Successful slab planing, thought I'd share!

Hi all,

I read the many threads asking for help planing large boards. I have a gorgeous 14" x 21" x 1.8" redwood slab that was irregularly planed and lumpy in some spots. I was able to successfully plane it beautifully, shaving 0.2" off of each side of the slab. Some notes:

  1. I used Easel to make a pocket slightly bigger than the board so that the X/Y min/max would end with the center of my bit on the corners of the work piece.
  2. I held the piece down with double sided carpet tape from Home Depot, and clamped 2x4 pieces down on the back and either side sandwiching it snugly but keeping the clamps out of the way of the bit
  3. The bit I used was a Whiteside 1/4" 6210 surfacing bit. It has a 1" cutting diameter. I added this in Easel as a straight bit.
  4. I went with the Easel suggested values for feed. I probably could have ramped it up, but slow and steady wins the race. Dewalt 611 set to 1 as the manufacturer suggests 15k RPM for the bit.
  5. Since I’m using Easel Pro, I used a Y-axis raster fill with the grain
  6. CNCjs for the actual cutting and monitoring through webcam

The planing is absolutely perfect, even better than I’d expect from a good planer (which this slab wouldn’t fit in). It feels as smooth as if I’d sanded it with 220 grit. Really really impressed with the utility of this machine.

My only regret is not having my dust collector in place first. This job generated a TON of fine dust.


Norm goes “hold my beer!” That dude’s planer can take the entire conference room table with the legs on it in one shot!



1 Like

Nice! TY Steven! Slow but not so heat building slow right? New to cnc wood milling but not to laser, i would imagine too slow builds heat that could burn? Like I was taught with hand hardwood routing, to keep the router moving at a steady speed? Or does that sacrifice edge finish? I am inlaying and cutting pockets for Black Walnut and Red Mallee Burl. The older I get, the more humility it takes to ask questions. To me this is growth. lol. Thanks in advance. Kurt. PS I know this is an older post and I’m late to the game but hopefully you’re still; around inventables to answer. :+1:t4:

Since RPM is fairly high (typically 16k RPM for the Dewalt) its best to keep things moving at a medium-fast pace as depth is shallow. What is fast for my machine may be not so fast on yours so your milage may vary. Easel do support feed override (10-200%) so one can play around a little…

I´d start with 60IPM myself and take it from there.

If the router in in perfect tram one can increase stepover from the default 40% to say 70-80% to decrease the path needed to complete the piece.