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Thread: How to set jointer knives

  1. #1

    Post

    Hi All,

    First let me say that I have searched the archives before writing this.
    I bought an older jointer last year, and this winter when I had all my saw blades re-sharpened, I also took out the knives of the jointer to be sharpened.

    No I have installed them in the cutterhead, but I am in doubt. I realize that I don't have the slightest idea of how to set them correct. I know they should be true to the bed, and that there are some "tricks" as to how to achieve that.

    The blades are NOT supported by feather springs, as with my thicknesser.

    Can anybody help me out with this?

    Thank you.

    Mac

  2. #2

    Post

    Hi All,

    First let me say that I have searched the archives before writing this.
    I bought an older jointer last year, and this winter when I had all my saw blades re-sharpened, I also took out the knives of the jointer to be sharpened.

    No I have installed them in the cutterhead, but I am in doubt. I realize that I don't have the slightest idea of how to set them correct. I know they should be true to the bed, and that there are some "tricks" as to how to achieve that.

    The blades are NOT supported by feather springs, as with my thicknesser.

    Can anybody help me out with this?

    Thank you.

    Mac

  3. #3

    Post

    Hi All,

    First let me say that I have searched the archives before writing this.
    I bought an older jointer last year, and this winter when I had all my saw blades re-sharpened, I also took out the knives of the jointer to be sharpened.

    No I have installed them in the cutterhead, but I am in doubt. I realize that I don't have the slightest idea of how to set them correct. I know they should be true to the bed, and that there are some "tricks" as to how to achieve that.

    The blades are NOT supported by feather springs, as with my thicknesser.

    Can anybody help me out with this?

    Thank you.

    Mac

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2000
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    Cummington
    Posts
    5,394

    Post

    I have the little magnet devise that you lay on the take off bed extended to carry the knife edge. Without a pair of long magnets I think you tighten to snug the outside bolts on the knife. Snug, the knife should be moveable so you can lay a thin piece of wood (straight) on the bed and push the knife up till it touches the wood as the head turns. Do this over the outside bolts one side then the other til both side check out good and then tighten all the bolts snug. Then tighten all the bolts from the middle to the ends.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Cummington
    Posts
    5,394

    Post

    I have the little magnet devise that you lay on the take off bed extended to carry the knife edge. Without a pair of long magnets I think you tighten to snug the outside bolts on the knife. Snug, the knife should be moveable so you can lay a thin piece of wood (straight) on the bed and push the knife up till it touches the wood as the head turns. Do this over the outside bolts one side then the other til both side check out good and then tighten all the bolts snug. Then tighten all the bolts from the middle to the ends.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Cummington
    Posts
    5,394

    Post

    I have the little magnet devise that you lay on the take off bed extended to carry the knife edge. Without a pair of long magnets I think you tighten to snug the outside bolts on the knife. Snug, the knife should be moveable so you can lay a thin piece of wood (straight) on the bed and push the knife up till it touches the wood as the head turns. Do this over the outside bolts one side then the other til both side check out good and then tighten all the bolts snug. Then tighten all the bolts from the middle to the ends.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Location
    The land of reefs
    Posts
    32,057

    Post

    Invest in a "Magnaset". I used to use the old back and forth snug em up and adjust til close method. The Magnaset takes about 5 minutes. It's well worth the $50 it costs (or whatever they cost these days).

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Location
    The land of reefs
    Posts
    32,057

    Post

    Invest in a "Magnaset". I used to use the old back and forth snug em up and adjust til close method. The Magnaset takes about 5 minutes. It's well worth the $50 it costs (or whatever they cost these days).

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Location
    The land of reefs
    Posts
    32,057

    Post

    Invest in a "Magnaset". I used to use the old back and forth snug em up and adjust til close method. The Magnaset takes about 5 minutes. It's well worth the $50 it costs (or whatever they cost these days).

