Woodworking Saw Dust-all

Love working with ply because it's so predictable. Edge banding is such a satisfying process.

I've got a love/hate with plywood. It's predictable, but can also wind up with nasty tear out. The times I've edge banded, I haven't been super happy with the results, but I probably just need practice. Probably also need to work on my technique when working with it, and possible get a better saw blade too. I've had some luck with the various tear out avoidance tricks, but some (like the blue tape thing) never seem to work. I might also just be getting crappy plywood.

This morning, I was hoping I'd just need to cut the last batch of grooves, then glue everything up, and it'd be pretty quick. It was not quick, and I spent an hour and a half making mistakes and fixing mistakes. Here's a list of the things I screwed up!

1. When I cut the first groove, I set up on the wrong side of the line. I was clever and marked a scribble to tell me which side of the line to cut on. I wasn't clever in that I wound up lining up the cut at the back end of the line, while the scribble was on the front. I'd planned for at least two or three extra slots anyway, so decided I didn't care enough to recut the whole piece, and made sure the rest of the slots went in the right place.
2. Realized that I cut that second batch of grooves in the far right piece, when I should've cut them in the center divider. That also meant that my screwup with the first groove didn't matter anyway.
3. Got the grooves cut again, and in the correct piece, and dry fit everything again. Then found out that I'd mis-measured where the groove holding that center divider needed to be, and the space between the left side and center divider was too far to hold the things it was supposed to. Luckily, there was enough room in both pieces to get the dado in the right spot.
4. Got my depth setting on the dado re-cuts too shallow, and had to go back and re-cut them 1/8" deeper.

After all that screwing around, everything actually did fit together really nicely. Got glue on all the joints and shot some finish nails in to hold it while the glue set.
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Good thing I don't care about looks on this, because that's a lot of extra slots. Hopefully I'll be able to finish it off tomorrow.

I got the rest of the pieces cut for the sanding station thing, and put the cleats on.
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It works! Though you can see in the back where I'm not super good at aiming my nail gun. I also slapped together the shop towel holder next to it, because I'm tired of constantly misplacing the towel roll.
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I also raided the hardwood store yesterday and grabbed a bunch of different stuff so I can start trying different species. The two longest pieces are sapele and sipo, and holy crap will they look amazing when a finish goes on.
IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/NS3MQwb.jpg)

What are people's thoughts on live-edge furniture?

I view it as a fad. In 20 years, people will view it like shag carpet or popcorn ceilings: "What were they thinking?"

I like it in certain cases, but it's probably being over-used right now. There's probably less angst about live edge stuff than there is about epoxy river tables. Some folks in the internet woodworking sphere hate those things and yell at anyone who makes them. Usually the people making them respond with "hate them all you want, these things are making me bank, so I'll keep selling them as long as people keep buying them." I actually kind of dig river tables, but I don't think it's exactly a timeless design.

I kind of suspect that live edge and epoxy stuff started out as a way to try and use parts of the tree that were considered waste. Mills would've cut out and tossed the outsides of the logs, all the crotch sections, and split slabs because there wasn't much to do with them. Suddenly, all those parts are super desirable.

Quintin_Stone wrote:

What are people's thoughts on live-edge furniture?

I view it as a fad. In 20 years, people will view it like shag carpet or popcorn ceilings: "What were they thinking?"

Without a good amount of context around it, I think it's misplaced. For me live edge in a log home or similarly themed area works, and will always work. It can also be used to bring the outdoors into other spaces, such as a contemporary space with a glass wall where the outdoors can lend it some context.

LouZiffer wrote:
Quintin_Stone wrote:

What are people's thoughts on live-edge furniture?

I view it as a fad. In 20 years, people will view it like shag carpet or popcorn ceilings: "What were they thinking?"

Without a good amount of context around it, I think it's misplaced. For me live edge in a log home or similarly themed area works, and will always work. It can also be used to bring the outdoors into other spaces, such as a contemporary space with a glass wall where the outdoors can lend it some context.

Caveat: anyone can make something work if they work it just so, so the below is generalizations.

RE: River Tables I'm a fan of it in theory, but not so much in practice. I think the ones done in anything that doesn't look like water is more timeless; the blue looks a bit cheesy and already dates itself a bit. Even if I think it's pretty on insta, I don't know if I'd use it in a room design.

RE: Live-Edge furniture in general - A live-edge endtable, hallway bench, or something small is okay. For larger features like a dining table, it can really help counter the coldness of a white, mechanical, modern interior aesthetic for a high-end home dining area, restaurant, lobby, or nightclub. I feel it often reads as kinda "extra" in a normal household that already derives it's organic or warm elements elsewhere.

Oops, got a new toy. I'd just given up on finding a craigslist deal on one of these, and resigned myself to paying full price. The next day, one popped up for a little over half price, and I jumped on it.
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The first time I tried it, I made some newbie mistakes. First, I tried running some finished hickory flooring through, thinking I could plane off the finish. You're not supposed to do that because it gums up the blades. I also think I was running some boards through against the grain, which you shouldn't because it produces tearout. Today, I swapped out to the second brand new blades it came with, and it worked much better.

This thing has a big blower on it to kick out the chips, and without something to catch them, hoo boy does it make a massive mess. Good thing I have a filter bag coming in tomorrow.
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I also made a hundred blocks for my 4yo to practice math with (he's super into Number Blocks). Nice and simple, but oh man, is sanding them a PITA. I'm 60% through and I really don't wanna keep going.

We cleaned up a lot of the garage so hopefully I can .... oh right, this weekend we're going to the beach. So many in a couple of weeks I can work on that table saw sled. And maybe some infeed/outfeed tables.

