Hitting the Reset Button on my Jointer/Planer


Over time the outfeed table on my Rikon 25-210H worked its way out of adjustment, gradually creeping its way close to the cutterhead.  I found out about this one day by the one cutter slamming into the table when I turned on the machine.  So I was able to move the table back out of the way by turning its parallel arms but over time the table moved around more and more.

Looking at the Jet’s version of this machine (JJP-12HH), I saw that the outfeed adjustment arm also serves to lock it in place against the front cover.  So I ordered the three parts from eReplacementParts that would give me that:

Adjusting Handle (JJP12-014)
Knob (JJP12-015)
Bracket Screw (JJP12-016)

When the parts arrived I decided to start from scratch on tuning up the jointer tables, loosening the hinge adjustment screws thus throwing away the factory adjustment plus the work I had done.  I wasn’t very confident in how aligned the tables were so I wasn’t losing much.

Terms Used

Pitch Rotation of a table about the short axis of the machine.  Right/left ends are up/down.
Roll Rotation of a table about the long axis of the machine.  Front/back sides are up/down.
Twist Rotation involving both pitch and roll.  One corner is off from the others.
Stop Bolts The two bolts that each table stops on when closed.
Hinge Screws The four grub screws in each hinge that control its orientation
Hinge Bolts The three bolts in each hinge that secure it to the frame

(pitch and roll are aeronautic terms, they make it easier for me to visualize this stuff)


I have both the 38” and 50” straight edges from PeachTree and while the 38” model works OK the fact that the 50” lays across almost the entire table makes infeed adjustment a lot easier.

General Tips

  • Lock Down Levers and Stop Bolts
    • A smooshy feel when tightening means that the stop bolts are uneven; the “smoosh” is from the table flexing down to meet the top of both bolts.  If you have the bolts even then you will experience a nice firm feel when tightening the lever.
    • Adjust the bolts by hand and with the table down.  Turn one bolt to move the table up/down and then move the other bolt to just touch the table.
    • There are two stop bolts per table, with the locking rod in between them.  There are two in order to provider a wider, more stable platform for the table to rest on.  They do not participate in changing the pitch of either table; that is the job of the hinge levelling screws.  After making changes to the levelling screws both stop bolts should be brought into equal contact with the table.
    • When you are ready to lock the stop bolts down, do so with the table locked down.  This will help prevent the bolts from turning as you tighten the lock nuts down.  It helps to have two 13mm wrenches here as there isn’t a lot of space for a crescent wrench to fit into.
      • Tightening the lock nuts has the effect of moving the bolts upwards a small amount.  The thread’s backlash being taken up is my best guess as to why.  In my experience you will have to tighten the bolts down by another ~20° to account for this.
  • Outfeed Table
    • If you are installing the outfeed adjustment lever you can rotate the parallel arm as-needed to clear the guard arm mount.  
    • Loosen all grub screws before adjusting anything.  There are two on the parallel arm and four on the lift rods.

“Reset Button” Sequence


  1. Move infeed table down to take it out of the equation. You don’t want your straight edge resting on it.
  2. Back out all four leveling screws until they are loose.
  3. Tighten down hinge bolts
  4. Loosen all the grub screws to allow the outfeed table to be freely adjusted using its parallel adjustment arm
  5. Using the parallel arm try to adjust the outfeed to its ideal height, i.e. where the cutters just scrape your straight edge.  Work first on the back edge, closest to the hinge.  Note: it’s advisable to not tune the table such that the Top Dead Center of the parallel movement is at the ideal height.  Give yourself some wiggle room should the outfeed table settle lower.  
    1. If you are able to reach ideal height in back, move onto step 6.
    2. If you are not able to get the ideal height, i.e. the outfeed table is too low then you will need to raise it a bit via the hinge adjustment screws.  Adjust them evenly, say ¼ turn each.
      1. Again use the outfeed level to get the ideal height in back.  If needed, raise the table more via the hinge screws.
  6. Now adjust the stop bolts to get the front of the table to the idea height.  
    1. This will most likely throw off the adjustment in back.  Use the lever to regain your ideal height in back.  This will mostly likely throw off your height in front, fix that via the stop bolts.
  7. When you are done tighten all the grub screws on the outfeed table.


