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Raising panels with the Stanley #4

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Blog entry by Paul Sellers posted 02-29-2012 01:04 PM 5488 reads 4 times favorited 44 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Should I tell you that a plain Jane #4 plane with no retrofit irons, specialist cap irons or dead flat soles is of equal value to the beastly heavyweights engineers and salesmen tell you you need I would of course enter the realms of controversy most men fear to tread. But I have to do it for the benefit of my fellow woodworkers who might think these others are telling truth instead of merely discrediting Leonard Bailey’s entrepreneurial abilities in producing the perfect metal cast plane. As I have said, as far as the smoothing plane goes, few modern day planes can match the Stanley #4 smoother. Wahay!

Here’s a video we put together to add a dimension to your woodworking you may not know about. Enjoy!

 

-- Paul Sellers, UK http://paulsellers.com/paul-sellers-blog



44 comments so far

View Brit's profile

Brit

5148 posts in 1497 days


#1 posted 02-29-2012 01:21 PM

Thanks Paul. Excellent demo. Would you switch to a No.5 or No.6 for larger panels or still use the No.4? I know you could use the No.4 for longer panels, but the longer reference surface of a No.5 or No.6 might be beneficial. What’s your opinion?

-- Andy -- Old Chinese proverb say: If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it.

View Don W's profile

Don W

15029 posts in 1222 days


#2 posted 02-29-2012 01:46 PM

Great video Paul.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Kenny 's profile

Kenny

260 posts in 1102 days


#3 posted 02-29-2012 01:51 PM

Good video Paul!

One thing though, it’s obvious your skills exceed that of many other newcomers who will be buying planes. Just the way you lay out the panel without any measuring, and do so with good accuracy, shows you’ve done this a time or twenty! And a skill-set like that can go a long way to making an “average” or unideal plane do things other less experienced woodworkers would struggle with, or would find near impossible.
Would you say that the #4 is still a good choice for a newcomer who does not yet have skills that come near to yours, or is there a better, easier option for less experienced woodworkers to use for a panel raising project like this?

Thanks Paul. Good video and nice work!

-- Kenny

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3302 posts in 1309 days


#4 posted 02-29-2012 02:01 PM

This is one of the most fun things to do with handplanes. Thanks for sharing.

Is it a trick of the light or is that saw in the upper right hand corner 1 TPI?

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View kedmiston's profile

kedmiston

18 posts in 989 days


#5 posted 02-29-2012 02:10 PM

Wow. Very impressive indeed. I would have never thought to try this on my own…thanks for sharing!

View Brit's profile

Brit

5148 posts in 1497 days


#6 posted 02-29-2012 02:14 PM

RG – Those large saw teeth are actually a wooden board that Paul uses for demo purposes when discussing tooth geometry with students. There’s a metal saw hanging in front.

-- Andy -- Old Chinese proverb say: If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it.

View Bluepine38's profile

Bluepine38

2876 posts in 1739 days


#7 posted 02-29-2012 02:33 PM

Great video, the only two planes in my workshop for a long time were the Stanley #4 and a Stanley block
plane, I tend to drool over the fancier high dollar planes like a couple people I know have, but the darn roof,
the deck, or the concrete driveway needing replacement always gets in the way. Thank you for sharing.

-- As ever, Gus-the 75 yr young apprentice carpenter

View Brandon's profile

Brandon

4138 posts in 1605 days


#8 posted 02-29-2012 04:12 PM

Paul, I never regret watching your videos!

Just curious why you have so many bench planes in duplicate sizes? Do they serve different purposes? Do you just keep them all sharp so you’ll always have one sharp and ready?

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View Brit's profile

Brit

5148 posts in 1497 days


#9 posted 02-29-2012 04:14 PM

Brandon – Paul runs a woodworking school, so each student needs a plane. I think it’s great that so many old planes are getting the Seller’s treatment.

-- Andy -- Old Chinese proverb say: If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it.

View Paul Sellers's profile

Paul Sellers

277 posts in 1224 days


#10 posted 03-01-2012 02:42 AM

Hello Brit,

No I would use either a 4 or 4 1/2 throughout regardless of length or width. I am guided by the lines I put on and this will be straight enough for a raised panel of this type in general. That said, I do use a 5 1/2 for wome raing as the extra weight delivers the goods in harder woods.

-- Paul Sellers, UK http://paulsellers.com/paul-sellers-blog

View Paul Sellers's profile

Paul Sellers

277 posts in 1224 days


#11 posted 03-01-2012 02:45 AM

It is surprising how easy this is, Kenny. And, also, we all have to start somewhere. Nothing I ever started was from a level of pr=erfected work but as a result of trying something others might never have known. Go for it!

-- Paul Sellers, UK http://paulsellers.com/paul-sellers-blog

View Paul Sellers's profile

Paul Sellers

277 posts in 1224 days


#12 posted 03-01-2012 02:54 AM

Brandon,

Many of my students come without knowledge of planes. So much erroneous information is out there with regard to heavyweight planes being superior that I hate to see people feel compelled towards something they really don’t need when a simple and inexpensive plane will work equally well or in many cases all the better. The new breeds of heavyweight planes are of minimal value to the real woodworkers really and they are generally over engineered in my view. I will match a Stanley #4 against any other plane task for task and as you can see in this case they really work very efficiently. There are many advantages too many to list over an older stanley and a modern-day counterpart. Of course we all have our views. I am just trying to save people unnecessary expense just to start out woodworking.
I have planes in so students can buy a good, well fettled plane that’s ready to go. They pick one out during class and i fettle it for them so they have plane that may not look as pretty but that works well. I now do the same with saws too.

-- Paul Sellers, UK http://paulsellers.com/paul-sellers-blog

View TexAus's profile

TexAus

20 posts in 1345 days


#13 posted 03-01-2012 03:38 AM

Thanks for the great videos Paul! I had the pleasure of meeting you once at Homestead Heritage and I glad to see you are still teaching and sharing your love for woodworking with the original cordless tools. You obviously think very highly of the older Stanley planes. How do you think the older Millers Falls planes compare to the Stanley planes?

View Paul Sellers's profile

Paul Sellers

277 posts in 1224 days


#14 posted 03-01-2012 03:47 AM

Millers Falls were good planes.Never owned one but they were well made.
I used one from time to time and they were nice to use.

-- Paul Sellers, UK http://paulsellers.com/paul-sellers-blog

View saddletramp's profile

saddletramp

994 posts in 1292 days


#15 posted 03-01-2012 11:59 AM

Thanks Paul. Another fine, informative video. Your level of expertise never fails to amaze me. Keep them coming.

-- ♫♪♪♫♫ Saddletramp, saddletramp, I'm as free as the breeze and I ride where I please, saddletramp ♪♪♪♫♪ ...... Bob W....NW Michigan (Traverse City area)

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