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New Jet 15" HH planer - not overjoyed right now.

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Forum topic by Adam12Hicks posted 05-15-2015 10:09 AM 1315 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Adam12Hicks

7 posts in 590 days


05-15-2015 10:09 AM

Topic tags/keywords: planer jet helical head 15 question

I’ve seen and read pretty much nothing but positive reviews for this planer, and couldn’t wait to get mine assembled and running today. Now – I am a TOTAL newbie at these things. I understand them in concept and have taken some online courses (but I’m an overall pretty bright guy) – so I should preface with that.

Anyways – got it put together – dust chute didn’t line up correctly from the factory and took some convincing, but it’s on and tight.

The casters aren’t level and there’s about an 1/8” gap on one, so the thing currently rocks back and forth locked or not – no good.

The three belts were so loose they were like flicking rubber bands when I took off the cover. They were hot from friction and there was belt material in the case from where I had turned it on for a test run. I went and adjusted the belts and couldn’t believe how far off it was before they got what I considered ‘finger tight’ in the middle of the belt area. It wouldn’t feed or do anything.

Now I have it feeding (some of the time) but I’m getting an output of a piece of wood with angled lines throughout the piece. Could the first feed roller be mal-adjusted and too low? The cutter head never seems to do much of anything, and there’s a super fine line between the wood binding up or not doing anything at all. Very frustrating.

I will also add that I used a Woodpecker 36” straightedge to align the infeed and outfeed tables and they are nearly dead on. Within .001” to my eye. (if my eye can see that) so I don’t believe it’s an issue there.

I’m worried it’s going to be alignment problems with the cutting head and rollers, and that it’s going to turn into a nightmare. Being new to this, I guess I thought maybe a nearly $3,000 planer would come ‘somewhat’ properly adjusted from the factory.

Anyone with any experience that can help would be GREATLY appreciated! I’m a little aggravated at the fit and finish so far for the price. I also bought the 8” HH jointer which I will finish assembly on tomorrow. Hopefully I have better luck with it up front.

Thanks in advance for the advice!

Adam


19 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3940 posts in 1957 days


#1 posted 05-15-2015 11:05 AM

I just have a comment on one aspect of your woes. The diagonal lines can sometimes be a problem with stationary planers if you don’t cut deep enough. The feed roller is a steel serrated roller, and it will leave tracks on the finest of cuts, cut a little deeper and see if that works. It is possible that the roller is set too low but easy things first; it almost sounds like your machine didn’t get a final inspection. Other than that I can only offer my sympathy. Maybe a call to Jet (or the vendor you bought it from) is in order.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View BroncoBrian's profile

BroncoBrian

435 posts in 1422 days


#2 posted 05-15-2015 02:34 PM

Sounds like some setup issues, Call Jet and let them walk you through a couple things.

Also, your eye cannot see .001”. You would be surprised how big a gap is if you used feeler gauges.

-- Bigfoot tries to take pictures of me

View OneAdamTwelve's profile

OneAdamTwelve

14 posts in 572 days


#3 posted 05-15-2015 02:39 PM

Will do. And yes I know .001” is enthusiastic. We used a 36” woodpecker straightedge and shined a very bright light behind it. Did not have light coming in underneath for the length, so I have to think it’s pretty darned close!

I did get it working last night and think it’s ok. I might need to reduce tension on the infeed roller a tad. The results were very nice – and boy did it create some serious waste in the dust collector. Glad I did away with the shop-Vac at the same time!

Only issue now is the wobble. Probably doesn’t affect anything but seems a little Busch league for the price.

Thanks for the input. I’ll call Jet today.

View Mainiac Matt 's profile

Mainiac Matt

5992 posts in 1792 days


#4 posted 05-15-2015 02:44 PM

The belts are probably intentionally shipped loose… as these Tawain/China made tools can spend a lot o time in their packaging (shipping, warehousing, delivery), and the belts can both stretch and take a set (which can cause them to vibrate a little) if stored tight. Tensioning belts would be a standard set up chore imo, but if so, the documentation should have noted it.

With Asia tool distributors, I think there are three categories…
1. customer is first one to open box since leaving the factory (Grizzly)
2. distributor opens box and does inspection and tuning (Delta & supposedly Jet)
3. some manufacturing steps (assembly), setup and tuning, are done stateside (Powermatic)

I think Jet charges level 2 prices, but actually provides level 1 service.

