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About Collecting Those Antique Wooden Molding Planes....

by poopiekat
posted 12-17-2010 07:23 PM


29 replies so far

View Millo's profile

Millo

543 posts in 3104 days


#1 posted 12-17-2010 07:36 PM

Yes, I have done very little woodworking but I do look forward to getting/making wooden molding planes…

Especially after trying an old Stanley plough with which I made a perfect bead ornament, very easily, on some sort of mahogany-like board lying around in the local Woodcraft shop where I took a short “intro to handplanes” course. Certainly seemed a lot harder to screw up that than w/ a router, w/o even talking about possible chipping at the ends, tear out, safety issues, noise, and all the dust. It was an absolute joy to use. Not much muscle needed either—at least not anymore than needed when carefully holding/guiding a powered router.

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#2 posted 12-17-2010 07:44 PM

I don’t really know, poopie, but I would suppose that they would have to be carefully sharpened with round or shaped stones. Another thought might be to shape pieces of wood and glue the right sandpaper on the pieces of wood and sharpen them with the wood and sandpaper. The big problem would be that their profile still needs to be the same as it was before sharpening in order to match the sole of the plane. You would think that there would be some info on the internet about how you do this. I also have thought about collecting these. I’ve seen some real bargains on them, especially when they are sold in groups. I only have four of them but I haven’t even used them yet. I’ll bet somebody that knows will be along directly. I will be interested to find out the proper way to sharpen them myself.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

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Millo

543 posts in 3104 days


#3 posted 12-17-2010 07:54 PM

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#4 posted 12-17-2010 07:59 PM

Poopie, I just thought of one thing that might work. When you plane a molding with one of these things you are shaping a piece of wood that perfectly matches the sole of the plane. So why not use a piece of the molding to glue the right sand paper on it in order to sharpen the iron. You might even could take off a little from the wood by carefully sanding it to compensate for the thickness of the sandpaper to get it almost perfect. This is just a thought.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

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poopiekat

4364 posts in 3789 days


#5 posted 12-17-2010 08:00 PM

Thanks, guys! I’ve been working with my Stanley 45’s and it always impresses me with what they can do, though I’m generally using the plough cutters. I imagine the common bead cutters and other profiles also present the same problem with sharpening. Oddly, the You-tube videos of wooden molding planes, the cutter seldom perfectly matches the sole, I guess due to the wearing-out of the wood-on-wood friction. Finding useful info on profile sharpening on the ‘net has been difficult. I won’t advocate collecting these planes to anybody….until I get my set completed, wink wink!!! Here’s a link to a borrowed photobucket example of what we’re talking about: http://i265.photobucket.com/albums/ii203/oldarmy-brenham/Wooden%20Planes/woodplanes017.jpg Antique Wooden Molding Plane Pictures, Images and Photos

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#6 posted 12-17-2010 08:05 PM

Hey, Millo, I was looking at that Smartflix site just this week. Do you belong to that? If you do I was just wondering if it was a good deal. I noticed that they have some real good quality videos on the woodcarving section of it.

Sorry, poopie, i don’t mean to change the subject, but since he brought up this place it might be relevent if someone wanted to watch that sharpening video.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

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poopiekat

4364 posts in 3789 days


#7 posted 12-17-2010 08:09 PM

Thanks again, Millo and Helluvawreck! I’m anxious to start peeling some lacey ribbons with my newest acquisitions…I don’t have any nice mahogany at the moment to practice on, and I know I’ll get discouraged if I try to practice on my tuff-as-nails red oak. Nahhh, helluva, (hey, wasn’t that the name of a cheese company?) let’s let this discussion go wherever it wants to go! I’d really like to just find a you-tube video of someone at work sharpening profile cutters…I’m just not using the right search parameters, I guess.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#8 posted 12-17-2010 08:10 PM

Poopie, you’ll be safe from me. I’ve got a big long list of used hand tools that I’m looking for right now. The wooden planes are on down from the top of the list. ;-)

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#9 posted 12-17-2010 08:15 PM

Yes, poopie, these are very beautiful tools. I would love to have a hundred of them on the wall of my den, which is connected to my kitchen, which is connected to my shop. There they could sit while being wonderful conversation pieces but only a few paces from my shop. I can see that in my mind as I speak. :)

My wife, might have to take down some of her pictures. Maybe she won’t mind. :)

I do see one potential problem. Her kitchen is in between the den and the shop. Do you suppose that she me stop cooking my meals for me if I make her take her pictures down? It’s a distinct posiblity now that I think about it. I sure wouldn’t want to starve to death. ;-)

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

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poopiekat

4364 posts in 3789 days


#10 posted 12-17-2010 08:18 PM

Yeah, I hear ya, helluva! I’m preparing plans for my be-all to end-all huge wooden tool chest/cabinet/workbench, and fill it with vintage tools and stuff. I’ve got ridiculous amounts of old tools, and I gotta get more to fill this baby up. I’ve started a few threads here, about lid-lifters and caster-jacking, and other related stuff as I prepare my FINAL workbench that I can be happy with, 100% for the rest of my days.
I don’t see why we can’t fill our dining room china closet and living-room bookshelves with our ever more fascinating vintage tools. My wife might understand…I think!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#11 posted 12-17-2010 08:46 PM

Yep, there’s an antique secretary in my wife’s living room that wood make a beautiful tool box. It’s a beautiful thing. But, poopie, we can’t eat our tools, if you know what I mean, so we need to be careful about getting too carried away here. I can’t afford to eat out every meal. Besides that we also have a comfortable bed in the bed room as well. It sure beats the hell out of sleeping in the shavings inside the great big dog house out back that I built for Sassy. ;-)

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

View lwllms's profile

lwllms

555 posts in 3336 days


#12 posted 12-17-2010 09:03 PM

Poopiekat,

The Sharpening Profiled Hand Tools video linked above is one I did. Improper sharpening in the past and wood movement are the primary causes of irons that don’t match the sole profiles in molding planes. If one understands the simple steps, an incredibly precise match is easy.

Most woodworkers tend to view molding planes the same way they see router bits, one bit equals one dedicated profile. Molding planes are so much more than that and their capability is almost limitless. Combination planes like the Stanley 45 simply don’t even come close to molding planes. I wish I had more time to write about this now but I’ve got to get back to work.

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#13 posted 12-17-2010 10:10 PM

lwllms, why don’t you do a blog post about it at your liesure. We’d sure like to know about it.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#14 posted 12-17-2010 10:29 PM

lwllms, we manufacture molding and we grind our own profile knives. The thought just came to me that we might could make a template and run some molding for molding planes and then make a reverse template of the molding and then make a holder for the plane irons that would hold them at the right angle and then use the reverse template to grind the irons to go in the molding planes with the profile grinder. In other words it would be sort of a kit for people who wanted to make their own molding planes. Do you think that would be possible? Just wondering.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10880 posts in 3169 days


#15 posted 12-17-2010 10:39 PM

poopiecat and Helluvawreck :-)
what Lwllms aka Larry Williams did´t want to say but i will with the biggest recomandation
is that he and his teammates in there busyness has made four vidio´s about side escapeplanes
about how to use them and how to build them as well beside they make wooden planes and sell them too
I my self has the two first they made and they are fantastic if you want to now the real stuff about them
alot more than you can learn from books

larry allso show how to tune / sharpen an older wooden mouldingplane so it sing again

if I were you I surdently wuold buy the vidios SAP :-)
they are sold thrugh there own site and thrugh Lie-Neilsen´s site
and as soon as I can afford the two last of them they will be ordred you can count on that

good luck with it

you have two choices either you sharpen the iron to match the sole (easyest) or you can
make the sole to match the iron and sharpenning the iron is done with some small slipstones
that can bee bought in alot of different shapes and in different grits

hope this cuold help a little

Dennis

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#16 posted 12-18-2010 12:08 AM

I certainly do appreciate that, Dennis. I’ve toyed with the idea on numerous ocasions about the possibility of using our molding equipment and our profile grinders to make either complete molding planes or molding plane kits for those who want to make their own. I’ve just never done anything with it. It’s just a thought that rolls around in the back of my head along with all the other clutter that’s up there. I’m sure that my brain is full of all kinds of things that have cob webbs on it. There’s never enough time to do all the things that you might think of and want to try. Time is always a great enemy. :)

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10880 posts in 3169 days


#17 posted 12-18-2010 12:48 AM

I knew there there was a very small company that tryed to make side escapement kits a few yars back
but they went out after the first one or two planes
they had set up a cnc-router to precut the boards with wedge and all so you just had to cut
thrugh a few mm of wood ,sand a little and then form the the iron I think the first one was
a rabbet / shoulder plane or something like that , as I remember it had a flat sole.

