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Troubleshooting an 8" jointer - sagging outfeed table

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Forum topic by mcg1990 posted 03-17-2015 01:17 AM 2285 views 1 time favorited 36 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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mcg1990

159 posts in 758 days


03-17-2015 01:17 AM

I’ve only just got my new [to me] Grizzly G0586 8” Jointer up and going, but now that I’m using it I’m getting huuuge wedges after I pass my lumber over it. It’s taking off an awful lot on the leading edge of the lumber, and not as much off the trailing end.

I called Grizzly and the tech told me that without me having a machinist’s straightedge and feeler gauge there’s nothing he can do/tell me. The gauges are cheap, but I can’t afford another $50+ on a finely tuned stick to get this jointer right.

I’ve attempted shimming the Jointer with aluminum from coke cans, and I managed to get 3 slices under each side at the very bottom of the dovetail sliders on the outfeed table. But try as I might, I simply cannot get any more under there. I used my clamps as spreaders to hold up the outfeed table to use the jointer’s own weight to create a gap for the shims.

I was going to simply keep shimming until it was right, but now I can’t force any more shims in. Is there anything on the market like ultra slim steel wedges that I can hammer up in there? If not, what else can I do?

Is there a chance at all that my infeed table is also tilting IN to the cutterhead, thus compounding my issues?

I ran a 60” length of 2” hickory through it, and after about 4 passes there was a difference of at least 3/16”, possible more, between each end of the wood.

Any suggestion, please?


36 replies so far

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TheFridge

5765 posts in 952 days


#1 posted 03-17-2015 01:42 AM

Buy a cheap 4’ extruded aluminum straightedge from somewhere to check. Have you adjusted the outfeed table at all?

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

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MrUnix

4233 posts in 1664 days


#2 posted 03-17-2015 01:51 AM

I was going to simply keep shimming until it was right, but now I can’t force any more shims in. Is there anything on the market like ultra slim steel wedges that I can hammer up in there? If not, what else can I do?

Oh man.. just stuffing (hammering/?!) shims in blind is going to do nothing but lead to more frustration! If you are going to level your tables, you need to do it right. And to do it right, you need to first figure out what the problem is. The only way to do that is to measure for level across the tables. It could also just be your technique, which can also cause the symptoms you describe. Do a google, watch the videos and read the procedures. Buy a cheap straight edge like TheFridge suggested and determine what needs to be done.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View soob's profile

soob

223 posts in 674 days


#3 posted 03-17-2015 02:08 AM

I check my tools with a high-quality level. I got a bunch of them from Lowes on clearance, including a 6’er, an 8’er, a 3’er, a 2’er…just because I could. I love ‘em.

But investing in a straight edge would be a good call even if you have to pay full price. It’s a tool you’ll use all the time in woodworking. Like, for example, to check the edges your jointer makes!

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AlaskaGuy

2406 posts in 1775 days


#4 posted 03-17-2015 02:34 AM

You should have read this before doing any thing. S the part on (Tapering (Long Axis of board).

A jointer can tapper even when correctly setup.

http://www.newwoodworker.com/jntrprobfxs.html

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

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robscastle

3392 posts in 1670 days


#5 posted 03-17-2015 03:16 AM

mcg, you are working on one of the most sensitive pieces of machinery that a wood worker uses.

Stop and spend some time researching the involved steps required to have the machine purring.
And expect to spend an afternoon tuning it up, the effort will be well worth the time in the long run.

Initial checks can be done with a 1m long steel rule, or what ever the imperial equavlent is.
You need to be conversive with the terminology co planner and what it means as the machine requires these checks to be done before touching anything. In particular the outfeed table never moves unless cutters are changed, then the calibration process starts all over again.
So,
Step 1 Determine the datum settings and then work from there.
Step 2 If its all too hard seek the help from a fellow woodworker, but make sure you can understand the terminlogy and assist.
Step 3 If need be watch as many “tune Up” utube videos as possible, there are heaps out there, that way you will fully understand what is required, what does what. and also spot the incorrect practices shown sometimes.

Note this reply some how posted to your home page as well.

—Regards Robert

-- Regards Robert

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Shadowrider

183 posts in 675 days


#6 posted 03-17-2015 03:51 AM

Seriously get at the absolute minimum one of these. Granted they are not machinists straight edges, but it’s something to get you close and they don’t cost even $15. One of them is less than $6 and is known good quality. Use them gingerly and they’ll get you by for awhile.

http://www.amazon.com/Empire-Level-4003-Aluminum-Straight/dp/B004F7OJ7E/ref=sr_1_4?s=hi&ie=UTF8&qid=1426563933&sr=1-4&keywords=straight+edge

http://www.amazon.com/Starrett-ASE-24-Anodized-Aluminum-Straight/dp/B002C29SG6/ref=sr_1_1?s=hi&ie=UTF8&qid=1426563933&sr=1-1&keywords=straight+edge

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JohnDon

61 posts in 635 days


#7 posted 03-17-2015 04:01 AM

Buy ASAP a copy of “Care and Repair of Shop Machines” by John White ~$15 on Amazon. Best money you’ll ever spend.

