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Can I pay you to set up my jointer?

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Forum topic by JonHitThingWithRock posted 09-07-2014 12:29 AM 2051 views 0 times favorited 21 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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JonHitThingWithRock

97 posts in 1182 days


09-07-2014 12:29 AM

7 hours, 7 long stupid ridiculous hours now. I’ve been slaving away at my new steel city 40630GH, i thought I had it after 5 minutes of adjustments, tried to face joint a board and ended up with 39” board that was 7/8” thick on one side and 1/2” thick on the other, turns out the tables dipped in the middle by about .06”, so naturally I tried to correct this, ended up raising my infeed table so much that I couldn’t adjust it down far enough to where the cutterhead actually made contact. So I “started over”, lowered both of the beds to their lowest point, only to realize that the outfeed table has to be in a certain position for the jointer to function properly, so I spent 2 hours getting the outfeed table at what I think is the right height, but the infeed table CAN NOT be made co-planar with the outfeed table now, which can only mean that the cutterhead is in the wrong position, but there’s no way that i can find to adjust it. Every single adjustment takes at least 2 minutes, I’ve nearly stripped out the alan bolts that hold the beds down, and I can’t get this thing to even 1% correct, my only choices now are to pay someone who’s some sort of mechanical super-genius, send it back and wait until I can afford a $3,000 jointer and hope that it’s perfect out of the box, or quit woodworking altogether, as I’m tired of working with only non-straight, non-square lumber and using psychotic amounts of clamping pressure and doing hundreds of hours of sanding to make things minimally acceptable.

I watched the woodwhisperer jointer setup video a long time ago, and again before I started, but his jointer was already 98% correct when he started.

So if you’re in the northern colorado area, and are a mechanical supergenius, name your price.


21 replies so far

View dozer57's profile

dozer57

92 posts in 959 days


#1 posted 09-07-2014 12:52 AM

They way I do mine is fairly easy. get a straight edge as long as both the in feed and out feed beds. then raise both bed above cutters, then adjust both to exact parallel. use your straight edge and see if you can see light between it and either bed. adjust as needed then lower both so straight edge just touch the highest point on the cutter blade. now check if in and out feed bed are all parallel. if not adjust as needed. lock your out feed bed as it only needs to be reset when you change cutters. lower in feed about 1/64 inch and it should plane flat. this works well for me. out feed is same as cutter and in feed is set to amount of material to be cut

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JonHitThingWithRock

97 posts in 1182 days


#2 posted 09-07-2014 12:54 AM

as far as i can tell, i don’t think I can raise and lower my outfeed table, except by the 4 individual adjustments

View Loren's profile

Loren

8295 posts in 3108 days


#3 posted 09-07-2014 01:00 AM

You can edit the thread title to include your location.

That’s a not-so-standard jointer.

I have adjusted jointers with fixed outfeed tables. I
found that when the bolts were snugged up there
could be slight shifting of alignment, usually with the
end of the outfeed table lifting a tiny bit as I recall,
so my trick was to sneak up on snugging the bolts
all the way and do all 4 a little bit, check, then a
little more… to some extent before they were
tightened all the way I could apply pressure to the
end of the outfeed table and shift the alignment
a bit.

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JonHitThingWithRock

97 posts in 1182 days


#4 posted 09-07-2014 01:00 AM

steel city 40630GH

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endgrainy

237 posts in 1348 days


#5 posted 09-07-2014 01:03 AM

I shared your frustration. Having never owned a jointer before, I had a similar first experience. When first got my Grizzly jointer, I spent five hours doing an initial setup that turned into me chasing my tail over and over again. I was getting so frustrated that I quit messing with it and took a break for a few days.

I bought a good straight edge, some feeler gauges, read the manual again, and watched 5 or so YouTube videos. I reapproached with a calmer head, and with one or two much quicker sessions, it started to get better. I had to work on my technique as well, which for me was part of the issue. Fast forward a week, everything was much better. After the initial setup I haven’t had to touch the adjustments in 6 months.

What you’re experiencing is not uncommon. Rest, try again, stay calm and you’ll get it. And it will be worth it when you do. I’m sure the more mechanically inclined on this site can help troubleshoot your specific problem.

