Whch Upgrade Makes Sense?
#21
  Re: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by cams2705 (I'm debating on maki...)
As someone who has had both, my recommendation is to go with the larger planer. Good luck in finding a used 15" planer with a spiral carbide cutterhead for a bargain price. I bought my 8" jointer new with straight knives and later converted it with a Byrd cutterhead. Ordered the planer with it already installed, which I strongly recommend. It's another one of those things that once you have it, you wonder why you didn't do it sooner and would never go back.

Doug
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#22
  Re: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by cams2705 (I'm debating on maki...)
Normally I am firmly in the "rather rebuild than replace" camp but in this very instance I think you would be better off with a stationary planer provided that you have room for it.

Portable units are generally built from aluminium and plastic. Often a rather cheap aluminium alloy which is full of silica and therefore very difficult to weld if it breaks. Aluminium tables cannot take much wear. Repairing or making plastic parts is even more difficult and as we all know plastic gets weaker with age. If an universal motor burns out is is difficult to rewind (been there done that).

On a good quality stationary planer the only thing that really can go wrong is if you have a fire distorting the frame or if you drop the machine or if you leave it out in the rain for years. Most other damage can be repaired in one way or another and if parts aren't available they can be custom made or replaced with standard off the shelf componenents. Induction motors are usually standard size so a new motor will fit if the original one burns out and if a new one doesn't fit they are way easier to rewind. Cast iron tables do wear out over time but not as fast as aluminium. I had to remachine my planer table to make it flat again after 50 years of very hard use but with my less hard use I rekon the next time will be at least 100 years into the future. Feed rollers made from steel do wear out over decades of use but they can often be either re-machined or replaced.

In short..... to me warranties are not interresting. What breaks down usually breaks down after the warranty expired and then repairability is the important factor!

First an foremost a stationary planes has way greater capacity and better accuracy and less vibrations. That is it makes life easier and more fun for the woodworker. Whether it is new or secondhand.
Part timer living on the western coast of Finland. Not a native speaker of English
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#23
  Re: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by cams2705 (I'm debating on maki...)
What makes the most sense is this, in my opinion-

1. Do you have the money to upgrade to a stationary planer?
2. If so, do you have the room for a 20" model?
3. How much planing do you do? Are you able to use the machines 1-2 days a week? If so, that's a yes.
4. If you've got the money, the room and use the machines frequently, then I say go for it.

I'm not 100% sold on the spiral cutterheads, it is a very expensive upgrade IMO. I'm not saying I wouldn't do it, but it wouldn't be a priority.
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#24
  Re: RE: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by Rich_Dixon (What makes the most ...)
(01-31-2020, 11:52 AM)Rich_Dixon Wrote: What makes the most sense is this, in my opinion-

1.  Do you have the money to upgrade to a stationary planer?
2.  If so, do you have the room for a 20" model?
3.  How much planing do you do?  Are you able to use the machines 1-2 days a week? If so, that's a yes.
4.  If you've got the money, the room and use the machines frequently, then I say go for it.

I'm not 100% sold on the spiral cutterheads, it is a very expensive upgrade IMO.  I'm not saying I wouldn't do it, but it wouldn't be a priority.

Agreed.  Used 15 and 20" planers with straight knives often come up for sale because the owner just has to have a new one with a spiral head.  Those used ones go for cheap.  I have no regrets about the one I got.  

John
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#25
  Re: RE: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by jteneyck ([quote='Rich_Dixon' ...)
(02-01-2020, 05:23 PM)jteneyck Wrote: Agreed.  Used 15 and 20" planers with straight knives often come up for sale because the owner just has to have a new one with a spiral head.  Those used ones go for cheap.  I have no regrets about the one I got.  

John

I am not a fan of the spiral head cutters. I used indexable cutter for years in the die shops I worked in and when it came to roughing you couldn't beat them but when finishing you could always see the tooth marks. Always finished with an end mill, be it high speed or carbide.

Probably 95 percent of the planning I  would do is less than 12 inches. So I would fix the Dewalt planner and keep it for a second planner. And get a straight bladed 15 inch planner. I would use the Dewalt for most of my planning needs and use the 15 inch for the light finish work. Doing it that way you would probable only have to change the blades in the 15 inch ever 10 years or so. 

The dewalt you already own and it costs you noting. the straight blades one is much cheaper. 

It is how I do it but both of mine are stationary planners with the motor on top. And it works out great for me.

Tom
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#26
  Re: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by cams2705 (I'm debating on maki...)
I respect the differing opinions but to me having a 8" jointer as well as 20" planer set up with a indexable spiral cutterhead is a game changer in my shop. I upgraded my 8" jointer in 2008. My 20" planer was upgraded the day I purchased it in 2010. I had a 15" planer prior to the 20" that I had also upgraded. Not having to set knives and/or get new or sharpened knives is a true time saver. These carbide inserts last a VERY long time. One of the 4 sided carbide inserts will last 8-10x as long as HSS straight knives. So, if you don't chip or break them the carbide inserts that come on the cutterhead will last the equivalent of 40 knife changes. With most hobbyists (like me) the cutterhead will have a sharp edge the rest of my lifetime. As an example, a hobbyist that changes knives on their jointer/planer about every year, wouldn't need to touch their spiral cutterhead for around 10 years. And in that scenario it's just an insert rotation to get a fresh edge. Which leads to another 10 years of service without the fuss or expense of replacing knives. Rinse and repeat for all 4 sides of the carbide inserts. Couple that with all the other benefits of a spiral cutterhead and I won't ever go back to straight knives.


