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Planing Epoxy off River Board

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Forum topic by Keith Kelly posted 01-29-2019 10:03 PM 797 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Keith Kelly

333 posts in 2168 days


01-29-2019 10:03 PM

A friend brought me a river board (two pieces of wood, blue-tinted epoxy filling gap between them) to me to plane down the epoxy.

I have concerns about this and would appreciate any input.

  1. Will it gum up my planer blades? (straight blades on a Makita benchtop planer).
  2. I’m reading about risk of chipping/tearing the epoxy, especially in areas near air bubbles. I feel like I’ve seen this before – where the lower pieces are not as glossy as the flat area.

Or am I overthinking it? I’m usually all about just getting the job done, but I’m not familiar enough with the properties of epoxy.

I’m guessing the board is about 9×11”. Gap is only 2-3” wide, but the first few passes on one side will be removing about 7” of epoxy that’s on top of the wood.

-- Keith | Subscribe: https://www.youtube.com/c/KeithsTestGarage


15 replies so far

View Rich's profile

Rich

4953 posts in 1094 days


#1 posted 01-29-2019 10:30 PM

It probably won’t be as clear and smooth as you’ll want it, so plan on doing some sanding and polishing after the planing.

In my experience running epoxy filled boards through my planer (and lots of it), it won’t gum anything up, but what may happen is that the little shards of epoxy embed themselves in your rollers and make them slippery. I’ve had that happen several times and a good scrubbing with naphtha cleaned it right off. Still, it’s a pain.

-- Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to sound smarter the faster they come at you.

View BFamous's profile

BFamous

322 posts in 625 days


#2 posted 01-30-2019 02:22 AM

I’d question the hardness of the epoxy before I ran it through my planer. I’d ask what the Shore D hardness is of that epoxy. The higher it is, the harder it’s going to be on your blades…

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

View Keith Kelly's profile

Keith Kelly

333 posts in 2168 days


#3 posted 01-30-2019 06:06 AM



I d question the hardness of the epoxy before I ran it through my planer. I d ask what the Shore D hardness is of that epoxy. The higher it is, the harder it s going to be on your blades…

- BFamous

good point. I can tell you that right now it feels soft (at least in terms of epoxy hardness. You know, like when you mix epoxy and feel like you used too little hardener.). It feels sticky on one side, like it ought to cure longer. I’ll also look up the product to see. Thanks for the reply.


It probably won t be as clear and smooth as you ll want it, so plan on doing some sanding and polishing after the planing.

In my experience running epoxy filled boards through my planer (and lots of it), it won t gum anything up, but what may happen is that the little shards of epoxy embed themselves in your rollers and make them slippery. I ve had that happen several times and a good scrubbing with naphtha cleaned it right off. Still, it s a pain.

- Rich

I really don’t feel like gumming up the rollers. I’ve had that before and it’s miserable.

I wonder… I have a Performax 16-32 sander. That epoxy would gum up the sanndpaper real quick, but maybe I use some old, used 40 grit for a couple passes, then return to the planer when the blades need replaced anyway.

These boards are super common, right? What do people do usually?

Maybe these river-board-making people aren’t deep into woodworking, and don’t care about gumming up their planer. Hmm…...

-- Keith | Subscribe: https://www.youtube.com/c/KeithsTestGarage

View EarlS's profile

EarlS

3084 posts in 2853 days


#4 posted 01-30-2019 12:51 PM

I’ve run some boards with epoxy in knotholes and such through my DeWalt 735 planer.

If the epoxy is still sticky you are correct in your assessment that they might not have used enough hardener. Running un-cured epoxy through your planer would likely result in gummed up blades that would have to be replaced. The sticky epoxy might pull out of the wood as well. (your results might differ from mine).

I think I’d suggest that they get some coarse sandpaper, a ROS or hand held belt sander, and sand it down, then work through to fine paper and finally polish it (worked well enough for me). The drum sander belt would fill up and start burning the wood and you would have a real mess then.

This is one time where I would give it back to them and say “sorry, I can’t help you”.

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

View Keith Kelly's profile

Keith Kelly

333 posts in 2168 days


#5 posted 01-30-2019 01:54 PM

Good point about the drum sander burning the wood when gummed up.

Last night I noticed that the stickiness was from tape. Now I remember him telling me that. The epoxy seemed hard, so I change my perspective there.

I decided to run it through the planer on a light pass and see what happened…and realized the issue of snipe. That board can’t afford to have 2” of snipe on each end of it.

So, I may do something with rails to avoid snipe, but wonder if that will affect the rollers’ grip on the epoxy. ROS /belt sander may be the best way at this point as you said.

Thanks for the advice.

-- Keith | Subscribe: https://www.youtube.com/c/KeithsTestGarage

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

3128 posts in 2677 days


#6 posted 01-30-2019 01:54 PM

You’re overthinking it. Just run it thru. I’ve had no problem plaining epoxy fill down. If you’re worried about chipping just do lighter cuts.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View ScottM's profile

ScottM

741 posts in 2651 days


#7 posted 01-30-2019 04:55 PM



You re overthinking it. Just run it thru. I ve had no problem plaining epoxy fill down. If you re worried about chipping just do lighter cuts.

- johnstoneb

+1. Also let your friend know that he’ll owe you new knives or beer to pay for any damages!

View Keith Kelly's profile

Keith Kelly

333 posts in 2168 days


#8 posted 01-30-2019 05:22 PM

Ok, I’ll probably just glue some longer rails to the sides to prevent snipe, and just do it.

Thanks for the counsel.

-- Keith | Subscribe: https://www.youtube.com/c/KeithsTestGarage

View Davevand's profile

Davevand

128 posts in 1341 days


#9 posted 01-30-2019 05:30 PM

I have used a flattening jig and a router, same one I use for flattening slabs

View Keith Kelly's profile

Keith Kelly

333 posts in 2168 days


#10 posted 01-30-2019 05:31 PM



I have used a flattening jig and a router, same one I use for flattening slabs

- Davevand

yeah, I keep meaning to make one of those….

-- Keith | Subscribe: https://www.youtube.com/c/KeithsTestGarage

View avsmusic1's profile

avsmusic1

524 posts in 1190 days


#11 posted 01-30-2019 06:04 PM

I’d tell my friend to buy a scraper for $25 on amazon lol

View tomsteve's profile

tomsteve

963 posts in 1724 days


#12 posted 01-30-2019 06:44 PM

i think id show him how to use some blocks and sandpaper to go through the grits to sand it down.

View Keith Kelly's profile

Keith Kelly

333 posts in 2168 days


#13 posted 01-31-2019 08:36 PM



I’d tell my friend to buy a scraper for $25 on amazon lol

- avsmusic1

Your friend must be theoretical.

-- Keith | Subscribe: https://www.youtube.com/c/KeithsTestGarage

View Andybb's profile

Andybb

2089 posts in 1108 days


#14 posted 01-31-2019 08:47 PM

I have used a flattening jig and a router, same one I use for flattening slabs

- Davevand

yeah, I keep meaning to make one of those….

- Keith Kelly

Yeah, but they are a pain to dig out and set up. Just run it thru the planer, which will probably give you a more uniform surface anyway. :-)

-- Andy - Seattle USA

View DBDesigns's profile

DBDesigns

232 posts in 502 days


#15 posted 01-31-2019 08:56 PM

Even if it doesn’t affect the planer knives, he still owes you beer! In fact, I would charge a beer retainer just for consulting.
Just Sayin’

-- I remember when Grateful wasn't Dead

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