-- Follow me on Instagram @endgrainy

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JonHitThingWithRock

97 posts in 1182 days


#6 posted 09-07-2014 01:07 AM

thanks, endgrainy

This is more of a vent session than anything else, I’m re-watching spags’ video, and I think i was focusing too much on the outfeed table and not enough on the infeed table, probably gonna head back out and try again, lest I get nothing done this weekend.

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endgrainy

237 posts in 1348 days


#7 posted 09-07-2014 01:13 AM

No problem. I remember having exactly the same thoughts you did – “I’ll have to buy S4S forever.” “How am I going to get this 400lb useless hunk of metal out of my basement”. “Maybe I can just make a planer sled and use the jointer as a shelf.”

I too watched the woodwhisperer video – he made it look easy. But following similar steps it ended up working out for me. If all else fails, you could call Steel City customer service. I’m sure they (and every other jointer manufacturer) have taken this phone call before.

-- Follow me on Instagram @endgrainy

View timbertailor's profile

timbertailor

1591 posts in 884 days


#8 posted 09-07-2014 01:23 AM

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TheFridge

5764 posts in 946 days


#9 posted 09-07-2014 01:34 AM

Jointers can really suck to set up.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View JonHitThingWithRock's profile

JonHitThingWithRock

97 posts in 1182 days


#10 posted 09-07-2014 03:19 AM

timbertrailor: thanks, but it’s a segmented cutterhead, a knife-setting jig wouldn’t help.

So, I jumped back on the horse and got the 4 corners of the infeed table at .014, .015, .016, and .017. So I’m close, just a few more hours tomorrow and I’ll hopefully have it set

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TheFridge

5764 posts in 946 days


#11 posted 09-07-2014 03:58 AM

Blade to outfeed table height is good?

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View timbertailor's profile

timbertailor

1591 posts in 884 days


#12 posted 09-07-2014 04:30 AM



timbertrailor: thanks, but it s a segmented cutterhead, a knife-setting jig wouldn t help.

So, I jumped back on the horse and got the 4 corners of the infeed table at .014, .015, .016, and .017. So I m close, just a few more hours tomorrow and I ll hopefully have it set

- JonHitThingWithRock

Sorry. Did not know it had a helical head. Sounds like a nice planer. I am sure you will get it all sorted. A fresh start may be worthwhile.

-- Brad, Texas, https://www.youtube.com/user/tonkatoytruck/feed

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JonHitThingWithRock

97 posts in 1182 days


#13 posted 09-07-2014 04:33 AM

Fridge: I think so, it’s just barely not touching the straight edge

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TheWoodenOyster

1275 posts in 1395 days


#14 posted 09-07-2014 02:09 PM

Jon,

I share your frustration. I have adjusted my jointer twice. The first time it was similar to your experience, the second time it was much better. One thing to realize about the wood whisperer videos is that he is using a parallelogram jointer, and I believe yours is a dovetail way system, though I can’t really tell from the pictures. Parallelogram jointers are to dovetail ways what cadillacs are to horse-drawn buggies. So Marc’s jointer in that video is top notch, high quality, easy to adjust, etc. Yours and mine and most of ours are NOT. That said, definitely don’t feel bad that you are having a hard time with it. Setting up jointers SUCKS. Big time. Like one of the most dreaded operations I ever do in the shop. I share your sentiment for setup. When mine gets out of alignment for the third time, I will probably just sell it and buy a better jointer, no joke. And I too would be very happy to pay someone $150 to set it up. I don’t mind taking care of my machines, but jointer calibration, no thanks. Sounds like you are close to done, so congrats. Now don’t touch it so you never have to recalibrate it!

Also, be careful with that jointer. Forget tablesaws, jointers are the finger-eaters.

By the way, I’ll do the setup for you. $4.7 million is my price. I’ll need a $2 million signing bonus as well.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View skatefriday's profile

skatefriday

380 posts in 942 days


#15 posted 09-07-2014 03:07 PM



No problem. I remember having exactly the same thoughts you did – “I ll have to buy S4S forever.” “How am I going to get this 400lb useless hunk of metal out of my basement”. “Maybe I can just make a planer sled and use the jointer as a shelf.”

I too watched the woodwhisperer video – he made it look easy. But following similar steps it ended up working out for me. If all else fails, you could call Steel City customer service. I m sure they (and every other jointer manufacturer) have taken this phone call before.

- endgrainy

400 pound cast iron shelves are awesome. And yeah, the woodwhisper makes everything look easy. That bastard.

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