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Veritas Router Plane - 2 Thumbs Up

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Review by cmaeda posted 12-29-2010 08:44 AM 3350 views 0 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Veritas Router Plane - 2 Thumbs Up No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I got the Veritas Router Plane as a gift from my (favorite) aunt so I have only had a few days to try it out but so far its’ really awesome.
The fit and finish is excellent except that I spent maybe half an hour sanding the knobs and finishing it with oil but that’s just a personal preference.
Honing the blades didn’t take too long except that the 1/2” straight blade had a small ding in it so I had to grind it out (an extra 20 minutes of so). But the other blades only took maybe 5 minutes each…. maybe 1 minute on my extra fine diamond and 3 or 4 minutes on my extra extra fine ceramic stone.
It is really easy to use, I like the depth stop mechanism and the big brass knob to control the depth.
I don’t have many Veritas planes and it really was a toss up between this and the Lie Nielsen. I was able to test drive the Lie Nielsen beforehand but the Veritas was bought without a testdrive.
The features I liked were that the 1/2” blades are detachable, the depth stop mechanism and the closed throat.
I just wish that the 1/4” blade was detachable. It makes sharpening a whole lot easier.




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cmaeda

205 posts in 2241 days



10 comments so far

View gko's profile

gko

80 posts in 1931 days


#1 posted 12-29-2010 12:29 PM

Thanks for the nice review. How do you keep it going in a straight line? Clamp down an external fence? Has its own fence? Does it tend to skew or is it difficult to control? Going cross grain does it tear out? Do you have to smooth the sides after cutting a groove? I’ve thought of buying this but it seems difficult to control and it seems like it would have tear out. It also seems like it might leave a rough surface.

-- Wood Menehune, Honolulu

View woodworkerscott's profile

woodworkerscott

362 posts in 1501 days


#2 posted 12-29-2010 04:51 PM

Well “gko”, router planes are usually used after wood has been removed by a chisel or even a saw. For instance if making a dado the old fashion way you would cut the sides of the dado with a guided back saw, remove excess wood with a chisel almost to the depth line, then use a router plane to clean it to a uniform finished depth. The sides of the dado or groove were already straight and clean from the backsaw. The chisels or “blades” on the router plane follow along the sides of the dado so there is no need for a fence. So, no- there usually is no tear out if used properly. This is a good tool to use to tweak the bottom of grooves and dados that have been made by kerfing on a saw. You don’t grab a router plane and start gouging the wood to make a groove or dado. There are steps done before a router plane enters the picture. Hope this helps.

-- " 'woodworker'.....it's a good word, an honest word." - Sam Maloof

View gko's profile

gko

80 posts in 1931 days


#3 posted 12-29-2010 07:05 PM

Hi Scott, thanks for the tip. Never seen one used before so I just assumed you did everything with the router plane. Because they gave you a regular blade and then a pointed one for the smoothing I just thought you went at it with the regular blade and then used the pointed one to finish.

-- Wood Menehune, Honolulu

View cmaeda's profile

cmaeda

205 posts in 2241 days


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

I forgot to mention that I got the fence for it and that helps me go in a straight line. The fence works but the it feels somewhat unstable, especially if I try to make a deep cut. Maybe I just need to get used to it.
It is pretty easy to control, especially when taking light cuts.
The router plane isn’t used for any finishing cuts so I’m not too worried about leaving smooth sides. It does leave a fairly smooth surface when going with the grain. Across the grain isn’t as smooth, even when using the spearpoint blade.

woodworkerscott- I actually did use the router plane to remove the bulk of the wood in a dado I tested on and it works pretty well. I did cut the sidewalls first with a backsaw then removed the remaining wood with the router plane. It was a lot easier than using chisels. I just have to take light cuts as I get near the bottom of the dado.

I initially bought the tool for installing hinges… It was difficult to get a flat surface using chisels but after messing around with the router plane for the past few days, I see a lot of possibilities.

View rwyoung's profile

rwyoung

369 posts in 2159 days


#5 posted 12-30-2010 12:19 AM

The router plane is not efficient at hogging away material. They are designed for removing the last little bit to level a surface to match the reference surface.

When making a dado by hand, saw down to depth on each side. Then use a chisel (bench and if necessary a long paring chisel) to remove the bulk of the waste. Smooth the bottom of the dado with the router plane. Expect to take only the last 16th or less with the router plane. Removing the bulk with a chisel is fast. With the right width and a sharp chisel you can zip out waste very quickly. Makes a neat sound too.

You can get a very smooth cut with these tools if your blade is sharp, even cross grain. It sounds like your idea of sharp and my idea of sharp are different. ;)

Other neat tricks are leveling a tenon (make an axillary base with a nice long side to keep referenced over the work piece – looks sort of like the aux. base you would make for cutting circles with a tailed router). You can angle the blade or turn it around to point out from the base and get into places where the base would normally interfere. You can use this one (or the smaller #271 cousin) to clean up before doing inlay.

Hinge mortises were mentioned.

Stopped dados/grooves and sliding dovetails (straight, tapered and stopped) are easy to tune up with a router plane. Even making dados in plywood, you can improve them with the router plane. I’ve had the occasional problem where the plywood was just a tad bowed so the dado was shallow in the center of the sheet. Simple fix, set the depth of the blade to the dado depth near the end of the sheet where it is right, then work your way along fixing the hump. Likewise, if your dado set leaves “batwings”, cut your dado a tad shallow and bring it to depth, thus removing the batwings, with the router plane.

Lots and lots of uses.

-- Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things.

View rwyoung's profile

rwyoung

369 posts in 2159 days


#6 posted 12-30-2010 12:21 AM

p.s. the use of the fence is helpful for working on rabbets, especially if you have a rabbet along a curved workpiece. Say you are making a round table top but want to inlay something around the edge into a rabbet. With the fence in place, and probably a modified fence so you have a point contact and not the flat fence, you can skate your way around cleaning up the rabbet as it switches grain direction.

-- Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things.

View StumpyNubs's profile

StumpyNubs

6231 posts in 1487 days


#7 posted 12-30-2010 10:53 PM

I’ve been wanting one of these for a long time! It’s on my list of future endulgences. Thanks for the review!

-- It's the best woodworking show since the invention of wood... New episodes at: http://www.stumpynubs.com

View TheGravedigger's profile

TheGravedigger

963 posts in 2711 days


#8 posted 12-31-2010 02:02 AM

I’ve got the Veritas small router plane, and have this one on my wish list. You really can’t beat them for cleaning up the bottom of a rabbet or dado. Even machine-cut ones can benefit from a final pass with one of these, since the depth of cut will often vary slightly due to wood movement. Thanks for the review.

-- Robert - Visit my woodworking blog: http://littlegoodpieces.wordpress.com

View cmaeda's profile

cmaeda

205 posts in 2241 days


#9 posted 12-31-2010 03:14 AM

I’m actually finding that my dado blade cut dados are not totally flat at the bottom so I can go back over with my router plane and get a totally flat bottom.

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