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Thread: Planer differences ???

  1. #1

    Planer differences ???

    I have heard people talking about 15 inch planers with motors on top are not as good as the ones with motors mounted down below- What makes this so ????
    Seems to me that the fixed table height and the fact that you dont have 3 long belts driving the planer head would ofset any other problems. Or is it that the frames are not as sturdy.
    Also, with a planer- Is there any real negatives of a open base versus a closed base??
    Mission Furniture- My mission is to build more furniture !

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Southern MD
    One of the mags just had a 15" planer comparo. The reason they thought overhead motors were bad was they get in the way when doing knife changes. The advantage (for some) is that the bed is fixed, so additional in/outfeed support is easier.
    I wouldn't think that open or closed stand would make much difference in operation.

    Jay St. Peter

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Helena, Montana

    I just went through this same thing when recently shopping for a new planer. The guys I talked to about changing blades with a top mounted motor gave me the impression that it was really not a big deal. The only other conclusion I could come to about the enclosed stand versus the open stand was looks and maybe a little sawdust protection.

    I have an old Foley Belsaw 912 with a 5HP motor that I have used for over 20 years. It is still a workhorse, but I got this idea in my head that I needed a contemporary 15 inch planer. I was also concerned about the parts availability for my Foley and was basically in one of those moods to buy a new piece of woodworking equipment. Upon entering and exiting the mystical dimension of irrational thinking and justifiable spending, I walked out of Montana Tool CO. with a new Delta 13 inch portable planer. Since then, I have tuned my Foley with new blades, adjusted the belts and rollers, microed some planed boards and seems to be running sweet. In the meantime, I will use the Delta soley as a finishing planer and for final dimensioning. Pretty weird huh?

    I guess the thought of hauling another 450lb. plus tool down the basement convinced me to try the portable, plus I was looking for something that may pick up the dust a little more efficiently. The salesman assurred me that I would eventually quit using the Foley and would use that little 13 inch for most of my planing. Hard for me to imagine, because when I look at the two, it is like looking at David and Goliath.

    The End

  4. #4
    Based on this and some other message boards,it seems that the only real gripe or low point is the blade changing issue. Since I plan to change out the head for a Shelix head, that pretty much nullify's that aspect.
    Grizzly has a model G0551, closed stand with motor on top for $875.00 delivered. Anyother deals out there I should look at.

    Thanks to all-
    Mission Furniture- My mission is to build more furniture !

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Southern MD
    I've been looking at 15"ers also and want a Shelix. I think Wilke will install the Shelix for you and send it your way. The Yorkcraft got good reviews in the aforementioned mag review. It has the motor below and moving bed though. But, it is the one in my sights right now $799+shipping.

    Jay St. Peter

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Western Ma.
    I went with the Yorkcraft, no problems encountered except getting it down the hatchway and lifting the head assm after getting it down there. It probably sounds trivial, and may be, but I like the motor below models as they have the set of rollers on top. It was one of the things I didn't want to give up when I got the new planer.
    I found the DC hood will be in the way when I attempt the blades and it isn't all that easy to remove. This may not be the case with the motor on top models.
    I like the Yorkie's solid tables over the rollers on the planer I used to use. The table going up and down has yet to prove itself a hindrance, I actually think it may be helping limit the snipe as I have to go around and get the board before it finished a cut and I can hold it down for the last few inches. On the old unit the board used to be pushed down by the cutterhead when it cleared the infeed roller causing some snipe. Holding the distant end down a bit just as it clears that point seems to be making a difference, at least so far. I don't have too many miles one this one yet.

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