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  1. #1
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    May 2011
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    Albury
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    Default Helical Cutterhead for DeWalt 735 Under $500

    Don't know whether this is common knowledge, but looks like extremely good value to me.
    Sherwood Spiral Cutter Head Upgrade - Only Suits DeWalt DW735-XE (timbecon.com.au)

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    NSW
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    I have some hardwood that I am sawing into 100mm wide decking and I want to end up with one smooth face. The dewalt blades are "patchy" when it comes to hardness so I did the upgrade. Yes, it worked. The instructions are reasonable. After you have done a couple of conversions, it's pretty easy. There are benefits to the conversion (quieter, smaller chips, possibly handles cranky grain better, longer cutter life) but there is one downside.
    This cutter drum is narrower than the original dewalt blade carrier. That's not a problem until you want to use that repetitive stop facility on the left hand side of the machine. All the settings are out because of the smaller gutter diameter. And if you want to take big cuts, you can't because the smaller cutter means it can't get as much of a bite. The limiting factor is the distance between the platter and the bottom of the adjustable head.
    But it's good, it works and it blows these little tiny chips about 3M!

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Newcastle
    Posts
    439

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Old Hilly View Post
    I have some hardwood that I am sawing into 100mm wide decking and I want to end up with one smooth face. The dewalt blades are "patchy" when it comes to hardness so I did the upgrade. Yes, it worked. The instructions are reasonable. After you have done a couple of conversions, it's pretty easy. There are benefits to the conversion (quieter, smaller chips, possibly handles cranky grain better, longer cutter life) but there is one downside.
    This cutter drum is narrower than the original dewalt blade carrier. That's not a problem until you want to use that repetitive stop facility on the left hand side of the machine. All the settings are out because of the smaller gutter diameter. And if you want to take big cuts, you can't because the smaller cutter means it can't get as much of a bite. The limiting factor is the distance between the platter and the bottom of the adjustable head.
    But it's good, it works and it blows these little tiny chips about 3M!
    So this is similar to the Byrd reduced diameter Shelix head?

    BUY ONLINE

  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    NSW
    Posts
    483

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    Possibly, although this head has only 2 "spirals" or rows of cutters and from memory the Shelix has 3 rows. The reduced number of cutters doesn't seem to make a difference to the quality of the finish compared to the original straight knives. Running the timber through on speed 2 gives a nice finish with only minimal sanding. I don't think I need to go out and buy a drum sander.....yet.
    The idea behind both the small Shelix and this head was, I think, that you don't need to undo 30-odd torx screws, remove the carbide cutters, insert the bare head and then put everything back together again. The problem is that the thickness scale is "off".

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    blue mountains
    Posts
    4,640

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    Tempted as the price is getting a bit more like sensible. Is the cut depth off by much? Just thinking of workarounds if its more off than the adjustment to the gauge will handle.
    Regards
    John

  7. #6
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    May 2009
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    NSW
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    John, at this stage, I don't know. I never used the thing (either the knob with the preset thicknesses or the scale on the side of the inferred slot) before the conversion but I guess I can run a stick through the machine and compare results. It's just possible that there is some sort of calibration adjustment in there somewhere, I just never bothered to look for it, didn't need to, didn't use it. But now you ask the question I guess it's worth a try.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    blue mountains
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    4,640

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    Thanks I am sure something could be worked out.I did read someplace that the quick install head is 1/16'' less than the old one so hope the timbecon one is the same . I think the scale adjustment should stretch that far. I could extend the slot in the pointer if I have to. The markings on the preset thickness knob being marked in metric equivalent for imperial graduations is a pain now so I never use that. May be time to just get a bit of stick on imperial measuring tape.
    Regards
    John

  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    NSW
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    483

