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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I'm having problems...

I'm building my first dresser based on some pretty simple plans I found. I purchased a bunch of 4/4 poplar from the local wood guy and started hacking it up to fit my dimensions.

When I take a board I start by ripping one edge off with my table saw, then adjusting the fence and ripping a bit larger than what I need so I can use the jointer to clean it up. After I run each side through the jointer a few times I measure against my pre-set gauge and the piece is not even! On one end it's a bit over 3/4" and the other end is under 3/4 like a tapered table leg.

The jointer is an old craftsman jobby that I borrowed, and I try to go slow and easy. I was all excited and I went to start fitting pieces together and the joints don't match up, some are high, some are low. (sad trombone)

So is it me or some tool adjustment I missed?

Thanks

David
 

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Did you check any measurements after it came off the table saw? Might have been tapered there first.
 

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I suspect that it is at least partly technique. Do you always run the same end of the board through the jointer? I have found that I need to alternate which end I start with or I end up just as you have, with a wedge shaped board.

I agree with the other posts that you should have first jointed one edge of the board. That, however, should have no bearing on the "wedge" problem.

You may also be trying to remove too much wood with a jointer. It is not intended to replace a planer.'

George

George
 

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Jointers and planers do 2 entirely different operations. The jointer gets you a flat face and then you use that face to get a flat/straight edge that us 90 degrees/square to the face. These are your reference for every subsequent operation. After you have that reference edge, them go to table saw and clean up the other edge/cut to width. Then with your reference face down, the planer makes the other side if the board parallel to the reference face and sets your desired thickness.

There are other ways to do this, but this is the most common, IMO.
 

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First off, before you rip that first edge off you need to sight down the fence side of the board and make sure you have a straight edge to run along the fence. If you don't you will probably build a taper into the board as you rip the edges. Next, if your jointer is not set up right, meaning that if the blades are not set exactly to the height of the outfeed table, you will either snipe off a bit more on the tail end or bump on the front end.

Part of knowing how to use a jointer is learning how to remove uneven width from a board. This is how I do it. Others may throw in red flags, but it works for me. If my board is 1/16" wider on one end, I set the jointer to take of 1/32" then lower the narrow end so about 1/4" lands on the outfeed table to start the pass, then push the board through. Then repeat the operation. By doing that you remove zero from the narrow end and 1/16" from the wide end. The key is to make light passes when learning. If the edge of the board is bowed when you first sight down it, you can lower the concave part of the bow onto the jointer above the blades and push the remaining board through to get rid of the points of the bow. Take some off from both ends for a centered bow or all off one end if the bow is close to that end.

If your jointer blades are dull, you will get an uneven cut, also. You have lots of things to check.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So I do know that the jointer blades are dull and nicked. I found a 1" section that is good enough to get this first project out of the way, then I will look at buying my own. The 8/4 stock I ran through has lines down the entire length but I'm not worried about it.

I don't think I'm trying to remove too much. This jointer doesn't have measurements on the table, but it takes me about 3 passes to take off 1/16.

The boards I bought have rough edges, but one looks straight to my nekkid eye. I don't have a planer yet, but I will try jointing one edge before ripping it on the table saw. I will also try alternating the ends of the board on the jointer to see if that helps tomorrow and report back.

Thanks everybody!

David
 

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It's hard to say without being there but if the knives are not perfectly level with the rear table it can cause it to joint like you are describing. Also if both tables are not in unison it can cause that too. You might raise the front table up level with the rear table and put a straight edge across the jointer and see if it is flat.
 

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There is more to getting a straight edge from a joiner than just pushing a board through the knives. Putting pressure on the wrong part of the board can cause it to be tapered.

One of our members has produced a very good video showing how to get nice square faces on a joiner. Its well worth watching.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3tUhWbd4rck
 

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K.I.S.S.
Did you go to the trouble to measure the planks as you got them from the sawmill?
4/4 is generous. The end user is expected to dress them to dimension.
Not you. Not your tools (sorry, gang).

