The Old Warrior, Singing Friar and Fed-Up Woman Plane.

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Project by RusticJohn posted 439 days ago 1437 views 5 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my latest work. A rather ornate Krenov style smoothing plane made of Matai and Oak. The front knob has the head of an old warrior and the wedge has his entourage, a woman and a singing Friar. All vaguely medieval. It is to be put up for sale at a Wellington Museum/Gallery in the next couple of days.

The plane is fully functional although many who buy others of mine tend not to use them. I do, but I suppose I can always make another if I damage one of mine. Matai, a native wood of New Zealand, is good for plane making as it is quite hard with a dense honey coloured grain. Its not the easiest for carving fine detail however as small pieces tend to flake off. I have had to make a special set of carving knives with curved sliding cut blades to get a good result. The heads of the Woman and the Friar are only about 40 mm high so features like the folds under the eyes are only about 1mm wide and 1mm deep.

The head of the Warrior was quite tricky to carve as 4 pieces of wood with grain running in different directions meet there. I had to also develop a special set of fine scrapers on a handle like a pencil to get a fine finish on the grain.

A fun project to work on but time consuming. It took a month, off and on, as my eyes tend to give up after and hour or two of fine carving. Taking time out to make the knives and scrapers adds to the duration.

-- RusticJohn

22 comments so far

View deon's profile


2008 posts in 1526 days

#1 posted 439 days ago

Great work!

-- Dreaming patterns

View RS Woodworks's profile

RS Woodworks

464 posts in 1752 days

#2 posted 439 days ago

Wow thats awesome! Great work and fantastic detail!
What would a plane like this go for? I’d love to have one.
I have an antique plane carved in the shape of a shoe, but it doesn’t have nearly the detail as yours does.


-- I restore the finest vintage tools! If you need a nice plane, saw, marking tool or brace, please let me know!

View RusticJohn's profile


156 posts in 2092 days

#3 posted 439 days ago

The plane will sell for $400. I can tell you where to go to get it if you want. Cheers RusticJohn.

-- RusticJohn

View DIYaholic's profile


11238 posts in 1176 days

#4 posted 438 days ago

That is an amazing “work of art”, or is it “art for work”.....

Fantastic, that will surely be a prized possession, for an art lover or WW!!!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procratination a bad thing?

View Hybridwoodwork's profile


174 posts in 553 days

#5 posted 438 days ago

Good work, I love it!

-- How it happened that Mastro Cherry, carpenter, found a piece of wood that wept and laughed like a child.

View MShort's profile


1706 posts in 1919 days

#6 posted 438 days ago

AWESOME!!!! Love the carvings.

-- Mike, Missouri --- “A positive life can not happen with a negative mind.” ---

View ksSlim's profile


927 posts in 1391 days

#7 posted 438 days ago

Fantastic! Wish I could afford one.

-- Sawdust and shavings are therapeutic

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Don W

13928 posts in 1068 days

#8 posted 438 days ago

that’s some detail. Nice work!

-- There is nothing like the sound of a well tuned hand plane. - (timetestedtools at hotmail dot c0m)

View jap's profile


1218 posts in 555 days

#9 posted 438 days ago

that’s so amazing

-- Joel

View 489tad's profile


1957 posts in 1512 days

#10 posted 438 days ago

Fantastic plane. I would use it.

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

View Bluepine38's profile


2876 posts in 1586 days

#11 posted 438 days ago

Wonderful plane, and worth every penny, I can see why someone would buy it just for display,but I would
have to use it. Great addition to any shop. Thank you for sharing.

-- As ever, Gus-the 75 yr young apprentice carpenter

View RusticJohn's profile


156 posts in 2092 days

#12 posted 438 days ago

Thank you everyone for the kind comments. – Cheers RusticJohn.

-- RusticJohn

View NaFianna's profile


450 posts in 1527 days

#13 posted 438 days ago

That is so beautiful.

-- Cad a dheanfaimid feasta gan adhmad.......?

View mcoyfrog's profile


2477 posts in 2095 days

#14 posted 438 days ago

great work, any one would love a plane like this

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

View stefang's profile


11820 posts in 1835 days

#15 posted 438 days ago

A very arty and beautiful plane. The carving is super too!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

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