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20" planer tune up help

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Forum topic by giser3546 posted 06-11-2014 02:47 PM 513 views 0 times favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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giser3546

111 posts in 130 days


06-11-2014 02:47 PM

Through an incomprehensible amount of just blind luck I managed to become the new owner of a 20” Sunhill 220V 5 hp planer for the convenient price of FREE. It appears to be in good shape, no rust anywhere and I was told ”... it will run but needs some work”. My problem is I know little if any about working on these things. I’m aware Sunhill no longer exists but I have been told they are similar to all the other Asian made machines. Where would be a good place to start on tuning this thing up and getting it to run as well as it can? What are the potential problems I should look for?

Along with the planer I was given a bundle of 17 blades. All are in varying states of disrepair but I mostly plan on using this for shaping rough sawn stock. My final finished surface will be done with smoother and scraper plane.

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"


23 replies so far

View Buckethead's profile

Buckethead

1921 posts in 526 days


#1 posted 06-11-2014 03:22 PM

Others will be able to steer you in the right direction regarding diagnosing and repairing, but as for the blades, they need to be sharp. Regardless what type of finish you want to achieve with the machine, sharp blades will minimize tear out and make the machine operate more smoothly.

I also believe your machine is fairly common, with replacement parts readily available. Posting photos of the insides
As well as the outside will garner responses much faster, and allow those with knowledge to help you along.

-- Bucket, any person that spends 10k on a bicycle is guaranteed to be a $@I almost started to like you. -bhog

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giser3546

111 posts in 130 days


#2 posted 06-11-2014 03:34 PM

Messed up camera phone and a dead camera batter have held me up… pictures will be posted soon.

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"

View Loren's profile

Loren

7571 posts in 2305 days


#3 posted 06-11-2014 03:58 PM

They are sort of still around… mainly distributing the new imported
Oliver badged machines I think. ph: 800-929-4321

I don’t recommend opening a gear box but you may want to
drain and change the oil. Planers are robust machines and
the feedworks is the part that’s most vulnerable to wear,
though most any cast iron planer would take a lot of use to
wear out the feedworks.

Mostly you should focus on cleaning and waxing the bed, getting
sharp knives accurately installed. Then you can test and
see what it will do.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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giser3546

111 posts in 130 days


#4 posted 06-11-2014 04:06 PM

I did receive a blade guide (I’m assuming thats what its called), a small metal rod with forked brackets on either end. He mentioned it was for setting the blades and gave me a quick lesson on how to use it but didn’t go into detail.

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"

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Loren

7571 posts in 2305 days


#5 posted 06-11-2014 04:11 PM

Often there are grub screws in the cutterhead which
bear against the back edge of the knife. You set the
knife in there, put your gauge on top and assess where
the knife should be higher or lower. Then remove the
knife, adjust the grub screws and check again.

Sometimes there are springs and you push the knife
down with the setting jig and tighten the gib screws
with your other hand.

Sometimes there is nothing and the knife is held in place
by the gibs only so you tighten them a little so the
knife can still slip a bit and go from there. This is the
most annoying style of cutterhead but you’ll manage.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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giser3546

111 posts in 130 days


#6 posted 06-11-2014 05:55 PM

Would there be any hope of finding some kind of owners manual for this?

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"

View bowedcurly's profile

bowedcurly

482 posts in 387 days


#7 posted 06-11-2014 06:05 PM

looks the same as the older Grizzly and powermatic planers they all have the same build, made is Indochina somewhere

-- Staining killed the wood<<<<<>>>>>Dyeing gave it life

View OldWrangler's profile

OldWrangler

559 posts in 252 days


#8 posted 06-11-2014 06:52 PM

Seems to me that when I was shopping for a planer, I ran across a Sunhill, new being sold by Amazon (I think). I’m sure it was a 12-13” and it wasn’t cheap, like $500.That might be a place to start. They may tell where it will be shipped from and who the distributor is. Find the distributor and maybe they can supply parts and owners manual. Blades will be no problem either buying new or getting sharpened.

You are indeed lucky for getting this machine and whatever you have to put into it will be worth it. 20” planers are hard to come unless you have really deep pockets….they are expensive but they will do so many more things that a 13” can’t. Good luck.

-- If trees could scream, would we still cut them down. We might, if they did it all the time for no good reason

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giser3546

111 posts in 130 days


#9 posted 06-11-2014 07:32 PM

Thanks, Im reading over the 20” grizzly manual right now and it appears similar at least at a glance. At the very least I’ll be able to get an idea of maintenance

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1254 posts in 606 days


#10 posted 06-11-2014 08:46 PM

Just a heads up I have a 20” jet knock off. I just picked up an extra set of HSS knives from my sharpening guy. They are Freud and a set of 3 was $125+ tax. Around here ( South Bend IN )I can get HSS knives sharpened for
$ .40 an inch. The carbide set is $ .80 an inch and usually next day turnaround.

View OldWrangler's profile

OldWrangler

559 posts in 252 days


#11 posted 06-12-2014 01:29 PM

In looking up this machine, I found that it takes a set of 4 20” blades and one dealer sells the set for $329. I would definitely get the old ones sharpened.; Still you got a bargain.

-- If trees could scream, would we still cut them down. We might, if they did it all the time for no good reason

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giser3546

111 posts in 130 days


#12 posted 06-13-2014 02:25 AM

Attempted to take a few pictures of the planer, didn’t go well considering this was the only one worth posting. But this happens to be the thing that’s confusing me at the moment. I’ve read the manual for the Jet 20” and the Grizzly 20” and they both mention filling the gear box with 90 weight gear oil, this one doesn’t even seem designed to hold any liquid. I’m sure I need to clean them but what then? Grease? Also one of the chains is tight the other (the lower one) is quite loose. Should they be tight?

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"

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giser3546

111 posts in 130 days


#13 posted 06-13-2014 02:49 AM

More pictures

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"

View Jerry's profile

Jerry

2197 posts in 2204 days


#14 posted 06-13-2014 02:52 AM

Looks like you got yourself a decent planer there. Congrats.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

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giser3546

111 posts in 130 days


#15 posted 06-13-2014 03:37 AM

Realized my mistake with the location of the oil bath…

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"

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