This is a picture of the sled jig for surface planning. It was featured in an article in Fine Woodworking. I made mine a little over six feet in length and 10 inches wide. It is a little heafty when a piece of raw oak is laying on it. However it runs through my Delta 12.5 planner with no strain on the cutters
You lay your wood on top and adjust the wooden wedges to to stop any rocking motion.
The top picture shows the front end of the jig as it would enter the planer. It looks like a dagwood sandwhich. The top is the oak board. Notice the gap on the bottom of the oak board. You see two wedges coming through a cross piece. These wedges move and lift the cross piece until it touches the bottom of the oak board. The bottom pic shows the jig coming through the planner.The top slice is the oak board resting on the cross beam. Now the gap is between this beam and the top of the sled. There was a video on some site that explains how this jig works. It is not that complicated to use.
Top photo closer view of jig. The dry wall screws tighten against the wedges to keep them inplace once you have made all the adjustments to keep the oak from rocking and on a horizontal plane to the planner blades.
Bottom photo shows the oak emerging from the planner. You then make as many pass throughs as are necessary to surface one side smooth. You then remove the board from the jig, turn the board over, and pass it through the planner with the other rough side up.
Top Pic The boards are now milled S4S. Next pics after and before shots of the oak boards. The last pic is with the boards cut into their respective pieces for the night table. I keep them clamped together to prevent warping and to keep things organized until I am ready to work on the project.
Hope this hasn't been to dull to all of the expert wood workers out there.
So bear with me guys and give me a break. Until my next set of posts
You could be asking for trouble with the boards clamped in stacks like that. The outside faces of the outer boards are exposed to the air and nothing else is, so no matter whether you have them clamped or not there is a possibility for the outer faces of the outer boards to change their moisture content and the rest cannot change to match.
When I am not ready to use various pieces after I have milled them, I use a couple of different methods to store them while they are waiting, depending on how soon I need them and what space is available to stash them in.
Sometimes I stand them on end, leaning some against the edges of others, like this.
You only need to leave a little space between them so that the air can move equally over both faces, but it's important that both faces be exposed to the air. Depending on the moisture content of the boards and changes in humidity in the air it only takes a few hours to cause a problem. I've made the mistake of leaving boards laying flat on my workbench overnight and coming in to cupped boards in the morning.
Clamping doesn't make any difference at all because it does nothing to prevent the difference in moisture content that happens when one face is exposed to the air and the other face is not. If there is a change in moisture content to the exposed face, the board will start to cup as soon as the clamps are released.
Also do not make the mistake of setting them on a concrete surface or you could have problems, too.
Walter: Thanks for posting the pics of the jig. It looks pretty slick and would certainly save a lot of hand planing on boards too wide for my six inch jointer. Thanks for posting and looking forward to seeing how your night tables progress. Oh yes I too use Ken's method and stand my boards on end or on edge after planing them. If I am really worried about movement I plane them once to roughly size, let them sit a couple more days and then replane them to final thickness. Hard to do that though when you want to get on with things but with a little planning it is possible!!...........Tom
I had to flatten a 10" board that was a little wavy, for a rush project and I only have a 6" jointer. So I used a variation of this idea. I cut a piece of MDF slightly larger than the board and hot glued small cedar shims under the high spots. Basically what you are doing is plastic welding your board to an MDF carrier sled to transport it though the planer. When you get one side flat , pop the 'welds" apart with a screwdriver and proceed with the other side. A little more primitive, but it works great in a pinch.