I buy 5/4 and 6/4 birch, maybe 6", maybe 5-7' long for $1.50 each. Sawmill stuff.
Stacked and stickered for years, fantastic heartwood grain.

No two of them have been straight, flat and square.
For what I do, the wood is fabulous, the fact that it isn't drawing-board pretty is no problem.
 

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The only way too keep two edges parallel too each in most of our shops is with a table saw or a planer. Without seeing your jointer, it sounds like there may be a couple things going wrong......1. Make sure the outfeed table is dead even with the tips of the blades. An easy way too do this is use a framing square or a good straight edge and lay it on the outfeed table.....roll the blades of the jointer until you can just barely feel the tips scraping the straight edge. This is also an easy way too make sure all the blades are set at the proper height if you dont have magnetic sets. 2. Make sure you only take one or two very thin cuts with the jointer......every time you run the board across the jointer, you risk runout.
Another thing too check is the table saw. Using your miter gauge, set the head at 0* as if you were going too make a 90* cut on the end of a board....push it down so the front edge is even with the front of your blade. Clamp a framing square or thin straight edge too the head so the end of the square is just a hair off the very edge of a tooth....note the tip of the tooth and make sure it is a tip running toward the side of the square. Now then, push the miter gauge down the slot too the back of the blade and make sure the tip of the tooth at the back of the saw is the same distance from the tip of the square. You will need your blade all the way up for this procedure. Another thing too check is roll your blade and make sure your blade is not warped by watching the gap at the end of the square.....it should stay consistant!. All blades will have a little runout but it should be very very little!!!.
If the outfeed on the jointer is right and the blade of the saw is running true too the table.....then next we check the rip fence too make sure it is running true too the table. Slide it over too the edge of the T-slot in the table. Or the edge of either slot and tighten the fence....notice if the fence is exactly parralel with the slot in the table. If not, we have found a major problem!. There will be a way of fixing this but all saws are different and you may need too refer too the owners manual for proper method of adjustment. Just about all manuals are available on line, just type in the model number and name of the saw in the search bar and surf through the available sights....most of the time, you can find a download for the manuals.
Table saws are finicky creatures and it takes a lot of patience and time too perfect the adjustments on them....but its time well spent as a properly adjusted saw is less noisy, makes beautifully straight cuts, and is a dream too work with.
A few of the things I look for if a saw is out of adjustment are:
Noisy running, excessive whine.
Having too push and force a board through the saw.
Smoke!!!!!!!! Even a bad blade with little set will still cut if the saw is adjusted properly.

Hint: Most of us cannot do it because of space, but a properly floor mounted saw is far more accurate than one sitting in a roll around base or even just sitting on the floor. Concrete anchors with double nuts for leveling, or bolts in a wood floor with proper shimming or jam nuts are far superior too keeping the overall plane of your saw accurate!. On this same note, it is important too set level too the top of your table and not the bottom of the legs on your saw. Always use a good level on all four sides when setting a tool and bolting too floor, or do like I do and set up the transit and get it right!. Another key feature of bolting down your tools too the floor is stability, your tool will run smooth and quiet!. The vibrations associated with lightweight table saws will become almost nonexistent!.

I hope yall dont think I'm rambling but I'm merely trying too cover all the bases that I know of!.....Hope this helps. I'm sure there are lots of other ways of doing this but this is just how I usually do it and it seems too work!..... Best of luck and let us know what ya find!.
 

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While we're on this subject and if one wants too test they're skills on tool setup and adjustment.......you can do this simple test on a table saw, radial arm saw, miter box, or even with a skilsaw!.
Once you get your board parallel down both sides....and you think its right!. Now then Using a good quality framing square, put a line across the board using a very thin lead pencil or a scratch awl. 90* right?.....now then, flop the square too the other side of the board and line up on the same line you just put on the board........bet 1 outta 10 that its just a little bit off!!!!!. Now then....roll the square over toward the other end of the board and look at the same line....do this on both sides of the board!.
The best of woodworkers has a hard time passing this simple little test most of the time!. If it did work on all four positions....then your tools are set right and your ripping and edging properly!. If not....ya better work on tool adjustments!.