-- Pine is fine, but Oak's no joke!

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mike1950

360 posts in 1263 days


#5 posted 05-15-2015 02:58 PM

Are you sure the wobble is not your floor? I upgraded to 15” delta a few years ago and it is amazing how fast it fills the can.

-- "There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as if everything is."– Albert Einstein

View Adam12Hicks's profile

Adam12Hicks

7 posts in 590 days


#6 posted 05-15-2015 03:31 PM

Thanks guys – and yes… I moved the planer elsewhere in the garage and it is level. DANGIT. Also, thanks Matt for the comment on the belts. Makes sense that they would ship them loose, but unfortunately the manual does not list tightening the belts as an initial setup step. It does, of course, tell you how to do it should you need to. I wish they’d just do like they do on the jointer and ship with the belts off. Then there’s no confusion :-)

And Matt I agree on the level 2 pricing, level 1 delivery. Mine came from Jet factory direct in the big wooden crate, so everything else was up to me. A little daunting but not beyond my ability (with a little help from you guys)

Adam

View BroncoBrian's profile

BroncoBrian

435 posts in 1422 days


#7 posted 05-15-2015 03:58 PM



Will do. And yes I know .001” is enthusiastic. We used a 36” woodpecker straightedge and shined a very bright light behind it. Did not have light coming in underneath for the length, so I have to think it s pretty darned close!

Only issue now is the wobble.

- OneAdamTwelve

No light is pretty close then. I returned that woodpecker straight edge. I thought it fell over too easily and you really cannot use it with feeler gauges for that reason without supporting it. It is pretty, but the Lee Valley straight edge I ordered is much better. 3x thick or more, heavier and it will stay upright. They also had feeler gauges for $20 that are great (long version). Check that out. I did get the 24” WP straight edge just b/c it is pretty and it will come in handy for a lighter option and short option. Might also suggest a Starrett combination square. They are awesome!

Jet will resolve the wobble. Might have been a motor mount shift in shipping. This forum is full of reports from damage after shipping.

Matt’s comment above is probably pretty accurate. I want to think that Jet does better than level 1 but cannot be sure. My PM BS was definitely setup and QC’d in the states. And it showed. I’d pay 10% for that every time from now on. Much better experience.

-- Bigfoot tries to take pictures of me

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

1951 posts in 1453 days


#8 posted 05-15-2015 06:36 PM

I guess my expectations are a bit different. When I get a new major tool I expect to go through it and check things especially p especially belts. When I got my Jet planer a few years ago, I spent a day or so to check everything…belts, oil in case, table rollers, feed rollers and cutting head. I used a straight edge, feeler gauges, and a jig to hold a dial indicator for the feed rollers and head.

Maybe I am a little paranoid but it is a big investment and I want to protect it.

I adjusted my feed rollers up a bit to reduce snipe as it had less than dead flat.

View AHuxley's profile

AHuxley

493 posts in 2786 days


#9 posted 05-15-2015 10:36 PM

Unfortunately, machines (even ones many times the cost of this one) usually require a full setup routine. Even if they were perfect from the factory or distributor the shipping alone will knock them out of alignment. Expect to do a full alignment and tuneup on any machine, new or used, no matter the cost. Have had to do it on much higher cost European machines every single time.

View OneAdamTwelve's profile

OneAdamTwelve

14 posts in 572 days


#10 posted 05-15-2015 10:40 PM

Got it and understand. Makes perfect sense. The rollers all seem to be nicely aligned as I’ve run a few cutting boards through and not noticed any snipe at all (which I still find hard to believe?!?)

I’ll go over everything again and get it set up. I’m much happier with it now :-)

View toolie's profile

toolie

2024 posts in 2092 days


#11 posted 05-15-2015 11:21 PM



Thanks guys – and yes… I moved the planer elsewhere in the garage and it is level. DANGIT. Also, thanks Matt for the comment on the belts. Makes sense that they would ship them loose, but unfortunately the manual does not list tightening the belts as an initial setup step. It does, of course, tell you how to do it should you need to. I wish they d just do like they do on the jointer and ship with the belts off. Then there s no confusion :-)

And Matt I agree on the level 2 pricing, level 1 delivery. Mine came from Jet factory direct in the big wooden crate, so everything else was up to me. A little daunting but not beyond my ability (with a little help from you guys)

Adam

- Adam12Hicks

You’r learning the unfortunate lesson that the Jet of today is not the Jet of yesterday. Today, it appears to be a premium priced version of almost every other Asian originated power tool. Premium price and average performance. I’ve owned only one jet tool, and I’ll never own another. Good luck with your jet equipment. I hope your experience is better than mine was.

