Face Jointing Wide Boards on a 6" Jointer

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by tenontim posted 11-23-2011 04:02 PM 15379 reads 21 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

After commenting and following a post by MichaelJ, I decided that a picture or two is worth a thousand words. So, here’s how I do it. (I had also posted in the past another way, but I like this method better)
First, remove the blade guard on your planer. Set the fence to the maximum width.

Face joint the board as you normally would, until the jointable surface is flat.

You should now have the flat, jointed surface and the “rabbet” from the overhang.

This is the spacer board, which I made from 1/4” plywood. I also have some made from tempered hardboard.
I made a variety of length, to use with different length boards. I glued a stop block on the end to keep the spacer from slipping out from under the board while planing.

Place the stop block on the infeed side of the board

Set your planer and plane the rough side of the board until flat.

Flip the board over and set planer to remove the “rabbet” and plane to desired thickness.

I haven’t used this on boards wider than 9” – 9.5”. There could be some tilting on boards wider than that. Maybe if someone has some wider boards they could experiment and let us know.

13 comments so far

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6872 posts in 4891 days

#1 posted 11-23-2011 04:44 PM

Hi Tim;

Nice write up.

This does work on wider boards as well, as they can’t tip. The feed rollers prevent it.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View tenontim's profile


2131 posts in 4656 days

#2 posted 11-23-2011 04:58 PM

Thanks for the info, Lee. I normally don’t have any boards wider than 10”, so haven’t tried this method on them.

View jumbojack's profile


1691 posts in 3536 days

#3 posted 11-24-2011 02:11 AM

Brilliant! The analytic prowess of the persons of Lumberjocks amazes me.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3601 days

#4 posted 11-24-2011 04:33 AM

Great tip! I didn’t ‘get it’ until you posted the pics. Thanks for going to the trouble to do this.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View mafe's profile


12643 posts in 4001 days

#5 posted 11-24-2011 12:35 PM

I’m acually amazed it works that the tilting is not making it take more on one side unless the rabbet is 1/4 as the baoard. Cool idea, thank you.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View tenontim's profile


2131 posts in 4656 days

#6 posted 11-24-2011 03:14 PM

Mads, I only joint the board until its mostly flat, which is usually less than 1/4” I think that if the amount of wood riding on the plywood is greater than the over hang, the leverage is not enough to cause the board to tilt. That’s provided the hold down springs on your planer are adjusted equally. And actually, if the board did tilt a little, it would be flattened out when you flip it over. Just be a little thinner when you’re finished.

View patron's profile


13711 posts in 4252 days

#7 posted 11-24-2011 03:27 PM

what a great tip tim

t’ll have to use this sometime


-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View mafe's profile


12643 posts in 4001 days

#8 posted 11-24-2011 11:05 PM

Thank you.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View a1Jim's profile


118143 posts in 4489 days

#9 posted 11-24-2011 11:24 PM

Very good tip . I would guess if you have a 12” board and a 4” jointer you could joint both edgs and make a sled with a space in the middle and then send it through your planner.
Thanks for sharing.


View pintodeluxe's profile


6231 posts in 3725 days

#10 posted 11-25-2011 06:11 AM

Thanks, I appreciate the photo series. Good description.
I have heard that one heavy pass is best when you first start this operation. The theory is that once the difference between the flattened side of the board and the rough side of the board exceeds your cut depth, then the rough side will start riding up on the planer near the guard mount.
Have you found this to be true?

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View able339's profile


47 posts in 3287 days

#11 posted 11-25-2011 06:57 AM

I must say, Tenontim, You are smarter than the average “possum!! I had heard of it being done but I never put much faith in the process. It certainly sounds like something I need to know!

-- TNJames

View tenontim's profile


2131 posts in 4656 days

#12 posted 11-25-2011 03:33 PM

Willie, I think it would ride up on the guard mount, especially if you’re jointing some really cupped boards. If I have any that have a lot of cup, I will rip them down, as someone previously mentioned. The main thing is to just get a mostly flat surface for the board to ride on. It doesn’t have to be completely jointed, just have a supporting surface down the length of the board, to prevent the planer rollers from pressing the board down to follow the uneven top surface. You’ll clean up the jointed face when you flip the board over.

View Dusty56's profile


11861 posts in 4599 days

#13 posted 02-19-2012 06:19 AM

Wow , this is a great time saver , TT…I see you have the Powermatic jointer there. Thanks for responding to my pulley question earlier today : )
Have a great weekend !

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics