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Truing lumber by hand--how to avoid "oops"

by Dave11
posted 474 days ago


48 replies so far

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Mosquito

4505 posts in 890 days


#1 posted 474 days ago

maybe try backing the plane iron out a little when you get closer, so you’re taking less off with each pass by then?

I guess I don’t generally rough surface to lines.

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist - www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods

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paratrooper34

760 posts in 1550 days


#2 posted 474 days ago

Dave,when I make the mark around the perimeter of the board after surfacing the first face, I make sure I use a cutting gauge and that it cuts pretty deep (relative to the tool being used – deep is 1/32” or so I guess). When I use this method, the wood will tell me when I an close by giving me more than a “fuzzy” edge; it will create a minute strip that is easily visible. As soon as I see that, I know I am about done.

Give it a shot and see if that helps you out. Good Luck!

-- Mike

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Dave11

27 posts in 1166 days


#3 posted 474 days ago

Mike—thanks for the advice. I’ve been using the veritas cutting wheel, which seems to work well, but maybe it can’t go deep enough. I’ve scored the line as deep as I can with it, but maybe that’s not deep enough, at least in softwood. Maybe a traditional cutting gauge is what’s needed, though I never saw anyone else report that as a drawback of the veritas wheeled gauge.

And just for my own education, going past the line pretty much requires new lines to be made and dropping the whole surface by the same amount, yes? I guess I don’t see any other way to recover from it.

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CessnaPilotBarry

877 posts in 708 days


#4 posted 474 days ago

Don’t forget, one side will often be hidden. If the oops is in a location where it won’t matter, move on.

Take a look at the hidden areas on hand made antiques, like underneath the case, or or the bottoms and backs of drawers, and you’ll see that the forth face wasn’t a worry. It only became a “worry” when factories started cranking out stacks of stock.

I’ve seen Roentgen Furniture with the back off, and even that stuff looks like pallet wood in places that don’t show.

Related to Mike’s scoring tip above… I was taught to zip a soft 4B or carpenter’s pencil around the score. As you reach the scored line, a pencil line will appear, which is easier to see than without the lead. The line will easily come off when you finish the edge, by chamfering or other shaping, or simply breaking it with a block plane or sand paper.

-- It's all good, if it's wood...

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Dave11

27 posts in 1166 days


#5 posted 474 days ago

Thanks CessnaPB. The pencil line makes good sense. I’ll give it a try.

All the wood I’ve been practicing on is scrap SYP, but I’m trying to get the method down so I can prep the lumber for the bench top I’m making. I realize learning to square lumber on 2×4x8’s (16 of them) might be a little masochistic, but I figured now was as good a time as any to learn, and by the time I was finished, I’d be pretty good at it.

I did buy extra lumber, for the expected mistakes along the way in surface prep…

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#6 posted 474 days ago

First of all Kingshott, like so many so-called experts, really didn’t work by hand. It’s obvious in the videos.

Yes, there are parts in old furniture that were left rough but you need to understand when you can get away with that. The first face and edge you straighten and flatten is your reference face and edge. All your joinery layout is done from these reference surfaces and it’s often necessary for the reference surfaces to be the non-show surfaces. The structural parts of case work is an example. If you want the case and openings for drawers and/or doors square you need to be working from reference surfaces on the inside of the case.

You should be using the proper tools properly set up. It sounds as if you’re traverse planing with a scrub plane. Scrub planes are too aggressive for this and traverse planing, while useful at times, shouldn’t generally be used. The features of the planes make them ideal for specific tasks. Depending on the size of your work, the lion’s share of stock removal should be done with a jack or fore plane having a camber with a 12” to 14” radius. You can remove just as much per pass as with a scrub plane but in a more controlled and shallower manner. Ideally you can then finish up with a trying plane with little or no camber. Only use the smooth plane to deal with localized surface problems on show faces.

Hope this helps.

