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Planing & Thicknessing Timber, getting wood Flat Square and True

Time to power up your Woodworking machinery and make some shavings

Now the wood has acclimatized it’s ready to plane to the finished sizes. Some of the pieces will have dried and shrunk evenly. Some will have twisted, bowed, bent or cupped. Enough spare should have been left on the rough cut pieces for these problems can be sawn and planed out.

First check to see if there are any problems to rectify, here’s what to look out for:

You can spot most of these visually by sighting down the end.

Slight winding (twist) can be tricky to spot so use a stick at either end to amplify the distortion.

A straight edge can be used on bowing, springing (bend) and cupping.

The diamond distortion has to be checked with a square.

Just to add to the fun you can have any combination of these distortions in a single piece.

Don’t despair! The methods I use, correct the problems without too much trouble. My Planer Thicknesser (Jointer in the US) is only small and lightweight but it does the job.

Maybe I should have bought a better one however I can still get excellent results when used in tandem with my table saw (or band saw).


Next - How to plane up the good pieces of wood




Timber / wood for DIY, Woodworking, Joinery, Carpentry

Examples of joinery jobs, softwood types and timber grades

Carpentry and joinery softwood types

Timber Grades, Unsorted ? Vth's ? Sawfallen ?

Timber rough sawn ? PSE ? PAR?

Commonly available rough sawn and PSE / PAR timber sizes

How to choose a Timber Merchant / Supplier

Work out what timber you need for the job

Inspecting wood at the Timber Merchant

Preparing the timber for acclimatising

Planing timber / wood flat, square and true

How to plane up the good pieces of wood

How to plane "diamond" pieces

How to plane Winding or Twisted timber

How to plane bowing on a timber board

How to plane cupped or cupping timber