He has a big section on setting up and adjusting jointers, including making your own precision straight edge.

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MikeDVB

115 posts in 647 days


#8 posted 03-17-2015 04:02 AM

If you give up on it I’ll trade you my 6” which works beautifully :).

Seriously though – once you figure it out – let us know.

-- Mike

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MrUnix

4233 posts in 1664 days


#9 posted 03-17-2015 04:03 AM

Another thought.. you say the jointer is ‘new to you’... so I’m guessing that it’s a used machine you just purchased? If so, did you check that the knives were set properly and in correct relation to the outfeed table before using it (and if you did, how)? And since you said you don’t have feeler gauges or a straight edge, you probably don’t have a dial indicator or other fine measuring device either. How did you determine that the table is sagging… by just looking at it or simply based on running some wood through it? You really need to verify the basics, and without the proper tools, that is pretty difficult if not impossible. There are just too many unknowns here, and without more info and you not having the proper tools to verify things, the Grizzly tech was correct in saying there isn’t much he or anyone else can do to help – or even determine if it actually is the machine or simply how you are feeding the material.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

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MikeDVB

115 posts in 647 days


#10 posted 03-17-2015 04:09 AM

MrUnix – can you explain briefly what various tools would be used to test/check a jointer? You mention the knives and a dial gauge for example.

I’m just curious.

-- Mike

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firefighterontheside

13504 posts in 1322 days


#11 posted 03-17-2015 04:31 AM

Lots of good advice here. You say you can’t adjust the out feed any more, but how do you know it’s the outfeed? The outfeed and infeed need to be parallel to each other no matter what. Also as said the outfeed should be at the same height as the knives. If I were you, I would take out all the shims and check to see if the tables are coplanar. If they are then it is just a question of the outfeed not being even with the cutter head. Are you jointing pieces with the concave side down? It’s very difficult to joint with convex side down and you will waste a lot of wood trying.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View MrUnix's profile (online now)

MrUnix

4233 posts in 1664 days


#12 posted 03-17-2015 04:31 AM

MrUnix – can you explain briefly what various tools would be used to test/check a jointer?

I find a dial indicator with a mag base to be invaluable. The knives need to be set level or just a gnats hair (technical term for about 0.001”or so) proud of the out feed table. A straight edge can be used, but I’ve tried both and the dial indicator is much, much more accurate. With the straight edge, you put it on the outfeed table, across the cutter head and turn the head. The knives will just kiss the straight edge and move it slightly forward. Based on the amount of movement, you can more or less determine their height… various sources state different distances that are acceptable, but usually around a 1/4 inch give or take and no more. Not extremely precise though, which is why I prefer the dial indicator.

For checking the tables, a straight edge is required, laid across both tables to see if they are co-planer, and a square is needed to verify the fence is perpendicular to the table.

There are some pretty good videos on YouTube and other places… a “quick google should turn up more than you can watch in a day or two :)

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View MikeDVB's profile

MikeDVB

115 posts in 647 days


#13 posted 03-17-2015 04:34 AM

Thank you.

-- Mike

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mcg1990

159 posts in 758 days


#14 posted 03-17-2015 05:52 PM

Thanks everyone. I honestly wasn’t sure whether the Grizzly tech was being sincere or dismissive, as I’ve had issues with apathetic tech support with them in the past. Now I know he really was serious.

I’ve got one of those aluminum straight edge rules. I’m not sure how precise it is, but using that I set both tables level with the cutterhead. The first thing I notice is that when I set them to just be ‘kissed’ by the blades, the tables, or the cutterhead, seems not to be perfectly level. If it just touches the straightedge at the end furthest from the fence, they will not touch the straight edge when it is placed next to the fence.

Also, although I don’t have any feeler guages (I will get ‘em soon), I did check using a piece of paper. I could slide the paper between the bed and the aluminum rule, going from the cutterhead to about half way along the outfeed table. This is the opposite of what I expected.. I expected the outfeed table to be sagging at the end, not at the centre. I suppose a better straightedge and feeler gauges are required for more accurate analysis.

Next I took some 3/4 stock I had (20” long, 5.5” wide) and planed it to a perfect 1/2”. I checked at all edges and corners, and checked that it’s not cupped/warped etc. It’s 1/2”. I set my infeed to 1/32” and made 4 passes.

My results after this are..
Leading edge, right corner: 14/32
Leading edge, left corner: 13/32
Trailing edge, right corner: 16/32
Trailing edge, left corner: 14/32

I have absolutely no idea what’s going on here.

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MrUnix

4233 posts in 1664 days


#15 posted 03-17-2015 06:12 PM

If it just touches the straightedge at the end furthest from the fence, they will not touch the straight edge when it is placed next to the fence.

The knives should all be the same height in relation to the outfeed table across the entire width of the table/knife. Yours are not. However, your indiscriminate cramming of shims would also cause misalignment. You need to take those shims out and start over from the beginning, making sure your tables are co-planer and then readjusting your knives. There are tons of videos and tutorials on how to do it from start to finish, just google it.

Cheers,
Brad

PS: You might want to also check the table mounting hardware (gib screws) to make sure they are not too loose.

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

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