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Byrd Shelix Head for planer or jointer, or both?

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Forum topic by Holbs posted 03-26-2019 03:49 AM 690 views 0 times favorited 30 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Holbs

2196 posts in 2359 days


03-26-2019 03:49 AM

I was seriously considering picking up a 8” byrd shelix head for my 8” GeeTech jointer for the $420 price tag. While on the site, I took a gander at what a 15” head would be for my 15” Jet planer of $694. That is lots of dough for both. I gots to thinking… maybe is best to just purchase the shelix head for the 15” planer as it gets more use (since a thickness planer). And I could leave 1/16” or so extra, flip board over, and run it through the planer again. Wouldn’t really need a shelix head for the 8” jointer? Especially considering I just might pull trigger on a Grizzly 0490X with it’s spiral head someday.

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


30 replies so far

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Manitario

2747 posts in 3213 days


#1 posted 03-26-2019 04:27 AM

I have Shelix heads for both my jointer and planer. Planer is a huge help, jointer helps on the odd board with crazy grain. Saves me the PITA of changing the jointer blades.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

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mithun

1 post in 27 days


#2 posted 03-26-2019 04:38 AM

Those who are Woodworkers they know that a shear cut is far better than a straight cut. So, You need to know that a stagger cut is much better than just a single straight knife and is a lot easier on your dust collection system. If you just shelix-head-.jpghappen to plane a nail or staple, it is not necessary to replace expensive knives the full length of your planer head. You can replace 2 or 3 small inexpensive knives and you are ready to go. You might expect to pay a small fortune for a journal head with these features, but due to Oella Saw & Tool’s unbelievable buying power you can buy directly from Byrd.

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therealSteveN

2371 posts in 904 days


#3 posted 03-26-2019 06:03 AM



jointer helps on the odd board with crazy grain. Saves me the PITA of changing the jointer blades.

- Manitario

This is something many with knives only, who do NOT feel a shellix is good on a jointer miss out on. Don’t need to always be looking to see which direction you are working. Those little shearing cuts allow you to just go. Crotch, Curly, Knots, just do it.

Only caveat I’ll add to that is always do it with shallow passes.

Yeah, either planer or jointer, down time to sharpen when you get a nick is now just identifying exactly which cutter, 1/4 turn and you are a go again…..

Best $$$$$ I’ve ever spent in the shop.

-- Think safe, be safe

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5458 posts in 2823 days


#4 posted 03-26-2019 10:37 AM

There are a lot of folks who advocate the Shelix on the jointer only. One arguement goes that the jointed surfaces typically get planed anyway, so why put a Shelix on a Jointer. I have both and it was mentioned above: just avoiding the knife set up hassle is reason enough. There is also the added bonus of a (slight, on the jointer) reduction in noise. But you said you are thinking of stepping up to a Griz with a spiral…I don’t think I’d put one in the Jet planer; that would be a good amount to apply to the next planer.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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YouthfullMind

46 posts in 481 days


#5 posted 03-26-2019 11:42 AM

I started by getting a shelix on my jointer because the white oak was eating up my straight knives. It has saved me a ton of time changing/sharpening/setting knives. I just ordered one for my planer as well. They’re expensive up front, but the knives and sharpening aren’t cheap either.

On my jointer I did it for more of a time savings, but on my planer it will definitely save me money in the long run.

View Tony1212's profile

Tony1212

309 posts in 2064 days


#6 posted 03-26-2019 12:52 PM

I’m kinda right there with you, Holbs. Except that the budget for even one shelix head is not there right now. But when (if) I get the cash, I will only be upgrading the planer.

As you say, it gets more use. WAY more use. Also, face jointing will get the board flat enough for the planer, and I can leave a little extra to turn it over and plane any tear-out or lines from nicked blades off.

On the edges, a quick pass with a hand plane will clean up any tear out there. Even a shaving with my tablesaw will leave it glue or finish ready.

Sure, changing the blades on the jointer are a PITA, but as a weekend woodworker, I don’t go through them very often. I’ve had my jointer set-up for a few years now and it does just fine. Depending on the planer, changing those blades can be almost as bad, and since it gets so much more use, I end up changing those more often. Or to save the frustration and cash, I leave them in long past their expiration date and end up having to do more work to clean up the planer marks. So, personally, I’d see a much higher ROI with the planer upgrade.

-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs

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jonah

2063 posts in 3628 days


#7 posted 03-26-2019 01:03 PM

Long term, I’d want helical cutterheads on both, but setting jointer knives sure is a pain in the ass. It might be worth doing for that reason alone.

