Planer dilemna

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Forum topic by eflanders posted 01-30-2021 04:39 PM 491 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View eflanders's profile


339 posts in 2907 days

01-30-2021 04:39 PM

Topic tags/keywords: planer fixed table snipe

Background Info:

I have owned several portable planers in the past and always had good luck with them as far as snipe goes. When I switched from blades to helical cutters I was extremely happy with the way the helical head performed with hard figured woods. Plus the cut was much quieter in my opinion. But I also changed from buying “finished” lumber to buying rough sawn as my work demand increased a lot. So I then chose to go to a floor standing older Delta 15” that I bought used. But this unit had a variable speed belt system that did not work well and it did not have any infeed or outfeed tables. I quickly sold it to buy a nice used 15” Powermatic unit that came with a working 2 speed drive and roller infeed & outfeed tables. Both of these units were bladed heads. Both floor standing units caused snipe at the infeed and outfeed ends of the board. With a lot of adjusting, I have pretty much eliminated the outfeed snipe but cannot seem to get the infeed snipe to go away. I also want to get a true helical carbide head but before I invest in one I need to get the snipe under control. I see that Grizzly offers a floor standing unit that the head raises and lowers vs. the tables much like the portable units do. This in my opinion would lessen the chances for snipe and they offer a helical head option. I would rather not buy another planer if I can fix my current unit to fix the snipe and then add a Shelix head to it as this would be less money. What do you all suggest? Have any of you bought the fixed table unit? What are your impressions of it vs. others? Can I eliminate the infeed snipe somehow? All I have tried so far is to adjust the rollers…

17 replies so far

View Aj2's profile


3769 posts in 2855 days

#1 posted 01-30-2021 04:50 PM

I have a powermatic 15hh I get some snipe on both ends. I tried to adjust it out completely but it just possible on this flimsy machine made in Taiwan. What does work is to butt the boards up or run scrap wood before or after. Facing the boards flat before I plane them is my usual practice. If your planing Rough boards I can why your not happy
Thicker boards do better then thin stuff
Good Luck

-- Aj

View ajosephg's profile


1897 posts in 4618 days

#2 posted 01-30-2021 06:04 PM

I have given up trying to eliminate snipe 100% of the time, and just assume that it’s going to happen and allow for it by not planning to use the ends boards.

-- Joe

View Woodchuckswife's profile


56 posts in 2367 days

#3 posted 01-30-2021 06:05 PM

I have a grizzly stright blade and I do not get any snipe on in or out feed tables .

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5349 posts in 5017 days

#4 posted 01-30-2021 06:12 PM

Lift trailing end on infeed, and leading end on outfeed. This stops the normal (sometimes) on in and out feeding.
That’s what I do, and snipe is ALMOST always gone.
Remember that LIFT is light. Just enough to counter gravity.

-- [email protected]

View Richard Lee's profile

Richard Lee

395 posts in 1832 days

#5 posted 01-30-2021 07:07 PM

Most snipe problems can be mitigated by adjusting the pressure bars.
And what others have said also.

View Madmark2's profile


2515 posts in 1645 days

#6 posted 01-30-2021 09:47 PM

I have a 100% ure cure for snipe. I start with lumber 4” or so longer than I need and eliminate the snipe with the crosscut saw.

Longer supports for the infeed and outfeed will help. Keeping the far ends up and preventing them from levering into the cutters prevents snipe. A live helper can prevent snipe the same way.

If the snipe is slight, any ridge can usually be sanded out if the thickness variation isn’t an issue.

-- The hump with the stump and the pump!

View eflanders's profile


339 posts in 2907 days

#7 posted 01-30-2021 09:59 PM

Please understand that i am supporting the boards both on the infeed and outfeed with adjustable, mobile roller stands. I do this as I often work with hardwood boards that are 6 -9’ long and by as much as 12” wide especially with the lunchbox planers as the weight alone would literally lift the planer off its stand. Richard Lee: You mention adjusting the pressure bars… I am not familiar with that adjustment. Can you help me to understand what this adjustment is and how it affects the cut please? I assume that this has nothing to do with the feed rollers or does it?

View Richard Lee's profile

Richard Lee

395 posts in 1832 days

#8 posted 01-30-2021 10:09 PM

The pressure bars are fore and aft of the cutter head , usually smooth bars that hold the wood down.
Adjust the spring pressure tighter.
They should be lower than the cutter head
Some planers will be worse than others

View therealSteveN's profile


7503 posts in 1631 days

#9 posted 01-30-2021 10:11 PM

If you get none coming out, triple check your infeed roller is allowing an even infeed, slight up, or down will queer the deal. I’d try a 2’ long piece, and forgo the infeed and outfeed roller stands, if it looks crisp, you know the problem.

-- Think safe, be safe

View eflanders's profile


339 posts in 2907 days

#10 posted 01-30-2021 10:14 PM

Thanks Richard I will certainly refer to my manual on them!

View eflanders's profile


339 posts in 2907 days

#11 posted 01-30-2021 10:15 PM

Thanks Steven I will try that too!

View Robert's profile


4523 posts in 2537 days

#12 posted 01-30-2021 10:57 PM

Snipe is generally on the outfeed. Slight upward lift as board exits can help.

Sounds like the infeed roller is too high relative to the cutter head.

Also if it has bed rollers, they are a major source of snipe when I adjusted mine below the bed, snipe disappeared.

+1 on the pressure bar. I think that thing is very important. Remember rollers can only hold down as much spring tension allows.

I would go through a complete adjustment session as per the manual. On my planer it’s a whole morning ordeal.

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

View eflanders's profile


339 posts in 2907 days

#13 posted 01-30-2021 11:08 PM

Thanks Robert!

View menuisierJC's profile


18 posts in 91 days

#14 posted 01-30-2021 11:38 PM

I have a Powermatic 15HH and I absolutely love it. I get no or negligible snipe. I’m not sure, but I think two of the most important keys to avoiding snipe are (1) making sure your infeed and outfeed tables are absolutely in the same plane as the main table and (2) only elevating the table rollers a teeny tiny bit above the table (about the width of a vein in a gnat’s knee).

-- Jeffrey

View Richard Lee's profile

Richard Lee

395 posts in 1832 days

#15 posted 01-30-2021 11:56 PM

Planers can be a PITA to set up, but once you have figured out the workings, its easier.
This makes it easier.

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