  1. Loosen the hinge leveling screws and tighten down the hinge bolts
  2. Adjust the infeed table to its uppermost position such that it is even-ish with the outfeed table
  3. At this point there shouldn’t be a lot of roll, just pitch to adjust for.
  4. Attack the pitch first, adjusting the hinge screws in left/right pairs.  For a gap of around 1/16”, start with pretty small turns of the screws, about ⅛ of the way around.
    1. Measure in the back side first by the hinge, noting which side has a bigger gap.
    2. Adjust the infeed table’s height to zero in on it being level with the outfeed table.  Raise it such that it just contacts your straight edge at some point, either left or to the right.
    3. Now check the front side, adjusting the stop bolts to match the roll between the outfeed and infeed tables.  Another way to think about this is that your goal here is to have your straight edge’s contact with the infeed table the same in both front and back.  It won’t be laying flat (unless you’re lucky) but the gaps and contact spots should at least be in the same areas.
    4. Now note your gaps which will dictate your next round of adjustment.  When you overshoot, and move the gap to the opposite end, back off the screws you just touched rather than tightening the screws by the new gap.  This minimizes the variables in play.
  5. Ideally you will be able to get things adjusted such that your 0.001” gauge won’t fit under the entire length of the table in both front and back; good luck with that 🙂

I put together a (too long) view on the process which also includes my thoughts on the product after messing around with it so much.

To summarize, setting the outfeed table is simpler than the infeed because it has fewer variables:


  1. Match the cutter head’s height
  2. Match the cutter head’s roll


  1. Match the outfeed’s height
  2. Match the outfeed’s pitch
  3. Match the outfeed’s roll

Front Cover Bracket Screw Hole Marking

I used a dowel marker pin over the bracket screw to mark where the hole should be drilled in the front cover.  With the marker pin in place I positioned the cover about where it should go and then struck it with a rubber hammer.

Jet JCDC-2 vs. Grizzly G0548ZP Showdown!

I just got Jet’s 2HP cyclone dust collector as an upgrade from Grizzly’s 2HP canister unit.  My main driver was to get a more quiet dust machine with a side benefit of it being easier to empty.  So while I had both machines on hand I measured their sound levels and air volume throughput.

The purpose of this post is not only to compare the two machines but also to give a little more real world data on the sound levels produced by dust collectors as opposed to what the manufacturers publish.

My testing instruments were:

The ambient noise levels in my shop measured @ 43 dBA.

Open Test

Side by side testing

My first test put the machines out in the open with a short length of 4″ hose to constrict flow a bit.  I stood with the sound meter from where the photo was taken, about 10 feet away.

Grizzly:  86 dBA,  1065 CFM

Jet: 82 dBA, 1070 CFM

The Grizzly’s sound level was pretty close to the published 83-85 dBA level.  The Jet’s number was quite a bit higher than their published value of 76 dBA.

The air volume numbers were essentially the same, showing that the 4″ hose restricted them to the same volume.

Enclosed Test

img_20170107_114246Next I tested the dust collectors where they actually live, in this weird little room my basement has.  It’s about 8′ x 8′ and is where the water main comes through the floor.  As a woodworker it serves me pretty well by giving me a plash to stash a noisy machine.

On this test I measured the sound levels from about 15′ away next to my lathe.  This is where I will spend a lot of time with the collector running while sanding or turning dry wood so I was interested to see what my ears would be subjected to.

As for airflow I measured the flow at my lathe’s dust hose and my jointer’s dust hose.  Each of these machines are at the end of the two branches of my dust system.

Grizzly: 76 dBA, Lathe = 550 CFM, Jointer = 500 CFM

Jet: 70 dBA, Lathe = 550 CFM, Jointer = 532 CFM
img_20170107_113447The two jointer numbers are not the same because the dust collectors have different inlet locations and therefore force a different shape in the hose hooked up to them.  The Jet’s inlet is higher up so I was able to reduce the severity of the bends which netted me 30 more CFM.  The lathe piping run was able to keep approximately the same shape.  In the photo to the left, the PVC elbow is for the lathe while the flexible run is for the jointer.

I was happy to note that the Jet’s lower noise level is very noticeable from my lathe area.  In fact the whooshing noise from the dust hood is pretty much louder than the actual dust collector.

Jet JCDC-2 Cyclone Dust Collector Assembly


This past weekend I assembled my new dust collector, Jet’s 2HP cyclone unit.  The whole process took about two hours, most of which was spent getting the “head” (motor/impleller) mounted onto the frame.  That part, when done according to the instructions was honestly hard to do.

