, I’ll build a mounting bracket that lets me lock the fence down onto the outfeed table using the magnet, with maybe some fine adjustment so I can ensure it’s absolutely dead on 90 degrees to the table surface. When I need to face joint full 14-16” wide boards, I can turn the electromagnet off with a switch and just lift the fence off and put it aside.

What do you all think?

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective


13 replies so far

View Tennessee's profile

Tennessee

2873 posts in 2540 days


#1 posted 02-15-2018 10:55 PM

As long as it can be held to 90’ while you are pushing on it when pushing wood through the blades, and there is no “under the fence” section where things can get stuck, sounds good to me.

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

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Loren

10476 posts in 3673 days


#2 posted 02-15-2018 10:55 PM

If it’s easy to put it together, why not give it
a try?

What kind of machine is it? 16” jointers are a
bit exotic. I have one but I went through a lot
of smaller machines before I found it.

View William Shelley's profile

William Shelley

572 posts in 1495 days


#3 posted 02-15-2018 10:57 PM

Here’s a picture to show the machine… the fence has already been removed. It mounted with a pair of steel rods that just stuck straight out the back of the machine.

For reference, that slab of black walnut is 24” wide and 5.5” thick

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective

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Loren

10476 posts in 3673 days


#4 posted 02-15-2018 10:59 PM

Nice. I have a Knapp. The fence is end-mounted.
It has a support thing that mounts in the middle
and covers the unused cutter head but the fence
is pretty solid without it.

View BlasterStumps's profile

BlasterStumps

711 posts in 465 days


#5 posted 02-16-2018 12:24 AM

Is there any chance of the cast iron table becoming magnetized? My concern with magnets being used on woodworking tools is that the tool becomes magnetized and then attracts metal particles. I recently was working on a smoother plane and when I took the blade away from the chip breaker it felt like it was stuck to it. I first suspected something sticky holding the two pieces together but on further inspection found that the blade has somehow become magnetized. Probably because someone put it on a magnetic bar on the wall or some such. Not good.
Anyway, just thought I would mention that since you were describing mounting a door lock. Might be worth exploring first.
Mike

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

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William Shelley

572 posts in 1495 days


#6 posted 02-17-2018 10:46 PM

I’m not sure that an electromagnet would magnetize the cast iron bed. I hadn’t thought about that beforehand but if it did, wouldn’t the ‘magswitch’ jigs like the featherboard and such, have the same effect?

I don’t have any good pictures right now but I did build a really really basic bracket to hold the fence onto the magnet and the initial impression is promising. It holds pretty well except it’s prone to rotating/spinning if I push on the end of the fence too hard. This might be fixed by adding a second electromagnet so the holding force is distributed over a larger area.

I might also add some rubber ‘feet’ that get compressed when the magnet is engaged, and the rubber feet could help prevent unwanted scooting.

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective

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BoardButcherer

144 posts in 120 days


#7 posted 03-09-2018 02:51 PM



I m not sure that an electromagnet would magnetize the cast iron bed. I hadn t thought about that beforehand but if it did, wouldn t the magswitch jigs like the featherboard and such, have the same effect?

I don t have any good pictures right now but I did build a really really basic bracket to hold the fence onto the magnet and the initial impression is promising. It holds pretty well except it s prone to rotating/spinning if I push on the end of the fence too hard. This might be fixed by adding a second electromagnet so the holding force is distributed over a larger area.

I might also add some rubber feet that get compressed when the magnet is engaged, and the rubber feet could help prevent unwanted scooting.

- William Shelley

Using DC will magnetize the bed for sure, but if you could figure out how to run that magnet with AC it wouldn’t, I’m pretty sure.

Magnets are magic like that.

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William Shelley

572 posts in 1495 days


#8 posted 03-13-2018 05:15 AM

Update: I’ve been dwelling on this project a bit lately and I think that it’s a bust. Mostly because of the issues where the magnet still allows a little bit of “scooting”, and because this jointer is so big that it’s possible that I’m going to be pushing some rather large and heavy stuff against the fence.

Which takes me to crazy idea #2:

I’m going to drill and tap holes in the outfeed table. Yes, I’m going to “ruin” the equipment.

