|Project by JuanVergara||posted 11-11-2014 05:46 PM||1884 views||3 times favorited||9 comments|
Hey, fellow Lumberjocks:
I finished these babies – the one on the left more or less equivalent in size to a Stanley No. 3, the other to a No. 4 – some months back in preparing for the Woodworking in America show in Winston-Salem.
The infill is cocobolo rosewood, cut from a big chunk that gathered dust in my shop for five years until I was ready to work it. The irons are A-2 tool steel, pitched at 50 degrees on the No. 3 and 45 degrees on the No. 4. The finish is a French polish on top of hand-rubbed oil.
As an experiment, I made the irons for these planes myself as I wanted to play with shape and size, and had them professionally heat treated. Ron Hock has made my irons in the past, and what I really learned in making these irons is that metallurgy is better left to someone who knows what he’s doing. Ron Hock does. I don’t.
These are the newest iterations of my “shorebird” infills, so called because, as I explained in my last post, the little uptick on the crown makes it look like the head and bill of a shorebird.
There’s nothing like cocobolo, don’t you think? But it can break your heart. I spent half of yesterday stressing out about the other half of my big chunk, trying to figure out how best to cut it for a No. 3 I’m making for a client. It’s gorgeous wood, to be sure, and it bothered me no end when I realized that if I was to end up with the grain pattern I wanted, I’d lose a lot of wood to waste.
Oh, well. The stuff grows on trees, right?
-- Juan Vergara, California, www.juanvergara.net