Need some help with a planer

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Forum topic by rut posted 01-25-2012 04:08 AM 1660 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View rut's profile


70 posts in 2864 days

01-25-2012 04:08 AM

I have my dad’s old 6” Sears planer. I went through a setup using a straight edge to set both in-feed and out-feed tables to the same height (within .015”). I then set the new knife blades by using the method of placing a ruler on the out-feed side and blade and rotating the blade and measuring how much the ruler moved. I set each blade to where the ruler moved 1/4”.

So my in-feed and out-feed are the same height, the blade is some degree higher. Now when I run an edge across it I take care to always apply downward pressure on the out-feed side. I still end up with snipe on the back edge.

Is my setup wrong or my technique? I was trying to get a straight edge to rip the boards on my table saw.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.


14 replies so far

View JAAune's profile


1866 posts in 2798 days

#1 posted 01-25-2012 04:16 AM

The outfeed needs to be set level with the blade (or just a couple thousandths lower) but the infeed should be anywhere from 1-64” to 1/16” lower than the outfeed table depending upon how heavy a cut you wish to take.

-- See my work at and

View roundguy's profile


62 posts in 3166 days

#2 posted 01-25-2012 04:18 AM

The out-feed should be the same height as the blades, and the in-feed should be lower.


View rut's profile


70 posts in 2864 days

#3 posted 01-25-2012 04:22 AM

I must have watched the wrong youtube video that said the knives should be a bit higher than the out-feed table.

View Howie's profile


2656 posts in 3404 days

#4 posted 01-25-2012 05:17 AM

If you set your knives higher than the outfeed you will never be able to get rid of the snipe. Set them even with the outfeed.

-- Life is good.

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

6628 posts in 3676 days

#5 posted 01-25-2012 05:23 AM

I think you are talking about a jointer…..not a planer…

-- " The secret to staying young looking.....hang around old people.." R.D.

View Warren's profile


81 posts in 2817 days

#6 posted 01-25-2012 02:09 PM

yea thats what I have to is a jointer. I have that prob with end snips too but after reading this I think it solved me prob by rasing the out feed just a bit higher and set the infeed level with the blades. The jointer I have is old. I bought it from a flea market. Its so old it has grease fittings still on it, not the sealed bearings like now days

-- Warren, Cambridge,OH.

View rut's profile


70 posts in 2864 days

#7 posted 01-25-2012 02:59 PM

Yes, It is a jointer. My mistake. So I was under the impression that the in-feed and out-feed tables, once set, should not be moved again, even though there is a large knob to adjust the in-feed table. There is also a locking screw to lock that adjustment knob down (under the unit where it isn’t easily accessible).

So am I incorrect in assuming this and the in-feed table should remain adjustable? Also, the out-feed table is not adjustable in relation to the knives and I have the knives set as low as they will go. Apparently I ordered the wrong size knives (3/4” instead of 5/8) so I have ordered some less tall ones and will try this setup again.


View buffalosean's profile


174 posts in 3869 days

#8 posted 01-25-2012 03:28 PM

Rut, for the most part I don’t move my in-feed table much. However, at times you will want to adjust it, depending on what wood your working with. I usually take smaller cuts for more highly figured wood.

When I set my blades, I put them dead level with the out-feed table. With the machine unplugged, I will put a straight edge or perfectly flat piece of wood on the out-feed table so the piece of wood is cantilevering over the cutter head. Then I will manually turned the cutter head in reverse. If the blade grabs the wood and pulls it on to the in-feed table, the blades are still to high. If the the blade just “kisses” the wood, without moving it, I am usually happy with my set up.

This is a trick I personally do as a double check. Do whatever works for you.

I always tell people, there is a lot of ways to skin a cat…... but the butter knife is not recommended.

-- There are many ways to skin a cat...... but, the butter knife is not recommended

View JohnMeeley's profile


255 posts in 2814 days

#9 posted 02-27-2012 08:58 AM

IMHO… the term your looking for is ‘co-planar’. Your outfeed table is stationary. ( I own an old craftsman 6” jointer) There are four adjustment points under the INFEED table. I had problems with mine trying to tune it with a straight edge. Went to HF and paid twenty something bucks for a dial gauge and magnetic base. End of problems. I also use it to set the knives @ .001 or so above the outfeed. If you need documentation for your Jointer to assist in the tune up, PM me and I can help you out.

-- "The greatest pleasure in life is doing what others say you cannot do."-Walter Bagehot

View canadianchips's profile


2627 posts in 3479 days

#10 posted 02-27-2012 12:33 PM

This article explains how to adjust your knives. ttp://
Yes. your OUTFEED table should be adjusted slightly higher.
I have setup my Jointer this way for 37 years, I never have problems with snipe.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View Grandpa's profile


3263 posts in 3157 days

#11 posted 02-27-2012 03:16 PM

I own 2 Craftsman jointers like the one you describe. Set the tables so they are co planar. do that first using the 4 screws under the in feed table. Put the knives in the machine and adjust them .001 to .002 higher than the out feed table. Set the in feed table anyplace below the out feed table depending on the depth of cut you plan to make. The table is adjusted using the knob you talked about on the end of the in feed table. the screw you described under the table is used to keep vibration from backing the adjustment knob off. You will want to change the depth of cut depending on the type of wood you are working. Hard woods will need a lighter or shallower cut while soft woods can stand a deeper cut. Highly figured woods will tend to chip out with a deep cut. If you have an owner’s manual this should be described in it. If you don’t, try to get one. If all else fails PM me and I will try to help.

View rut's profile


70 posts in 2864 days

#12 posted 02-27-2012 03:32 PM

Thanks. I have the same adjustments. I have it working pretty well now but still not convinced the knives are set correctly. I think I’m going to order a gauge jig to use on it.


View Grandpa's profile


3263 posts in 3157 days

#13 posted 02-27-2012 03:37 PM

A very import thing to check on the knives is whether they are the same height on each end. Mine shipped to me with one end high and the other low. the next knife was set the opposite. It could ruin a board in a heart beat. That was 30+ years ago and silly me, in my youth I thought tools came ready to use. I learned how to make the adjustments and have enjoyed it ever since. The next point of frustration was not setting the screw tight enough to stop the machine from self adjusting the depth of cut. More reading to catch up on then you make another adjustment.

View canadianchips's profile


2627 posts in 3479 days

#14 posted 02-27-2012 05:28 PM

I WROTE MY RESPONSE WRONG> I meant to say YES the knife should be HIGHER than OUT feed table.
Sorry, I juct came in from shop and re read what I wrote. NEED to edit before I post.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

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