Is my jointer salvageable or is it garbage?

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Forum topic by MKXprojects posted 08-06-2018 08:49 AM 1272 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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6 posts in 737 days

08-06-2018 08:49 AM

Topic tags/keywords: jointer question

I’m restoring a Craftsman 113 jointer. I’ve spent hours cleaning, polishing. Changing the knives, I even painted it. Now, one of the last things before its complete, is I need to fine tune the infeed table, and I just realized it is slightly bowed.

There is a bow where the middle dips about .0075 – .008 inches. Is a .008 bow enough to render this jointer useless? Or can I still get flat boards? The outfeed is perfectly flat…

This is my first jointer, and I’ve done a lot of research and spent a lot of time learning about jointers and getting it restored to this point. I’m pretty devastated to find out it has this bow. I’m thinking that it’s done for, but I figured I’d ask some pros

13 replies so far

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

2518 posts in 971 days

#1 posted 08-06-2018 12:38 PM

can you post a photo with a steel straight edge on the part in question ?
I had that jointer for several years and it saw a LOT of use. it is a good machine.
as for the jointer I had – I honestly don’t remember if I ever checked the tables
for straightness. It was slightly used when I got it and just used the heck out of it with good results.
when you get it all assembled and working – run some test boards through it
to see if there are any significant issues you need to address.

-- there is no educational alternative to having a front row seat in the School of Hard Knocks. --

View MKXprojects's profile


6 posts in 737 days

#2 posted 08-06-2018 12:42 PM

Here’s a photo where you can see the light shining through between the straight edge and the table… I used a feeler gauge to determine that space is ~.008

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6 posts in 737 days

#3 posted 08-06-2018 12:47 PM

This pic may be a bit better. The black strip on top is my straight edge, you can kinda see the gap. It’s hard to take a picture of a .008 gap haha

View johnstoneb's profile


3147 posts in 2981 days

#4 posted 08-06-2018 01:31 PM

Is the outfeed table straight? If it is I would run some test boards thru is and use it.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View Aj2's profile


3187 posts in 2606 days

#5 posted 08-06-2018 01:37 PM

Since you have gone this far might as well see how it cuts. If that’s the jointer with the fixed out feed table you might want to start looking for a new/old machine to restore.
One with a adjustable outfeed.
My first jointer was craftsmen I still have the fence.

-- Aj

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6 posts in 737 days

#6 posted 08-06-2018 01:46 PM

Thanks everyone, I think I will go ahead and finish the restoration and see how it cuts. I still need to fine tune the fence and blades, and I will do my best to align the infeed table which is difficult with the bow.

Do you think it’s possible to use a belt sander to work down the high parts and create a flatter infeed table? I’d be afraid I would make it worse than it is.

View waho6o9's profile (online now)


8920 posts in 3385 days

#7 posted 08-06-2018 01:47 PM

Since you’ll be taking off a 1/16 at a time I think everything will be okay.

View Woodchuckswife's profile


41 posts in 2118 days

#8 posted 08-06-2018 06:07 PM

Take it off and take it to a machine shop and have them flatten it on a milling machine.

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6 posts in 737 days

#9 posted 08-06-2018 07:31 PM

Would it be expensive to have a.machine shop flatten it? Removing the infeed table.itself would be a huge pain, and if it’s expensive to machine it, then I’m thinking It may be worth it to just think about buying a new jointer

View CaptainKlutz's profile (online now)


3372 posts in 2302 days

#10 posted 08-06-2018 08:47 PM

hehe, :)
Everyone is so used to speed and efficiency of power tools, that milling and surface grinding is 1st thought to make a surface flat, and it IS fastest way.

But, Making cast iron flat is possible at home with hand tools using old school methods.
You can flatten that in-feed table with some file work, and Hand scraping.
FWIW – The folks over at practical machinist forum have all kinds of useful information on how to get surfaces flat.

IMHO – For a wood working tool, do not really need a perfectly flat surface. Having a few thousands difference across tool is typically not going to create issues machining wood. So hand scraping cast iron top for woodworking tools is most likely overkill. But once you understand the techniques, it opens your mind on possibilities to refurbishing old tools.
If it was my machine, AND IF the dip on in-feed table creating issues; would remove 4-6 thousands of material from both ends with a flat file, then polish with 40-80 grit sand paper on flat block and be happy. Since usual jointing technique is to keep pressure on out-feed table as materiel is processed and not in-feed, Probably won’t even notice the dip, unless the stock is shorter than in-feed table?

Best luck.

-- If it wasn't for bad luck, I wouldn't have no luck at all, - Albert King - Born Under a Bad Sign released 1967

View ohtimberwolf's profile


1000 posts in 3160 days

#11 posted 08-07-2018 12:55 AM

MKX thanks to Klutz this is what I found, more information for you. larry

-- Just a barn cat, now gone to cat heaven.

View MKXprojects's profile


6 posts in 737 days

#12 posted 08-10-2018 08:29 PM

Hey just in case anyone wanted an update on this thread, I decided to take my infeed table to a.local machine shop to have them flatten it. They said it will cost 80 bucks, I figured that was well worth it…

Thanks for everyone who commented with their advice

View ohtimberwolf's profile


1000 posts in 3160 days

#13 posted 08-11-2018 12:07 AM

Thanks for updating us MKX. larry

-- Just a barn cat, now gone to cat heaven.

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