Woodmaster for Straight-Line Ripping

Advice on using a Woodmaster as a gang ripsaw. January 25, 2010

I have a Woodmaster 18" and have heard someone say how to use it for a straight liner. Have any of you used one to do this and how did you set it up. I spent all day trying to make some cuts on lumber I milled and air dry after I planed them to 13/16. I was trying to use two L brackets to guide the board after the blade but was having trouble keeping the board straight to run on the L brackets. Also is there a company that has blades larger in size then the Woodmaster blades?

Forum Responses
(Solid Wood Machining Forum)
From contributor T:
Woodmaster calling that a gang rip would be like me calling a go-kart a Formula 1 race car because it happens to have four wheels and an engine. That said, in order to straight line rip or accurately glue-line rip you need pressure and feed above and below the board. You do not want to use a fence to guide the rough edge, it’s freehanded preferably with a laser line in line with the blade. Looking at the photos on Woodmaster’s website maybe you could mount a laser to the hood of the machine.

This machine simply does not have adequate feeding and pressure rolls to really be a production machine. I would strongly recommend you check the used equipment options for an old Diehl or Mattison straight line rip. They can be had for under $5k and will run day in and day out as much lumber as you can throw at them.

From contributor U:
I have never looked at a Woodmaster, so maybe it has all of the good safety stuff a gang saw needs, but somehow I doubt it. Be very careful. A gang saw not properly designed and not properly maintained is more deadly than Russian Roulette. It will kill you. So the first thing to find out is whether it has sufficient anti-kickback protection, not only in the area used by the operator, but to the sides as well. If you are afraid of a bullet, imagine the bullet is an inch or more in diameter and three feet long. After you establish that it is safe, then go to the next step.

From contributor R:
I happen to have actually used a Woodmaster 718 to gang rip many thousands of feet of material. The gang rip feature of the machine is one I did not think I would use when I bought it, but I have used it a lot. I've run as many as five blades at a time. It gives very clean cuts and if set up properly, the strips are parallel and straight. The blades are 5.5 inch diameter and the machine has variable speed feed, so it works perfectly fine. There is always a chance of parts coming out of the machine, but the cutting forces on these blades are FAR less than using a molding knife. I have had molding parts come out before, but never a gang rip part.