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Tim

1173 posts in 559 days


#7 posted 473 days ago

There’s a couple great videos on this on Paul Sellers' master class site. You have to sign up for an account, but a few, such as the two on squaring up stock are free. You may want to watch his youtube series on building a bench too, but it doesn’t cover squaring up the stock.

You’re right, once you go past your line the only way to be sure of recovering is run a new line and come down to that, but once your skills are pretty good I think you’ll find you can bring the high spots down, checking with your square and have a piece square enough for most purposes. Like mosquito said, if you set your plane for very thin shavings your mistakes will be smaller too.

It will take practice, so it’s great you have a pile of wood to work on. Maybe start with smaller pieces though then work up. You probably can’t get an 8 foot two by four truly squared up without ending up with a 3/8”x2”x4’ piece unless you selected your pieces very carefully. There’s just too much bow and twist in them usually. But for a benchtop all you need to be able to do is pull them together by hand.

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Dave11

27 posts in 1166 days


#8 posted 473 days ago

I’ve only used the scrub for the few areas that needed a lot of material removed first. Otherwise, I’ve been using the jack plane, then the try plane, both set thin. The issue isn’t going down through the wood too fast, its being unable to tell where the line is without stopping every five seconds to look from the side. I’ll give the pencil line a try.

The2×4s were ripped from 2×12s, and are mostly straight. Some are fairly bowed, and these will be the practice pieces.

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sikrap

988 posts in 1957 days


#9 posted 473 days ago

There are several factors that will impact how easily you can true boards, but probably the most important is practice. Don’t get discouraged if your first few (or several) attempts aren’t perfect. There aren’t many that will get perfection with hand tools, so don’t expect that. If someone is going to put a micrometer on something that you made and start telling you that one edge is .001” thicker/thinner than another edge, take the piece and smack him with it.

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

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Dave11

27 posts in 1166 days


#10 posted 473 days ago

I have seen Paul Sellers vid on stock prep, and though it is detailed, he still glosses over (in my opinion) how to come right up the gauge line without cutting past it. He seems somehow to magically know when to stop. He didn’t even seem to look at the gauge lines much while he was planing, though with camera angles, its hard to say.

I’m a newbie at hand tools, but isn’t it really, really important to stop right at the line? For instance, if I plan to glue up the boards face to face for the benchtop, and there’s even a little variation in the thickness of any individual face, isn’t that going to be obvious, even before glue-up? There would be tiny gaps, I’d think. Yet there were lots of benches made well back in the days before thickness planers.

Thanks everyone for the feedback.

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shampeon

1278 posts in 781 days


#11 posted 473 days ago

Dave, part of what you’re seeing as glossing over is just muscle memory from repetition. Once you’ve dimensioned a few boards, and made some mistakes, you’ll get to know how much of a cut to take, and where to take off the material. In general, checking early and often is good practice, as it taking more thin passes than few thick ones.

You’ll have a tendency to take more of the material from the ends, making a convex face. To counter-act this, you should ease off the pressure as you start and end the pass, and possible take a few cuts from the middle of the board before doing a full length shaving.

Since you’re making a benchtop, your boards don’t actually need to be all the same thickness, since they’ll turned on their sides and glued up. So this is a great opportunity to practice hitting a given thickness mark.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

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bandit571

6649 posts in 1281 days


#12 posted 473 days ago

Sometimes the right plane, at the right time, works best

Diagonals with a cambered jack to start to flatten

A #6 or #7-#8 Jointer to go the length to “Try” the board

A smooth plane either in the #3 or #4 size to smooth the plane mark out.

Edges are the domain of the jointer planes. When there is a single shaving from end to end, stop.

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#13 posted 473 days ago

Dave,

Your jack or fore plane should get you close and will tell you when you’re close by its shavings. After making sure you’re close to your gauge line switch to a trying plane. Don’t traverse plane with either one unless it’s necessary because of a sudden deformation in the wood. Do you really want to use a piece with internal stresses that cause the localized deformation? I’d avoid it if possible. When you reach your gauge line with the trying plane it will leave a long ribbon of wood where the gauge line was. It’s actually quite satisfying to reach down and pull up that long narrow ribbon of wood.

