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Restoring History-Auburn Tool Co Try Plane

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Blog series by RGtools updated 07-07-2011 05:41 AM 5 parts 16533 reads 40 comments total

Part 1: A look into the past

06-20-2011 05:33 AM by RGtools | 9 comments »

I normally don’t buy old wooden planes, since I can make wood planes much better that are suited to my purposes. However, like any other hand tool addict (lets face it, we’re addicts not casual users) I occasionally adopt things that need a good home. What could need a home more than a former inmate? Auburn Tool Co repeatedly used prison labor within Auburn correctional facility in New York to create their tools. The contracts to do this constantly changed hands but A Howlan...

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Part 2: Cambering the Iron

06-21-2011 05:49 AM by RGtools | 12 comments »

Never try to outsmart a dead guy. If you see something that worked a hundred years ago, don’t try to improve it, that’s not your job. Your job is just not to mess things up. Moderns tend to put way more aggressive a camber on there irons than needed, Lee Valley and Lie Nielson put a 3 in radius on their scrub planes. A camber that size is great for removing wood in a hurry, and on it’s own a 3 inch camber sounds like a great idea. But our ancestors realized that each tool wa...

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Part 3: Lessons Learned

06-24-2011 04:32 AM by RGtools | 3 comments »

So I made a mistake. Not a big one but definitely avoidable. When I set my grinder up, I used a nice thick blade to figure out where may angle should be. Unfortunately I forgot to factor in the tapered blade on the old plane makes a RADICAL 10 degree difference to my grinding angle so I realized that I had a 20 bevel angle about early enough correct it. I tapped the stand forward so I ended up with a second bevel of 30 degrees. Believe it or not the secondary bevel is big enough to reference ...

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Part 4: Finishing touches

06-26-2011 05:19 AM by RGtools | 6 comments »

The bottom was flat enough for rough work but not fine cuts impressive after 137 years and a trip from coast to coast. Now I needed to make it flat enough for fine work. I found it fitting that my old plane was being restored by my newest plane. My vise crapped out (my fault, need to give me bench it’s yearly tune up…which may be the next next blog) so this is a good improvised set up for planing (yet another reason to make your bench clamp friendly) I use winding st...

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Part 5: Disapearing ink

07-07-2011 05:41 AM by RGtools | 10 comments »

I noticed something odd about the patina of my plane the other day. It’s signed in some way but the cursive ink is illegible at this point. I would like to bring the signature/note out somehow. I have heard that you can use a type of acid to lighten wood that will not affect ink (good for fixing old rulers where the boxwood has darkened) but have never messed with this. If I did this I would like to darken the signature, then restore the original patina on the tool. Any ideas?

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