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Seabeck, WA
    Posts
    9,754

    Post

    Here's where I publish the articles I occasionally do after floating them here and on other forums as trial balloons for revision...they have two articles that suit your needs:

    http://www.woodcentral.com/bparticle...justment.shtml

    http://www.woodcentral.com/cgi-bin/r...cles_107.shtml

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Seabeck, WA
    Posts
    9,754

    Post

    Here's where I publish the articles I occasionally do after floating them here and on other forums as trial balloons for revision...they have two articles that suit your needs:

    http://www.woodcentral.com/bparticle...justment.shtml

    http://www.woodcentral.com/cgi-bin/r...cles_107.shtml

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Seabeck, WA
    Posts
    9,754

    Post

    Here's where I publish the articles I occasionally do after floating them here and on other forums as trial balloons for revision...they have two articles that suit your needs:

    http://www.woodcentral.com/bparticle...justment.shtml

    http://www.woodcentral.com/cgi-bin/r...cles_107.shtml

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    4,565

    Post

    I have a late forties vintage 4" jointer made by Delta. I love it. Yes setting the knives back be a bit tedious, but once you 'set' them with a stone!! It is a joy to work with.

    As per the owners manual, glide a stone over the knives from the outfeed table. Have the table set to where it barely touched the stone. Oh, and by the way, be very careful! I remember doing it years ago and did it while running (which is what I believe the manual said), no problem, but I am sure this is not an approved method nowadays! [img]smile.gif[/img]

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    4,565

    Post

    I have a late forties vintage 4" jointer made by Delta. I love it. Yes setting the knives back be a bit tedious, but once you 'set' them with a stone!! It is a joy to work with.

    As per the owners manual, glide a stone over the knives from the outfeed table. Have the table set to where it barely touched the stone. Oh, and by the way, be very careful! I remember doing it years ago and did it while running (which is what I believe the manual said), no problem, but I am sure this is not an approved method nowadays! [img]smile.gif[/img]

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    4,565

    Post

    I have a late forties vintage 4" jointer made by Delta. I love it. Yes setting the knives back be a bit tedious, but once you 'set' them with a stone!! It is a joy to work with.

    As per the owners manual, glide a stone over the knives from the outfeed table. Have the table set to where it barely touched the stone. Oh, and by the way, be very careful! I remember doing it years ago and did it while running (which is what I believe the manual said), no problem, but I am sure this is not an approved method nowadays! [img]smile.gif[/img]

  16. #16
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    Mar 2000
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    Acworth, GA
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    3,960

    Post

    I've got to get over to my friends house one of these days with the digital camera. Yesterday he allowed that he just bought a bunch of old ahrn including a 24" bandsaw and 24" planer. Gawd, I can't imagine setting the knives on that baby.
    FWIW this same guy has something like 2 dozen lathes.

  17. #17
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    Acworth, GA
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    3,960

    Post

    I've got to get over to my friends house one of these days with the digital camera. Yesterday he allowed that he just bought a bunch of old ahrn including a 24" bandsaw and 24" planer. Gawd, I can't imagine setting the knives on that baby.
    FWIW this same guy has something like 2 dozen lathes.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Location
    Acworth, GA
    Posts
    3,960

    Post

    I've got to get over to my friends house one of these days with the digital camera. Yesterday he allowed that he just bought a bunch of old ahrn including a 24" bandsaw and 24" planer. Gawd, I can't imagine setting the knives on that baby.
    FWIW this same guy has something like 2 dozen lathes.

  19. #19
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    Mar 2002
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    Olympia, WA
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    4,565

    Post

    Try here, maybe you can find teh manula for your particualr beast?
    Old woodworking machines

  20. #20
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    Mar 2002
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    4,565

    Post

    Try here, maybe you can find teh manula for your particualr beast?
    Old woodworking machines

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    4,565

    Post

    Try here, maybe you can find teh manula for your particualr beast?
    Old woodworking machines

  22. #22
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    Location
    West Olney Ave. Phila.,Pa.
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    Thumbs up

    Looks like DAve Fleming has posted some knife setting comments over in messing about forums.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    West Olney Ave. Phila.,Pa.
    Posts
    251

    Thumbs up

    Looks like DAve Fleming has posted some knife setting comments over in messing about forums.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    West Olney Ave. Phila.,Pa.
    Posts
    251

    Thumbs up

    Looks like DAve Fleming has posted some knife setting comments over in messing about forums.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA USA
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    10,063

    Post

    What kind of jointer is it?

    If it has jackscrews (like a Powermatic), setting the knives is easy.

    Two tools will expedite the process that you might or might not have, but are worth investing in if you're going to be wrassling with your power tools more than once:

    1. A 24- or 36-inch machinist's straightedge (Starret or Brown & Sharp preferred). Your steel rule from you combination square won't do: it's not a straightedge. Not cheap (~ $100), but it is straight. Keep it greased, and store it supported at the support points marked on it.