-- there's a solution to every problem.......you just have to be willing to find it.

View AHuxley's profile

AHuxley

493 posts in 2786 days


#12 posted 05-16-2015 02:42 AM


You r learning the unfortunate lesson that the Jet of today is not the Jet of yesterday. Today, it appears to be a premium priced version of almost every other Asian originated power tool. Premium price and average performance. I ve owned only one jet tool, and I ll never own another. Good luck with your jet equipment. I hope your experience is better than mine was.

- toolie

I always find it hilarious when you suggest that the quality of Jet has gone down over the years, when like every other Asian import their quality has sky rocketed over the long haul. Jet was the original Asian import woodworking machine company and their initial tools were just like the initial Grizzly machines, a crate of parts that could be combined into an almost usable machine. The Jet bandsaw you bought (for a give away price) was a poorly designed machine that was significantly re-engineered into a much better machine. The point being you bought a poorly designed machine used, probably from someone that knew how bad it was, and your perspective is based on the one machine. I have never understood the amount of time you have spent over the last half decade trashing a company based on a machine you bought for less than 1/10th the selling price at the time.

View BroncoBrian's profile

BroncoBrian

435 posts in 1422 days


#13 posted 05-16-2015 02:38 PM

”You’r learning the unfortunate lesson that the Jet of today is not the Jet of yesterday. Today, it appears to be a premium priced version of almost every other Asian originated power tool. Premium price and average performance. I’ve owned only one jet tool, and I’ll never own another. Good luck with your jet equipment.”

Toolie – What is this comment?

You quoted his comment where he admits the wobble and vibration were because he did not realize his concrete floor is not flat and the planer ships with loose belts to not put extra stress on the motor and head. That is not a Jet problem. Sounds more like anti-Jet talk than anything.

Asian manufacturing is pretty darn awesome. Look at every apple product. And most everything else you buy assembled in America. I have both Jet and Powermatic in my shop along with other stuff from all over. The PM finish is better, and you pay for it, the Jet product is great.

Adam – good luck getting this done and let us know if we can help with it. Sounds like you have come a long way in a few days. Make sure you get the right measuring tools to help you really dial everything in. Makes a huge different.

-- Bigfoot tries to take pictures of me

View Adam12Hicks's profile

Adam12Hicks

7 posts in 590 days


#14 posted 05-16-2015 03:00 PM

BroncoBrian – thanks for that. You’re exactly right. The issues I’ve had so far are just learning curve stuff. But like a buddy in woodworking tells me, “you never learn anything by doing something right.”

The planer is working amazingly well now, and the jointer is an absolute dream. Wow. I showed my wife a rough piece of 2×4 pine that I quickly converted to a perfectly dimensioned (almost pretty) piece of wood.

I’ve noticed that the planer snipe is just under what I have a single pass on the jointer dialed in at, so I’ve just been leaving about that much left on the thickness with the planer, and then a simple single pass on the jointer removes the snipe and puts the wood where it should be dimension-wise. Awesome stuff!

View BroncoBrian's profile

BroncoBrian

435 posts in 1422 days


#15 posted 05-16-2015 04:09 PM

Adam

I setup my jointer a couple weeks ago and finally got to use it this week. I was blown away by how clean the cut was on figured maple and how quiet it is. I also have the Jet 8” HH and love it! Get yourself the One-Way Indicator:

http://www.amazon.com/Oneway-2289-Multi-Gauge/dp/B0002SA98I

I bought it for about $85 at Woodcraft. Best tool I have. I am co-planer to .001 as far as 32” out on the infeed table. My blades are all .0015 above the outfeed table from left to right. That is high-end machine accuracy! Not for for a crappy asian jointer!

My Dewalt planer is the weakest link in my shop now and your 15” is my target purchase to replace it some day. I really want a HH planer for noise and quality.

I think by design, every planer has snipe, that is not in any way the manufacturers issue. There are some good threads about reducing it. The tables should both tilt up about the thickness of a quarter and the far ends. Maybe more. It helps but there is still some snipe.

-- Bigfoot tries to take pictures of me

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