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Blog entry by parkprimus posted 05-30-2015 05:18 AM 929 reads 0 times favorited 1 comment Add to Favorites Watch
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So lately I have been getting back into Japanese wood working but this time it is different. I am not sure if it is because I have better steel or better technique or both. I think the biggest part of it is that I am better at sharpening my chisels. I was never really good at sharpening when I was younger but now I can make a blade truly sharp.

I am very fascinated with the planes or kanna. From what I have seen they are pretty expensive to buy too. If anyone has some pointers on building or purchasing Japanese wood planes that would be cool.

I have been exploring the idea of buying whet stones to keep all the blades sharp and also the veritas honing guide. Currently I am using fine grit sand paper and baby oil with a cheapy honing guide.

I want to learn as much as i can about the techniques for building without nails or screws. I want to learn the primary joints. So far I have only seen one video the has an apprentice practice box which contains samples of the primary joints.

1 comment so far

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167 posts in 2641 days

#1 posted 05-31-2015 09:37 AM

There are some excellent youtube videos on restoring and setting up japanese planes and chisels. Here is a link to Sumokun’s channel. For around $5, there is a very good e-book available on amazon named “Getting the most from your kanna”, by Desmond King. Also checkout Chris Hall’s blog, thecarpentryway. Not really a beginner’s site, but he has some good posts on setting up a kanna. Also, lots of inspirational work.

For purchasing, I would try to start with a smaller plane, 55 or 60mm. They are easier to setup and the blades are easier to sharpen.,,, and, are all good choices.

You can try eBay. Recently, there have been some very good new planes offered by sellers both in the USA and Japan. Some bargains are to be had, but beware that I might be one of those bidding against you. I have had mixed luck with used planes from eBay. A few have been well maintained, but a few have been unusable due to the body being incorrectly setup.


-- David W. Cupertino, CA

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