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Forum topic by Mobley1 posted 04-08-2021 01:58 PM 217 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 13 days

04-08-2021 01:58 PM

Hello All. I’m doing maintenance on my older delta dc-380 planer. I drained the high pressure gear oil out and it seems the fill plug is in a hard to access place on the side. I think I answered my own question but just seeing if I’m missing something. Gonna get some 3/8 vinyl tubing to assist with putting new oil in. Looks like I’ve read 20 ounces but only about 9-10 drained out. I didn’t tip the machine though. Also I’ve never been able to put the feed rate into slow speed which is no big deal. yes i try to only change speed when planer is running. I’m assuming the shaft is bent.


2 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

6930 posts in 3552 days

#1 posted 04-08-2021 02:47 PM

The tube on the gear oil container will work fine. I use one of these, it allow me to keep track of how much oil I’ve put in. No tipping of the gear box, just fill to the level of the hole. 20 ounces sounds about right, I’d have to go look at my notes but I though it was closer to 16 oz. Whatever it is, juts fill to the hole and you’ve got it. When you say you can’t get in to into the slow speed, is the shifting mechanism not moving…or does it shift but not change speeds? Canb you get it into neutral (the center point of the movement)?

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

View CaptainKlutz's profile


4364 posts in 2553 days

#2 posted 04-09-2021 12:36 AM

No need to tip machine. 99% of gear box oil drains out bottom hole.

IMHO – common to find a 15” planer missing half the oil.
Thanks to internal gear design, even half empty; the planer still runs and is not damaged. :)

Need to find oil leak.

Check the inside face of gear box for oil residue. If crusted with oily wood dust; might need a new cutter head oil seal? Oils leaks at the inside of cutter head will hide from you. Wood chips from planning will scrape off oily residue, and get sucked up your dust collector. All that is left behind is sawdust and oily film. When full the gear oil is just below the bottom of seal, so it rarely drips down gear box case; unless the seal is toast.

IME – The speed shift lever is easily bent. The material used, length, and location of the shift knob is perfect place to guarantee it gets damaged when planer is moved around on a mobile base.

If shaft is bent, don’t force it to shift speeds.
The tolerances on the cast iron gear box lid bore for that shaft are very close, due o-ring oil seal. If you attempt to straighten the shaft, WITHOUT tear down of the gear box for shaft removal, and force the shaft to move; can damage the bore in the cast iron gear box cover, and create a permanent oil leak. Once a bent shaft is forced to slide in-out; fixing the resultant oil leak requires a new gear box lid, and a new shaft/seal (unless you are machinist type).

Even on rebuilt machines with new gear box lid, new shift shaft, and fresh metric o-ring; would still find occasional oil weep past the o-ring. IMHO – The speed shifter design is a poorly done and weak link on the otherwise bullet proof 15/20” four post planers.

PS – While doing maintenance, remove the cover over the drive chains over the gar box, and check the in-out feed bushings. If these have not been oiled regularly (weekly per manual); they can wear oblong. This wear allows feed rollers to move up/down, which makes it impossible to obtain consistent feeding.

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

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