The new additions

I made two huge acquisitions today to nearly complete the shop. Really, I have three things left that I really want for the shop: a bandsaw, a planer and a drill press. A bandsaw would let me resaw wood and make tight cuts. After today, I don’t think this will ever happen in this shop. I simply don’t have the room. A planer takes rough cut wood and makes the surfaces smooth, can reduce the depth, and also joint the edges. A very useful tool, one that actually saves money the more you use it. The drill press is essential for accurate holes, and especially useful for series of holes. Perfect for making the holes for adjustable shelves, as well as being a great tool for starting mortises.

Well, I can cross the drill press and planer off the list.

I’ve been scanning Craigslist for planers, and almost lucked into a AP1300.(Ryobi) a couple of weeks ago. It went within four hours. Well, I saw another ad for a Ryobi planer for a little bit cheaper. I called, and made arrangements to check it out today. If it was the newer AP1301 model, I wouldn’t have bought it. The newer one is a cost-cutter model, eliminating the cutterhead lock and extension tables, two things that help to reduce snipe. Snipe is uneven cutting of the wood and makes part of the piece basically unusable. I took a look, and it was indeed the better, older model. Dusty, one piece broken, but it made a beautiful cut on the wood I tested. Perfect, no snipe whatsoever. The blades made a very nice cut, so I shouldn’t have to replace them immediately. Great buy, and he threw in a stand.

Before I picked that up, I made a trip to a Home Depot near there. I got a tip about a huge floor drill press on clearance. I had been thinking about getting one from Harbor Freight, a bench model that would have served the purpose. The main purpose being helping me make mortises for the big birthday present I’m starting soon. Well, this drill press blows the HF ones out of the water. A Ridgid DP1550, it’s a 1/2hp model that may be my first and last. Even though I bought the floor model, it should still retain the lifetime warranty. Being the floor model,
it’s unfortunately missing some pieces. The key for the chuck, the lightbulb (which may not come in the box), the safety key are all not there. I’ll give Ridgid a call tomorrow and see if I can’t get those parts, and register the machine. This thing is almost as tall as I am. It’s quite impressive, and see why they charge what they do. But better for me, because I got it for half price! For the last drill press I may ever need? Damn fine deal. Thanks to Tommy for helping me grab it. I’ll be testing the accuracy of it this week, but it seems rock solid and made a great hole with the one bit I tried.

Damn good day for the shop, even though there’s less room. Getting some more tubs out of there will help.

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