Need to square a 4 1/4 x 4 1/4 x 18 Spalted Maple

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Forum topic by Johnnyv99 posted 06-06-2017 03:50 PM 760 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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06-06-2017 03:50 PM

First of all let me say that I have checked my set up and my saw blade and Osborne Miter Gauge are square to each other.

I have a 4 1/4×4 1/4×18 Spalted Maple piece that I need to cut two pieces that will be 3/8 thick. The blank was originally square S4S, but has gone out of square since I bought it two years ago. I have run the stock through my jointer and planer but the other two sides need to be squared up. What I’m getting when I crosscut is an uneven face because the piece isn’t square. The mismatch is about 1/32 on the first cut and then when I flip it 180 degrees about .045.

My question is can I turn the piece 90 degrees and run through the jointer, then the planer to square all 4 sides?

My hand plane skills are not up to a level that I would attempt to do this by hand. I know that I could just do it and live with the results, as I’m only taking off 1/32. I could just live with the results and hand plane flat, but I’ve had this question unanswered like an earworm running through my brain for a long time. I would appreciate your ideas before doing that.


-- When the people fear the government, that's Tyranny. When the government fears the people, that's Liberty.

7 replies so far

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5626 posts in 1367 days

#1 posted 06-06-2017 04:04 PM

If you have two faces that are 90º to one another, then making the other two faces parallel to them will make all corners 90º. I’d simply use my planer to do that.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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1164 posts in 3595 days

#2 posted 06-06-2017 04:14 PM

I think he has two parallel, straight sides. In that case yes, the normal procedure is to run it through the jointer, making sure to reference it off the fence (and before doing so, check to make sure the fence is square to the outfeed table). Then run it through the planer to finish the 4th side.

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

View bbasiaga's profile


1243 posts in 2773 days

#3 posted 06-06-2017 04:18 PM

Flatten one face on your jointer. Square one edge to that face using the jointer, to do this you must register the flattened face against the fence. Make the 3rd face parallel to the first with a planer. For the 4th face, you can use the planer again or rip on the table saw.

You cannot use the jointer on all sides. They would all end up flat but not necessarily parallel.

-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

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8909 posts in 3354 days

#4 posted 06-06-2017 04:45 PM

Once you have a 90 degree corner mark it as your reference point and

work off that. I too had that problem, using a reference point seems to mitigate the


View Johnnyv99's profile


11 posts in 2139 days

#5 posted 06-07-2017 12:05 PM

Thank you all. I had the right idea, but needed your perspective. Great replies all.

-- When the people fear the government, that's Tyranny. When the government fears the people, that's Liberty.

View DrDirt's profile


4614 posts in 4520 days

#6 posted 06-07-2017 01:12 PM

You could use the jointer, however I don’t see why… if you are going to cut 2, 3/8 inch planks off the side.
I don’t 4-square the rough stock that I want to cut a piece off to use.

I would square up your 3/8 boards after cutting off the block.

Cut off plank (propose bandsaw) to rough thickness… joint one face. Plane to thickness. Joint the edge at 90 degrees. then rip to final width at table saw with the jointed face against the fence.

-- “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain

View Robert's profile


3748 posts in 2258 days

#7 posted 06-07-2017 01:37 PM

My question is can I turn the piece 90 degrees and run through the jointer, then the planer to square all 4 sides?
That’s how you do it. Be sure you keep the piece tight against the fence don’t worry about the bottom.

Or do what DrDrit said. It will take two passes use an aux fence to eliminate the small gap between fence and table (or hand plane a flat edge to register against fence).

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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