    2. A machinist's dial indicator (and appropriate mounts) to check for parallel.

    The Badger Pond Archives at WoodCentral have an excellent article on the process at http://www.woodcentral.com/bparticle...ustment.shtml] (Bob Smalser referenced this article earlier).

    With jackscrews, the process is, as I said earlier, pretty simple: in essence, you adjust the jackscrews to set each knife to a uniform height. Once that's done, you tighten that blade's gib screws to lock it in place. With judicious adjustment of the jackscrews, you ought to be able to get the knives adjusted so they're not more than 0.002 inches out or so.

    Once all the knives are properly set, you adjust the outfeed table so that it is coplanar with the knife edge at TDC (top dead center). It may take a while to find TDC: once you do, you might consider taking a carbide scribe and scribing the TDC point on the jointer fence for later reference.

    Tuning the Jointer

    If you've never tuned your jointer, you might want to do so before installing your knives. You'll need your straightedge and feeler gauges to get the infeed and outfeed tables coplanar: if the tables are in wind, you may need to insert brass or steel shim stock in the ways underneath the table gibs to get the tables coplanar.

    You ought to be able to tweak the jointer's infeed/outfeed tables so that they are coplanar +/- 0.002 inches or so.

    Then check the jointer's fence for squareness and wind and adjust accordingly (straightedge again, machinist's try square and feeler gauges.) If the fence is in wind, the only way to fix it may be to drill/tap the jointer's fence for a false face and shim that to take out the wind. If it comes to that, you'lll want two mount points at each mount location, so you can shim the false face to remove the wind. MDF makes a good false face, since it's very flat.

    The June 2000 issue of Fine Woodworking had a good piece on the process of tuning your jointer and setting the knives properly. It's worth ordering the back issue as a reference. That article has a sidebar on making a test bar from MDF and drywall screws that can be used in lieu of a real straightedge.

    There used to be a rather fine piece on the web on the process of setting up a jointer properly, but the site appears to have gone the way of all flesh. I have a hard copy of it. I'll see if I can find it and put it up on the web.

  26. #26
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA USA
    Posts
    10,063

    Post

    What kind of jointer is it?

    If it has jackscrews (like a Powermatic), setting the knives is easy.

    Two tools will expedite the process that you might or might not have, but are worth investing in if you're going to be wrassling with your power tools more than once:

    1. A 24- or 36-inch machinist's straightedge (Starret or Brown & Sharp preferred). Your steel rule from you combination square won't do: it's not a straightedge. Not cheap (~ $100), but it is straight. Keep it greased, and store it supported at the support points marked on it.

    2. A machinist's dial indicator (and appropriate mounts) to check for parallel.

    The Badger Pond Archives at WoodCentral have an excellent article on the process at http://www.woodcentral.com/bparticle...ustment.shtml] (Bob Smalser referenced this article earlier).

    With jackscrews, the process is, as I said earlier, pretty simple: in essence, you adjust the jackscrews to set each knife to a uniform height. Once that's done, you tighten that blade's gib screws to lock it in place. With judicious adjustment of the jackscrews, you ought to be able to get the knives adjusted so they're not more than 0.002 inches out or so.

    Once all the knives are properly set, you adjust the outfeed table so that it is coplanar with the knife edge at TDC (top dead center). It may take a while to find TDC: once you do, you might consider taking a carbide scribe and scribing the TDC point on the jointer fence for later reference.

    Tuning the Jointer

    If you've never tuned your jointer, you might want to do so before installing your knives. You'll need your straightedge and feeler gauges to get the infeed and outfeed tables coplanar: if the tables are in wind, you may need to insert brass or steel shim stock in the ways underneath the table gibs to get the tables coplanar.

    You ought to be able to tweak the jointer's infeed/outfeed tables so that they are coplanar +/- 0.002 inches or so.

    Then check the jointer's fence for squareness and wind and adjust accordingly (straightedge again, machinist's try square and feeler gauges.) If the fence is in wind, the only way to fix it may be to drill/tap the jointer's fence for a false face and shim that to take out the wind. If it comes to that, you'lll want two mount points at each mount location, so you can shim the false face to remove the wind. MDF makes a good false face, since it's very flat.

    The June 2000 issue of Fine Woodworking had a good piece on the process of tuning your jointer and setting the knives properly. It's worth ordering the back issue as a reference. That article has a sidebar on making a test bar from MDF and drywall screws that can be used in lieu of a real straightedge.