Going on a tangent here, I’ve noticed that, in general, flat cast iron surfaces are worshiped as some kind of holy deity in the wood shop. But lets think about this for a bit. Everyone’s table saw already has two big huge gouges in it … and they’re done by the manufacturer! Shaper tables have drilled and tapped holes to mount the fence and guard, not to mention that shapers often require modification by the end user to fit aftermarket power feeder post mounts.

I think that modification of power tools, stationary or otherwise, is and should be considered perfectly acceptable, provided that the modifications don’t introduce or worsen safety issues, and provided that the workmanship of the modifications is at a level that matches the workmanship of the original tool.

In my case, I work with metal quite frequently and at the expense of sounding arrogant, I “know what I’m doing” here. Plus, cast iron is dead easy to drill and tap. This modification will allow me to bolt the fence directly to the outfeed table, providing extreme rigidity and accuracy.

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective

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Kelly

2039 posts in 2970 days


#9 posted 03-13-2018 05:49 AM

I use hundred pound magnets on my cast iron table, so a six hundred pound puppy should pale mine, at least until the power dies.

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Aj2

1438 posts in 1824 days


#10 posted 03-13-2018 05:51 AM

I say drill away it’s yours to do what you want right. My thoughts are having the fence fixed in one spot would drive my crazy. I run straight Hss knives so I like to move my fence for jointing edges on a sharp area of knife. I see you have a insert head but you can still wear the cutters and the table if you ran the same spot.
So I think it will cause problems in the long run.

-- Aj

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BoardButcherer

144 posts in 120 days


#11 posted 03-13-2018 03:37 PM

I would recommend finding some way to rig it from the back of the machine, not out of fear of having your soul consumed by the lich that inhabits your cast steel bed, but because being able to move the fence all the way back and out of the way of the cutter head is useful for maintenance, and if done properly making setting your fence back on a 90 easier.

By the way, how’s that Milwaukee circular saw working out for you? I’ve noticed the gearbox leaking oil slowly on mine after a year and some change of light use. Rather miffed about it.

View William Shelley's profile

William Shelley

572 posts in 1495 days


#12 posted 03-19-2018 07:47 PM



I say drill away it s yours to do what you want right. My thoughts are having the fence fixed in one spot would drive my crazy. I run straight Hss knives so I like to move my fence for jointing edges on a sharp area of knife. I see you have a insert head but you can still wear the cutters and the table if you ran the same spot.
So I think it will cause problems in the long run.

- Aj2

I’d probably drill a couple sets of holes so I could move the fence around a bit.

My machine has a true helical knife setup, like the Byrd heads, where the inserts have a radius and are set at a compound angle on the cutterhead. One thing I’ve noticed with this setup is that the shear angle tends to push boards to the right when running them past the cutterhead. This means, towards the back of the machine / away from the operator when jointing, and towards the front of the machine when planing. Because of this, I tend to run stock closer to the back side of the machine when planing. I think this should give me pretty even wear across all the inserts if i’m jointing and planing with different ends of the cutterhead.


I would recommend finding some way to rig it from the back of the machine, not out of fear of having your soul consumed by the lich that inhabits your cast steel bed, but because being able to move the fence all the way back and out of the way of the cutter head is useful for maintenance, and if done properly making setting your fence back on a 90 easier.

By the way, how s that Milwaukee circular saw working out for you? I ve noticed the gearbox leaking oil slowly on mine after a year and some change of light use. Rather miffed about it.

- BoardButcherer

I’m not too worried about getting the fence back to 90, in fact that’s part of the idea with bolting it. The outfeed table being the “master” reference surface, once the fence is dialed in to 90, it should be back to 90 every time I unbolt it and re-bolt it, assuming that I’ve not bungled the design for the mounting bracket.

As far as the circular saw, I haven’t noticed any leaking oil but honestly I havent checked. Mine is a direct-drive brushless DC motor, as far as I know, so I didn’t think it would even have a gearbox.

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective

View simmo's profile

simmo

67 posts in 3497 days


#13 posted 03-19-2018 09:20 PM

Put it on wheels that allow it to be moved sideways but not fore and aft , you can sort your fence more easily,
Chris

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