Metalworking Machines - Planers

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What should you know before using a planer?

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Planers can be dangerous if not used properly.

  • Read the owner's manual carefully.
  • Make sure you understand instructions and are properly trained before operating a planer.

With a planer, the work table moves back and forth while the cutting tool is held stationary. A shaper operates similarly except that the work table is stationary while the cutting tool moves back and forth.

Refer to Metalworking Machines - General for basic safety tips.

What are some good work practices to follow when using a planer?

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  • Wear appropriate CSA-certified safety glasses.
  • Make sure that planer has a working emergency stop button (e-stop) within easy reach of the operator.
  • Use a vacuum, brush or rake to remove cuttings only after the machine has stopped moving.
  • Make sure that all guards are in place and in good working condition.
  • Make sure that stop pegs are in place on planer table.
  • Secure safety devices at proper locations.
  • Make sure that there is ample clearance between work and planer frame.
  • Secure tool holder, tool and crossrail in their proper places.
  • Make sure that feed rod and its attachment are in good working order.
  • Make sure that power is on when using a magnetic clutch.
  • Use proper cutting tools.
  • Always set the depth of cut and the feed rate so they are appropriate for the tool and the piece being worked.
  • Keep machine properly oiled.
  • Keep floor around planers free of oil and grease.
  • Keep working surface clean of scraps, tools and material.
  • Use lifting equipment to move work to or from planers. Refer to Materials Handling for additional information.

What should you do when clamping work on the table?

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Make sure that:

  • clamps are located to properly grab work so it will not spring out of shape or alignment;
Ensure that clamps are located to properly grab work

  • fork end of U-clamp is on the work piece;
  • bolts or nuts with stripped threads are discarded and replaced;
  • work is mounted squarely.

What are some things you should avoid doing?

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  • Do not wear gloves, rings, watches or loose clothing. Tie back long hair.
  • Do not make adjustments or measurements while planer is in motion.
  • Do not leave planer unattended while it is running.

  • Fact sheet last revised: 2019-01-28