and I think its possiple to do the same with mouldingplanes but I wuold let people more or less
form and sharpen the iron to the sole them self if you want to make kits to them
otherwise you shuold make planes and sell instead and that wasn´t your purpodse here
but the idea of lething people snif to what it is can be a good nice I think

an other way of doing it is to prepaire the the board and then make the profiled sole
tell people were to buy iron to make the profile
just like Lwllms does thrugh Lie-Nielsen then you only have to consentrate on the wooden part

huu see what you have done now helluva geting my overloaded brain spinning again :-(

take care
Dennis

Ps. I will see if I can remember where the links to the site is where I have seen this with that company

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Dennisgrosen

10880 posts in 3169 days


#18 posted 12-18-2010 12:50 AM

here is the link to Clark and Williams

http://www.planemaker.com/index.html

Dennis

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#19 posted 12-18-2010 01:28 AM

Dennis, I’m not sure that you are following me. What I’m saying is that I think you can probably do is mold the wood body with a molder and then use a profile grinder to grind the matching plane iron. You would have to have a computer controlled template making machine which we have. You would have to make in the machine shop some sort of plane iron holder to hold the plane iron in the grinder. The template making machine is very precise and so is the profile grinder. Not only so, but the grinder is equipped with an agressive coolant system that keeps the steel cool while grinding it so the steel would not loose it’s temper. It’s not at all rocket science – it’s just a matter of playing around with it I think. I’m sure it could be done with a week or two to work the bugs out. You would probably have to tweak the plane iron template somewhat but a little experimenting could accomplish that. One you made a few of them it would all fall in place as they say. Your profiles could not be anything random. Each section of the profile would have to be generated from mathematical sections of circles and elipses but this is not a problem. Your profile can contain as many of these sections as it takes. The template making machine is computer controlled and is continuously travelling along the sections of the curves one after the other and your computer is doing all of the mathematical calculations to do this in the background so it is all very precise. In the old days of the company I use to make all of the templates with files and hacksaw out of template steel. Back then I just filed to a line that I scribed with french curves and rulers and so forth. So I did what was pleasing to my eye. It took a half an hour to an hour and a half to make a molder template. The steel is very tough and I went through countless files and and hacksaw blades in a month or so and the curves were not mathematical and it was actually enjoyable because I always liked files. Now I am just a mathematical curve fitter on a computer. LOL. How boring is that? :)

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

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Dennisgrosen

10880 posts in 3169 days


#20 posted 12-18-2010 02:01 AM

hmm ain´t easy to follow but thats only becourse I have never seen such maschines in work
but I think I pretty much got the picture now :-)
and I look forward to hear more about it and see what you come up with in the future
but its more complex than just a flat piece of iron and the moulding well I´m not good to explain it
but I surgest you see the vidio Larry did make and I think you will agree with me on that part
but I realy do wish you the best of luck with it

Dennis

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helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#21 posted 12-18-2010 02:30 AM

Don’t hold your breath. I really prefer the old ways of doing things. :) I will definately watch the videos. :)

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

View lwllms's profile

lwllms

555 posts in 3336 days


#22 posted 12-18-2010 04:26 AM

”...we manufacture molding and we grind our own profile knives. The thought just came to me that we might could make a template and run some molding for molding planes and then make a reverse template of the molding and then make a holder for the plane irons that would hold them at the right angle and then use the reverse template to grind the irons to go in the molding planes with the profile grinder. In other words it would be sort of a kit for people who wanted to make their own molding planes. Do you think that would be possible? ...”

I suppose it’s possible but there are some huge issues. First of all one has to make the escapement and the blind side or non-escapement side would have to be made to incredible tolerances. There’s really no lateral adjustment in a side escapement plane so the blind side would have to be established with no error or the profile of the iron won’t match the profile of the plane. You’d also have to make the irons from steel that’s already hardened because there’s some dimensional change and distortion during heat treating. I’m guessing you’re already working with hardened and tempered steel but the tang of a molding plane iron can’t be hardened. When hardened the narrow tangs are too brittle and will shatter or break. You only want the bit of the iron hardened.

There’s also the issue of sharpening. You can’t just work the face like machine cutters, that changes the profile too much for a molding plane. It’s actually pretty simple to maintain the profile or even refine the profile if it’s off a little. People who use the planes need to be able to sharpen them and keep the profiles of the irons an accurate match to the sole. I don’t think you’ll gain a lot in CNC matching profiles and irons.

