Byrd Shelix - Fine Woodworking Tool Review
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Byrd Shelix

Byrd Tool Corp. - Byrd Shelix

The Byrd Shelix cutterhead can be retrofitted to fit many different machines.

$ (As of 10/27/2011)

(5 user reviews) Write a Review

Editor's Review: Segmented Cutterheads Change the Game

by Roland Johnson

review date: October 27, 2011

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Editor Test Results:

Quality of Cut Hardwoods: Excellent ; Softwoods: Good; Difficult Hardwoods: Excellent
Available On Some new machines (check with the manufacturers), and as retrofits for many more (check

Manufacturer Specifications

Manufacturer Byrd Tool Corp.
Manufacturer's Web Site
Manufacturer's Phone Number 1-800-441-2973
Tooth Orientation Shear
Number of Teeth per Inch 5

great upgrade. Order direct from Byrd. Great customer service if you need help. Order with the bearings installed new head deserves new bearings anyway save the hastle.

Wow the better upgrade I ever done for a tool! Do not hesitate you'll find a new jointer with perfect cut any grain direction believe me. I installed onr a old General Drummond 1180 6"

I replaced the head on my Ridgid jointer about a year ago. As others have said, night and day! The process was more complicated that in the FWW article. In particular, I had difficulty removing and re-installing the bearings. But with some persistence, I got it. I have considered doing the same to my planer, but at the moment, the cost is unreasonable. There are new planers coming on the market with segmented heads that cost about the same a the 20 inch (+/-) heads needed. So, for the moment, I'll continue changing blades there. Which is moving up the to-do list!

I upgraded to the Byrd Shelix cutter head on my Grizzly 8" jointer a few years ago and have been thoroughly satisfied with the results. The segmented cutters don't leave quite as smooth a finish as the regular straight steel cutter heads, when their sharp, but the difference is barely noticeable. Just the fact that I don't have to remove , resharpen and realign the blades has been well worth the investment to me. To install the head was only sightly more difficult than it is to install and realign regular blades in a straight cutter head, but you only have to do it once. And considering the carbide stays sharper approximately ten times longer than regular steel it's a no brainer ! A good investment any way you look at it !

I changed my original cutters on my 8" jointer and 20" planer to Byrd Tool Corps shelix heads and the difference is like night and day. Apart from being very easy to install, they are also far easier to use and the results outstanding in comparison to a normal 3 or 4 bladed cutter, even a very sharp perfectly aligned one. The Byrd heads cut exotic grain with ease and minimal tear out, they are much quieter and smoother, and the finished result requires very little sanding. Would highly recommend to anyone and without any doubt the best investment I have ever made in my shop overall.

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