Stupid underpinner question

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nolonstacey
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Stupid underpinner question

Post by nolonstacey » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 8:28 am

This is going to be another stupid newbie question, but one that I cannot find the answer to anywhere.

I have the Alpha U200 underpinner, and I know that the hammer should be adjusted so that it is flush with the head when the pedal is all the way down, but what I cannot find is what part of the hammer should be flush? There's a flat bit (b) and a raised v shaped bit (a). I'm assuming it's the flat bit, but that does mean that the raised bit makes a little groove in the wood when the nail is inserted, and the v nail is then a few mm into the wood. It feels like this pushes the moulding up and out a little.

Be gentle!!
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Justintime
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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by Justintime » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 8:52 am

The manual says that if the hammer is set too high it will do exactly what you say it is doing. Sounds like you need to follow the instructions to lower the hammer slightly.
The hammer is "a" in your image. If you remove all of the wedges from the machine and press the foot pedal fully you will see the hammer appear closest to the fence, exactly where the wedge enters the moulding.
Hope that helps.
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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by Not your average framer » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 8:56 am

A lot of us like to have the hammer blade press the wedge in very slightly below flush as it is better to be slightly below flush rather than slightly stiching out and slightly raising the backing tape and not producing nice smooth finish when the frame is tapped up. It's not a very critical thing, that needs to be set to a super accurate setting. I adjusted my previous Cassese CS-88 to be about 1mm below flush, but afterwards I bought and new CS-88 and that one is yet to be set below flush.

BTW, there is no such thing as a stupid question on this forum. We all have to start somewhere and asking seemingly trivial questions is something which most of us have needed to do at sometime, so feel free to ask when you need to. Nobody minds answering trivial questions and there are always plenty of those who like to answer questions and help each along.
Mark Lacey

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― Geoffrey Chaucer

nolonstacey
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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by nolonstacey » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 9:15 am

Thanks Justin & Mark, that's really helpful. I do tend to trust 'factory settings' a bit too much. As it came out of the box with the part I labelled b perfectly flush with the block, I assumed that's what it meant by the hammer. That would explain why I'm getting an opening in the bottom outer edge of hardwood mouldings when I join - it must be pushing the moulding up. Not so much of an issue on softwoods as I guess it just indents the wood easier rather than pushing it apart.

I'll make my adjustments now! Thanks again

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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by nolonstacey » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 9:38 am

Is there anyone out there that has actually done this on the U200? I've loosened the locking screws (actually taken them out) but the adjustment ring nut only moves by about 10 degrees, which makes no difference at all to the hammer height

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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by Justintime » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 9:55 am

If the back of the moulding is opening it can be a whole host of reasons. First is to try moving the wedge nearest the back/outside further forward. Having it too far to the back will definitely do this. You are using hardwood wedges? Hardwood can be tricky on an underpinner. Do you have a band clamp to clamp it up nice and tight afterwards? That could sort it out. If it's Oak fill it with some Brummer interior Natural Oak wood filler. You won't see the filler once it's waxed.
Give Lions a call, one of their engineers will be able to talk you through it.

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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by Not your average framer » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 10:06 am

nolonstacey wrote:
Thu 28 Apr, 2022 9:15 am
Thanks Justin & Mark, that's really helpful. I do tend to trust 'factory settings' a bit too much. As it came out of the box with the part I labelled b perfectly flush with the block, I assumed that's what it meant by the hammer. That would explain why I'm getting an opening in the bottom outer edge of hardwood mouldings when I join - it must be pushing the moulding up. Not so much of an issue on softwoods as I guess it just indents the wood easier rather than pushing it apart.

I'll make my adjustments now! Thanks again
Ah, gaps at the corner joins, is a competely different issue. The wedges displace wood as the wedges don't compress at all ant therefore the wood is displaced by the wedges. Softwood mouldings often give a little bit, but many Hardwood mouldings will not give very much at all. It is therefore necessary to not insert the wedges to close to the outside edges of the frame, as this pushes the outside edges outwards and creates a visible gap. Sometimes it is posible to fill these gaps, using coloured framer's fillers, but not always!

Framer's fillers are available in a range of colours and it may be necessary to mix the exact colour which you need from more than one colour. If you are using unfinished barewoods it is often possible to apply a little surplus glue to fill the gaps and to sandpaper around the gap and for the correctly coloured sawdust from the sandpaper to become mixed wither the glue and result in the gap being filled with the correct wood colour. Everyone has a method which they decide suits them best.
Mark Lacey

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nolonstacey
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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by nolonstacey » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 10:09 am

Thanks Justin, Just sent Lion some pics of it. Apparently it does only adjust by rotating a few degrees, but I couldn't see that making any difference to the height of the hammer at all. They think it is set correctly but advise that it would have to be returned if not. It is oak and I am using a band clamp to clamp it afterwords, but I'm a bit of a perfectionist so would like it better before clamping. The back nail is being inserted 10mm from the back (it's a 15mm rebate, so one nail 5mm and one 10mm from the inside).

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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by nolonstacey » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 10:33 am

Not sure if this helps make it clear whether the hammer is set too high or not. You can see the indentation on the inside of the v-nail. This was clamped too though
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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by Not your average framer » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 11:45 am

Ah, Oak is a difficult one! I think that a little bit of filling the gap with PVA glue and sanding while the glue is still wet is called for.
Mark Lacey

“Life is short. Art long. Opportunity is fleeting. Experience treacherous. Judgement difficult.”
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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by Justintime » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 11:48 am

Yes looks like it could do with a mm or so adjustment IMO.
Your placement looks good too, looks like a great join to me.
I would put the inside wedge a fraction closer to the inside personally.
Have you experimented putting the back wedge in first then the inside? I prefer that way.

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Re: Stupid underpinner question

Post by nolonstacey » Thu 28 Apr, 2022 3:35 pm

Hi Justin. I have wondered about outside or inside nail first. I’ve been putting the inside nail in first, so I’ll try the outside.

Interestingly, Lion compared it to their display model and theirs is set up exactly the same. They also checked with Alfa and they confirmed it is set up correctly

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