Shooting Board

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Project by FritzM posted 02-05-2008 09:54 PM 7065 views 20 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I was inspired by the video Tom (mot) posted about shooting boards and decided it was time to make one of my own. It’s 12” x 17” has 2 layers of 3/4” Birch ply with a 3” runway. The fence and hook are 1 3/4” x 3/4” walnut. No glue, just screws. I promised myself I’d plug the screw holes, but i bet if you ask me in a couple years if they are filled the answer will be no….

What are your thoughts on finishing these things? maybe just wax for ease of use and slight protection?

Thanks for the inspiration Tom! I’ve got the parts cut for a bevel ramp so that will be next! Then a miter fence.

as a side note….. this is another one of those tools (i guess it’s a tool) like the card scraper that is so simple in function but is such a joy to use and makes the process fun!

-- Fritz Oakland, Ca (dedicated to my other hobby)

13 comments so far

View jcees's profile


1060 posts in 3823 days

#1 posted 02-05-2008 10:11 PM

Finish isn’t important. It imparts a smidgen of protection from spills, oils, et al. Unfinished is best for holding the workpiece still. On a tough workpiece you’ll be shocked at how it tries to shift about if the surface of the shootboard is slick. That said, I recommend a coat of paste wax on the sole and side of the plane as well as the raceway. Slickum is always welcome there. Just remember to keep your plane iron razor sharp for this kind of work. You’ll be glad you did. Nice work, Fritz.


-- When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world. -- John Muir

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3809 posts in 4046 days

#2 posted 02-05-2008 10:13 PM

Hi Fritz:
I think wax is a good solution. You can run it on your planes too.
When I made my board” I used and insert of arborite on the runner so the drag is substantially reduced.
I bleive the pics on my project show what I used for the beveal and ramp as well.

Nice job! we should start up a club and get shirts!

-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View Dominic Vanacora's profile

Dominic Vanacora

508 posts in 3894 days

#3 posted 02-05-2008 10:22 PM

Since I do not have one of these my idea must be take with a grain of salt.
The design is simple for small items like boxes. This would work great and as in the film for 45 degree cuts.
But the finish … don’t you want the surface to grab.
I don’t think I wood want it to move on a slippery surface. Like wax.
I can see its easy and simple to make, and easy to store and pull out when needed.
You may want to plug the holes so they don’t mess up your work .

-- Dominic, Trinity, Florida...Lets be safe out there.

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4013 days

#4 posted 02-05-2008 11:59 PM

Great shooting board! I need one of those.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3809 posts in 4046 days

#5 posted 02-06-2008 12:20 AM

Dominic, you are right. We want to wood to stay put but the slide where the plane sits needs to be slippery.

“The chute” part of the shooting plane.


-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3846 days

#6 posted 02-06-2008 12:32 AM

This is a nice shooting board. I watched the video as well and thought about it. But first I need to get some hand planes. This is one area of my woodworking techniques (among many) that has been neglected.

Obviously something to add to the to do list.

Thanks for sharing.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Grumpy's profile


23997 posts in 3875 days

#7 posted 02-06-2008 12:56 AM

Thanks Fritz. I have one of these on the to do list. I don’t think I would use a finish.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View FritzM's profile


106 posts in 3837 days

#8 posted 02-06-2008 03:17 AM

Thanks for the feedback and compliments everyone. I think I’ll wax the runway and let the rest age naturally.. :)

Bob2 – I also checked out the white mountain design website you mentioned in your post. They’ve got a router table “how-to” that’s great! I didn’t see your post before I designed my board. After using it a bit, I think I need to add a second fence that sits a bit higher and can be shimmed/replaced if/when the time comes. t-shirts? haha!

Glue’s drying on the bevel ramp. I’ll post that too in a bit.

-- Fritz Oakland, Ca (dedicated to my other hobby)

View Karson's profile


35125 posts in 4425 days

#9 posted 02-06-2008 03:28 AM

Great job Fritz.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View Chris 's profile


1879 posts in 4016 days

#10 posted 03-08-2008 06:54 AM

Great work Fritz. I will be making one of these after I build my bench.

-- "Everything that is great and inspiring is created by the individual who labors in freedom" -- Albert Einstein

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4024 posts in 4088 days

#11 posted 03-08-2008 07:07 AM

Where’s ScottB with that design for the Shooting Board T-Shirt?

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3712 days

#12 posted 10-14-2008 04:19 AM

Did you leave the edge of the Walnut rough to prevent the workpiece from sliding , or just not joint it ? I’ve used PSA sandpaper on some of my jigs to prevent slippage of pieces . Nice board you’ve made here and I was wondering what size your plane might be ?

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

View FritzM's profile


106 posts in 3837 days

#13 posted 10-14-2008 04:40 PM

Hey Dusty. I didn’t address the fence face at all. I haven’t had an issue. Considering the shooting board requires a balance between forces from the plane and forces from the workpiece meeting somewhere in the middle, I like the fence not resisting too much. My preferred plane (as shown in the photo) is a Lie Nelson Low Angle Jack Plane (14” long).

-- Fritz Oakland, Ca (dedicated to my other hobby)

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