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Hi there. i am new to the group and fairly new to woodworking in
general.
I am very lucky to have a barn with a perfect space for a workshop
behind my house, and so i am in the process of building a working
woodshop with fairly limited funds. Currently i have a contractor
table saw, router with tabletop router table (no plunge base yet,
table top drill press, compound chop saw, drills, circular saw,
couple of hand planes, etc....

its a start, but i know i am missing some very important
improvements/ purchases. ..

Ok, here's my question: I am looking at making some end grain
cutting boards for xmas presents. A local wood dealer i have found
has pretty decent prices for rough wood, and given their location and
price i am really interested in them...

However not having a jointer or a planer am i stupid to consider
buying wood in the rough? There is another wood place further away
that sells dressed woods, however there is a 2-3 dollar per foot
increase in price that goes with them being dressed... That plus
instead of being in town, the other place is about 50 miles away.

Any pointers, ideas, and suggestions will be Greatly appreciated!
Thanks in advance.
 

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flatiron
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rough lumber

I'd be looking for a good used jointer & planer. you could use a scrub plane and a jointer plane, but you need to know how to set them up.
you could find a fellow wood worker to joint & plane it for you. I do that for a couple of my freinds.
 

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Welcome Aboard!

I think I'd set my ultimate goal to have a Jointer and a Thickness planer.

Now, how would I get by in the meantime?

I'd try to get a good quality thickness planer On Sale, eBay, Amazon, Craigs List, etc.

I'd make some jigs for the planer so I could use it Flatten one side... then, I could plane / flatten the other side coplanar.

I would use the table saw to get a straight edge (using a carrier jig).
... followed up with any fine jointing using the Router with a Jointing fence.

I would also use a premium blade in the TS... like the Forest WW II or similar.

If the above method worked really well and I was happy with it, I'd spend money on something else like a bandsaw instead of a Jointer! :eek: (the bandsaw is one of my most favorite tools) :laughing:

Good Luck!
 

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That my friend, is your only choice.

There is nothing you can do with undressed wood no matter how you choose to accomplish the dressing. Even Roy Underhill needs to get a flat surface to start with. If you are going to work with rough cut lumber, plan on acquiring a thickness planer at the very least. Also, spend the extra money and get something more substantial than one of the portable lunch boxes. They will not stand up to a steady diet of rough cut lumber without being babied through the process. Spend a little more than you think you can afford now and you won't be sorry a year from now.

Ed
 

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I don't own a jointer, but I do own a small dewalt planer. I buy rough lumber and use my table saw to get a straight line edge. As far as using the planer, I use a planer sled. The sled is just a piece of mdf and I use shims to even out uneven rough boards before I send it through the planer. Once I get one side planed, i can flip it over and plane the other side. Sometimes I double cut my straight line to get smooth edge. Many would argue to buy a jointer and planer. I would have but I don't have the space or the money. I'm a novice with wood but the results have been great for me using this way. Also, my wife calls me cheap but I prefer to use the term thrifty.
 

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Hi All.
New here I also do not have a jointer in my home shop it is just to small, I use my tablesaw to get a straight edge. However I believe a planer is a must for any small shop you can get a straight edge with a tablesaw but a flat table top I have to say using a hand plane is just not an option for me at my age. This is only my opinion others will think differently
 

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so basically i should buy dressed until i can afford a planer and or jointer.... correct?
You can flatten other ways... w/o power tools and with a router...

Once you get one side flat, you can use the same jig to flatten the other side to where they will be very close to coplanar.

EDIT: Not too long ago, I had to flatten a board... I did it with a router & jig... as briefly shown in the writeup:
http://www.ncwoodworker.net/pp/showphoto.php?photo=13817
/Edit


Table saw can be used to rip a straight edge by clamping to a carrier sled. Then, remove carrier & rip the other edge.

Hand tool procedures...

A friend with a planer helps a whole lot!! :)
 

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flatiron
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jointer

you could use a router or a planer jig. you could buy a electric hand plane . you don't have to get the first side perfectly level, just where it won't woble or flex, the run through the planner and then turn it over and flatten the rest of the way. bottom line if not square when you assemble you project , a little off transfer to a lot off when you join the parts together. small pieces are easyer to level. you should learn to use a hand plane as is a great tool for a lot of uses. of course the table saw gives you straight edges after the planner.
 

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Hello all, first post here.

Asperante, several thoughts when I read your post:

If this is for a cutting board, there is not a whole lot of wood used. The extra cost of having (buying) it surfaced should not add up to that much, but you did mention that it is 50 miles away, and this is no fun. And it is for presents so doing it yourself is a plus.