As you can see in the photo I used my “shop crane”, a Harbor Freight 1-ton model, to lift the head.  Unfortunately the legs of the shop crane did not allow the cyclone’s frame to be positioned directly underneath the head… they are about the exact same width as the halves of the frame.  So I tipped the two parts towards each other and got them bolted up.  This wasn’t an elegant or safe operation but it worked.  After it was bolted up I was able to tip the dust collector back upright.

If I had to do this over again I would still use my shop crane to lift the head, but I would not have first assembled the two frame halves together.  I would have left them separate and bolted them onto the head while in the air.  Then I would have lowered the dust collector to a horizontal position cradling the head on some the styrofoam it was packed in, and then assembled the rest of the frame.  Tilting it back up could have been assisted by the shop crane.



Grizzly T26674 Button Repair

Over the last few months I’ve noticed the buttons on my dust remote starting to flake out.  Some days they would require a few clicks to work, other days they would be fine.  Well today the on button totally died.

Because the buttons were getting more and more unreliable over time I had a pretty solid hunch that the culprit were the actual buttons on the remote’s printed circuit board.  So I took it apart, and the on switch when pressed by itself sounded different, less “clicky”.

So I removed both the on and timer down switches and then soldered the timer switch in the on switch’s old home.

Repaired PCB with switches moved.  In the background are the two worn out switches.

So on the board you can see the four switch positions S1 – S4:

  • S1: On button
  • S2: Off button
  • S3: Timer down
  • S4: Timer up

I just moved S3 to S1.  And lo and behold my dust collector now turned on with its usual roar!  And amusingly enough that was exact moment the off switch decided to crap out, I had to unplug the whole works.  So I did the same operation with S4 and S2 and fixed that too.

Example eBay listing for the replacement switches

I’m going to replace the timer switches so that I can resell this remote, but it works fine without the timer buttons in place.  On eBay or Amazon just look for 6mm x 6mm x 4.5mm through-hole momemtary switches, they’ll be about $1.25 per 100 shipped from China.  I did some googling for “high quality” switches but really didn’t find anything obvious; but perhaps these more expensive switches from Jameco would be more durable?  Or they might just cost more.

This repair would work for the Grizzly T26673 as well because it would use the same cheap components.

If you are interested in doing this easy repair yourself here’s what you’ll need:

  • Soldering iron
  • Solder, something thin like 0.5mm or 0.6mm diameter
  • Some means to remove the old solder from the switch pins.  “Desoldering wick” will work in a pinch but I’ve always had good luck with a desoldering iron like this one.

Search YouTube for “how to desolder” and you’ll find 1000 videos on the topic.

DMT Dia-Sharp Stone Roundup

Over the last year or two I’ve gradually accumulated 6 of DMT’s 8″ continuous diamond sharpening stones.  I started with Coarse, Fine, and Extra Fine per Paul Seller’s recommendation with a leather strop plus green compound for a hair-popping edge.  Then curiosity compelled me to get the Extra Extra Coarse, Extra-Coarse, and Extra Extra Fine models.  I have not purchased the special Medium stone because it costs $20 more than the other models.  I’ll be using DMT’s shorthand for these throughout this post:

Extra Extra Coarse XX
Extra Coarse X
Coarse C
Fine F
Extra Fine E
Extra Extra Fine EE

This post is basically shitting on those last three models.  I feel that with the C, F, and E models DMT has produced some very effective sharpening plates that efficiently remove metal to the advertised mesh.

The lowest two (XX & X) do remove metal faster than C.  But not that much faster, not $50 faster.  And I honestly have not noticed much of a difference between XX and X.  XX has sort of a bumpy, gravelly feel to it not a sharp feeling.  Yesterday I was straightening out the beefy 2-3/8″ blade on my Woodriver 5-1/2 plane blade, starting with the X plate.  You know the drill, 3/4 of the bevel is done but then the remaining 1/4 has this thin triangular section that slowly wears away.  As I spent minutes upon minutes sharpening away I there wasn’t a noticeable difference in the speed at which that triangle disappeared as I switched between XX, X, and C.  No I did not time this or get very scientific but I was frustrated from a consumer perspective.

At the top end is the EE model.  Out of the box it leaves a scratch pattern much more coarse than E and apparently requires a ton of break-in time to get good.  Some folks on Bladeforums.com have had success, this fellow spent a year breaking in his plate.  Personally I’m not willing to spent that kind of time on a product.  We’re here to make things not sharpen.  Related to this, I recently picked up an 8k Kuromaku Shapton stone and got a mirror finish coming from the DMT E plate in something like 20 seconds.  Super fast and easy.

