Keep Those Rollers On Your Planer Clean - Router Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2013, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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Default Keep Those Rollers On Your Planer Clean

As anybody that reads my threads and/or posts knows that my shop sets near large cotton fields and so keeping dust and dirt out of the shop is, for now anyway, impossible. One of the worse problems with this is that the rollers on my planer were constantly needing to be cleaned in order for them to work properly, by that I mean being able to smoothly move workpieces through the machine. A few weeks ago I tried the following. After cleaning the rollers I folded a towel and laid it on the table of the planer. After doing so, I lowered the head of the planer down firmly onto the towel and covered the planer with an old sheet. Since doing this I have needed to use the planer several times and each time the planer has worked fine. When I finish the work with the machine I protect the rollers with the method described above and so far, the frequent cleaning has not been an issue. Don't know yet how long the macHine will work before I do have to clean the rollers again.

The way I have been cleaning the rollers is to use paint thinner on a rag to wipe them with. I have to bump the on/off switch several times to get the roller to stop in a position so that I can wipe each part of the surface of each roller.

WARNING, UNDER ABSOLUTELY NO CIRCUMSTANCE TRY TO WIPE THE ROLLERS WHEN THE PLANER IS RUNNING. That should go without saying but I sure wouldn't want to be responsible for anyone getting into a serious accident when cleaning the rollers.

I recall reading about a man that had bought a planer just like mine, a Dewalt 734, and he said that planer had worked fine for a short time but quit pulling the stock through the planner and Dewalt exchanged it with a new machine but in a short time the problem began again. To me, it is obvious that the rollers were just getting dirty and so they can't work properly.

Nuff said on this subject, once again the subject matter is of no value to the majority of the members on the forum, but if even one person is not familiar with the issue and is having trouble with the feed on their planer, this thread might just be of value.

Jerry
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2013, 06:47 PM
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once again the subject matter is of no value to the majority of the members on the forum


Don't sell yourself short, Jerry.

What paint thinners did you use, I usually use Methylated Spirit (Denatured Alcohol) for that task.

James
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2013, 07:57 PM
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Thanks for the reminder, I try and clean all my tools at the end of the day of usage. I am always thankful for a reminder

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2013, 10:51 PM
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Hi Jerry,

You just reminded me that I need to ask my wife to make covers for some of the tools in my shop that I don't use all the time, she offered and I just haven't ask her to make them yet. They collect dust just sitting there and have to be cleaned off ever when they have not been used. The idea of lowering the planer head down on a clean towel would help keep the dust from getting inside and causing problems like you are describing.

You could add a desiccant pack under the tool cover just to keep the moisture down since the cover will limit the air flow around the tool.

We all should give our tools a good cleaning now and then and check for loose screws/bolts and check power cords for ware or cracks that my be dangerous.

Mike
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-16-2013, 06:05 AM Thread Starter
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Don't sell yourself short, Jerry.

What paint thinners did you use, I usually use Methylated Spirit (Denatured Alcohol) for that task.
James,
I don't have enough knowledge about which paint thinner or other substances are best for cleaning the rollers. I have used mineral spirits and it works just the same as the thinner. This brings up another issue. Lately, at the hardware store where I buy some of my supplies, they didn't have any MS, asked about it and was told by a clerk that thre was no difference between thinner and MS which of course is not true but for the roller cleaning, I frankly don't know if it makes any difference. As to what brand of thinner, right now I am not in the shop so for now I can't give you the answer to your questions, I'll get back to you on that.



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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-16-2013, 06:44 AM Thread Starter
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Hi Jerry,

You just reminded me that I need to ask my wife to make covers for some of the tools in my shop that I don't use all the time, she offered and I just haven't ask her to make them yet. They collect dust just sitting there and have to be cleaned off ever when they have not been used. The idea of lowering the planer head down on a clean towel would help keep the dust from getting inside and causing problems like you are describing.

You could add a desiccant pack under the tool cover just to keep the moisture down since the cover will limit the air flow around the tool.

We all should give our tools a good cleaning now and then and check for loose screws/bolts and check power cords for ware or cracks that my be dangerous.

Mike,
Right now I wish that I had a moisture problem in my shop. We are entering our third consective year of droughtt here is West Texas, we really need some rain, but your suggestion as to dealing with potential moisture is a good one.

In regard to my planer, I'm attempting to figure out a sound in the drive system that has developed recently. The planer is working but I am trying to figure out if the issue is a matter of lubrication or something coming loose, haven't pinned it down yet. I have had the planer for maybe two years and only maintance I have done has been to keep it clean and using powdered graphite. If and when I find the culprit before something breaks, I'll post what I find. The dry envoirment might be something that is part of the problem.

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-16-2013, 10:08 AM
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Regarding desiccant packs.
Once they have absorbed moisture, they have to be heated to drive it out.
Oven at 250 degrees for two hours should do it.

Loose desiccant is sold for drying flowers. It can be reheated and will last forever.

The indicator crystals are blue. When moisture is absorbed they turn pink.

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Last edited by rwl7532; 04-16-2013 at 10:14 AM. Reason: Wikipedia says 250 for two hours. Blue=dry; Pink=not
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-16-2013, 10:19 AM
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Jerry I live in the Dallas area and for the last couple of years the cracks in my yard were big enough I could lay down on the ground and put my whole arm in the crack and still have room to move my arm around. We did have days that the humidity was around 90 percent but had no rain so I still have desiccant packs in tool boxes and use them under machine covers. For people in high humidity areas, some of the cat litters can be used to remove moisture from the air, a small container in each tool box drawer works wonders.

Jerry check for loose screws or bolts. some times the will loosen with the vibrations of the machine running. With your dust problem from loose soil blowing into your shop it could also be worn parts from accumulation of the dust around moving parts. It could also be the failure of a part like a spring that should be holding other parts in position. It could be the beginning of a bearing going out. Hopefully it is a simple fix.

Mike
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 09:37 AM
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And what kind of planer ? I have a Jet 15 inch open base stand . It is making a skreeching sound wile planing a board not real loud .
As far as cleaning the rollers the only time I have a problem is when I plane Pine . Then I clean the table it slides on the bottom side of the board . And then I put some type of dry lubricant on the slide table. Gene
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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Jerry I live in the Dallas area and for the last couple of years the cracks in my yard were big enough I could lay down on the ground and put my whole arm in the crack and still have room to move my arm around. We did have days that the humidity was around 90 percent but had no rain so I still have desiccant packs in tool boxes and use them under machine covers. For people in high humidity areas, some of the cat litters can be used to remove moisture from the air, a small container in each tool box drawer works wonders.

Jerry check for loose screws or bolts. some times the will loosen with the vibrations of the machine running. With your dust problem from loose soil blowing into your shop it could also be worn parts from accumulation of the dust around moving parts. It could also be the failure of a part like a spring that should be holding other parts in position. It could be the beginning of a bearing going out. Hopefully it is a simple fix.
Mike,
I am sure that something along the mechanical line is what is going on with the planer, I am anxious to start tearing into the guts of it. I probably need to send it into Dewalt and have it serviced and repaired. Don't know what I would do without it while being out of the shop. Might have to buy a back up copy so I won't be without a planer in the shop. Maybe I can sell this one and let the person that buys it send it in for repair and I can just buy a new one. Anybody out there in the market for a planer that needs to be sent to Dewarl for repair? I'm just thinking about this so I'm not certain that selling the planer is the issue. The problem is very slight right now, but is an indicator that something needs fixed before it gets worse. Just common sense huh.

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