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I just discovered "Supersurfacers" through Mark Hen...'s site at Solidwood Machinery but I can't find any independent, non-Japanese, web-sites about the machines. Not that I don't trust my original source but I'd like some feedback on others knowledge or experience. I make windows for historic properties and want to prep the surfaces for paint or stain prior to assembly. If this is indeed an alternative to WB drum/platten or orbital sanding why isn't it more well known or utilized?
It's not an alternative to the widebelt/platen, my favorite is still the stroke sander for the budget minded and those looking for more versatility.
Maranuka is the leader in super surfacers. Hitachi and Makita were trying to bring the machines to the small shop and hobbyists in the late 70's and it never went anywhere. The widebelt will do finished frames and panels. The super surfacer is geared toward individual pieces and you will still have issues of flattening your joints unless you go to a slot mortiser and it will still need some touch up. You are totally off base if you think the super surfacer will do what you are expecting and eliminate the extra work.
That's not necessaraly what I wanted to hear but it was the information I was seeking.
I was intending to run single pieces prior to assembly. I also can live with a .005 - .01 offset the joints and wouldn't worry about sanding that small difference. But If you think the SS is crazy for my app then I'll duely note that. I can pick up a WBS for a song compared to a SS anyway. When my ship comes in I may pick one up, fall in love with it and prove you wrong but meanwhile I'll probably save that xtra 10K difference and go WBS.
I respectively disagree with Rick.
The Marunaka dealer at Fensterbau this year was running pine scantlings through one then dropping the parts in a bucket of water for a few minutes. There was no grain raising on the faces that were supersurfaced but a lot on the 2 edges that were conventional planed. This would be a big plus if using water base finishes. Insert window tooling Mfgs. are engineering window tooling to prevent grain raising for the water base finishes as well.
True, you can probably buy a used wide belt for less than a Marunaka. I think sharpening the knives on these could be a little involved. If you do a lot of doors or other millwork the wide belt would be the better choice if you can only have one. We used a stroke sander for 15 years and it would be difficult to keep individual scantling precise thickness with one.
This is the kind of dialog I was hoping for.
I must reitterate that I do not intend to run the assemble product through a surfacer/sander. Parts only - to avoid cross grain sanding. Someone told me about the raising of the grain and that is a consideration since I do use a waterbased paint on the interior, the only surface with which I'm concerned. I clad the exterior.
SS have insert tooling as well. I think Kanefusa sold some. The disposable knives last substantially longer. Extremely shiny and crisp surfaces. Next best to hand planing. Fast feed rates. Joe pretty much summed it up.