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Thread: Picked up a used Shaper - looking for advice on tooling, etc.

  1. #1

    Picked up a used Shaper - looking for advice on tooling, etc.

    I won this machine on IRS auctions recently and it just arrived today. The price of the machine / power feeder was below what I see most older 3/4” spindle Taiwanese machines going for without a feeder. I am mostly new to shapers, having used one a little in someone else’s shop, but not with enough experience to know the in and outs or the cutterhead options.

    I’ve been doing a lot of online research and reading about various cutterhead options, setups, etc. There is so much information out there and different techniques and approaches to using shapers and what they can do that it’s a bit overwhelming to know where to start.

    My goals / intention for the machine is to try and get my feet wet in the shaper ocean with something that is simple and stout enough to not need to upgrade immediately and still relatively affordable that gives me a handful of options for different cutting operations to see if it’s something that I want to dive deeper into. At this point I have about $750 into the machine / feeder after freight, taxes, etc. I realize that tooling can add up to many multiples higher than the cost of the machine. I’m looking to start acquiring tooling that is quality made, but offers me the best value for the relatively low volume that I do compared to a larger shop.

    The cost of a really good router table / lift put me off for a long time and I figured why not just go straight to the shaper and skip the $$ router table. I am a small scale, professional woodworker with a relatively new business (3 years in) that mostly does custom furniture, custom timber framing, interior custom woodwork, and other one-off custom stuff but I’m looking to expand my capabilities into offering more small scale custom millwork (matching historical profiles, etc) as well as use the shaper for furniture / cabinet scale joinery, cut grooves/rabbets, and have the option to do template work with a bearing.

    About the machine - it’s an SCM T100 (late 70s/early 80s vintage), 1” spindle, 5 HP motor with 3 wheel, 4 speed, 1 HP feeder. Both 3 phase, 220v. I have a 10hp Kay Phasemaster rotary phase converter that I run my Tannewitz table saw and same vintage SCM 20” planer with that currently has a single 30 amp receptacle coming out of it. My plan has been to find a used MLO 3 phase panel with breakers already in it and have multiple circuits of various amperage coming off the RPC, but I haven’t found all the parts and pieces used yet...

    Questions -

    With the current 1” spindle should I just sleeve/bush out the spindle and begin to purchase 1 1/4” bore cutters / heads? If so, I’d appreciate hearing some details about the specifics of doing this, what I need and where the best place to buy from is.

    The T100 apparently came with 3/4”, 1”, and 1 1/4” OEM spindle options. I have a WTB here and on OWWM for 1 1/4” spindle for this machine but no bites so far. Wondering if a more common 1 1/4” spindle from the newer T110 will fit or be a different spindle?

    There doesn’t appear to be a nut for the top of the spindle anywhere with the machine. What are my options here?

    What are the 2 items in the photos below that fit on the spindle? One of them is smaller diameter, is tapered on one side and looks like a spacer of sorts. The other is larger in diameter and spins like a large bearing, but has some angled grooves/slots on side (rub collar?)

    Ive been reading a lot about Euroblock cutterheads, specifically attention to Brent’s posts and videos about the Whitehill Combi head and it looks interesting. Is this a good option for me and/or is there another similar option that is similar in performance and quality? Any opinions on where to start with a Euroblock head?

    Are the handful of included knives practically useful to me and what cutterhead do they fit in?

    I have yet to plug the machine or the feeder in and run anything. It was very well packed for LTL freight and arrived safely with no damage. I did notice in person (but not in the auction photos) that the casting for the vertical travel of the power feeder was damaged at one point and had a large chunk missing. There is a C clamp in that spot. Wondering if this will make it a pain to setup the feeder to different heights or not. Any tips on setting up the feeder to feed properly are appreciated; that’s new to me.

    3B269767-C1BA-45B8-B185-DA588D47C591.jpg

    F5203E49-D088-4537-B6D4-F2032FF69531.jpg

    96D14C57-4D5C-4914-B698-5A8DE6A95F05.jpg

    1EB6CD5D-1411-40B1-8C9F-A2CB8B988CF7.jpg

    DA4CE3A8-6389-4538-8553-11A1B1204305.jpg

    AB53C583-E449-4AD8-AF42-0049B16334D6.jpg

    5571005A-A9C9-4812-B079-934793710A56.jpg

    9D8BC426-A516-41EA-8C17-5D304A6BC7F5.jpg
    Last edited by Phillip Mitchell; 12-29-2020 at 9:32 PM. Reason: Autocorrect...
    Still waters run deep.