    There used to be a rather fine piece on the web on the process of setting up a jointer properly, but the site appears to have gone the way of all flesh. I have a hard copy of it. I'll see if I can find it and put it up on the web.

  27. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA USA
    Posts
    10,063

    Post

    What kind of jointer is it?

    If it has jackscrews (like a Powermatic), setting the knives is easy.

    Two tools will expedite the process that you might or might not have, but are worth investing in if you're going to be wrassling with your power tools more than once:

    1. A 24- or 36-inch machinist's straightedge (Starret or Brown & Sharp preferred). Your steel rule from you combination square won't do: it's not a straightedge. Not cheap (~ $100), but it is straight. Keep it greased, and store it supported at the support points marked on it.

    2. A machinist's dial indicator (and appropriate mounts) to check for parallel.

    The Badger Pond Archives at WoodCentral have an excellent article on the process at http://www.woodcentral.com/bparticle...ustment.shtml] (Bob Smalser referenced this article earlier).

    With jackscrews, the process is, as I said earlier, pretty simple: in essence, you adjust the jackscrews to set each knife to a uniform height. Once that's done, you tighten that blade's gib screws to lock it in place. With judicious adjustment of the jackscrews, you ought to be able to get the knives adjusted so they're not more than 0.002 inches out or so.

    Once all the knives are properly set, you adjust the outfeed table so that it is coplanar with the knife edge at TDC (top dead center). It may take a while to find TDC: once you do, you might consider taking a carbide scribe and scribing the TDC point on the jointer fence for later reference.

    Tuning the Jointer

    If you've never tuned your jointer, you might want to do so before installing your knives. You'll need your straightedge and feeler gauges to get the infeed and outfeed tables coplanar: if the tables are in wind, you may need to insert brass or steel shim stock in the ways underneath the table gibs to get the tables coplanar.

    You ought to be able to tweak the jointer's infeed/outfeed tables so that they are coplanar +/- 0.002 inches or so.

    Then check the jointer's fence for squareness and wind and adjust accordingly (straightedge again, machinist's try square and feeler gauges.) If the fence is in wind, the only way to fix it may be to drill/tap the jointer's fence for a false face and shim that to take out the wind. If it comes to that, you'lll want two mount points at each mount location, so you can shim the false face to remove the wind. MDF makes a good false face, since it's very flat.

    The June 2000 issue of Fine Woodworking had a good piece on the process of tuning your jointer and setting the knives properly. It's worth ordering the back issue as a reference. That article has a sidebar on making a test bar from MDF and drywall screws that can be used in lieu of a real straightedge.

    There used to be a rather fine piece on the web on the process of setting up a jointer properly, but the site appears to have gone the way of all flesh. I have a hard copy of it. I'll see if I can find it and put it up on the web.

  28. #28

    Post

    Hi all,

    Thanks to everyone for the responses, they are very helpfull.
    Since I am not in the US but in Denmark, buying the magnaset and such will be expensive and take a lot of time ( I need the machine )

    I could provide you with the machine's brand Capt. Jake, but it is a machine manufactured in Holland, so I don't think there will be info in the US. (And the manufacturer went out of bussiness, so nothing to find here)

    Bob and Nicholas thanks for the Woodcentral / Badger pond link. Lots of interesting articles there.

    Regards

    Mac

  29. #29

    Post

    Hi all,

    Thanks to everyone for the responses, they are very helpfull.
    Since I am not in the US but in Denmark, buying the magnaset and such will be expensive and take a lot of time ( I need the machine )

    I could provide you with the machine's brand Capt. Jake, but it is a machine manufactured in Holland, so I don't think there will be info in the US. (And the manufacturer went out of bussiness, so nothing to find here)

    Bob and Nicholas thanks for the Woodcentral / Badger pond link. Lots of interesting articles there.

    Regards

    Mac

  30. #30

    Post

    Hi all,

    Thanks to everyone for the responses, they are very helpfull.
    Since I am not in the US but in Denmark, buying the magnaset and such will be expensive and take a lot of time ( I need the machine )

    I could provide you with the machine's brand Capt. Jake, but it is a machine manufactured in Holland, so I don't think there will be info in the US. (And the manufacturer went out of bussiness, so nothing to find here)

    Bob and Nicholas thanks for the Woodcentral / Badger pond link. Lots of interesting articles there.

    Regards

    Mac

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