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Blog entry by Philip Edwards posted 05-12-2011 10:07 PM 963 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hi Folks
There’s been some lovely comments posted on old projects of mine recently and this has spurred me into posting a little more frequently. Please don’t think me rude – there just aren’t enough hours in the day :)
So a little background info for those that don’t know me. I love woodworking – I’ve been making furniture and things (and let’s be honest, finding excuses to buy of lots of tools!!) for about 10 years. A few years ago I got into building a few hand tools, planes especially. And Folks liked the planes I made and I made a few for friends. I got quite a few enquiries about making planes and decided it might be worth making them to sell. I then started Philly Planes and launched a website advertising my wares – this was about three and a half years ago.
Not long after this I was made redundant from my job, not good news. But I thought the timing was rather good to give the plane making a go, 100%. It was rather difficult for a couple of years supporting myself financially, but things have grown steadily and I now just about break even. The Wife is very pleased…... ;)
So, my hobby has become my job. But I am so pleased to be able to do something I love so passionately and consider it a blessing to be able to spend all day (and sometimes the evenings!) in the workshop.

My planes… I make planes in the traditional manner, cut from a single piece of timber. Not the easiest thing to do, especially in some of the exotic timbers like Rosewood and Blackwood, but I have learned so much along the way. And there are no real books on the subject – you have to get stuck in and learn as you go. I also have learned a huge amount by studying old planes – they hold so many secrets within their humble exteriors.
I’ve had to learn all about metalwork and heat treating – I make all my own plane irons and blades. I also make all the brass hardware from scratch too – it’s a real advantage to be able to make everything myself, even if it takes a little longer.

So I shall leave you with a few photo’s of planes that have just left the ‘shop and get back to the bench.
Best regards,
Phi
l



12 comments so far

View Brit's profile

Brit

5148 posts in 1494 days


#1 posted 05-12-2011 10:38 PM

I tip my hat to you Phil for a) having a go at full-time plane making and b) making it pay! Long may it continue.

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

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1344 days


#2 posted 05-12-2011 10:45 PM

I’m glad you did this, Phil, so I wouldn’t have to. I’ve already warned my fiance’ (the holder of all things money) that I’ll be investing in some woodbodies. I spent 30 minutes drooling over your site. Your tiny chamfer, your gorgeous classic coffin, modern ploughs, I was in heaven. The brass soled ones are simply beyond description with their massive central dovetail. I think people poo poo woodbodies without foundation. I’ve got a coffin smoother that will hang with my Hocked bedrock. They require some tinkering, but that’s what it’s all about! I hope to own your work. Huge, huge fan, Al

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1344 days


#3 posted 05-12-2011 10:46 PM

Look at those friggin molders! I can’t stand it, can’t stay away!

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Brit's profile

Brit

5148 posts in 1494 days


#4 posted 05-12-2011 10:50 PM

Al,

Phil lives and works about 20 minutes from me, so if you want me to check the quality before he sends them onto you, I’m quite happy to do so. There wouldn’t be any charge :-)

They are gorgeous though aren’t they?

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

View Philip Edwards's profile

Philip Edwards

244 posts in 3091 days


#5 posted 05-12-2011 10:53 PM

Thanks Andy, Al. I appreciate your enthusiasm, it’s what keeps me going!
Best regards
Phil

View WayneC's profile

WayneC

12290 posts in 2749 days


#6 posted 05-12-2011 11:00 PM

Hey, missed your smiling face. Good to see you back here.

I can personally recomend Phil’s planes. I have one of his miter planes in my shop. (now TheGravedigger can give me more crap for what I can pull off the shelf). It is a great plane. Wish I had the cash to get a full set of hollows and rounds.

Please pay us a visit more often. It would be good to know what you have been upto.

Also, like Karson you just crossed the 5 year mark as a LumberJock. Congratulations.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1344 days


#7 posted 05-12-2011 11:05 PM

Andy, it was you that first turned me onto him! You mentioned him as a local alternative to higher-priced iron-bodies in your area (Norris, Spiers, lol you Brits and your planes that I can’t afford). I remember distinctly that he was “down the street” which I equated with Philadelphia USA at the time lol. Phil, you should lay your head down proudly at night. Your work is honest. You’re allowing a tradition to continue that has dwindling followers. You have my unbridled respect. If you can call upon me one day, I am here.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Karson's profile

Karson

34874 posts in 3052 days


#8 posted 05-13-2011 12:24 AM

Phil: nice to have you posting again. Beautiful work as always.

Congratulations on your 5 years with LJ.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

View Jack_T's profile

Jack_T

621 posts in 1683 days


#9 posted 05-13-2011 03:18 AM

Your planes look great. The brass dovetail is simply amazing.

-- Jack T, John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life."

View bigike's profile

bigike

4031 posts in 1940 days


#10 posted 05-13-2011 03:54 AM

Great job on the planes, it stinks you lost your job but it worked out for the best. I hope the same thing will happen to me some day. God Bless! keep up the good work I wish you many years of happiness in this craft and in life.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://www.icombadaniels@yahoo.com

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1766 days


#11 posted 05-16-2011 09:43 AM

congrat´s with the five year L- J – B – DAY
even though I can´t afford your planes I have admired them for a copple of years
glad to hear you breake even now :-) your hard work had pay off

take care
Dennis

View BertFlores58's profile

BertFlores58

1646 posts in 1573 days


#12 posted 05-18-2011 08:55 AM

Good to hear from you Phil. I am always reminded of you when I am using the iron you gave. It is really tough. Thanks for the encouragement that you let me start to be active in LJ.
Cheers,

-- Bert

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