  2. #2

  3. #3
    I think it all looks good. The pic showing ,apparently used shaper collars is the ONLY online one I have ever seen that
    does not show lines and distortions from use by incompetant users. I have too many redundant shaper posts to write
    any more. They are all good!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    837
    Buy a 40x100 euroblock, a rebate head, and maybe a adjustable groover. That would cover a lot. If you plan on running any custom moulding get a corrugated head. Its just not worth getting custom 40mm knives, vs corrugated steel. Id get 1.25 bores and bush up with the expectation that you will have a 1.25" spindle (or a 2nd machine) eventually.

    There should be a tabbed washer in addition to the spindle nut to allow reverse rotation. The nut should be a std metric pitch.

    I didn't notice that broken part on the feeder in the listing photos... that is irritating.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    5,423
    Is that made in Italy or Tiawan? would a grizzly spindle fit? I have no idea if there a standard spindle angle or not. Sometimes I will put on one of those rub collars above the knives just to reduce airflow area through the fence.
    Bil lD

  6. #6
    You may be able to source a 1 1/4" spindle from SCMI. That looks very like the spindle on the T110 I used to work with. Parts Pronto is the US parts source. They should be able to supply a spindle nut and washer.

    The available speeds will determine what tool diameters you can safely run.

    You will want to upgrade to 1 1/4" if you run large profiles, but the 1" should suffice for now. Definitely plan on using 1 1/4" tooling with bushings. A pair of t-bushings will get you started. Jared's basic tooling suggestions are good. Insert tooling is a good investment. Brazed carbide tooling is lower initial cost. Corrugated HSS knives are the way to go for custom mouldings. Amana tooling from Tools Today is a good basic source, but there are many. It's good that you realize the tooling costs will outstrip your initial investment.

    It looks like you have a lock-edge knife collar set with a ball bearing guide, which is a versatile cutter for curved pattern work and relatively safe if set up properly with correctly matching knives. Talk to the Charles G.G.Schmidt Co. about it, I don't know if they still support that design. It is a safer version of smooth edge collars which were once widely used but are no longer considered safe.

    You will have to experiment with the powerfeed to see if it is functional with the broken casting. If not you might be able to replace the part from the manufacturer, otherwise look for a new or used replacement feeder. You will definitely want to replace the old wheels with polyurethane ones such as Western Roller makes.

    Set up the feeder so the cutter is centered between two of the wheels with enough clearance to avoid nicking them. Adjust the knuckles so the wheels are parallel to the table in both axes. The wheels should be about 1/8" below the stock and pointed inward with 1/8" to 1/4" taper toward the fence.

    Check the spindle for runout with a dial indicator. Should read <.001" near the top of the unthreaded portion. Any more will lead to unwanted vibration, worse as the tooling gets larger/heavier. Check the wiring too, old cables can be brittle.

    Good luck, and be careful. The shaper is a powerful tool. If you can get an experienced user to give you some in-person guidance that would be good. Double check your setups before running anything, making sure that the spindle height, fence settings and powerfeed adjustments are all locked.

    Stephenson's "Spindle Moulder Handbook" is dated but still the best reference I have seen
    Last edited by Kevin Jenness; 12-29-2020 at 9:48 AM.

  7. #7
    Italy.

    What speeds does it have? your photos of the cutters and cutter head hard for me to tell. My view you should not be touching that stuff. We learned on that and even then I dont think we got enough good info. Mel said both knives have to come from the same bar stock. Total Logic statement that no one had ever said, all of us would just assume which is fine for a jointer but not for collars. Thats why I like guys here like Joe Mel and others that are sharing a lifetime of working in the trenches and sharing info that often you would not find.

    There is a max RPM for those and more to know, I have serrated stuff (usually called lock edge which makes it sound more warm and fuzzier than it really is) and can see people tried to save on steel not knowing enough about the heads and forces on knives and how they change related to knife length in the head. There are three thicknesses for the bar stock. Ive run stuff I dont like yet had they cut the knives 1" or more longer it would be safer. Even then its dangerous stuff, ive been in shops twice when it was thrown. One an inexperienced kid that might have been a stoner and the other a real deal guy with his masters papers who had far too many barley sandwiches.

