Doug Carlson

DW735 Advanced Tune Up, anyone?

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I have a DW735 that's about 13 years old and in that time I've run A LOT of board feet through it.

It's starting to show it's age. Nothing really specific that I can point to, but it doesn't feed very smoothly any more. The cutterhead lock doesn't seem to work and on a few occasions I noticed that it didn't change speeds when I flipped the lever to go to the slower finishing speed.

So, I'm getting the feeling that it needs a good tune up. And I'm wondering if anyone has done this?

Let me be clear:

I am NOT talking about waxing the tables, cleaning the rollers, changing the blades or resetting the preset turret stops. This is all basic planer maintenance and I've done this religiously.

I'm taking about:

(possibly)

1. re lubricating and possibly retensioning the drive chain. 

2. Replacing the rubber on the rollers, or failing that, replacing the rollers altogether.

3. Looking at the mechanism that allows you to change speeds (never looked at this before. No idea how it works. Clutch and gears? I honestly have no idea).

4. hopefully fixing the cutterhead lock. (Not a big deal that this doesn't work but I like all my stuff to work at full potential)

5. Install a helical cutterhead.

6. Anything else I can find.

Has anyone done any work on the DW735 above and beyond normal maintenance? If so, any advice, recommendations or 'gotchas' along the way?

I love this machine and think I can probably get another 13 years out of it if I give it a serious tune-up now.

My only complaint (and this goes for any planer with straight knives) is the noise, and I know the helical cutterhead cuts the noise down considerably.

Thanks in advance

dewalt-dw735-1.jpg

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I am on my second 735,  the first one died after about 10yrs.   I was in the middle of a rush project and didn't try to fix it.  I did however cannibalize it to salvage parts for future repairs.  

1.  I don't remember seeing a tensioning mechanism for the drive train, doesn't mean it isn't  there, I wasn't looking.  

2.  I think you will have to replace the rollers, I just don't see how the rubber could be replaced easily.  I didn't save the rollers on my old unit, they were badly worn.  

3. The gear box for the speed change is on the left side (behind the height locking knob).  It is fairly simple with 2 chain driven gears and a spring loaded tensioner.  If it is not working I would suspect that the spring has broken or is disconnected.   One of the gears might be stripped.

4.  Since you are adding a helical head, you will remove the cutter head  lock.  If you don't go with a helical head the lock is a simple spring loaded post and should be a simple fix.

5.  I highly recommend the helical head.  I have had mine going on six years now, and in my opinion made a really good machine even better.  

While your in there, replace the Vbelt for the motor to drive head.  Dewalt is in love with this little belt, they want $44 for a new one.

I did a quick search and found replacement rollers for about $74 each.

This is where I buy my parts.  https://www.ereplacementparts.com/dewalt-dw735-type-inch-planer-parts-c-1009_2664_2987.html?source=gaws&gclid=CjwKCAjw_MnmBRAoEiwAPRRWWxvaIXUhNYo_k_bmDQe6Hg1MKTLkccc_b_f_fVN2o4hfOSPY27810hoCBUoQAvD_BwE

Good luck.

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The helical had has has many advantages, noise reduction is just one. But don't expect a huge reduction in noise. All the screaming the machine does when no wood is going through comes from the universal motor and chip ejector fan, which isn't going to change.

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The machine is extremely easy to work on. When i replaced the standard head to HH on mine I was elated the attention to detail that was taken in the design to make the machine easy to assemble from the factory and easy to work on.

1 hour ago, wtnhighlander said:

The helical had has has many advantages, noise reduction is just one. But don't expect a huge reduction in noise. All the screaming the machine does when no wood is going through comes from the universal motor and chip ejector fan, which isn't going to change.

I respectfully disagree. The noise reduction was huge.It went from foam ear plugs with ear muff style over top to just using some reusable 20 DB plugs.

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Thanks all, very much.

@Just Bob thank you for your detailed response. Since I thought up this scheme last night,  with the benefit of a night's sleep and all your replies, I'm kind of inclined to agree with @Chris208.

 

If only someone would be selling a used DW 735 with a helical head already installed (*cough* @Chestnut) :)

i think I'll poke around in there real soon, and tighten what I can tighten, lubricate what I can lubricate and do what I can to tune it up without investing in replacement parts. Then I'll either hold out for a quality used machine or buy brand new. The cost has come down so much on this machine, we often sell them at the store, with the stand, in/out feed tables and an extra set of blades for a little over $650. (I think. Might even be closer to$600).

anyway, thanks again everyone who took the time to respond here. And @Chestnut, give me a shout if/when you decide you want to do that.

