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Woodworking is an art that demands precision, patience, and the right techniques. Whether you’re a seasoned woodworker or a beginner, using a woodworking jointer is an essential skill. However, it’s easy to make mistakes that can affect the quality of your work or even lead to accidents. Learn more about common mistakes to avoid when using a woodworking jointer, ensuring your projects are successful and safe.

Watch how our member Daliyl Muhammad uses the NextFab woodshop to create handmade furniture!

1. Don’t Skip Safety Gear

Woodworking Safety Gear

The first mistake to avoid is neglecting safety gear. Always wear safety glasses, hearing protection, and dust masks. Woodworking equipment can be dangerous, and the jointer is no exception. Protecting yourself from flying debris and loud noises is crucial for a safe woodworking experience.

2. Pay Attention to the Jointer Bed Alignment

A misaligned jointer bed can lead to uneven cuts and wood wastage. Regularly check and adjust the infeed and outfeed tables to be co-planar. This ensures that the wood passes smoothly over the cutter head, resulting in precise and even cuts.

3. Sharpen the Blades

Dull blades not only make your job harder but also compromise the finish of your work. Ensure your jointer blades are sharp and well-maintained. Dull blades can cause tear-outs, uneven surfaces, and even kickbacks, which are dangerous.

4. Feed the Wood Correctly

Feeding wood incorrectly through a jointer can result in imperfect joints and may even damage the wood. Always feed the wood against the cutter head rotation and maintain a consistent feed rate. This practice guarantees smoother cuts and better control.

Cody Hughes | Untitled_Co. Design

5. Properly Manage Snipe

Snipe, a deeper cut at the beginning or end of a board, is a common issue with jointers. To avoid this, support the wood at both ends during the entire cutting process. This extra support helps in achieving an even depth throughout the board.

6. Measure the Jointer Table

Underestimating the importance of the jointer table length is a mistake. For longer boards, a jointer with a longer table provides better support, reducing the risk of uneven cuts or accidents. Choose the right jointer size based on the projects you undertake.

7. Watch Out for Metal

Before jointing, always check the wood for nails, screws, or any metal. Hitting metal with the jointer blades can be dangerous and will damage your blades. A thorough inspection before jointing can save you from a lot of trouble.

8. Maintain the Jointer

Regular maintenance of your jointer is essential. Keep it clean from dust and debris, lubricate moving parts, and check for any loose bolts or parts. A well-maintained jointer is safer and performs better. At NextFab, we provide regular maintenance of our equipment to help ensure safety and efficiency. You can also check out all our woodworking equipment here.

Avoiding these common mistakes will not only improve the quality of your woodworking projects but also ensure your safety in the workshop. Remember, a woodworking jointer is a powerful tool, and respecting its capabilities is key to mastering its use. Happy woodworking!

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