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Dave11

27 posts in 1166 days


#14 posted 473 days ago

Lots of good comments here. Glad I asked.

I tried the pencil line tonight, and though it doesn’t always appear at the right time, it usually does, and that makes a big difference. You handplane pros might think it wimpy, but I’ll keep using it as a crutch for now, LOL.

lwlims—I looked carefully as I slowly came down to the gauge line with the smoother plane set very fine, but I never saw the ribbon you describe. I did see, sometimes, a thin line of wood, much like the thin wire off the plane blades when sharpening, though bigger. I’m guessing that’’s what you mean? It wasn’t always there for me, at least using SYP.

I have to say though, turning some of these bowed/twisted scrap boards into reasonably straight boards, using just handplanes, is pretty cool. Gives me some strange satisfaction.

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Dave11

27 posts in 1166 days


#15 posted 473 days ago

Maybe I should also wonder if part of the problem is the veritas wheeled gauge I’m using. It works fine, but it doesn’t seem to score very deep, even after several passes, and maybe that is contributing. Maybe I should get a more conventional cutting gauge to try?

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#16 posted 472 days ago

Dave,
The ribbon will only be as wide as the gauge line is deep. The density difference between early wood and late wood in SYP may cause problems. The times I worked SYP I was working pretty much exclusively with machines so I can’t say for sure how much the density differential will effect the formation of the ribbom.

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Rick M.

3777 posts in 978 days


#17 posted 472 days ago

I don’t know why you keep saying not to traverse, all that business about internal stresses doesn’t make any sense. Cross grain planing is the correct way to start, you plane with the grain near the end with very light cuts to remove mill marks.

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#18 posted 472 days ago

Rick,
I disagree. While you will go diagonally from corner to corner to remove wind, Traversing will almost always end up removing too much, especially when flattening the first face. The goal of flattening the first face is to get a very true surface while still leaving enough thickness to end up at the desired thickness. If you start whacking away with traverse planing, you won’t be able to figure out what the final thickness will be on all the stock until you’ve flattened the face on every piece. I guarantee you’ll end up with thinner stock than you thought you would. Develop good habits and always use them, one face planes with the same techniques as its opposite face. This traversing crap is something Chris Schwarz picked up from Rob Cosman. Cosman doesn’t really prepare stock with hand tools, he wouldn’t spend time burnishing his bench if he did.

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Rick M.

3777 posts in 978 days


#19 posted 472 days ago

This traversing crap …

Traverse planing did not start in the 20th century, you are off by centuries. Yes, there are other techniques but you are suggesting that the correct way is actually some silly fad and I don’t know what that BS was about internal stresses. Someone has filled your mind with nonsense, please stop spreading it around.

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#20 posted 472 days ago

Internal stresses???? Rick, I’m talking about unstable stock that has problems like kinks in a local area. If you get a piece with a sudden bend, bulge or other localized problem and flatten it; it’s likely that piece will move again after a day or two. I avoid wood with such problems or cut that section out so it won’t be in my work. Whacking away with traverse planing offers no control and you need control if you’re going to end up with all your stock at a uniform thickness. There’s a reason stock preparation used to be called “thicknessing.” A uniform thickness of your stock at a predetermined thickness is critical if you want control of the whole project.

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Jorge G.

1524 posts in 1073 days


#21 posted 472 days ago

Someone has filled your mind with nonsense, please stop spreading it around.

Hmmmm, lwllms is a well respected maker of wooden planes, you might want to check his website. While I don’t agree with him on some things (bevel up vs bevel down) I am betting if someone knows how to prepare and choose stock it is him. He has moved beyond making marking knives….. ;-)

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#22 posted 472 days ago

Rick,

You wrote, ”Traverse planing did not start in the 20th century, you are off by centuries.”

I’m curious and would really like to find an old text that describes this. Do you have a citation for that?

