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Thicknessing small wood


Victor222444
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Hey there all. New to this forum.

I'm looking on how you guys thickness your wood for your miniatures. I've been messing around with model building for a while but not to scale accurate models and i've decided to try and go for details now so i'm trying to mill my own wood because of that and I don't exactly know how to plane down really small pieces of wood. i don't want to use a really loud, heavy, and inaccurate table to cut my lumber and leave them rough cut.

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I had an answer for you with pictures but this "new" forum is not letting me add photos. maybe if they fix it I can reply  to you......... 

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Welcome to the forum Victor, here is a photo of an old lathe made into a thickness sander that I use for thicknessing all my wood. We had a discussion about it before, here is the link to the thread.

Linda, adding photos is easier than before, there is a plus sign on the photo after you have uploaded your photo, just click on it and your photo will be in the post.

image.jpeg.774bff1eb2f5e08586a06bac3129b

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Hey all thanks for the feedback. 

I like the thickness sander idea but since I'm a college student living in a dorm i can't really have something in my room that's noisy or creates a lot of dust. I was leaning more towards a jig to plane small bits of wood. 

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21 hours ago, Bill Hudson said:

I usually rip to near thickness on my 10" table saw and then run it through my thickness sander.

 

18 hours ago, ElgaKoster said:

Welcome to the forum Victor, here is a photo of an old lathe made into a thickness sander that I use for thicknessing all my wood. We had a discussion about it before, here is the link to the thread.

Linda, adding photos is easier than before, there is a plus sign on the photo after you have uploaded your photo, just click on it and your photo will be in the post.

image.jpeg.774bff1eb2f5e08586a06bac3129b

 

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Welcome Victor to the forum, so glad to have you jump in a post.

Lots of possibilities.  Let's say I have a 3" wide board that is 3/4" thickness and 24" long.   I want a piece that is 3/32" thick.

I find our full size 10" table saw to be very accurate.  And a good sharp blade results in a beautiful cut surface.  Expect saw kerf equal to the thickness of your blade.  I would  raise the blade to 1.5", I would place the 3/4" surface against the bottom of the table saw, saw it, and then flip it to finish the cut.  I set the fence to, in theory 21/32" to make those two cuts.    I am in favor of heavy equipment; a good heavy saw is wonderful; if your saw is inaccurate; then I would look at ways to clean up the inaccuracies, and of course there are many kinds of saw blades. 

An alternative in our shop is to resaw the board against a taller fence on our band saw, and feed it through the planer. 

My personal favorite is to buy the wood planed to the correct thickness... 

I would do is 2 or 3; my husband enables option 1 to happen... 

Tamra

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Victor, do you have any makerspaces in your community?  They may have equipment that you can use.  I can use our local makerspace's laser for $10 per day + xx amount per minute for the laser use.  Our local makerspace has a lathe, tablesaw;  I didn't check any of this out, but I read about it on their website.

Yep, you can use a hand planer - and depending on your dexterity and equipment it is most definitely a possibility.  You might get some other tips and ideas from the PBS TV Show, the Woodwright's Shop. 

So they frown upon using a table saw in the dorm room?  

Tamra

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for the + sign Elga I never would have guessed :)

5.thumb.jpg.2e55226c46516f28334fcaea0cab

Here is my home made thickness sander, it works great. I love it.

thicknesser2.jpg.97196a9376af5f4e23af64e

Here is a small thicknesser I built too, this photo shows it with the jointer attachment on.

 

DSC_0447.jpg.b8f683850aac5aeb8956def46e7

This is a jig I made to mill down little logs on my full size table saw. You move the log into the blade with each pass. So the thickness is not exactly the same but from here the boards can go into the big thickness sander.

 

1side8.jpg.e69d83d3b1b58bfe2503da604d64b

And last is a log mill I made for my band saw.  It makes the log square and then you can set the fence and resaw equal size boards. Then on to the thickness sander, and can be jointed on the little one.

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On 3/17/2016 at 9:31 PM, WeekendMiniaturist said:

Victor, do you have any makerspaces in your community?  They may have equipment that you can use.  I can use our local makerspace's laser for $10 per day + xx amount per minute for the laser use.  Our local makerspace has a lathe, tablesaw;  I didn't check any of this out, but I read about it on their website.

Yep, you can use a hand planer - and depending on your dexterity and equipment it is most definitely a possibility.  You might get some other tips and ideas from the PBS TV Show, the Woodwright's Shop. 

So they frown upon using a table saw in the dorm room?  

Tamra

 

 

 

 

Well I'm pretty sure i'll get some odd looks if i happen to bring my craftsman table saw into my dorm. 

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On 3/17/2016 at 9:31 PM, WeekendMiniaturist said:

Victor, do you have any makerspaces in your community?  They may have equipment that you can use.  I can use our local makerspace's laser for $10 per day + xx amount per minute for the laser use.  Our local makerspace has a lathe, tablesaw;  I didn't check any of this out, but I read about it on their website.

Yep, you can use a hand planer - and depending on your dexterity and equipment it is most definitely a possibility.  You might get some other tips and ideas from the PBS TV Show, the Woodwright's Shop. 

So they frown upon using a table saw in the dorm room?  

Tamra

 

 

 

 

Also no there isn't a makerspaces. There is however another tech shop that has tools for various materials like lathes, saws, cnc, laser cutters, etc but in order to use them first I have to take classes there for the category i want to work in and the lessons are around $60 an hour + cost of materials and i don't have that money with me.

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Have you considered buying ready thicknessed sheet wood, with limited tools that might be your best option for now.

https://www.northeasternscalelumber.com/

I used sheet wood and a ruler and knife for quite a few years before I had the luxury of power tools for making furniture.

Midwest also sell wood but their options seem to be less now and there is another supplier that has many mre wood choices but I can't remember their name now...Tamra, I think you will know who I am talking about.

 

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Victor, sorry about your $60 per hour fee - ouch.   That isn't necessarily affordable at any age.

SHGoode & Sons is a great hardwood supplier.  http://shgoode.com/

You can purchased various thickness of basswood and balsa at Hobby Lobby & Michael's Craft Stores in the US.

You can purchase various thickness of basswood, cherry, walnut at a well stocked miniature store; and sometimes model railroad stores...if you want to see a similar inventory of a well stocked miniature shop, try

www.micromark.com

As I'm not sure of what you want to make, I am making general suggestions... I hope the links provide some assistance in finding sources.  Andif you are in another country, that may help us give your more specific options.

It is quite possible to make wonderful scale miniature items without power tools.

Tamra

 

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

There are is low tech way of thicknessing small pieces of wood to a uniform height.

You basically need to surround it with strip wood that is close to the correct thickness, the strip wood has to keep the wood you are trying to thickness from shifting. Then a flat block of plywood faced with sand paper that does not reach all the way to the edge so that the edge of the plain plywood rides against the strip wood. The edges of the plywood can be adjusted by gluing on paper shims for slight height variations. It is a lot of hand labor but where there is a will there is a way

The same type of system can be done with hand plane where the edges of the plane body rest on the strip wood runners so that only the plane iron cuts into the wood and when the body of the plane meets the strip wood no further cutting action will take place. Basically it is a specialized type of shooting board.

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