The wood shaper is a very useful machine, whether you're using it in a garage shop or in a production environment.
The wood shaper also called a spindle shaper or moulder is a stationary woodworking machine that performs work similar to a router table. Shapers are stationary tools that are mounted on a bench or stand. Some heavy duty shapers have the base built into the machine.
Shapers are built stonger and heavier than routers and can safely turn a larger diameter cutter and larger profiles than routers can handle. Because the cutters are a larger diameter they turn at a slower speed than routers, usually at speeds of about 7,000 to 10,000 RPM.
Typical work performed on a wood shaper includes door making (raised panels), production of crown moldings and other types of moldings.
The shaper cutter usually fits over a vertically mounted shaper spindle that protrudes through a hole in the middle of the shaper table. Spindles come in sizes from 5/16" diameter, 1/2", 3/4", 1", 1-14/" and larger on some large production machines.
Shapers normally feature a moveable fence against which the workpiece is guided to control the horizontal depth of cut.
Shapers are identified by the diameter of the spindle and the horsepower of the motor. The most popular size shapers for the home shop are equipped with a 1/2" or 3/4" inch diameter spindle and up to a three horsepower motor. Larger shapers are usually found in production shops.
Like the router, there are hundreds of interchangeable shaper cutters available that offer hundreds of different profiles and for specialized jobs. They vary in power from 1 HP to 3 HP units for the home to 5 to 7 HP and larger motors in production shops.
Accessories for the Wood Shaper
Accessories for the wood shaper include miter gauges to guide the work, hold downs, and power feeders. Power feeders are also a safety device that holds the work both down and against the shaper fence. It also keeps the operators hands far from the shaper cutter.
Vintage Wood Shapers
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