So, the pictures above are the two slabs. The larger slab is at the back, on edge. It will be the front slab, and is actually still going to get two more timbers added to it, a dog strip and the face strip. The slab in the clamps is the back slab. Rather than going with a “normal” split top design, this one is using asymmetrical slabs. The front slab is going to be about 16” wide, while the rear slab is a bit over 11” wide.
Both slabs are out of their clamps, and I’ve been flattening the bottoms, hence the Popeye arms. Unfortunately, I don’t have either the optimum plane herd, much less optimum plane wielding skills. I’ve gotten good use out of my Veritas LA jack, and my Lie-Nielsen Scrub plane, as well as a vintage Dunlap junior jack. The Veritas LA jack is great, but the blade has no camber. The Scrub is good, but it lacks an adjustable mouth and chip breaker, so it can be too aggressive. The junior jack is almost my favorite for this, except the blasted handle is loose and swivels, and I can’t tighten down any more. grrrr….
I’m seriously considering getting a premium BU jack plane, putting a mild camber on the blade, and using it to finish up the bottom flattening. Why premium? Because I’d rather not screw around with fettling a vintage plane, nor replacing the blade and chipbreaker. Of course, I may not wait and finish up the flattening without getting a new plane.
Once I’m done with the bottoms, it’s on to the tops, and I’m torn on how I’m going to do it. My arms want me to find some time with a wide belt sander, but my romantic half wants to do it all by hand. If I were 100% confident that I could keep the thickness consistent, the wide belt sander would be running as a distant option.
-- I'm happier than a tornado in a trailer park! Grace & Peace.