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Benchtop thicknessers

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Amos Starkadder31/10/2013 16:30:53
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25 forum posts
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I tried recently, for the first time, to change the blades of my Jet JWP Bench Top Thicknesser.
The hex bolts holding the blades down were extremely stiff and some have proved immovable, so far I've had an Allen key ping out and cause a facial injury and the remaining bolts are now stripped of their internal hexagonal structure. I've tried WD 40 to ease them, to no avail. One of the blades therefore cannot be removed and certainly neither could be replaced now, I appear to have destroyed my thicknesser.
I've had the thing about 8 years I suppose so maybe I've had my money's worth out of it - pity I never got to use the second good edge on those blades.

So I'm now in the market for a replacement. The review in Fine Woodworking #195 isn't much help as most of them aren't available in the UK. I'd like something a bit better but it seems that that appalling table height adjuster (it waggles loose) is standard. The triangular dust extraction port on the DeWalt D733 (is the port standard or do I have to find one somewhere?) is positioned at exactly the point where I'm accustomed to gently guiding stock off the outfeed table and the hood fixing method looks fiddlier than the Jet. Those segmented cutterheads (FW Toolguide 2013) look to be a good idea in view of my recent efforts, or maybe I should just change blades more often than 8 years.

Any thoughts on other "light trade" (ca £400) models?

Big Al31/10/2013 17:07:15
1599 forum posts
73 photos

Have you considered replacing the cutter block? It maybe cheaper than buying a new machine, especially if the rest of the machine is still Ok.

Al

Derek Lane31/10/2013 17:22:23
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3219 forum posts
1004 photos

Can;t you place a piece of wood under the blade block to hold it steady and then drill the heads off the screws holding the blades. In many cases this will also release the pressure on the remaining bits still in the machine which can be unscrewed by hand or pliers.

This would mean buying a new set of allan screws for it especially if it has given you 8 years, if you get another few years out of it all well and good.

sad sam31/10/2013 17:49:29
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597 forum posts
234 photos

hi amos

you have got one of the quality bench top machines there if you cant manage to fix it give axminster tools a ring tell them your problem and i am sure they will be able to sort it for you at a much cheaper cost then a new inferior model

Simon Reeves01/11/2013 12:52:44
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622 forum posts
227 photos

Think I would agree with Sad Sam - if you are really stuck, give Axminster a call. They have always been very helpful for any issues I've had in the past. They should also have the means of getting the bolts out without damaging anything else, even down to putting helicoils in the holes should the worst happen and the threads get damaged. I'm sure it would be cheaper than a new machine.

Ref the DeWalt 733, I have one of these and there is no problem with the extraction port (which is standard). You just need to keep the hose out of the way of the workpiece as it emerges. The port is held in place by Pozi screws, and is easy to remove and replace. IMHO, the only downside of this machine is that it's REALLY LOUD sad.

Simon

Brianhr08/11/2013 17:27:22
22 forum posts

I had this problem with my old Woodster planer/thicknesser. The advice I received from the VERY helpful people at NMA was to drive a Torx bit into the recess and release the screw. You will, of course need replacement screws for the blade.

Brian

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