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    Well, here are the results of a quick and not totally scientifically accurate test of the relationship between the indicated thickness and the actual thickness as measured by a digital caliper.
    With the scale on the right hand side of the machine reading 20mm the actual thickness after 2 passes was 21.2mm
    Using the preset knob set to 19mm the actual thickness after 2 passes was 20.13mm.
    In both cases there were no chips or dust observed at the exhaust port of the machine on the second pass so, in practice, one pass gets you down to the desired thickness.
    Just looking at my machine the indicator bar on the scale on the RH side is adjustable and the preset knob on the LH side contacts a rod which is adjustable, so there is provision in the design for adjustment.
    I would have thought that there would have been more than 1.2mm difference in the diameters of the old straight-knife cutter head and the new spiral head but my measurements show that things are close to the same.
    An interesting thing is the waste produced. the chips are tiny, perhaps only 6 or 8mm long, nothing like the long shavings from the straight knives. The DW735 has it's own exhaust blower to move the chips out of the cutting chamber and it certainly does that! Blows them more than 3M which could be a problem if you don't have a "chip catcher".

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    NSW
    Age
    36
    Posts
    765

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    for anyone worrying about the scale being out of alignment.


    its super easy to fit a DRO to your machine (I did it on my carbitec model), and i think I-gaging actually make a bracket/setup specifically for the dewalt machine
    Digital read out (DRO) added to carbatec thicknesser
    DeWalt Planer Digital

  11. #10
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    NSW
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    483

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    Well, it was easy enough to reset the measuring devices on the 735, I just ran some material through the machine until I got to 19mm, well, it was 19.05mm on one side and 18.95mm on the other but that was close enough for this part of the bush. Leaving things set at that position I moved the right hand indicator to match the 19mm mark and tightened the screws. On the left hand side I had set the repeat or quick position knob to the "19" setting and I adjusted the pin that is threaded into the frame so that it contacted the top of the hole in the knob and tightened the locknut. I ran some wood through the machine after winding the head up and back down to the stop, did some adjustments, tried again and settled at a repeatable 18.92mm. It's raining, I should check the measurement when things dry up a bit but I think that will do for now.
    But that digital readout is looking good.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    blue mountains
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    Well I just clicked the button on one so I guess I will have to sort out the scale somehow. As I said about the imperial graduations and metric markings on the depth stop its going to be better with imperial scale. I think that way in wood anyhow. At the time I bought the machine a spiral head would have cost as much as the machine so good to see them coming down in price. It all comes to he that waits as they say but I am getting to the stage of life where I can't wait too long.
    Regards
    John

  13. #12
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    NSW
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    The markings on the RH (long) scale are ambidextrous or imperial on the left side of the scale and metric on the right. But they are decimals of the good old inch, not fractions, thank heavens, so you should be happy "orraloon". If you do decide to do the conversion, watch the how to do it video numerous times. It's simple enough but you will need thread-lock for the screws and nimble fingers for some of the small parts that want to hide in awkward places. A magnet probe comes in handy, even if you don't need it.

  14. #13
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    Sep 2009
    Location
    Newcastle
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    Anyone know what replacement carbide inserts it uses?

    Mainly interested if inserts are available from other sellers, e.g SJE SJE-Tool

  15. #14
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    May 2009
    Location
    NSW
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    483

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    Well pippin, I have not yet started looking for replacement carbide cutters but the thing comes with 4 or 5 spares so I measured them and found them to be 15mm square but with a slight radius on the edge, you might just fit a "Tally-Ho"paper between the corner of the insert and a straight edge. The insert is about 2.5mm thick (I got a reading of 2.51mm once but that may have been dust on the insert) and the hole is 6.3mm and countersunk.
    I should contact SJE Tools and see what they know about these things, thanks for the link.

  16. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    Leopold, Victoria
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    The inserts might be the same as these which are a bit of a rarity with the 37 angle as most inserts are 30. Those are the same as what is used in the Sherwood Spiral head Thicknesser and Timbecon don't advertise them anywhere on their site.
    Looking at the photo of the cutter head the inserts look like they have a fairly sharp angle on them.
    Dallas

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