I did spend some time trying to break in my EE plate, perhaps 15-20 minutes scrubbing with a 1″ square of steel.  It still leaves a pronounced scratch pattern after all that; I’m done with it.

Concluding Remarks

Here’s my quick summary of the plates I’ve used

Extra Extra Coarse Way too slow for something advertised as 120 mesh.
Extra Coarse Slower that it should be, is a bit faster than Coarse.  Also useful for flattening water stones.
Coarse Works quickly enough, leaves a healthy surface
Fine Works great
Extra Fine Works great, leaves a surface that reflects light but is not mirror-smooth
Extra Extra Fine Not worth the time investment

I feel that DMT’s plates belong in the middle of your sharpening progression.  Paul Sellers does C, F, E + strop.  Rob Cosman goes from a 1k diamond plate right to a 16k ceramic stone.

Serious shape changes can be done with the X or C plates, albeit slowly.  Or you could gently perform those modifications on your bench grinder.  Or you could do them on cheap sandpaper and a flat surface.

On the fine end a strop plus honing compound will get you a very sharp edge but you truly do need to hit it for 50 strokes.  Waterstones are an option here too but introduce more cost especially with the need to flatten them.

I’m going to stick with my C, F, E + Shapton for day-to-day tasks.  I’m keeping the X for waterstone flattening.  XX and EE are heading out to eBay.

Veritas Inset Vise Review

Bench before inset vise installation

I recently finished a new workbench with a face vise on the left and Veritas Inset Vise off on the right.  Most of my bench work is on the medium-to-small size and I wanted a means to secure those pieces to the bench top without clamps.  Most operations will be things like holding the work for assembly or sanding.  I don’t do a lot of hand-planing but when I do I use the face vise.

Benchcrafted’s wagon vise looks pretty sweet but it’s also at least $300.  Making one from scratch is an option but I’d still have to spend some money on the hardware not to mention the extra time on making the darn thing.

Vise installed

So I went with the Veritas option because it wasn’t horribly expensive and the installation looked pretty easy; just rout out a channel for it.  Installation was simple, I used my plunge router with a guide fence to make two parallel grooves forming the edges of the channel and then hogged out the middle.  I screwed up the routing process, cutting out the a 3″ wide channel the full depth leaving hollows underneath the two wings.  Oops.  But this wasn’t a huge deal I just made two spacer pieces to fill that void back, in gluing them in place.

The four 3/4″ dogs

I located the edge of the vise about 2″ from the edge of the bench in order to give more support to either side of the clamped piece.  As you can see I went with round 3/4″ dogs, starting them about 1.5″ from the end of the vise and spacing them every 7″.  The vise allows a spacing of 7-3/4″.  I made mine as Paul Sellers shows in this video.



So that is where my vise lives, but how well does it work?  I’d say pretty darn well.  My first test was a piece of plywood clamped up between the vise and one of my dogs.  Yanking on it I moved my entire bench before it budged at all.  So it is not lacking at all in the power department, it would easily snap off one of my oak dogs if I really torqued on it.  The work is very resistant to rocking motion too, but for extra stability there one could install parallel bench dogs for an ultra-sturdy triangular holding pattern.  As I said earlier I’ll be using those for mostly light-duty things so I don’t need to get that fancy.

The little toggle handle is kind of cheesy but it’s necessary for the vise top to be 100% flush.  While a wheel would be easier to use it’s really not so hard to quickly spin it around with your finger.. just not as intuitive.

My only real complaint was with the optional 1/4″ jaw that I ordered along with the vise.  Its locating pegs were a bit too close together, preventing the jaw from fully seating into the vise.  To remedy this I had to file away some material on their inside faces.

So overall I’m very happy with this vise.  It works very well and due to its simple installation it can retrofitted into existing benches.  After spending a few weekends building this workbench I was very glad to be able to install the vise in one evening!


Veritas Canvas Apron Review

I’ve had the Lee Valley / Canvas Apron for a month and have been pretty happy with it so far so I thought I’d share my thoughts on it.

To test the concept of using a shop apron I had been using a cheapo model from Menard’s but I really disliked the neck loop.  However I did really enjoy keeping things close to hand and up high as opposed to using cargo short pockets; dust collector remote, pencils, ear plugs, etc.

