Got back a little while ago with my first hardwood purchase (which is, ironically, soft maple):
And a close-up:
The really cool thing about this is the top three boards, which are 11” wide each and 9’ long. I am surprised I got these boards for $2/bf :) These three boards are all obviously from the same tree, as the grain is very similar and they’re nearly identical in size. The only bad thing about this is I’m going to have to cut all these down to be able to machine them with my equipment!
All told, this is just 36bf, but I figured it’d give me something to start playing with and learning on, which brings me to my next topic: hand planing. I had mentioned a while back (in a comment I think), that the one hand plane I had was not doing a very good job. I thought it might be an issue with sharpness, so last night I broke out the sand paper and did a quick and dirty scary sharp (my first attempt) sharpening.
The difference was night and day!
I edge jointed some of the crappy 1×4’s I had laying around, and took my sharpened plane to the resulting glued up board. The plane started taking off razor thin, beautifully tight curled slices instead of gouging into the wood and making a mess. I will definitely have to do a proper sharpening of this plane!
The plane itself is labeled as a Stanley SB4 – I’m sure someone here can tell me what the difference between that and standard #4 is. I’m not real crazy about this plane, as it has two adjustment screws to control the blade depth (one on each side of the blade), which to me makes it seem more difficult to keep the blade at a consistent depth across the width of the plane. It seems to be more of a UK item, based on the Google results, so it’s odd that I found it at Lowes.
Anyway, enough rambling for now, till next time :)
-- The difference between being defeated and admitting defeat is what makes all the difference in the world - Upton Sinclair, "The Jungle"