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Adjustable Mouth No. 5 2/3 Plane (2015 Plane Swap)

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Project by bobasaurus posted 08-05-2015 05:24 AM 1775 views 5 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I made this plane for the LumberJocks 2015 Hand Planes and Spokeshaves Swap and sent it off to my new friend John . I’ve dubbed it a No. 5 2/3 since it has a super-wide 2.5” blade.

It has a hard maple body, jatoba sole/cheeks, and walnut knob/tote. I made the blade myself from A2 steel and did the heat treatment in my father’s kiln (here is a blog with the technique). The mouth is adjustable by loosening the knob and sliding the adjustable toe piece, allowing for heavy to fine cut adjustments. I made a stubby little tote that fits in the webbing between your thumb and pointer finger, it seems to work better than just gripping the smooth back of the plane.

I etched my logo on the blade using laser printer toner transfer to create the “resist”, then salt water electrolysis for the etching. I’ll extend my plane blade making blog someday to include the steps, but google has lots of info on the process for those interested. It’s pretty straightforward without needing a lot of equipment.

I applied two thin coats of tried and true danish oil (leaving the sole, bed, wedge, and cross pin bare for friction/wear) as the finish. It seems to take good shavings in my tests, and the blade holds an edge for a long time without showing any signs of chipping:

Here’s a neat picture from heat treating the blades:

Planes planing planes:

And here is the nice little coffin smoother I received in turn from Wally331 :

It works great in my tests so far, I’ll definitely put it to use.

Here is a full build album for this plane:

http://imgur.com/a/jmjnV

-- Allen, Colorado





18 comments so far

View Handtooler's profile

Handtooler

1374 posts in 1597 days


#1 posted 08-05-2015 06:06 AM

Absolutely Awesome! You are a man of many talents. That is a mighty fine swap tool Thanks for sharing.

-- Russell Pitner Hixson, TN 37343 bassboy40@outlook.com

View Ken90712's profile

Ken90712

16955 posts in 2654 days


#2 posted 08-05-2015 08:20 AM

WOW cool project and what nice results. Love the details on the blade as well nice touch. Great job.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View 489tad's profile

489tad

3099 posts in 2477 days


#3 posted 08-05-2015 11:48 AM

Nice job Allen! To incorporate an adjustable mouth into a wood plane has got to be a lot of careful work. The matting surfaces have to be flat and true. The A-2 iron. I have some experience with tool steels and it sounds like you know what your doing. Well done!

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View kaerlighedsbamsen's profile

kaerlighedsbamsen

1177 posts in 1179 days


#4 posted 08-05-2015 11:57 AM

Lovely plane! And nice writeup. Tanks for sharing!

-- "Do or Do not. There is no try." - Yoda

View john2005's profile

john2005

1741 posts in 1643 days


#5 posted 08-05-2015 01:25 PM

As the recipient of said tool, I couldn’t be more thrilled. It is a very precise tool. It does in fact take nice smooth shavings and came nice and sharp. All I had to do was insert the iron, adjust and go. The adjustable mouth is SWEET!!! It was something I had wanted to tackle but didn’t cause it seemed too intimidating. Not for Allen! The mouth opens and closes with very smoothly with no wiggling or chatter. When locked in place, it does not move. Great design. Thank you Allen, I love it and look forward to tomorrow night (supposed to have a few hours of shop time to myself. I got a pretty good idea what I will be doing).

-- In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

View ShaneA's profile

ShaneA

6474 posts in 2064 days


#6 posted 08-05-2015 01:30 PM

Looks really good. The adjustable mouth is next level stuff.

View terryR's profile

terryR

6321 posts in 1774 days


#7 posted 08-05-2015 01:47 PM

Very impressive, Allen!
You should be proud of such a shop built plane…the adjustable mouth and etched iron certainly makes this a cut above!

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View Shuja's profile

Shuja

270 posts in 1032 days


#8 posted 08-05-2015 02:59 PM

Hats off
I wish I could be half as good

-- shuja

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

7174 posts in 2263 days


#9 posted 08-05-2015 03:03 PM

That is one sweet little plane Allen, and truly made from scratch.
It will surely put a smile on John’s face every time he picks it up.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees. http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

View CL810's profile

CL810

3452 posts in 2453 days


#10 posted 08-05-2015 03:55 PM

Master craftsmanship Allen! lucky guy that John.

-- "The only limits to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today." - FDR

View Tim's profile

Tim

3119 posts in 1427 days


#11 posted 08-05-2015 05:02 PM

Adjustable mouth and etched and heat treated blade are definitely impressive. I covet one of those heat treating ovens. Would love to read more details on the blade making process when you get time.

View Hammerthumb's profile

Hammerthumb

2533 posts in 1440 days


#12 posted 08-05-2015 09:57 PM

Nice job Allen. I have thought about making an adjustable mouth smoother before, but I guess I’m to lazy.
Beautiful plane.

What do you use for a quench for the A2?

-- Paul, Las Vegas

View ToddJB's profile

ToddJB

6911 posts in 1596 days


#13 posted 08-05-2015 10:50 PM

Really outstanding job, Allen. You do fine work, Sir.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View bobasaurus's profile (online now)

bobasaurus

2673 posts in 2649 days


#14 posted 08-05-2015 11:09 PM

Thanks for all the comments. A2 is an air quench steel, so I just took it out of the kiln and set it on a shelf at room temperature to quench. I have the blade making process here:

http://lumberjocks.com/bobasaurus/blog/61378

Despite my lack of cryo treatment, it took a fine edge and seemed to hold it all through my testing without degrading.

I’m glad you like the plane John. I hope I got the blade flat enough to not chatter… it was a bear to flatten after heat treatment. I got close after a lot of hard work rubbing on diamond stones and granite/sandpaper then called it good enough and used the ruler trick when sharpening.

-- Allen, Colorado

View Hammerthumb's profile

Hammerthumb

2533 posts in 1440 days


#15 posted 08-06-2015 01:30 PM

Thanks for the info Allen. I have not tried A-2 due to the cryo treatment but have thought about different methods of doing it. Glad to hear that it will harden sufficiently without cryo.

-- Paul, Las Vegas

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