What should you do before using jointers and planers?
Jointers and planers can be dangerous if not used properly.
- Read the owner's manual carefully.
- Make sure you understand instructions before attempting to use any tool or machine.
- Learn the applications and limitations before use.
- Refer to Woodworking Machines - General Safety Tips for general safety precautions.
What should you check before starting your machine?
- Are the knives set for the proper clearance and depth of cut? Are they sharp, balanced, and fastened securely?
- Is the fence anchored in the proper position?
- Can the guard (swing or overhead) move freely and return over the cutting head?
- Is the equipment properly lubricated?
- Are the parts or accessories in proper working condition?
What safety procedures should you follow when using jointers and planers?
- Wear safety glasses or goggles.
- Wear hearing protection that is suitable for the level and frequency of the noise you are exposed to in the woodworking area.
- Wear protective footwear when required.
- Allow only experienced and trained personnel to operate jointers and planers.
- Use only sharp, balanced and joined knives.
- Replace old square cutting heads with round heads as they are much safer.
- Ensure start and stop buttons are within easy and convenient reach of the operator.
- Make sure the swing guard pushes beside the stock as it passes over the cutting heads and returns against the fence after the stock is removed.
- Remove all wrenches and tools used in the set up from the table.
- Provide a minimum clearance of at least 1 m (3 ft) greater than the length of the longest stock being worked.
- Construct hold-down push blocks to do bevelling and surface operations. See Woodworking Machines - Push Sticks for more information.
- Use hold-down (double-handed) push blocks. These keep hands well away from the cutting head.
- Maintain an adequate amount of downward and forward force with push blocks as the knife blades on a revolving cutting head can take the stock from an operator's hands.
Figure 1 - Planer
Figure 2 - Jointer
What should you avoid when using a jointer or planer?
- Do not leave the machine running unattended. Shut off the power and make sure that the cutting head has stopped revolving.
- Do not make cuts deeper than .3 cm (1/16") in one pass.
- Do not join (edge) stock of pieces less than 30 cm (12") long, 2 cm (3/4") wide and less than .6 cm (1/4") thick.
- Do not surface stock less than 30 cm (12") long, 2 cm (3/4") wide or more than 15 cm (6") wide or less than 1.5 cm (5/8") thick.
- Do not pass hands over the cutters.
- Do not remove dust or particles of wood from a table by hand or with compressed air. Use a stick or brush.
Document last updated on May 15, 2013
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