If your jointer is leaving a divot on the trailing edge of your work piece, it will not only drive you crazy, but it will produce unsightly blemishes on your projects. As you face joint your pieces, that divot will invariably end up in a visible place on your table top or other prominent location. When the divot occurs on an edge it will result in problems when you glue two pieces together in an edge joint. If the gaps are positioned next to one another in the joint, it will double the problem, and if you try to squeeze out the gap using clamping pressure, it will place the panel under a tremendous amount of stress and likely lead to cracking down the road.
The divot is the result of something called jointer snipe. Jointer snipe occurs when the outfeed table is positioned below the jointer knives. In most jointers the height of the outfeed table is adjustable, and that makes the fix to jointer snipe a relatively easy one.
Ensure that the knives are set properly. Check carefully with a good straight edge, and be sure that the knives are set in parallel with the table. If not, you will have to think about setting the jointer knives properly, and not making adjustments to the outfeed table.
Sneak up on the adjustment. Make adjustments in very small increments to ensure that you do not raise the outfeed table above the jointer knives.
Run several tests, then lock it in tight. Before you decide that your jointer snipe has been eliminated, run several tests, and this will also ensure that the alignment is remaining perfect.
Now that your jointer snipe is gone, it’s time to brush up on how to use a jointer.