In Tricks of the Trade

We may receive a commission when you use our affiliate links. However, this does not impact our recommendations.

Let’s face it: running a twisted board through the planer doesn’t make it flat. The board will still be twisted when it comes out. The trick is to use a sled that prevents the board from rocking as it’s being planed. That’s not a new idea, but I’ve made a sled that accommodates a board of almost any size, no matter how twisted.

I made the sled 12″ wide and 6′ long. It can be glued up from narrow boards, made from MDF, or be a melamine shelf purchased from a home center. Whatever the source, it has to be flat. Glue a 1/2″ thick stop block to the leading edge. Drill holes in the sled wherever needed and insert T-nuts from the bottom. Counterbore the T-nuts so their flanges don’t catch on the planer’s bed.

Next, mill a bunch of 1/2″ thick hardwood strips. Bevel some of the strips’ ends, and leave others square. Bandsaw adjustment slots down the strips’ centers. The wedges steady a wobbly board, and the square-ended strips hold it in place. Secure the blocks and wedges by screwing pan-head machine screws and washers into the T-nuts. Make sure the screws don’t stand proud of the board you’re planing! –Wayne Clevenger

Product Recommendations

Here are some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday work around the shop. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality.

Recommended Posts

Start typing and press Enter to search