    Years back talked to the owner of a company making those heads (diff manufacturer) and he refused to speak to me, I had to work to keep him on the phone long enough and he changed and by the time we were done it was all a very good conversation. I knew he was bitter from law suits. Years later one sharpening company refused to sharpen them for me that was from law suits, them blaming him. At first I thought your steel was slip edge but then saw one was serrated. I see rust and not enough to know what is really there other than looks like a Schmidt 3" ball bearing head maybe 1 1/4 spindle size.

    Also just cause that came with the machine is not a guarantee that someone was using that on that machine. Ive seen that before with auction stuff something sitting or with a machine doesnt mean the last owner was using that. Many shapers sold do have cutter heads in the machine from what was last machined.

    Looking at your photos again guess maybe the heads are 1" bore only as something is labelled as that not sure maybe the spacers are. All of the split collars I have come with different lengths of allen screws of a special head to assemble the heads off the machine then slide onto the shaft. cant see that all that steel has serrations maybe it is but photos dont show the whole knife on all of them. Get what Mel said the slot area is not rounded at the ends from having thrown knives in the past. There is usually a worm screw for those heads and they can wear as well. There is also left and right heads and knives should only project from the side that does not have the allen screw. I have enough that were not ground the right way and used sticking out the allen screw side. Im sure Mel and Joe have more time on that tooling and other past guys that are not here that often. My view and others will be get into new safe stuff. Shaper was by far the most dangerous machine in the old days and lots to most of that was due to the old tooling of different generations. Brent has a raised panel photo he sent me once and I havent tried that tooling but the cut quality looked great.
    Last edited by Warren Lake; 12-29-2020 at 2:13 AM.

  8. #8
    Corg is good ,relatively safe,but too big for some convoluted designs. Like stair volutes....ask the old Galoots! Shaper
    collars are pretty safe when used by trained operators . Most terrible blood spills are done because someone in upper management said "I want it done today". Good shaper guy is on vacation ....so forman gives job to someone unskilled....
    and expendable. If NASCAR operated like that ,the winner of the race would be the guy still alive. You need good info to
    work safely .....but info is hard to get since giving it to to the guy who won't really listen to what you are saying is
    dangerous to YOU!

  9. #9
    I don't think Schmidt makes the stuff anymore. They never wanted to give info. Why would they? They already had enuf unfair blame. And with CNC , and lots of ugly modern design choices, there is not much need for for the stuff. There are
    guys here who could make shaper collars in their garage or basement,but I doubt any want to.

  10. #10
    Hi Mel

    Last time I looked they had them. Last night I was looking for something else and ended up in their catalogue so I went to coping discs, wish there was a you tube on them.

    You mentioned corg and for sure safer. Im not convinced it cuts as clean, is there not a different cutting angle and yeah they had two angles a softwood and hardwood one. But is there not a different cutting angle on serrated cause of how they sit in the head. Jack pointed Shavings are neat from those heads.

    Interesting thing on serrated it can pass right through the head from side to side, that must make the knife stronger. I found the bar stock in the catalogue, they sell high quality WHK or whatever the letters were said it was M2 steel.
    Last edited by Warren Lake; 12-29-2020 at 8:02 AM.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    837
    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Lake View Post
    Hi Mel

    Last time I looked they had them. Last night I was looking for something else and ended up in their catalogue so I went to coping discs, wish there was a you tube on them.

    You mentioned corg and for sure safer. Im not convinced it cuts as clean, is there not a different cutting angle and yeah they had two angles a softwood and hardwood one. But is there not a different cutting angle on serrated cause of how they sit in the head. Jack pointed Shavings are neat from those heads.

    Interesting thing on serrated it can pass right through the head from side to side, that must make the knife stronger. I found the bar stock in the catalogue, they sell high quality WHK or whatever the letters were said it was M2 steel.
    Warren, there are a bunch of people on Instagram with schmidt cope heads, if you are looking first hand information.

    Mike has a both the whitehill and schmidt cope heads.
    https://instagram.com/mtlcarpentry?igshid=lgrsxopfrig2

    Luke has the schmidt heads
    https://www.instagram.com/tv/CIwMWhm...=1xavfu6s8l4g7

    Both will usually happly talk shop, There are a bunch of others with the discs as well if you go looking.