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Rick M.

3777 posts in 978 days


#23 posted 472 days ago

Moxon, J. (1678). Mechanick Exercises.
pgs 68-69

In addition, my personal experience tells me that your assertion that that traversing offers no control and guarantee it will make the stock too thin, is completely wrong. It’s a technique I had already learned 15+ years ago when I built my first tables from rough stock, long before I had ever heard of or read Cosman or Schwarz. Normally I would not bother arguing about it but it is on topic.

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

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paratrooper34

760 posts in 1550 days


#24 posted 472 days ago

Well, that just about nails that argument shut. Rick, I am with you on this issue. I traverse when flattening almost all the rough lumber I prepared. It is quick and gets results. Just like every single other hand tool task, it requires a little practice and experience to get a feel for it. And you are correct when you state that it is wrong for someone to say there is no control and makes stock too thin. That is nonsense.

Mr Williams, I do admire your work and own a couple of your DVDs. Frankly, I am surprised by what you are airing out here. Joseph Moxon’s book (which I also have – reprint of course) is no secret book. He wrote about some of the trades of the day documenting tools, procedures, and techniques that were widely used in that time in history. To suggest traversing is something dreamed up by a couple of guys who live now is completely baffling. You have a citation with Rick’s picture above, from a book written in 1694. I would say that is proof that the technique that you so readily dismiss, ridicule, and attribute to nothing more than a fad is actually a time honored technique in use by craftsmen at least just over three centuries ago.

Your postings have a somewhat bitter tone to them, as though you have a personal issue with Mr Scwharz and Cosman. That personal issue has bled into discounting their instruction and teachings based on your ego and not truth. Just because you don’t like those guys, doesn’t mean you should think they are spreading nonsense and you definitely should not be going public with trying to discredit their work, especially when your disagreements are not based on fact. You lose your own credibility pulling those kind of stunts.

Don’t blame Schwarz and Cosman for traversing, they are simply perpetuating a centuries old technique that was documented by Joseph Moxon.

-- Mike

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Dave11

27 posts in 1166 days


#25 posted 472 days ago

I realize I’m the new guy here, and I don’t mean to create any animosity, but I’m glad to read these arguments.

The historical aspects of traversing aside, as I’ve been learning to flatten (try?) a face, I haven’t been traversing, for 2 reasons: First, I’ve come across other people who on forums or in books/vids say not to do it (or who do their demonstrations without ever traversing or even mentioning it), and second, because of my makeshift set-up, it’s hard to hold long boards immovable in two directions at once, so I’ve just been planing straight along the length.

But I have been able to get boards perfectly flat that way. So is traversing just an alternate method,that people can choose to do or not? Or would some here make an argument that it is the BEST method?

Or should we start a new thread for this issue?

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paratrooper34

760 posts in 1550 days


#26 posted 472 days ago

Dave, traversing is a great technique when you have a lot of stock to remove and want it done quickly. For the first surface that you true up, even with rough lumber, there should be minimal stock to remove. If you have warping, twisting, and such, you may need to remove a lot. Anyway, the first face should be a minimal amount, so traversing may not be the best techique as stock removal is not the goal; square and flat is the goal.

Now once you get to the second face on the other side of the board, following your original question, you are probably looking at a good amount of stock removal to get the two faces coplanar and get the board to the desired thickness. Remove most of the stock by traversing then move to the finer planes to finish it up.

Most of us, me included, are here to learn (primarily learn for me) and share ideas. Sometimes people on this site have a hard time making their point without coming across in an abrasive manner and receive feedback with like abrasiveness. Personally, I wouldn’t classify it as animosity though. That’s my two cents.

Good Luck!

-- Mike

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Jorge G.

1524 posts in 1073 days


#27 posted 472 days ago

I believe lwllms is only pointing out that planning across the grain is only necessary when the board is severely cupped, and why would anybody choose a board with these problems if the truing is going to be done by hand?

