how to prevent tear out

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Forum topic by Ryan posted 07-26-2011 01:14 AM 2189 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Ryan's profile


238 posts in 2898 days

07-26-2011 01:14 AM

I use 12” Makita planer to smooth the rough surface. When the machine is well tuned including new blades, the output is satisfactory most of time. However, I often have a problem on Bubinga and hard maple. The surface is chipped out badly. I don’t have much problem on other species.
Some boards have many different grains, I guess, changing the feeding direction wouldn’t be a complete solution. Do you have any idea?

4 replies so far

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3142 days

#1 posted 07-26-2011 01:21 AM

Light passes, and dampen the surface with a sponge … since you say you keep the blades sharp—the other “have-to.”

-- -- Neil

View Loren's profile


10278 posts in 3616 days

#2 posted 07-26-2011 01:56 AM

As Neil suggests, but the more extreme and more effective solution is
known as “double bevel sharpening”. It involves effectively raising the
attack angle of the planer blades to “York pitch” or higher in order to
achieve a more scraping cut. On softwoods, York pitch makes a mess,
but on dense and figured hardwoods, it works much better than
standard pitch.

Tersa cutterheads running razor sharp new HSS blades are said to work
well on troubled grain as well. The Tersa blades are weird and would
be difficult to back-bevel, so if you have a standard cutterhead, get
a wet grinder and apply a 5-10 degree back bevel, but if you have
a Tersa, get new blades.

Angling the work as it feeds can help as well since angling the cut
makes for a more shearing action.

If you do a lot of work with these challenging woods, you’re going to
need another planer. Woodmaster has variable speed. Belsaw’s are
cheap (used) and run at a slow feed rate. The Incas sometimes have
Tersa cutterheads… and so forth.

View DLCW's profile


530 posts in 2623 days

#3 posted 07-26-2011 05:03 AM

Like Loren indicates – a back bevel on your jointer and planer blades makes a HUGE difference when working with really hard woods like bubinga and maple. Running at an angle accomplishes the shearing action that Loren describes in addition to actually reducing the load on the planer because of this angle of attack.

I work with bubinga, curly cherry, maple, curly maple and hickory all the time and don’t have a problem with the chip out.

I first learned of back beveling from watching David Marks on his TV show. He mentioned this sharpening method and I haven’t gone back since. I even take the disposable blades for my Dewalt planer to the sharpener and get them back beveled before I install them on the little planer. My main planer is a 20” 4-knife job and the results are virtually flawless. I do spend an inordinate amount of time cleaning up after the planer since dust collection was not something designed in to it but a band-aid add-on after the fact. I won’t mention the manufacturer, but it is American.

Another option is to find a cabinet shop in your area that has a large sander you can run the boards thru after you have them almost to thickness.

-- Don, Diamond Lake Custom Woodworks - - "If you make something idiot proof, all they do is make a better idiot"

View Ryan's profile


238 posts in 2898 days

#4 posted 07-26-2011 05:34 AM

Ok, back bevel is the one I haven’t tried, so will check that out.
Thank you DLCW
I’ll also check more on wetting, sanding and angling options too.

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