  12. #12
    Warren,there are two angles, in the catalogs! I've only seen the one described in catalogs as 'good for all" or some such.
    My view is that using good steel that one is ...good for all. I had a set of 3 bearings made that divide up the corg into 3
    parts. With that you get the cuts right where you want them .

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Jared Sankovich View Post
    Buy a 40x100 euroblock, a rebate head, and maybe a adjustable groover. That would cover a lot. If you plan on running any custom moulding get a corrugated head. Its just not worth getting custom 40mm knives, vs corrugated steel. Id get 1.25 bores and bush up with the expectation that you will have a 1.25" spindle (or a 2nd machine) eventually.

    There should be a tabbed washer in addition to the spindle nut to allow reverse rotation. The nut should be a std metric pitch.

    I didn't notice that broken part on the feeder in the listing photos... that is irritating.
    Thanks Jared. Very helpful. Do you have any brand preferences when it comes to the tooling you recommended?
    Still waters run deep.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Jenness View Post
    You may be able to source a 1 1/4" spindle from SCMI. That looks very like the spindle on the T110 I used to work with. Parts Pronto is the US parts source. They should be able to supply a spindle nut and washer.

    The available speeds will determine what tool diameters you can safely run.

    You will want to upgrade to 1 1/4" if you run large profiles, but the 1" should suffice for now. Definitely plan on using 1 1/4" tooling with bushings. A pair of t-bushings will get you started. Jared's basic tooling suggestions are good. Insert tooling is a good investment. Brazed carbide tooling is lower initial cost. Corrugated HSS knives are the way to go for custom mouldings. Amana tooling from Tools Today is a good basic source, but there are many. It's good that you realize the tooling costs will outstrip your initial investment.

    It looks like you have a lock-edge knife collar set with a ball bearing guide, which is a versatile cutter for curved pattern work and relatively safe if set up properly with correctly matching knives. Talk to the Charles G.G.Schmidt Co. about it, I don't know if they still support that design. It is a safer version of smooth edge collars which were once widely used but are no longer considered safe.

    You will have to experiment with the powerfeed to see if it is functional with the broken casting. If not you might be able to replace the part from the manufacturer, otherwise look for a new or used replacement feeder. You will definitely want to replace the old wheels with polyurethane ones such as Western Roller makes.

    Set up the feeder so the cutter is centered between two of the wheels with enough clearance to avoid nicking them. Adjust the knuckles so the wheels are parallel to the table in both axes. The wheels should be about 1/8" below the stock and pointed inward with 1/8" to 1/4" taper toward the fence.

    Check the spindle for runout with a dial indicator. Should read <.001" near the top of the unthreaded portion. Any more will lead to unwanted vibration, worse as the tooling gets larger/heavier. Check the wiring too, old cables can be brittle.

    Good luck, and be careful. The shaper is a powerful tool. If you can get an experienced user to give you some in-person guidance that would be good. Double check your setups before running anything, making sure that the spindle height, fence settings and powerfeed adjustments are all locked.

    Stephenson's "Spindle Moulder Handbook" is dated but still the best reference I have seen
    Kevin, many thanks for the detailed reply! It has a 2 speed motor / switch that runs at 5k and 10k according to my research.

    I have found some bushings from a kind member here that has some extras, so that’s a start. I will definitely keep my eyes peeled for an 1 1/4” spindle. I don’t know if I can stomach a new replacement spindle from SCM even if they had one...I wouldn’t be surprised if it cost $750-1000 for an OEM replacement.

    I have seen the Spindle Moulder Handbook recommended many times and will seek out a used copy to help with the learning curve.

    Thanks for the info on the feeder. Out of curiosity / ignorance, why do you recommend replacing the tires on the feeder?

    Thanks again!
    Still waters run deep.

  15. #15
    Mel and Warren,

    Thank you guys for the discussions on safety, etc. Itís helping me and Iím sure will help other uninitiated in the future that stumble on this thread looking for answers.

    Seems like the lock edge head with the bearing could be somewhat useful if everything was tip top and set up properly, but I donít know enough at this point to trust myself setting it up correctly and will likely set it aside for later when I have more experience.

    In my first post, the last couple photos show a smaller diameter piece of steel that fits over the spindle. Is this simply a spacer? Given the height of the spindle, would it do me well to have a handful of similar spacers to help get whatever cutter / head Iím using up closer to the threads on the spindle? Whatís a good source for spacers of this bore?

    Thanks again!
    Still waters run deep.

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