Unlike a big surface where errors can be introduced at the joining phase a board that is going to use for smaller constructions should not need cross grain planning if one is careful to choose said board and where to cut to minimize wind. In this case planning diagonally should take care of any wayward high spots and using a smoothing plane to remove any wind left in the board should be enough to get a true surface.

I do a lot of hand truing in smaller board because I have a jointer/planner combo machine and sometimes it is faster to just do it by hand than to deal with the conversion from jointing to planning. As lwllms wrote, developing good habits (learning to choose good stock, taking into account grain pattern etc.) and knowing when to use a technique is the mark of a good craftsman. This is not a “nonsense” approach but one borne out of experience.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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Fettler

109 posts in 595 days


#28 posted 472 days ago

After flattening one side and marking with a thickness gauge I’ll:
- use my #5 with a chamfered fore plane blade to taper the long sides 45 degrees down almost two the line.
- use a china pen to mark straight lines on the 45 degree bevels towards my marked line
- fore plane rough down until the china pen marks are almost gone.
- use my #5 straight blade (I have two #5’s).
- check for twist and flattness
- let it sit, hope it doesn’t go out if square again.
- smooth plane before assembly

I learned from Jim Tolpin at the Port Townsend school of woodworking in their hand planes course.

-- --Rob, Seattle, WA

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rkober

125 posts in 890 days


#29 posted 472 days ago

Dave:
I use the Veritas exclusively with fine results. I find one pass works (and multiple passes can be counterproductive). When you get close to the line switch planes (or adjust) and take .005-.010” +/- per pass and you can do what you need. Don’t feel bad about lots of checking especially starting out.

-- Ray - Spokane, WA - “Most people don’t recognize opportunity because it’s usually disguised as hard work.” - Unknown

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Fettler

109 posts in 595 days


#30 posted 471 days ago

I have the veritas marker which works far better than a tradional crown marker that I have. If the marks are not deep enough ill follow up with a razor. The marker line will act as a tool guide which other tools can rest in.

i was taught that traversing is the correct technique for roughing. Just to throw some gas on the fire, one point to mention is that in moxon’s time they’d be roughing green stock where as most of us probably work with post furnace wood. As for internal stresses, IMO, that’d only affect the roughed surface which would removed during refinement with more precise planes.

-- --Rob, Seattle, WA

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shampeon

1278 posts in 781 days


#31 posted 471 days ago

If only I had the time, money, and storage to simply toss aside any and all boards that were not perfectly straight after ripping or resawing.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

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Rick M.

3777 posts in 978 days


#32 posted 471 days ago

I believe lwllms is only pointing out that planning across the grain is only necessary when the board is severely cupped, and why would anybody choose a board with these problems if the truing is going to be done by hand?

But that is wrong, it isn’t a matter of necessity, you can plane a board flat and remove cup without traversing. It’s about fast stock removal.

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

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bandit571

6649 posts in 1281 days


#33 posted 471 days ago

Oh, really??

The “Before & During” shot, and

the “After” shot, Plane is a 8” cambered Corsair #C-5. Plank was cupped in the middle, spent the time getting the hump in the middle out. Once this side was flat, went along with the grain with a #6 small jointer, and then a smoothing plane to clean up

Maybe I did it wrong????

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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Jorge G.

1524 posts in 1073 days


#34 posted 471 days ago

Not in the original question, I believe Dave wants to remove stock on the second face once the opposite has been trued. For this planning across the grain is clearly the wrong approach, specially using a scrub plane.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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paratrooper34

760 posts in 1550 days


#35 posted 471 days ago

Got to disagree with you Jorge….what if the stock meaures 15/16” when you get it flat. If you need to go down to 3/4” or 5/8” or even 1/2”, that is way too thick to forego traversing in my opinion. I would skip traversing if I was good with the thickness of the board after initial flattening.

It IS all about fast, heavy stock removal. The situation above doesn’t even take into account the width of the board and the species. I challenge you to simply plane with the grain when trying to remove 1/4” of hard maple on a board that is over eight inches wide. Good luck my friend.