The Lee Valley apron gets 4/5 stars from me.  The construction quality is very good and the pockets are well thought-out, especially the large side pockets.  My only gripe with the apron is the extra webbing that sticks out from the shoulder straps; when I reach back to manipulate the main buckle I often wind up grabbing a stray strap or one of the adjustment buckle.  I need to pin back the excess strapping to keep the back clear as you see in Lee Valley’s product images.

But overall the apron is very comfortable and useful and is worth $40.

Telescoping Lathe Dust Collection Arm

There’s one advantage to a fixed head lathe; the source of dust and chips is always in the same spot!  Given a dust hood that can cover 10″ you’re set for most projects.  Given a sliding headstock lathe and now your dust collection needs to be a lot more flexible, it will have to travel a few feet in either direction.

When I first got my new lathe I made a dust arm that mounted to the lathe body but I didn’t like it because it was always in the way of the banjo.  The next version is a telescoping arm that mounts to the wall via a French Cleat.  So far it’s worked really well, here are some photos.

It’s a pretty simple design.  The arm is sandwiched between two boards, pinned with a 1/4″ carriage bolt and plastic knob.  Notice how the cleat is quite long, this was done to accommodate the side-to-side wobbliness of the collector as it’s moved.  An earlier version had a narrow cleat (~5″) and it would tend to tip out.  The extra boards on either end also help it stay put.  The surround is four pieces of wood glued up to form a rectangular tube.  A piece of 1/4″ plywood glued on top provides a mounting point for the plastic hood.

The arm is about 10″ long while the surround is about 9″ long.  I found that the surround only needs to have about 1/3 of the arm inserted into it in order to provide a stable connection so I cut the arm back such that at maximum extension the surround has this much engagement.

Careful sizing of the parts help it slide smoothly as does a good coating of paste wax on the arm.

The plastic dust hood is  the magnetic jobber sold by many vendors.

Repeatable Taper Rip Cuts with a Sliding Table Saw

Over the year that I’ve owned my sliding table saw I’ve really come to appreciate the convenience and safety of having a built-in crosscutting & ripping sled.

I just finished a set of tapered legs which on a normal cabinet saw one would use a taper jig to cut.  In this post I’ll show how I accomplished the same thing with my sliding table and two hold-down clamps.

Finished product first.  Four legs that started as 2″ squares.  The taper starts below the mortises (about 4.25″ from the top) and ends a half-inch from the bottom edge leaving a 1″ square foot on the bottom.

Finished legs

These photos show the uncut leg with the taper penciled in.

This photo shows how the legs will be positioned on the sliding table.  The cut starts at the foot and will end a little short of the mortise.  The leg is pushed by the miter fence while its taper angle is set by the fence’s flip-stop.  An important note here: I am indexing the cuts from the waste side not the good side.  This always gives me a square surface to set up on.  If I indexed off of the good side I’d have to deal with trying to index off of a taper which would involve making shim blocks.  Nuts to that.

Position on slider


Setting up on the slider required establishing two indexing points.

  • One for the foot set 1/2″ inch from the blade.  This is the easy one I just used the fence.
  • A second one to establish where the cut will stop near the mortises, 4.25″ inches from the top.

The second indexing point was harder to set up because that point is out in space.  I needed to move the flip-stop to “aim” the cut at the desired point below the mortises.  I gave myself a target to aim at by clamping a stick to the table at that location and then cutting it off:

Now with the stick in place I could move the flip-stop around to get the stick flush with the place I wanted the taper cut to end.

Flushing up the cut marker stick with the desired taper end

After confirming that the setup worked fine on my test piece I cut all the tapers.  Two Kreg hold down clamps did a fine job of keeping the work in place and my hands away from the blade.  A Diablo ripping blade left a very nice surface which only left behind very faint tool marks; a few scrapes and the surface was ready for 220.


Dubuque Bar Clamps vs. Harbor Freight Bar Clamps

I needed two more 48″ clamps on my current project and because it’s just a simple carcass I thought I’d give Harbor Freight’s a try.  I already have some Dubuque clamps so I’m able to compare the two.

Sidewall Thickness Comparison

As you can guess, the Harbor Freight clamps are a lot shittier, just look at the sidewall thicknesses above.  On the HF clamps the whole assembly twists while you’re putting them in place and none of the other components are as well-made.

However for the purposes of this particular project they work just fine.  Once you have them lined up and tightened they can hold a cabinet together just as well as much nicer clamp.  And their light weight makes them really easy to maneuver into place unlike my heavy 48″ Jorgensen Cabinet Masters.

So while I don’t think I’ll buy any more of these they can service lightweight assembly jobs just fine.