 

take care all.

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I want to sell it and will. It's a matter of when not if. I need to get the money accounted for before i hit buy. I have a couple for profit jobs ahead i might bake in a few extra dollars and blame it on the lumber yard closing and not being able to source material any more. In reality it'll be for a planer. It's not like they are goign to lose on the deal any way. I probably only make $5 an hour on my for profit work.

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Maybe @chestnut has a machine that makes less noise than mine, but even without a board feeding through, mine screams. A different head isn't likely to change that, UNLESS (and I haven't tried to confirm) the recesses on the rotating head pass across an opening that allows it to act as a mechanical siren. If that is the case, the helical design would have a significant impact.

There are still plenty of reasons to use the helical design, even if the sound level doesn't change. My preference, however, would be to put the money toward a 15 or 20 inch machine with induction motor(s) and a helical head already in it.

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Jay Bates did a video on switching his 735 from straight to Byrd head. His tests showed 69db for straight knives at no load and 65db with Byrd at no load. Under load was about 6db quieter than straight knives.

Link

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I’ve yet  to understand decibels. I bought a new dishwasher yesterday and the sales lady was explaining the difference between 42 and 37 and I just said, ok, and bought the 37. That was at Best Buy. Then at Sears, the guy told me that for over the range microwaves, it was just the opposite, the higher the better. I thought that to be a crock. I know it’s a sound measurement but that’s about all. 

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3 hours ago, JohnG said:

Jay Bates did a video on switching his 735 from straight to Byrd head. His tests showed 69db for straight knives at no load and 65db with Byrd at no load. Under load was about 6db quieter than straight knives.

Link

6db is quite noticeable

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17 minutes ago, K Cooper said:

I’ve yet  to understand decibels. I bought a new dishwasher yesterday and the sales lady was explaining the difference between 42 and 37 and I just said, ok, and bought the 37. That was at Best Buy. ...

I did the same thing when we got ours a couple years back what they fail to mention is the water slapping the dishes around is way above 37db LOL

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17 minutes ago, K Cooper said:

I’ve yet  to understand decibels. I bought a new dishwasher yesterday and the sales lady was explaining the difference between 42 and 37 and I just said, ok, and bought the 37. That was at Best Buy. Then at Sears, the guy told me that for over the range microwaves, it was just the opposite, the higher the better. I thought that to be a crock. I know it’s a sound measurement but that’s about all. 

More decibels is louder. It’s a logarithmic scale, not linear. A 10db increase is roughly twice as intense. So a 6db decrease is definitely noticeable. 

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That was an expense we could have done without. One, ours was still working and quiet enough, just not a s/s finish. Two, we have a double s/s sink so what do we need a dishwasher for? I’ve learned to just say yes ma’am and kiss a**. :(

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7 minutes ago, JohnG said:

More decibels is louder. It’s a logarithmic scale, not linear. A 10db increase is roughly twice as intense. So a 6db decrease is definitely noticeable. 

That’s more or less what the Best Buy lady said. Must be the reason that Sears isn’t doing so well, unfortunately. I see that Loew’s is now carrying Craftsman tools. 

Damn, I just hj’ed another thread. Sorry OP! 

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13 hours ago, JohnG said:

Jay Bates did a video on switching his 735 from straight to Byrd head. His tests showed 69db for straight knives at no load and 65db with Byrd at no load. Under load was about 6db quieter than straight knives.

Link

Yeah I'm not sure Jay's video is nearly accurate. He used a phone to measure and 69 dB is just not giving the planer credit it deserves should be more like 120dB

I measured near a 10 dB decrease in mine but that was with my phone which isn't accurate.

13 hours ago, wtnhighlander said:

Maybe @chestnut has a machine that makes less noise than mine, but even without a board feeding through, mine screams. A different head isn't likely to change that, UNLESS (and I haven't tried to confirm) the recesses on the rotating head pass across an opening that allows it to act as a mechanical siren. If that is the case, the helical design would have a significant impact.

There are still plenty of reasons to use the helical design, even if the sound level doesn't change. My preference, however, would be to put the money toward a 15 or 20 inch machine with induction motor(s) and a helical head already in it.

