A couple of weeks ago I purchased a planer with some money my parents sent to me for my birthday. Yes, my mom still does that.
I figured the planer would cut down wood prep time, especially since I use cedar for constructing my Adirondack Chairs. As most of you know, cedar is only roughly finished, especially on one side and the edges. I had been using a belt sander to prep the wood, but that was a two day chore. the planer has cut that time down to a couple of hours.
The first lesson I learning was something called snipe. This happen to leading edge of a board, generally about the first two to three inches. I asked around some of my more experienced woodworking friends and they all said there isn't much I can do about this. That section is basically wasted. So the lesson I learned was to NOT pre-cut the lumber prior to using the planer. I still had to use the sander to smooth out the snipe so i could use the lumber.
So, yesterday I was planing my lumber and moving along nicely, creating all kinds of wood chips. But On one board I forgot to check for staples. Stapes are used to hold on the price tag on every board. Normally this is not an issue because the staples are in the middle of the end of the board. On this occasion, the staple was right on the edge and the blades hit it. the edge is ruined. Fortunately, my blades are double-sided, so I just had to flip them around. But I have now cut the blade life in half, and the blades are NOT cheap. $30.00 for a new set.
Needless to say, every board after that had all the staples removed regardless of the location.