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Blog entry by sawblade1 posted 1080 days ago 1014 reads 1 time favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I know I am opening a can of worms :) A big can of fat squirmy ones :) Power tools buffs before you throw the first rock or board let me explain, and hand tool galoots don’t get too happy I still love my motorized friends (although I still am fond of hand tools ). There are points in our modern power tool shops that hand tools are just plain better one such example was the other day a friend stopped by and wanted me to chamfer some small boards for him, as I reached for my block plane he questioned aren’t you gonna use the router? Naw I replied he questioned again and I bet him I could lay out the chamfers before he could even get the thing set up. he reached for the router and proceeded to start to set it up, I grabbed the plane and chucked the board into the vise and proceeded to lay a 45 degree chamfer on the Board ( side note I have a 45 degree chamfer on the inside edge of one vice to assist my block plane with this task ) :) One minute later I was done he was just tightening the collate on the router 5 boards 18” long and 6” wide done both sides and less mess :P Needless to say his jaw hit the pilings on the floor. Another time recently was I was working on the blanket chest for my friends birthday / surprise gift and needed to flatten the top, One I could of reached for the belt sander but I don’t have one plus it was past 10pm (not the ideal time for a belt sander) here is the pic below
I grabbed my Stanley bailey #4 and had the top flattened by 10:40pm BOTH SIDES!!!!! the plane was simply the fastest and best choice Plus the finish was beautiful ( sanding hides the grain through scratches) There are just times the hand tools are faster ( when you only have a few to do or need to flatten a top quickly) Better ( when you want a better quality just don’t want to deal with all of the mess, or it is late and you have neighbors) and cheaper as you don’t have any electricity to buy :) I would like to hear others stories on how hand tools have saved you time in a modern power tool environment

-- Proverbs Ch:3 vs 5,6,7 Trust in the lord with all thine heart and lean not unto your own understanding but in all your ways aknowledge him and he shall direct your path elmerthomas81@neo.rr.com



22 comments so far

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

14721 posts in 2301 days


#1 posted 1080 days ago

I agree 100%!! ;-)) See my review of the Veritas Edging tool a few days ago. I was done before I could have found the bit I needed to do it with a router.

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11280 posts in 1730 days


#2 posted 1080 days ago

And the hand tools keep working when the power goes out. In that case, I put down the router and grab a beer!!

I do often use a hand plane to flatten wide boards before running through the planer. It feels good to cut all those high spots off and see it level out on the table.

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View DaddyLongLegs's profile

DaddyLongLegs

10 posts in 1087 days


#3 posted 1079 days ago

wish I had your planer skills

View 8iowa's profile

8iowa

1489 posts in 2386 days


#4 posted 1079 days ago

I’m a long ways from being an expert with the hand plane, but I use a #5 to eliminate twist and high spots on rough sawn boards before running them thru the planer.

-- "Heaven is North of the Bridge"

View Beginningwoodworker's profile

Beginningwoodworker

13337 posts in 2298 days


#5 posted 1079 days ago

Sometimes hand tools are faster, than setting up a power tool.

-- CJIII Future cabinetmaker

View mafe's profile (online now)

mafe

9483 posts in 1714 days


#6 posted 1079 days ago

I just straightened a long board the other day, it had a twist and a bump, with a scrub plane this was corrected much faster than any power tool could do it, but perhaps if I had to make 100 a day…
Yes the hand tools are sometimes much faster than the effort we do to not use them, but we need a sharp iron.
Best thoughts,
Mads

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View tom427cid's profile

tom427cid

294 posts in 1095 days


#7 posted 1079 days ago

Periodicaly I produce moulding for myself and others.One day a customer stopped by and asked if I had a cutter to duplicate a piece of moulding-said he did not have any cutters that would come close. I checked all of my machine cutters and came up empty handed. He was ready to leave when I told him that I had not checked ALL of my cutters. Pulled out the box of Stanley 55 cutters. Lo an behold there was the exact profile he needed! Hour and a half later he left the shop with 30’ of moulding that he thought was unavailable. Later he bought his own 55 and came to my shop and paid me to teach him how to use it. Saw him a couple of weeks later up to is knees in curls making moulding(he was restoring an early farmhouse).He said “9 passes, rip it on the saw,10’ of moulding that matches what is in the house.This plane is awsome and surprisingly fast”.
Yes, hand tools are sometimes faster,and in some cases can produce things that machines can’t.
tom

-- "certified sawdust maker"

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2135 posts in 1734 days


#8 posted 1079 days ago

I think the lesson you posted hits home. I think it is clear that if you focus on only hand or power tools you are limiting your solutions to a woodworking problem. I started out with my focus completely on power tools but have run into situations where a power solution was impractical, impossible, dangerous, or ridiculous to use. At the same time, power tools allow for repeatability, accuracy, speed and to completely dismiss technology does weaken your arsenal. Tools are only there to assist with solving problems. The real problem solver is your brain.

Thanks for posting,

David

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View mafe's profile (online now)

mafe

9483 posts in 1714 days


#9 posted 1079 days ago

In the kitchen when we need to whisk one egg we take a whisk with out even thinking about it, when we need to whisk 10 we take a egg beater if we need to mix 50 we bring ot the electrical kitchen machine.
But for some reason in the workshop people tend to want to do it all in one way.
I belive in a good mix, where we use the brain to chose the right tool before doing the job.
(Tools that are not sharp is often the problem both in the kitchen and the workshop, for some strange reason sharpening has become forgotten – my guests even bring their kitchen knifes to my place when they visit, just in the hope they will be sharp when they leave my house).
Big smile,
Mads

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

14721 posts in 2301 days


#10 posted 1079 days ago

I would like a 55, but I have no idea what I would do with it. I have resisted, so far ;-)) .......................

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2135 posts in 1734 days


#11 posted 1078 days ago

Great analogy Mafe!

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View mafe's profile (online now)

mafe

9483 posts in 1714 days


#12 posted 1078 days ago

Topa, I also want one, but will wait for the day I need it.
David, smile thank you.
Best thoughts,
Mads

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View DaddyZ's profile

DaddyZ

2380 posts in 1665 days


#13 posted 1078 days ago

And Another ‘Amen Brother’ Here !!

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View woodzy's profile

woodzy

416 posts in 1304 days


#14 posted 1078 days ago

Too true.
As an inexperience woodworker i often plan my projects around a few power tools. But the setup time and adjustments, force me to pick up a saw, and chisel more often than not.

I only really get into my shop after 9pm, after the kids go to bed. So power tools are not an option most nights. When i have my 2 girls with me in the shop it’s all handwork.

I am getting better with a plane the more practice i get. Sharp blades are the key (I just figured this out, don’t laugh)

The 45 and 55 Stanley’s call my name, I have no idea what i would do with them, but as soon as i do i will own one.

Great topic.

-- Anthony

View DamnYankee's profile

DamnYankee

3233 posts in 1187 days


#15 posted 1078 days ago

Amen

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

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