I get your apprehension but the noise difference is more than you'd expect. It was more than i expected.There is a lot of air raid siren noise from strait knife cutter heads.

Have you watched Cremona's video on replacing the cutthead in his machine? He used a legit meter to measure the noise. On his griz planer he had a 14 dB drop.

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The exact readings may not be incredibly accurate, but the point of it was more to say there is a noticeable difference between straight and helical at no load. Cremona's results are likely more accurate and precise, and seem to support Jay's findings. I was going to reference his video and findings, but Jay's were easier to find at the time and he has the same machine as OP.

NIOSH has done tests on sound meter apps and found that some do measure within ±2db, though no apps are certified.

 

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28 minutes ago, JohnG said:

The exact readings may not be incredibly accurate, but the point of it was more to say there is a noticeable difference between straight and helical at no load. Cremona's results are likely more accurate and precise, and seem to support Jay's findings. I was going to reference his video and findings, but Jay's were easier to find at the time and he has the same machine as OP.

NIOSH has done tests on sound meter apps and found that some do measure within ±2db, though no apps are certified.

 

I guess it's not clear how far the meter is from the sound source that has a HUGE impact. That NIOSH finding interests me. I have a one of the aps on my phone and it tells me the sound right next to my planer is 68 dB but outside my shop with doors close it's 65dB. Must be per phone manufacture and app as well cause I'm sure the hardware matters and how it's calibrated with the software. For comparison sake it works yes. I'm just skeptical when the reading is as far off as it is especially on a log scale.

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7 minutes ago, Chestnut said:

I guess it's not clear how far the meter is from the sound source that has a HUGE impact. That NIOSH finding interests me. I have a one of the aps on my phone and it tells me the sound right next to my planer is 68 dB but outside my shop with doors close it's 65dB. Must be per phone manufacture and app as well cause I'm sure the hardware matters and how it's calibrated with the software. For comparison sake it works yes. I'm just skeptical when the reading is as far off as it is especially on a log scale.

I suspect there may be an element of overloading the microphone input on the phone as well. It's going to be optimized for normal speaking levels, so a lot of them may be incapable of measuring beyond a certain level. Normally above 80-85 dB is where you would need to have hearing protection in a workplace setting, depending on the length of exposure. A lunchbox planer with straight knives is going to be well over that, so I wouldn't trust the sound metering at those levels using a phone, although they probably work fine at more reasonable noise levels.

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One more thing to consider about the noise is that decibels are not a good measure of perceived loudness. Different frequency noises at the same decibel level can sound drastically louder or quieter to us. 

The NIOSH tests found that iOS apps were generally more accurate than android apps, due to hardware and OS differences. 

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13 hours ago, Chestnut said:

Yeah I'm not sure Jay's video is nearly accurate. He used a phone to measure and 69 dB is just not giving the planer credit it deserves should be more like 120dB

I measured near a 10 dB decrease in mine but that was with my phone which isn't accurate.

I get your apprehension but the noise difference is more than you'd expect. It was more than i expected.There is a lot of air raid siren noise from strait knife cutter heads.

Have you watched Cremona's video on replacing the cutthead in his machine? He used a legit meter to measure the noise. On his griz planer he had a 14 dB drop.

There is the fact that I have age and exposure-related hearing anomalies that influence how I perceive the "loudness", as compared to some instrument that measures sound pressure levels electronically. But then, that will be true for a lot of us. 

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14 hours ago, wtnhighlander said:

There is the fact that I have age and exposure-related hearing anomalies that influence how I perceive the "loudness", as compared to some instrument that measures sound pressure levels electronically. But then, that will be true for a lot of us. 

Probably. I don't have you ears for good or for worse :D. I don't know how hearing loss and different frequencies effects precised hearing. I also don't know if that effects the pain threshold. It'd be interesting to note if pain from loud noise depending on frequency of noise as well. This is a tangent and more of a thought.

Also perception is a weird thing. I've often wondered if the red i see is the same as the next person. Do we like different tings because our senses pick things up differently?

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There is a product available called Rubber Restore, which can renew the surface of a rubber roller and restore the tack.  It's not a substitute for replacement but it works well.  When I worked at a computer shop we used it on printer rollers to restore the tack when we couldn't source replacements easily.  Ours came in a 16 ounce bottle.  The smell is horrid, but it works.  I'm not sure how expensive it is.

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