I would recommend using a router in a carrier as did Joe. Chuck in a 3/4 inch mortising bit and you can surface a bit of lumber quite quickly and accurately. I did it several times before I had a jointer and thicknesser, and also to flatten glue-ups that were too large for the planer. You also mentioned end grain; the router excels at leveling this. I am including a picture that I snagged off of someone’s web site (I don’t remember where and I hope it is OK) because it is such a simple way of doing it. My jigs were more complicated. I have also used the same technique to hold my belt sander level with very good results.

Steve
 

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Hello all, first post here.

Asperante, several thoughts when I read your post:

If this is for a cutting board, there is not a whole lot of wood used. The extra cost of having (buying) it surfaced should not add up to that much, but you did mention that it is 50 miles away, and this is no fun. And it is for presents so doing it yourself is a plus.

I would recommend using a router in a carrier as did Joe. Chuck in a 3/4 inch mortising bit and you can surface a bit of lumber quite quickly and accurately. I did it several times before I had a jointer and thicknesser, and also to flatten glue-ups that were too large for the planer. You also mentioned end grain; the router excels at leveling this. I am including a picture that I snagged off of someone’s web site (I don’t remember where and I hope it is OK) because it is such a simple way of doing it. My jigs were more complicated. I have also used the same technique to hold my belt sander level with very good results.

Steve
Welcome Aboard, Steve!

WOW! That is quite a jig!! Looks nice!

Have you ever experienced sagging of your rails as you run the router over them? Looks like you could, depending on how bad the boards are cupped, etc.

edit: Maybe those are square metal tubular runners that will not sag!! ??? COOL!!
/edit:



I don't have that much room of good flat area to do it that way... I think, for now, I'm stuck with a smaller jig.

On the routerforums.com website, a guy uses what he calls "Skiis" where he runs rods through the router base, connects adjustable riser/handles at each end, and slides the router over the board(s) using the end handles. Looks like an easy way to do it also.

That jig really looks nice... however...
I guess you don't clamp any boards except the ones on the side (sliding rails)?

That's the prettiest & largest jig I've seen for this purpose...

I can also say beyond any shadow of any doubt, IT WORKS GREAT!
 

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Hey Joe, nice to meet ya.

That is not me in the picture, nor is it my jig. I just thought ‘that is the simplest flattener jig thingy that I had ever seen’ and saved it. And yes it was steel square tubes. Cheap, easy to build and store. I would think some bench dogs would be a good idea, but there is not a lot of kickback going on. I flattened a 5 foot butcher block counter top with something similar a few years back and the results are amazingly nice. And for endgrain milling, either a router or a sander is the only thing that has worked for me.

If you have a lathe, you can make a drum sander….

Steve
 

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Just a couple quick things. You may be able o get drop offs from local woodworking shops. Most of that should be dressed S4S so you should be good to go there. Plus, it will probably be free.

Since you are dealing with little pieces, there is no reason you can't put a straight cut bit in your router table for joining short pieces. You can also use some kind of jointing bit. The one I am thinking of is like a finger jointer cutter, but, instead of long, relatively straight fingers, it is a row of scallops. It not only increases surface area, but I think it looks attractive. I will post a link to one of these cutters if I find one. When I fist opened shop, I bought a shaper but couldn't afford a jointer. I learned to do my jointing on my shaper, but you would never guess it when looking at the work I did on it. Necessity it the mother of invention.

The router sled in an above post is great too. I use a much larger version for surfacing my workbenches.

However, there is no substitute for learning how to properly setup and use a good hand plane. Not only is there more satisfaction, but I think they are faster. If you get good, you can virtually eliminate the final sanding step.
 

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Hi Asperante
Welcome to the forum. A couple of ideas you might consider: Check around your area and see if there are any woodworking clubs or guilds. If you can get in touch with a local group at least one of them will probably have a planer, and likely be willing to help out. [Woodworkers tend to be a pretty helpful bunch of people] Another possibility is to see if there are any small scale local milling operations. Up my way they are as common as mini vans. If you can locate one they would probably plane your lumber for about 35 cents a board foot.
I purchased a Delt planer at Home Depot for $179 CDN a few years back. It is 12 inch capacity, and obviously meant for the hobbyist, but I have already planed a lot of material with it, and it has proven pretty satisfactory. I just mention this to show that you don't have to blow a huge bankroll to get started. I will likely upgrade to a much bigger/sturdier unit down the road, but for now, it is just fine.

Good luck, and have fun

Gerry
 
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