|Project by sepeck||posted 08-02-2015 07:27 AM||1914 views||3 times favorited||6 comments|
One too many times I wanted a router plane. I’ve seen them used on various YouTube video’s, various TV shows and articles. I have had a few times where I had a little slot to flatten and my skill with a chisel was lacking so I would set up and fiddle with my router table for a bit. This Shop Made Tool Swap - 2015: Hand Planes and Spokeshaves was a great time to try out something new and make something I hadn’t before. The one on the left in the pictures is the one I sent my swap partner and he has some nice projects on his page you should check out.
Unlike the last tool swap, I wanted to make extra. So I started with three and worked my way down to two. I had some Ipe cut offs my neighbor gave me and it seemed a nice, pretty hardwood to use as a base. This combined with some Maple and the Shopmade router plane by MrDan was the inspiration. I think I will avoid Ipe for a while now until I get some more experience. It worked, but the successful finish options seemed to be wax, or wax or wax for it. Some of the other things I tried came with less then satisfying results. For the maple, I did what I used for turning, mineral oil while sanding, then Mylands friction polish. It seemed both pretty and a nice option for where your hands will be gripping the light color wood. The nut is a piece walnut I drilled a hole and put some epoxy on the thread and hammered in a brass screw and then turned the knob shape. The end peeked out a bit but it sort of looks deliberate so I will go with that story.
For the size, I did a BING image search for wood router plane and that ended here so I used that as a guide for size. The overall size is approximately 4”x6” and the hole was the largest Forstner bit I had 2-1/8”. I got the M router blade from LeeValley because in no way am I set up to play with heat treating metal where I am now. Having played with it and used it I will be ordering a more traditional flat blade (M) instead of the pointed blade to see what the difference is. The hole for the blade was done with my mortising machine.
Overall I am fairly happy with it but need to practice some more things. MrDan’s plane had the contrast in wood that I thought striking and I liked the curve in the walnut. I tried to make the curves in a way that was as smooth as his but that seems to be something I will need to work on more (which is partly why I only made two, not three). I ended up being more conservative on the shaping on the two I finished with shallows filed out for the fingers. They provided a good grip to me, but I miss those visually smooth curves. Maybe I need to get some more/different files for this? Regardless, something to practice on for future projects.
Overall, it was a great learning experience, if you haven’t participated in a tool swap I urge you to try one. They make you stretch yourself and stick to a fairly public deadline despite irritating disasters at work :)
-- -Steven Peck, http://www.blkmtn.org