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Newbie question about Jointers

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Forum topic by Nuvigil posted 03-11-2019 06:53 PM 643 views 0 times favorited 25 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Nuvigil

6 posts in 252 days


03-11-2019 06:53 PM

I’m new to woodworking, this is my second post. Last year I picked up a table saw and a jointer from a re-store and have restored them to good working order.

I’ve done a lot of searching and googling about this question, but how can I use my jointer as a planer, assuming I cant afford a thickness planer?

Everywhere I look I see “How to use your planer as a jointer” and DIY conversion stuff, but I need to go the other way around, which doesn’t seem like a common problem.

Is there a way I can use my jointer to make not just flat, but parallel cuts from a stock? Last night I was jointing every edge of a stock I needed, and my intuition was that “if I just keep running each side of the stock through the jointer, eventually it will be parallel and flat.”

I think this was a misguided intuition, confirmed by the results of the board after 15 minutes.

Any tips?

I recognize I might get a “you can’t use your jointer to make true boards” as a response, but I need to hear it as a novice.


25 replies so far

View Firewood's profile

Firewood

961 posts in 2148 days


#1 posted 03-11-2019 07:14 PM

Welcome to Lumberjocks, Nuvigil. Unfortunately, you are correct. A jointer cannot be used as a thickness planer. The jointer works well to flatten one face and square an edge to it, but once you flip the board to it’s other face, there no reference to the already jointed face. You will most likely end up with a wedge. You either need a planer or some hand planning skills.

-- Mike - Waukesha, WI

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pottz

6414 posts in 1499 days


#2 posted 03-11-2019 07:19 PM

ditto your gonna need a planer or beef up your arms and start hand planing-lol.or just get boards already planed.check craigs list for a good used one or maybe your re-store.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

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HokieKen

10986 posts in 1653 days


#3 posted 03-11-2019 07:19 PM

What Mike said ^

You can use a sled in a planer to joint faces of rough stock. But not the other way around.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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Nuvigil

6 posts in 252 days


#4 posted 03-11-2019 07:36 PM

Surely is unfortunate. Thank you for the confirmation though. I’ll have to try and make do with what I’ve got.

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runswithscissors

3074 posts in 2540 days


#5 posted 03-11-2019 10:18 PM

This is the kind of confusion that comes from Sears claiming for decades that their jointer was a “planer/jointer.”

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

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Holbs

2247 posts in 2544 days


#6 posted 03-11-2019 10:49 PM

Well… let’s see. It could happen! Might have to break law of physics. Could joint a face. And then flip over from the top of your jointer fence a cast iron overhead fence that is parallel down to the 0.001” accurate range to the jointer outfeed table, same length as said jointer fence. And then, flip board upside down the jointed face now turns upward, re-polarize gravity so the board slides along the bottom of the top fence!
Whalla!

-- The Carpenter Bee is derived from the Ancient Greek word wood-cutter "xylokopos/ξυλοκὀπος"

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BlueRidgeDog

499 posts in 294 days


#7 posted 03-11-2019 11:17 PM

In reality they are a pair, one without the other isn’t much use.

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CWWoodworking

528 posts in 693 days


#8 posted 03-12-2019 12:22 AM

Is it worth anything? If so, sell it and save up for a planer. Or better yet a nice drum sander.

In the mean time, buy your wood pre-prepped. You don’t really need a jointer to make a lot of things if your supplier can do some of the work for you.

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Holbs

2247 posts in 2544 days


#9 posted 03-12-2019 02:52 AM



Is it worth anything? If so, sell it and save up for a planer. Or better yet a nice drum sander.

In the mean time, buy your wood pre-prepped. You don’t really need a jointer to make a lot of things if your supplier can do some of the work for you.

- CWWoodworking


I asked my local hardwood supplier what S2S would cost as compared to rough lumber. He gave example of oak 4/4. Rough would come in around $3+. S5S would come in around $9+. Ouch! I’ve been spoiled by having both jointer/planer. Unsure if this is normal nationwide price difference between rough and S2S.

Whjat OP could do is to joint 2 sides, table saw the edge #3, hand plane face #4 since you have a nice 90 degree reverence opposite face to get started with.
Or keep eye out on craigslist for lunch box planers. Unsure of Central Machinery Harbor Freight ones go for. But majority of the Craigslist or local ads would have used planers starting around $150-$450.

-- The Carpenter Bee is derived from the Ancient Greek word wood-cutter "xylokopos/ξυλοκὀπος"

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AlaskaGuy

5361 posts in 2824 days


#10 posted 03-12-2019 04:17 AM

Well there are probably many difference scenarios depending on list of things like, what you want to build, budget, space and many others.

