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Thread: Rockwell Uniplane

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Corcoran, MN
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    Rockwell Uniplane

    I enjoyed the low key discussion by its restorer, a guitar maker.
    https://youtu.be/IgM-V2KpsRA

  2. #2
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    Nov 2021
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    Columbia MO and Howard County MO
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    They are an odd tool. I have tinkered with one a little. It failed to impress me.
    Best Regards, Maurice

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maurice Mcmurry View Post
    They are an odd tool. I have tinkered with one a little. It failed to impress me.
    I just began his channel yesterday. His archtop guitars are beautiful and I look forward to seeing more about his building theories and methods. I just began watching his 4 part series on modification of carving chisels for serious removal of wood. He creates a concavity to the edge with the sides projecting beyond the center. I recall reading the opposite recommendation, center ahead of side to prevent the gouge from digging in. I like having my preconceptions flipped and hope I have the time and skill to try his method.

  4. #4
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    Nov 2021
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    Columbia MO and Howard County MO
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    I suscribed too. We had one at the factory. It went missing along with the guitar maker and some other tools.
    Best Regards, Maurice

  5. #5
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    Mar 2009
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    Sterling, Virginia
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    We have one where I worked. It is one of those machines that is perfect when you need it and sets there getting dusty the rest of the year. He didn't touch on it, but it is very good at cutting end grain. Stuff no one in their right mind would try on a jointer.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Walter Plummer View Post
    We have one where I worked. It is one of those machines that is perfect when you need it and sets there getting dusty the rest of the year. He didn't touch on it, but it is very good at cutting end grain. Stuff no one in their right mind would try on a jointer.
    Thanks, Walter. Apart from the glossy surface and no need for belt changes, does it have an advantage over a small drum sander?

  7. #7
    cant see it and its not safer. He can barely control the material with his sticks. A jointer has a very little gap to fall into by comparison.
    Last edited by Warren Lake; 07-06-2022 at 12:55 PM.

  8. #8
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    Nov 2021
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    Columbia MO and Howard County MO
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    The Uni-plane does feel safer than a jointer to me. We had much better push sticks and push blocks, including a vacuum fixture. They are much more accurate than any of the sanders I have used, regarding the accurate and consistent removal of material.
    Best Regards, Maurice

  9. #9
    Vac jig would be better for sure. I remember a you tube of a british guy using big long push sticks. He had not control of the material. Sure if I tried one id understand it better. Too many years on jointers to see any value in that.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Sterling, Virginia
    Posts
    599
    Bruce I used ours mostly for trying to hit an exact length on parts. It leaves a surface of fine saw marks, not glossy. The sheetmetal stand is very noisy. We talked about trying to quiet it down but never actually tried anything.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
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    Los Angeles
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    Very enjoyable and informative video, thanks for posting.
    The presenter has a very relaxed and engaging personality, knows what he's talking about, and there's no loud music.
    Last edited by Mark Gibney; 07-07-2022 at 10:22 AM.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Lake View Post
    cant see it and its not safer. He can barely control the material with his sticks. A jointer has a very little gap to fall into by comparison.
    Actually the gap is only as large as the cutter width as the central disc is the first part of the outfeed and even with the cutting circle. Also, the cutting force is downward, so there is no tendency for a short workpiece to be pulled into the gap, so as long as the guard is in place it seems pretty safe to me. His push sticks could be better made and perhaps be replaced with a grippy push block, but that is not a reflection on the machine. I have seen one of these rigs in the past without a guard and thought it was a foolkiller, but I can see how it could be useful for dealing with short pieces as in box or instrument making.

    The section on flattening with a hand scraper and checking with a surface plate is good. I have scraped a couple of machine tables by hand and it is excessively tedious, but it does allow for getting as precise a result as your patience will allow without removing the tables and depending on a machinist to do it, with a minimal investment in equipment.

  13. #13
    I like the scraping section as I have not seen how that is done. Tool and die maker friend said he needed to do his bridgeport and if so I would have been there to see it done and the tools. They would have learned that in their apprenticeship. Ive flattened the SCM saw a fair bit and in that cause it was auto body stick on sandpaper on a long straight piece of mahogany grain orientated for minimal flexing. Likely still have more on that.

    Like I said id have to try one to feel and see. Looks like a large open cutter. Cut on the first material is nothing to write home about other than opposing grains like quarter sawn sappelle each band is running an opposite way so they dont cut as clean on a jointer but not an issue at all.

    Jointer gap is 1 1/2 to 2 1/8 approx depending on depth of cut. On a jointer gravity is your friend. I dont use guards so less exposed cutter is better. Iv jointed stuff down to five or six inches long using the usual jointer push block you can feel your pressure on the infeed till on the outfeed then focus on that. Its likely well under the rules but if you adjust your pressure as you go then its fine.

    Lots of respect for guitar makers. There are many. Larivee taught a number in the toronto area, Laskin, Manzer and others. Lynda has made guitars for many well respected players
    Last edited by Warren Lake; 07-07-2022 at 1:57 PM.

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