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Blindhog

115 posts in 1378 days


#8 posted 03-26-2019 01:42 PM

I have Shelix heads on both my jointer and planer, for all the reasons mithun mentioned. Some of the best money I’ve spent on tooling, highly recommended!

-- Don't let perfection get in the way of plenty good enough

View pottz's profile

pottz

4730 posts in 1314 days


#9 posted 03-26-2019 01:50 PM

well i just ordered the shelix for my jointer and eventually id like to put on my 15” planer also,it just sounds like the best way to go for the smoothest surface and ease of changing blades.

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

View Dustin's profile (online now)

Dustin

683 posts in 1070 days


#10 posted 03-26-2019 02:22 PM

I have one on my 6” jointer. Since I tend to rotate boards 180 degrees when flattening one side in order to reduce the tapering effect, this helps eliminate tear-out typical of straight blades when jointing “uphill” to the grain. Also, I definitely didn’t want to fiddle with setting knives, or having to resharpen/replace anytime I knicked a blade.

I would love to have one in my planer, but don’t want to spend the dough on upgrading a DW734. Now, however, I have the luxury of a drum sander, so I figure most of my stuff will be going straight from the planer to that anyways to eliminate any tear-out or snipe.

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

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Holbs

2196 posts in 2359 days


#11 posted 03-26-2019 04:11 PM


I don t think I d put one in the Jet planer; that would be a good amount to apply to the next planer.

- Fred Hargis


I think this 15” Jet planer I have will be the last planer I own :) Is a beast compared to my 13” Rigid lunchbox planer (which I still have incase of working on small pieces). Unsure what latest greatest 15” planers have over my own 15” planer to consider upgrading (other than cutter heads). Highly doubt I would move up to 20” or larger planer.


Long term, I d want helical cutterheads on both, but setting jointer knives sure is a pain in the ass. It might be worth doing for that reason alone.

- jonah


setting knives on 8” or 6” jointer is much much easier than 15” knives on planer :)
I have the luxury of a drum sander, so I figure most of my stuff will be going straight from the planer to that anyways to eliminate any tear-out or snipe.

- Dustin


Good point Dustin. I acquired my first 16-32 drum sander a couple months ago which I have not even used yet as my latest projects have been more oriented towards plywood, MDF, and douglas fir.

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

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avsmusic1

376 posts in 1015 days


#12 posted 03-26-2019 04:20 PM

I’m in the planer > jointer camp if you can only do one (this is what i have) but if this constraint doesn’t apply then by all means both!

View Dustin's profile (online now)

Dustin

683 posts in 1070 days


#13 posted 03-26-2019 04:22 PM

Holbs, you haven’t used it yet?!? Did you go Jet or Supermax? My Supermax 19-38 was my tax refund gift to myself, and I immediately ran some test boards through it. That thing is a dream, and like I said, eliminated the feeling that I’d need to upgrade the cutter on my planer.

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

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Holbs

2196 posts in 2359 days


#14 posted 03-26-2019 04:33 PM



Holbs, you haven t used it yet?!? Did you go Jet or Supermax? My Supermax 19-38 was my tax refund gift to myself, and I immediately ran some test boards through it. That thing is a dream, and like I said, eliminated the feeling that I d need to upgrade the cutter on my planer.

- Dustin


I bought mine used a number of months ago for… $250 or $300 (I forget). He did a test run and it looked fantastic! I bought home and did some test runs. 3rd or 4th test run, sandpaper came off and looked very used. Luckily, the person gave me 5 or 6 spare rolls. Haven’t installed them yet :) but mine is used, not new. SuperMax 16/32 unit. Hmm…now you got me thinking if it’s a Supermax or Performax. I’m at work currently so… I forget :)

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

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Aj2

2129 posts in 2128 days


#15 posted 03-26-2019 04:34 PM

I’m against the insert head in a jointer. When they first came out I had a 8 inch made by Gee Tech. It had 54 inserts in the head 6 rows of 9.
The feed pressure was terrible very difficult to get anything flat the wasn’t thick.
I see they are now offering jointers with a lot less inserts so maybe helps more then I know.
I do have PM 15 hh it’s ok but sometimes it takes forever to plane rough down it cannot take a very big cut.
What I have found with a insert head is it has very small amount of positive rake. So it scraps a shaving at a slight angle. This limits the depth of cut and increases feed pressure. Since carbide doesn’t sharpen keen like good hss that adds more feed pressure.
Most of the time I sit in a chair in front of my jointer and just pass wood over the head. Hardly any downward pressure I keep the knifes super sharp and let them scoop scoop. With good positive rake and clearance.
Straight knives with good hss in a jointer are a woodworkers best friend.

-- Aj

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