It’s my personal opinion in the beginning you should go for a table, planer and a jointer. One reason I recommend this is because I went quite a few years before I got a jointer. In hindsight I wish I’d got a jointer long before I did. Yes you can build a lot of things with out a jointer. Have properly milled lumber just made laying out joint much more accurate. Personally I would not pass up a jointer of a drum sander. I have a small Bridgewood wide belt. I’d give up the wide belt any day over giving up my jointer.

Once you get those 3 power tools and you want to move forward I look at a handsaw and the maybe a drum sander or wide belt sander.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

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CWWoodworking

528 posts in 693 days


#11 posted 03-12-2019 11:11 AM


I asked my local hardwood supplier what S2S would cost as compared to rough lumber. He gave example of oak 4/4. Rough would come in around $3+. S5S would come in around $9+. Ouch!

- Holbs

That would have been the last time I talked to that supplier. For 100 BF, they are charging $600 for a half hour of work. For 3$, I can specify what type of red oak and specify what region of the country it comes from, and put 50 cents/bf in my pocket, and have it planed/edged however I want. I dont use tons either.

My fondness for sander over planer stems from using a lot of glue up panels. I hate sanding/scraping. Plus the sander can be using as an edge sander for thinner stock.

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AlaskaGuy

5361 posts in 2824 days


#12 posted 03-12-2019 05:31 PM

There nothing quite as satisfying as taking some ruff cut lumber and milling it yourself. I like being in control of milling process. You don’t pre mill your project wood and set it aside for later use . You mill it after you have a project plan. You cut your pieces to lenght + couple inches before any thing else. Once that is done you can proceed with milling.

I flatten one face on the jointer, just enough to make it flat, then run them through the planer just enough to make that side flat and parallel to the first face. Once the faces are done I move on to the edges. That’s for the first day. At this point the stock is over size.

The next day I take some off each side but still leave it a bit over sized. Let that rest over night to see what moves. Don’t laugh I have stock move over night. Third and final day I mill it to finial size. All this time being careful as possible to remove the same amount of wood from each side of the stock.

No way the lumber yard can do what I described. They are just going to run it through a planer a time or two in full lengths and send it on it way. If you don’t use it right a way there still a good chance it can move on you.

I remember when I dind’t have a jointer and planer and have to use s4s stock from the lumber yard. Not many pieces were truly flat and many a time Id’ make a face frame the one piece would be thicker than the outer when butt together.

Here’s a table full of stock get ready for the last pass. Oh one other very important thing. Once you start the milling don’t lay the sock flat. Keep it so it get air to both sides of the stock.

I’ve milled a lot of wood over the years and my process has givens me great wood to work with. That’s a load of ruff cut cherry 4/4 lumber in that back ground.

That being said, “different strokes for different folks.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

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BlueRidgeDog

499 posts in 294 days


#13 posted 03-12-2019 06:32 PM

As an aside, I don’t buy S4S because they will treat the entire board, so you end up with a vastly thinner piece when milling a 8’ to 10’ board than I end up when I pre-cut then mill.

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CWWoodworking

528 posts in 693 days


#14 posted 03-12-2019 07:43 PM

AG, your right. My supplier would not do that, nor would I.


As an aside, I don t buy S4S because they will treat the entire board, so you end up with a vastly thinner piece when milling a 8 to 10 board than I end up when I pre-cut then mill.

- BlueRidgeDog

I just used 14 ft boards. None were remotely thinner. All same thickness.

Not really wanting to do this again. Was trying to offer a solution to the OP’s predicament of 2 pretty useless tools if he doesn’t have some help in some form. The tone of post didn’t sound like he wanted to spend more money.

View BalsaWood's profile

BalsaWood

161 posts in 1673 days


#15 posted 03-12-2019 08:19 PM


AG, your right. My supplier would not do that, nor would I.

As an aside, I don t buy S4S because they will treat the entire board, so you end up with a vastly thinner piece when milling a 8 to 10 board than I end up when I pre-cut then mill.

- BlueRidgeDog

I just used 14 ft boards. None were remotely thinner. All same thickness.

Not really wanting to do this again. Was trying to offer a solution to the OP’s predicament of 2 pretty useless tools if he doesn’t have some help in some form. The tone of post didn’t sound like he wanted to spend more money.

- CWWoodworking

You keep mentioning supplier here and in other posts. Most of the people here are hobbyists and don’t have some “special” supplier that lets them “specify what type of red oak and specify what region of the country it comes from.” That is great for you that you have your own supplier but doesn’t help most people here and the person who started the topic.

Likewise for tools. To most people here, the planer and jointer are important tools to have and to a lot of those same people, milling lumber is part of the fun. Even most pro shops have those two machines well. I’d never replace those two machines with a drum sander either when dealing with rough lumber.

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