This is just for fun and you have too be honest with yourself when doing this......a very fine line on the board is important too mark so you can see the exact ammount of your runout!.

Try this and post back and let us know what ya find!. Also, try it at different places on your boards and use it on a few different boards too get a good average.
 

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My first guess is the table saw.
I am assuming that when the board comes out of the joiner it is true on that one edge.
Simple to confirm.
Just join one edge and run it through the table saw with the good edge against the fence.
Measure the board after it comes out of the table saw. It should be exactly parallel. If not, the table saw is the culprit.
 

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So I'm having problems...

I'm building my first dresser based on some pretty simple plans I found. I purchased a bunch of 4/4 poplar from the local wood guy and started hacking it up to fit my dimensions.

When I take a board I start by ripping one edge off with my table saw, then adjusting the fence and ripping a bit larger than what I need so I can use the jointer to clean it up. After I run each side through the jointer a few times I measure against my pre-set gauge and the piece is not even! On one end it's a bit over 3/4" and the other end is under 3/4 like a tapered table leg.

The jointer is an old craftsman jobby that I borrowed, and I try to go slow and easy. I was all excited and I went to start fitting pieces together and the joints don't match up, some are high, some are low. (sad trombone)

So is it me or some tool adjustment I missed?

Thanks

David
a jointer is for smoothing the edge of board's and they will not be even if you flip the board and do the edge of that side it will make it smooth but it will not be even, here is the way to do this , smooth one edge of the bosrd and than go to the table saw and put the smooth edge next the fence and rip the board , now it will be the same size on each end. i didn't read any other post's yet but this is the wat to do this, now after you rip the board and you want to get rid of the saw marks you can run the board thro jointer and it will be the same width on each end , it may vary a hair due to the preasure you apply to the board, but i wouldn't worry about that, neasure and you will see it is ok good luck
 

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Your jointer will straighten the edge but it is very difficult to make parallel boards on it, therefor the most common procedure is to straighten one edge on the jointer and rip the other on your table saw with a good blade that will give you a smooth cut.

To surface the face run through jointer to make board flat and straight, then through planer to do other face and thickness the board.
 

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While we're on this subject and if one wants too test they're skills on tool setup and adjustment.......you can do this simple test on a table saw, radial arm saw, miter box, or even with a skilsaw!.
Once you get your board parallel down both sides....and you think its right!. Now then Using a good quality framing square, put a line across the board using a very thin lead pencil or a scratch awl. 90* right?.....now then, flop the square too the other side of the board and line up on the same line you just put on the board........bet 1 outta 10 that its just a little bit off!!!!!. Now then....roll the square over toward the other end of the board and look at the same line....do this on both sides of the board!.
The best of woodworkers has a hard time passing this simple little test most of the time!. If it did work on all four positions....then your tools are set right and your ripping and edging properly!. If not....ya better work on tool adjustments!.
That's assuming your square is actually square. :blink:
 

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A jointer is not intended to produce parallel surfaces on boards. It's function is to make one surface flat. The tool to use to make opposite surfaces parallel to each other is a planer.

The steps to prepare a board is to first use the jointer to make one surface flat and one edge flat and 90 degrees to one of the bigger surfaces. Then use the planer to make the other surface flat and parallel to the first surface. Finally use you table saw to make the board unform in width.
 

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It's very easy to taper a board with a jointer, even with a properly set up machine and an experienced operator. That's why we use the jointer first, creating the reference surfaces, then rip and plane to those references.

The more passes you make on the jointer, the bigger the chances of tapering the board. I often use a hand plane first to rough the board flat then finish it on the jointer with a couple of very light passes. I do this especially if the board is bowed in length and I want to minimize thickness loss. It's easier to judge exactly where wood is being removed when planing by hand.

Here's a nice writeup on jointer issues:

http://www.newwoodworker.com/jntrprobfxs.html
 
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