Lesson Learned--Wood Plane

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Project by Steffen posted 05-02-2010 06:29 PM 2800 views 2 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I bought my first tool on ebay about a year ago. I learned a lot about bidding, buying, and reading the descriptions better during this experience. The plane I got was an inexpensive model with plastic handles. It took me about 10 minutes to toss the plastic and begin fabricating new ones out of walnut. As you can see the front knob is much much bigger than what you would see on any plane but it fits my hand very well and would likely make more of them for my other planes. The rear handle is also much thicker and fits my hand well.

A few hours honing the sides and bottom and this plane actually works very very well. The iron is razor sharp and I can get through a lot of material quickly with it.

-- Steffen - Kirkland, WA

12 comments so far

View jjempson's profile


200 posts in 3011 days

#1 posted 05-02-2010 08:02 PM

its a great feeling when you make a tool yours….it does not take much but it makes all the difference .. enjoy :)

-- jjempson

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3710 days

#2 posted 05-02-2010 08:11 PM

Love the pistol-grip and the over sized front knob !

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3357 days

#3 posted 05-02-2010 08:16 PM

Amazing what a good tune-up can do. I like that the way you fitted it to your personal use.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View mafe's profile


11730 posts in 3112 days

#4 posted 05-02-2010 11:05 PM

Cool idea with the big round front handle, think I have to try this on a plane, it looks as beeing very comfortable.
Sometimes, bad things can bring good ideas…

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View Steffen's profile


326 posts in 4058 days

#5 posted 05-02-2010 11:12 PM

Mafe…it is really comfortable. I have an old stanley #4 with the original handle and though it cuts better than this one it’s not as comfortable.

-- Steffen - Kirkland, WA

View aurora's profile


229 posts in 3275 days

#6 posted 05-02-2010 11:12 PM

nice job on the plane. i don’t have really big hands, but it sure seems that all my plane handles feel small, so i have also made my handles a bit oversize as well, but was afraid to go as much as you did. i think if you are going to make handles, you really need to fit them to your own hands, because your end up owning your planes for a lifetime.

View bigike's profile


4052 posts in 3311 days

#7 posted 05-03-2010 03:12 AM

cool looken plane handles, what’s the thinnest shaveing you get from this plane?

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop,

View NormG's profile


6137 posts in 3026 days

#8 posted 05-03-2010 04:17 AM

Custom grips, works for me. I really never thought about it. But, we make sleds for our tools, jigs for just about everything. Why not custom handles also. Really nice work by the way.

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Steffen's profile


326 posts in 4058 days

#9 posted 05-03-2010 06:13 AM

Thanks for the comment Aurora…if you can believe it I actually thought for a second that I was committing some sin by changing the tool…then I realized they are my tools and they should fit me perfectly.

Bigike—Pretty thin but not thin like what I’ve seen come off of other tools out there. I’m not one of those guys who has to get a finished surface from a plane like this…I have a really nice stanley scraper plane…cool find from an antique store…a whopping $15.

-- Steffen - Kirkland, WA

View Napaman's profile


5526 posts in 4100 days

#10 posted 05-05-2010 03:00 AM

very nice…any before pictures???

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View Chelios's profile


568 posts in 3088 days

#11 posted 05-05-2010 03:04 AM

I can’t get over how cool it wouls be to customize my planes….too bad I don’t know how to turn pieces like these

View Steffen's profile


326 posts in 4058 days

#12 posted 05-05-2010 05:44 PM

Matt…Not sure if I took the time to take them…I was pretty mad at myself when I pulled the thing out of the box and I took the plastic handles off pretty quickly. I used the back handle to trace a template on the walnut than I believe it made a big “clank” sound when it hit the bottom of the trash.

Chelios…A round knob is pretty easy…just drill your hole first then begin shaping it… you can’t really tell in the photo but the knob is actually two pieces of wood glued together before I turned it. Great thing is you can make them out of scrap so it doesn’t really matter if you mess up…just throw it back in the scrap or burn pile.

-- Steffen - Kirkland, WA

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