When Shepherd Tool tried this they really didn’t understand the planes and the idea was doomed to failure because of that. They tried to find short-cuts without knowing what they were compromising. The guys at Shepherd should have studied tool history a little. The late 19th and 20th Century plane makers contributed to their own demise by incorporating short-cuts in manufacturing. A lot of those old planes didn’t work when they left the factories, were never made to work and will, in almost all cases, never be made to work. They just had too many compromises made in their construction.

People make sharpening molding planes a much bigger deal than it is. Anyone who watches the DVD’s I did will see my hands shaking constantly from what’s called essential tremors. I have to use an electric razor to avoid cutting my own throat and it takes two hands plus a lot of patience to even brush my teeth. If I can sharpen these things, anyone can.

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

31723 posts in 2921 days


#23 posted 12-18-2010 03:32 PM

The grinder is a profile grinder. The profile is ground into end of the steel producing the profile. The face of the steel isn’t touched. The steel is not heated because of the coolant which floods both the grinding wheel and the steel. The grinding is not controlled by the CNC machine. The termplate is what you make with the CNC machine. The template is what the stylus in the profile grinder follows. Whatever your template is is what the profile will be within very close tolerances. The lateral position where the profile begins on the iron will be extremely accurate. This is controlled by the template also.

You would have one template for the profile and one template for the plane iron. The template for the plane iron would be produced from an angular section of the plane body. The angle would be the angle the iron sets in the body.

I’m not saying there wouldn’t be problems to be overcome but I think that they could be overcome. The iron would be very close in tolerance to the body profile. It would always have to be sharpened by hand for the first use and all of the rest of the uses. The whole point of the process that I am talking about would get you to the point where you would make the finishing touches but has elliminated some of the drudgery.

The point is that once you have everything set up you could run a thousand plane bodies and grind a thousand plane irons. There would still be a lot of hand work to do but you have elliminated a lot of the work just the same. This would be the perfect kit senario for those who would like to build their own planes.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

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poopiekat

4364 posts in 3789 days


#24 posted 12-18-2010 04:23 PM

Thanks for all the GREAT replies! Not much is said about this somewhat obscure aspect of the woodworking hobby, and I knew I could count on the experts to come in and shed some light on these tools. I had no idea there was even the possibility of making my own with kits available for the task. I really like exploring any possible way to do my work unplugged, and discovering that these old molding planes are still as relevant today as they ever were is truly a surprise! These will be a definite part of my future woodworking endeavors!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10880 posts in 3169 days


#25 posted 12-18-2010 04:45 PM

poopiecat
I don´t think there is any avablekits today
but if you deside to make the round and hollow side escapement planes you can buy
the irons at Lie-Neilsen but as I say see the DVD and discover a new old world you wont regret

Dennis

View poopiekat's profile

poopiekat

4364 posts in 3789 days


#26 posted 12-31-2010 09:38 PM

I’ve got 12 antique planes coming, from recent eBay purchases, many different sources. The first 2 are Mathieson complex molding planes. Even with the blades in ‘As Found’ condition, they did an adequate job on an old piece of softwood I had lying around. This is going to fun!!!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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Dennisgrosen

10880 posts in 3169 days


#27 posted 12-31-2010 09:47 PM

becare full now poopiekat
when you have fun the time fly tooo fast

happy new-year
Dennis

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poopiekat

4364 posts in 3789 days


#28 posted 12-31-2010 10:04 PM

Thanks, Dennis!
I’ll be asking for your advice again, once I get ready to sharpen these old planes and put them to work. Thanks for all of the great advice you’ve given me already! I’m going to view lwllms’ videos too and see what I can learn from them. Thanks, EVERYONE!!!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10880 posts in 3169 days


#29 posted 01-01-2011 12:11 AM

uhu don´t ask me about sharpening
there I´m a complete novice tooo…LOL
but the DVD´s has the answer to sharpening mouldingplanes and tune them :-)
but I will recomend to make the blade fit the plane instead of the oppesit ,
why , its easyer that way around , just remember to check the profile on the sole isn´t
worn out , if it is you maybee have to make a new sole that fit the profile on the iron
well sorry got carry away me a novice try to teach ….ha ha …well I gess thats how it works
if you have a little passion for the subject called handtools

good luck on the slopery lane :-)
Dennis

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