Back to the OP, I would choose a stationary 15 or 20" planer with straight knives over a lunchbox/bench top planer with a spiral cutterhead. With that being said, the upgrade from straight knives to spiral cutterhead is a substantial upgrade IMO.
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#27
  Re: RE: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by Lumber Yard® (I respect the differ...)
(02-02-2020, 01:38 PM)Lumber Yard® Wrote: I respect the differing opinions but to me having a 8" jointer as well as 20" planer set up with a indexable spiral cutterhead is a game changer in my shop. I upgraded my 8" jointer in 2008. My 20" planer was upgraded the day I purchased it in 2010. I had a 15" planer prior to the 20" that I had also upgraded. Not having to set knives and/or get new or sharpened knives is a true time saver. These carbide inserts last a VERY long time. One of the 4 sided carbide inserts will last 8-10x as long as HSS straight knives. So, if you don't chip or break them the carbide inserts that come on the cutterhead will last the equivalent of 40 knife changes. With most hobbyists (like me) the cutterhead will have a sharp edge the rest of my lifetime. As an example, a hobbyist that changes knives on their jointer/planer about every year, wouldn't need to touch their spiral cutterhead for around 10 years. And in that scenario it's just an insert rotation to get a fresh edge. Which leads to another 10 years of service without the fuss or expense of replacing knives. Rinse and repeat for all 4 sides of the carbide inserts. Couple that with all the other benefits of a spiral cutterhead and I won't ever go back to straight knives.


Back to the OP, I would choose a stationary 15 or 20" planer with straight knives over a lunchbox/bench top planer with a spiral cutterhead. With that being said, the upgrade from straight knives to spiral cutterhead is a substantial upgrade IMO.

I can not find any fault in what Lumber Yard said. He stated that (  I won't ever go back to straight knives). And given the fact with my experience with inserted cutters in metal and the fact that I am more than happy to go from a planner surface to sand paper  I, will at this time, never consider switching to an inserted cutter head. Who is right? We are.

Being on a fixed income changes the way a person looks at it. I sharpen my own knives so I didn't think in those realms. With me like I said I would keep the dewalt because I am used to working with it and i presume paid for so it costs nothing to keep it, granted a few repair parts. I have two planners so changing the blades in the big one doesn't come into play as often as only one planner would. It is much like using a #6 to do most of the grunt work and having a super sharp #7 hand plane only for the final few strokes. The 7 wouldn't have to bee sharpened as often. 

I read that Lumber Yard up graded his 8 inch jointer and I can not fault him doing that. I also have an eight jointer with no jacking screws and changing blades rates right up there with getting a root canal.  But there are those who would argue that a person should have the same size jointer as planner. And if that logic is correct then why upgrade cutter heads? Why not just get a larger jointer with a spiral cutter head?  I also read in more that one post about a 20 inch planner versus a 15 and if bigger is better then will a 20 inch be big enough.

In keeping with the original post topic the person who posted it is pondering the question of how to proceed, really needs to consider his situation as far as funds available, space available and what type of projects he or she likes to work on, Family needs and so on. And what he is willing to live with.

Is there anything wrong with inserted cutter heads? No.  That is as far as if you can afford it and if you can afford it and want to buy it great for you. And I have to agree that a bigger planner over an old bench top with a spiral head is a no brainer.  But in the end Cams2705, the buck rests on your shoulder and I would go with what you gut feeling is on this one.

Tom
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#28
  Re: RE: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by jteneyck (Option C.  Get a use...)
(01-29-2020, 04:56 PM)jteneyck Wrote: Option C.  Get a used stationary planer.  You can find used 15" planers for well less than half the price of a new one, often around $500 -600.  That's not a lot more than rehabbing your current one.  

John

I love this idea to.  I have the grizzly 15" with the spiral cutter head and find more and more the 20" is what we need more and more.

Also have the same in a 6" jointer and would love to have a 8" and hate to get rid of the 6" before I get a 8".
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#29
  Re: RE: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by Rich_Dixon (What makes the most ...)
(01-31-2020, 11:52 AM)Rich_Dixon Wrote: I'm not 100% sold on the spiral cutterheads, it is a very expensive upgrade IMO.  I'm not saying I wouldn't do it, but it wouldn't be a priority.

I suspect that whether or not a spiral cutterhead makes sense depends what kind of wood you're planing. I work with mostly straight grained domestics and see very little tear out with straight knives. I don't find changing knives to be that big a deal, maybe if I used it more or planed abrasive woods - teak for example - I might feel differently. If I worked a lot with figured woods I probably would feel differently. As with most questions there's no one size fits all answer.
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#30
  Re: Whch Upgrade Makes Sense? by cams2705 (I'm debating on maki...)
The Delta/Rockwell RC 33 is a great 13" planer
I long for the days when Coke was a soft drink, and Black and Decker was a quality tool.
Happiness is a snipe free planer
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