-- Mike

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Jorge G.

1524 posts in 1073 days


#36 posted 471 days ago

that is way too thick to forego traversing in my opinion.

IMO going from corner to corner has the same effect and yields better results, not to mention spelching. Nothing worse than being just about your width line and having the edge blow out on the last pass.

Removing 1/4” of hard maple with a LN #8 is a matter of a couple of minutes, IF the second surface has been trued and all you need is to remove stock fast.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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paratrooper34

760 posts in 1550 days


#37 posted 471 days ago

Good on ya, I applaud your skill and ability of your plane.

Centuries of history support this technique by guys who fed their families with work produced from hand planes. I am gonna default to their expertise, but thanks for the input.

-- Mike

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Jorge G.

1524 posts in 1073 days


#38 posted 471 days ago

Centuries of history support this technique by guys who fed their families with work produced from hand planes.

True, but they did not have kiln dried S4S lumber back then. I am guessing you also chop your own trees down as well, huh?

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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bandit571

6649 posts in 1281 days


#39 posted 471 days ago

A picture story, if you will?

The “Victum”, a 10” wide, by 19” long plank of rough sawn Mystery wood. Just under 4/4 thick.Next.

Using either a Jack set up as a cambered jack/fore plane, or

a small scrubplane. MOST of the rough stuff is gone. Follow up with

a #6 sized Jointer, on the diagonals. Then with the grain, nocking off any high spots. Finally

ran a smooth plane over the entire plank. Done to both faces today, and the plank now measures 3/4” thick. Edge grain the same way, with a final pass with that smooth plane, again

Panel is flat, smooth, and ready for a project, like a panel. As for a shaving?

from the last pass on the edge grain.

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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bandit571

6649 posts in 1281 days


#40 posted 471 days ago

Mystery board came from a Carriage house/ Garage that fell down, due to age. Skirt board? 4/4×10. I had already used a big chunk of it to build a hall table. Still have a couple chunks left. Might clean up a few angles on the left-overs, and build a lap desk??

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#41 posted 471 days ago

Jorge: ”I believe lwllms is only pointing out that planning across the grain is only necessary when the board is severely cupped, and why would anybody choose a board with these problems if the truing is going to be done by hand?”

Rick: ”But that is wrong, it isn’t a matter of necessity, you can plane a board flat and remove cup without traversing. It’s about fast stock removal.”

Now that Dave has his issue resolved, let’s revisit Moxon. I was pretty sure Moxon would be the source Rick would cite. Did anyone actually read what Moxon said?

First he says one must plane along the length of the stock from the hinter end to the fore end. Then he offers a condition. If the wood proves to be “cross grained” in part of its length, one turns the stock in the “contrary way” (end for end) and again plane along its length for the section that’s “cross grained”.

This is just one of many problems that arise from Moxon being a printer and writing about various trades. Anyone with experience will know there are better approaches. It’s just too easy with this approach to overshoot at either end which likely results in more serious tear-out.

Moxon then describes planing the cup from wide boards by traversing. Unfortunately, he also uses the term “cross grain” to describe traversing. He says to “turn the grain athwart the work-bench,” a very different description of the earlier end-for-end turn of the stock. He then describes planing from the edge of the stock toward the center to remove one high edge of cupped stock placed concave side up. Then he says to turn the stock, still concave side up, around so the other edge is out and repeat planing from the edge to the center.

What he’s describing is a controlled way to remove the cup in wide stock and still retain thickness. It’s not about whacking away trying to rapidly remove material. Again, there are better methods. I’d place the concave side down and plane to remove stock in the center without removing stock from the edges. You could do this either by traversing or by working the length, I guess that’s a matter of personal preference. I’ve added scans of Moxon’s text below.

