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.