ash planing problems - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum

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post #1 of 5 Old 02-15-2017, 06:03 PM Thread Starter
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ash planing problems

hi guys,
I am trying to plane 3ft long by 10 inch 35mm thick ash boards on a 18inch wadkin planer thicknesser. at the moment I am trying to surface plane the ash but having real problems the pieces of wood are vibrating quite a bit as I'm pushing them over the blades and the end result after 4 passes is a rocky base not level taking more off the front half it also takes a lot of force to get it over the blades. I checked my method hand flat in the middle of the piece on the infeed table and smoothly changing to the outfeed as soon as a hands length has gone over then all the weight on the outfeed. we have a suva guard over the blades. I yesterday honed both blades and double checked the out feed table with a true piece of wood and took the wood 6mm all along the blades. I cant understand why it is vibrating so much and tough to push through. first time if dealt with ash on the planner but have had not problems with beech pine spruce cedar.
any help would be much appreciated.
kind regards
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post #2 of 5 Old 02-15-2017, 06:43 PM
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Sounds like you're using a jointer, not a planer. Anyway though, sounds like your blades are dull, dull blades can push through softwoods without much issue, but something harder like ash will just bounce around.

Take all the blade out and have them sharpened, not just honed. Honing only really works to touch up an existing edge, if the edge isn't there honing is useless

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post #3 of 5 Old 02-15-2017, 07:00 PM
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The wider the board you face on a jointer the less you need to take off per pass. Try raising the front table. Could fear be an issue. It's pretty unnerving to most folks to face a board that wide on a jointer. I made a push block which has the appearance of a hand plane to make doing that safer.
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post #4 of 5 Old 02-15-2017, 09:17 PM
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I had to look up what a Wadkin planer thicknesser was. It's easy to see that it's a jointer. I would say you're trying to take off too much at a time. I don't think trying to plane on a jointer is such a good idea though.
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post #5 of 5 Old 02-15-2017, 11:48 PM
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I have honed and sharpened jointer blades

If you removed the blades to hone them, they may not all be set at the same height and will chip and bounce because only the highest one is doing all the work.

Recheck the heights using a dial indicator on a magnetic base or known flat bar clamped or weighted down and some feeler gauges. A sheet of plate glass 1/4" thick will also work and you can see what you are doing under the glass. Slip the feeler gauges under the bar set to a height just barely higher than the highest blade. You can adjust the rear table to do this.

If you are certain the edges are razor sharp AND the blades are of the same height, then technique and the amount of cut is next in importance. Don't take a cut greater than 1/32" at a time especially with Ash which a tough wood and not easy to joint with blades that are the least bit dull.

Finally, pay attention to the grain on the edge and have the blades enter the work removing material in the "downhill" direction rather than "uphill" which will cause tear outs.
Reading grain direction:
A useful article here:

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specfic. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo

Last edited by woodnthings; 02-16-2017 at 01:16 AM. Reason: added link
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