People may think I get emotionally involved in these discussions. That’s not the case. I enjoy printing out what others say vs. what I’ve said and spending a little part of the day going over it all with Don McConnell at the shop. Often, he doesn’t agree with me but agrees with others involved. In the shop or in his personal collection, upstairs from the shop, we have most of these old texts. We learn a lot from this. Sometimes from finding things we hadn’t noticed before and sometimes reading things a different way. It’s people like Rick who challenge me and gives us these opportunities. We both appreciate that.

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Jorge G.

1524 posts in 1073 days


#42 posted 471 days ago

I’d place the concave side down and plane to remove stock in the center without removing stock from the edges. You could do this either by traversing or by working the length,

I use a similar approach for wind as well. I shim the board on the bottom and remove the offending corners with a smoother. I then plane from corner to corner with a try plane, you get a flat board in no time without taking too much stock off the board.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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Rick M.

3777 posts in 978 days


#43 posted 471 days ago

Now that Dave has his issue resolved, let’s revisit Moxon. I was pretty sure Moxon would be the source Rick would cite. Did anyone actually read what Moxon said?

I find it disingenuous to ask for a citation then not acknowledge it or perhaps pretend I did not post it. Yesterday you stated that traversing was a Schwarz and Cosman thing, today after my citation, you are quoting Moxon. This discussion has turned counter-productive.

Dave, regardless of what technique you use, I’m sure all you really need is a little more practice. Woodworking is a learned skill, don’t give up.

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#44 posted 471 days ago

I should clarify what I wrote. In the first instance Moxon uses ”cross-grain’d” to mean grain reversal. In the second instance ”cross-grain” and even ”cross-grain’d” refers to traversing. It’s unfortunate Moxon the printer wasn’t a cabinet maker or joiner but his work is the earliest reference we have and the only one for the period.

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paratrooper34

760 posts in 1550 days


#45 posted 471 days ago

Yep, comes a time when discussion is no longer helpful.

Good Luck Dave.

-- Mike

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Dave11

27 posts in 1166 days


#46 posted 471 days ago

Thanks everyone. I’ll be re-reading this thread from time to time as I get more experience. Thanks to all who chimed in.

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Caleb James

149 posts in 1528 days


#47 posted 453 days ago

Things have’t changed much. Those that write about it first become the “authority” but the experienced maker often is making and never does the writing but would be the best authority. I am not surprised that Moxon is taken as the “authority” but was actually a printer. Funny but not a surprise.

You only really come to appreciate all the woodworking experts aren’t really such experts until you meet many of the true craftsman. They are out there but most are not writing about it.

-- http://www.calebjameschairmaker.com, http://www.kapeldesigns.com

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#48 posted 453 days ago

Caleb,
Actually, Moxon did a remarkable job but you have to understand him in context. After The Restoration, Moxon was working with the Royal Society to rebuild British culture after the fundamentalist religious oppression of the Cromwells. The Royal Society knew the British had fallen behind the rest of the World and were attempting to catch up in science, the trades and the arts. At the beginning of the restoration British furniture was based on wainscot frame and panel construction but the French furniture was of veneered and marquetry construction that was often curvilinear. I suspect that Moxon viewed this as more sophisticated and attributed this to the tools. It’s my belief this is why Moxon’s illustrations of planes were copied from André Félibien’s work. Except for the smooth plane, the illustrated planes are French and not what would have been in use in England.

What Moxon didn’t seem to understand is that during the Wren Period and also the rebuilding of London after the Great Fire the British developed a very sophisticated system of woodworking and hand planes.

I’m not sure exactly what irritated Rick. He wrote that I didn’t acknowledge his citing Moxon. Maybe he thinks I didn’t know about Moxon but, if so, he has no idea what I’ve been doing for the last 16 years. I don’t know how more directly I can acknowledge his citation than to explain what Moxon actually said.

Rick is right about one thing. This pointless and wasteful diagonal whacking away at the thickness of wood didn’t start with Rob Cosman or Chris Schwarz. They both seem to be following Garrett Hack’s The Handplane Book. I’ve been rereading stock preparation sections of all of the woodworking books I have that cover. I’ve yet to find an earlier source.

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