That looks awesome Chaz. It's on my list after the table saw

I really need to build a crosscut sled and an outfeed table. I've got some melamine pieces hanging around that I think I could use as a base of the sled, but keep spinning around on putting t-track or something on the fence, or routing a slot, or not worrying about it. I like the idea of being able to have a slotted stop block or hold down. And whatever I wind up doing is probably the same thing I'll do for the miter saw stand I want to build.

Oh, and I also need to build a mobile stand for this planer cuz this thing's definitely too big to haul around.

The surface finish the planer produces is really nice, and definitely makes me want to find a hand smoothing plane to use for finish surfacing instead of sanding.

The complicating factor for my feed tables is that they'll need to be collapsible to be able to fit in my garage.

Same here. It'll either be something that I attach to the back of the saw that I can fold down when I'm not using it, or just something freestanding with folding legs. The real trick is that if it's going right up against the back of the saw and isn't permanently attached, I'll have to figure out how to account for the miter slots.

And almost have a miter saw stand. Just need to attach the top and the casters. After that, I'll be building a couple side tables that will also be able to be used for an outfeed table for my table saw.

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Oops, I bought more tools.

A few weekends ago, I found out about a little used tool shop about 45 minutes south of me, so I swung by. He had a Jet 6" jointer with extended beds in really nice condition for $300. That's about what those have been going for lately, and this was in better shape than a lot I was seeing, so I picked it up. He also had a 1hp dust collector for $120, which I also grabbed.

Unfortunately, when I looked up the price of a new set of knives for the jointer, it turns out that because they use this fancy method to adjust the knives, a new set costs about $90, while most jointer knives are around $25. That basically means that it makes more sense to get a helical cutter for the jointer than the planer, since the jointer's helical is around $300 vs $90 knives, while the planer's is $400 with $50 knives. Oh well.

The jointer didn't come with a mobile base, so I had to get one of those, and getting that set up was a mild pain. Once I got the jointer on it and started wheeling it around, I discovered that the way I'd mounted the wheels, which I thought would work better, didn't work better. So now I need to pull it all apart and rearrange the wheels.

Then, on Friday, I found a listing for exactly the dust collector I'd been planning to get, with exactly the canister filter I would've added on, and a chip separator, a bunch of extra hose and fittings, and a remote control. All that stuff together would've probably cost around $600, but the guy only wanted $250, so I picked that up. Now I've got an extra dust collector that I'm trying to re-sell.

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I really need to build a cart for the planer. I've spent so much time the last two weeks cleaning and setting up the jointer that I haven't actually worked on any projects. At least today I got the first pieces of a project cut and milled. Having a remote control for the dust collector is pretty awesome.

I made a bench for our front porch.

IMAGE(https://bl3301files.storage.live.com/y4mLaVUYdebQONvGQLFLrOoboY26j9IR0M3iu36zc9eDY9UGPY2EAj6ol0MZ-AnVAoO6jqBr33zzcc2rJ0D4pWz5iDBAhuCPNzRFK3c8prfShB6h7e5I22gQmbcaRCdpuSOaIB2DKvTAd2Lq9jyqhuW4kBsnTkBJ6P4tpaFwCtU0bs?width=1024&height=768&cropmode=none)

Turned out exactly how I wanted. Great for sitting in the morning and drinking coffee or in the evening and having a beer. Just need to stain and seal it. Made from 3 2x6x8s and 2 2x4x8s generic white fir.

EvilHomer3k wrote:

I made a bench for our front porch.

IMAGE(https://bl3301files.storage.live.com/y4mLaVUYdebQONvGQLFLrOoboY26j9IR0M3iu36zc9eDY9UGPY2EAj6ol0MZ-AnVAoO6jqBr33zzcc2rJ0D4pWz5iDBAhuCPNzRFK3c8prfShB6h7e5I22gQmbcaRCdpuSOaIB2DKvTAd2Lq9jyqhuW4kBsnTkBJ6P4tpaFwCtU0bs?width=1024&height=768&cropmode=none)

Turned out exactly how I wanted. Great for sitting in the morning and drinking coffee or in the evening and having a beer. Just need to stain and seal it. Made from 3 2x6x8s and 2 2x4x8s generic white fir.

Nice!!! Looks great.

Very nice! I like it.

Chaz, those are some awesome scores!

I've been really happy with scoring deals on tools. It took a while, but it definitely paid off. My major ticket items:

Table saw - $200
Planer - $350
Jointer - $300
Dust collector - $250

It's pretty funny that the table saw wound up being the cheapest thing. I'm still low-key looking for a drill press, and band saw, but those are way down the list. I'm also fighting the urge to hunt down some hand planes and chisels to clean up and use. Those would definitely be useful, but finding them, cleaning them up, and learning to sharpen will all be a time suck, so I'm probably going to resist and focus on actually building stuff for a bit.

Awesome prices for good looking tools!

I finally got tired of hauling the planer around (because it's dense like a star). I had some time after I got clamps on another project, so I knocked together a basic cart. Materials include some scrap plywood I had lying around, four 5" casters I picked up at the ReStore, and about $783 worth of 2x4s. I still need to bolt it down.

IMAGE(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/51248365800_3344c35d7c_c.jpg)

Only thing I'm not sure of is that none of the casters lock. It might be fine, since you don't really push anything through the planer when you're using it, but I might wind up swapping one or two out for locking casters. I also need to get a bungee cord to hold up the in/outfeed tables. The tables fold up, but the dust chute keeps the outfeed one from staying up. It's kind of dumb.

Why lock the wheels anyway? I like the idea of putting the outfeed against a wall and watching the planer push itself across the floor with the wood it's working on!