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Thread: ShopFox Planer Molder

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Hayes, Virginia
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    ShopFox Planer Molder

    Last night I finally received a set of custom molding knives I ordered. The knives are actually for a friend and neighbor of mine, he needed to make some custom molding for a job he is working on in his shop. I hadn't had time lately to use the new machine due to my shop schedule and an influx of sign work. After what I learned last night I am all of a sudden hot to get going with some molding projects of my own.

    We transported the ShopFox molder to my friends shop yesterday afternoon as my shop is just too cluttered right now. The pictures below are just a taste of an article I am preparing to post here at the Creek about the ShopFox planer molder, I need more time to put together photos and create a series of jigs for machining arched molding. As soon as my next round of knives arrives I will get started, I recently was able to find the time to move al of my Corian inventory away from my lumber racks which I haven't been able to access for months.

    I have to say that my ShopFox Planer Molder is one of the slickest woodworking machines I have ever used. In spite of it's small size it is truly a workhorse. The photos of James and I running his red oak molding last night tell the rest of the story. The ShopFox was smooth and reasonably quiet. At about 14 feet per minute we were making really nice molding in just one pass.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
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    Sterling CT
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    hi Keith

    the W&H and the knockoffs like the SF are very interesting machines. I have a shop full of very large cast iron machines, but I have been thinking about this little fellow. Every guy who has one has the same opinion as you do... A great little machine that really is impressive

    best wishes
    Lou

  3. #3
    keith, i`m curious as to how well the chipbreaker/hood performed? when i first looked at this machine the major difference i noticed between it and my w&h was the shape and casting differances of the chipbreaker and i`ve wondered how well it does, what percent of what you ran was chipped/torn? thanks for the review.....tod

    [edit] just noticed the rag under the transmission, guess this version leaks oil just like the w&h? ya` know that`s how you tell when to add gear oil, when the dripping slows down..
    Last edited by tod evans; 05-13-2006 at 9:01 AM.
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  4. #4
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    Thanks for the update, Keith. This is a mildly interesting machine to me, especially with our upcoming home addition project.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
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    Lou,

    I'm pretty excited about the possibilities of making my own molding and experimenting with Corian as well. I know that for at least 20 years I have wanted a W&H planer molder but the price kept me at bay. I am so impressed at how well this machine performed and the price makes it a real bargain.

    Tod,

    The red oak we were using was clear, there wasn't any chipout in the entire run we did last night. I expect that the knives being brand new and sharp had something to do with the performance as well. I remember the pictures you posted awhile back of your machine, I was impressed by the arches you made.

    Yeah, I was surprised at the oil foaming and having to put a rag under the fill tube. I expect that I will come up with a small plastic bowl to catch the overflow from now on

    Jim,

    Ya just gotta see one of these machines work, geez they are really nice. Something else that is very cool, there is no software to learn before you can use the molder and you don't even need a computer which makes it really nice for woodworkers my age I really love the CNC and laser stuff but I have to admit it was just plain fun to be able to set a machine up and start producing right away...like it used to be

    .

  6. #6
    keith, they`re an amazingly simple machine (even an ol` brain-dead hillbilly can drive `em). when i used the factory gearbox i`d just let `er drip, the sawdust will soak up the oil whereas if a bowl where to fall off and spill you`d have a real mess. glad to hear that the chipbreaker is doing as it should! how big a bite where you taking with those knifes? looks like less than 1/2" x 3 1/2" or so? just this morning i ran some maple arches where the profile is 11/16 x 4-1/4 it still amazes me how well these guys chew up wood and spit out mouldings! enjoy....02 tod
    TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN; I ACCEPT FULL LEGAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR MY POSTS ON THIS FORUM, ALL POSTS ARE MADE IN GOOD FAITH CONTAINING FACTUAL INFORMATION AS I KNOW IT.

  7. Do you think the variable speed option would be of value? How about Shop Fox vs. W &H vs. Bridgewood ??

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Hmmmmm...Bears a striking resemblence to my W&H!!! Kinda' funny, though; I think there's something in the air.... I pulled my W&H out this morning for the first time in months and ran some Cherry through it to make picture frame moldings. LOML even commented on how the final product looks as though it doesn't even need to be sanded. It does, but not much! Glad you're enjoying it.
    Cheers,
    John K. Miliunas

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  9. #9
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    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
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    Tod,

    The molding is 3.25" wide and the 5 coves are 3/8" dia and about 3/16" deep. Not exactly a big cut but not bad for a single pass run.

    Steve,

    I can't say how much the varible speed gearbox would improve the machine but I expect that it would be valuable when making crown molding and other styles that require lots of stock removal.

    John,

    Oh Yeah! The best is yet to come as I find time to experiment with things like arches and the other cool stuff this machine will do. Very close to the W&H design the ShopFox molder takes the same knives and I expect the performance is very close. My CNC router should be just the ticket for making custom guides for the molder with the exception of ovals, I think a special jig is required.

    .

  10. #10
    Any chance that the shop fox machine takes corrugated back knives? Currently I run my mouldings on a 5 hp shaper with a power feeder but am looking for a safer method for employees. I already have a decent selection of corrugated back knives and shudder at the thought of having to retool with different knives.Thanks in advance and congrats on an great forum.

  11. #11
    the dc servo feed motor is the cats behind! variable speed was the answer to all the w&h woes and i`m sure the other moulders would benefit from the technology too. the cnc should provide perfect patterns/blanks and guides for running radiuses but you`re correct keith ellipses having a constently changing radius require a "flexable" jig to guide them through the machine, i opted to build mine (cause i`m cheap!) loosely patterned after the now defunct(?) bonnyman jig. it uses pneumatic cylinders to provide pressure against the pattern to hold it in tight referance to the guide bearing.
    robbert, if you need a moulder to run radiuses with cor. back knifes i think you`re going to be stuck bucking up for a mirkon that`ll take heads right off your stick moulder. to the best or my knowledge neither the w&h or its clones accept 60deg steel.
    for those interested in doing custom runs using this type of machine cg schmidt sells shaper and traditional moulder heads that will accept w&h style knifes.......02 tod
    TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN; I ACCEPT FULL LEGAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR MY POSTS ON THIS FORUM, ALL POSTS ARE MADE IN GOOD FAITH CONTAINING FACTUAL INFORMATION AS I KNOW IT.

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