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Hand plane for table top glue ups

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Forum topic by BalsaWood posted 09-30-2015 07:36 AM 523 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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BalsaWood

29 posts in 625 days


09-30-2015 07:36 AM

I am making an oak table top. I glued up some oak boards and one of the boards ended up slightly higher on one end. I was thinking of some of my options for leveling the board. I don’t have much experience with hand planes so was wondering which hand plane would be good for flattening the table top glue up?


5 replies so far

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

4036 posts in 1818 days


#1 posted 09-30-2015 12:35 PM

It depends on how much wood you need to hog off. If it is a lot start w/ a jack, then go to a jointer and then final pass w/ a smoother. If it is just a sliver of wood to begin with go straight to the smoother. A table top doesn’t have to be dead flat, it just has to look flat to the naked eye.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1836 days


#2 posted 09-30-2015 12:49 PM

I just finished a table top that had a board or two like that (need to make some better cauls). I started of going cross-grain with a #4 taking a moderate amount off, to get it level front-to-back. Then I switched to a jack and did front-to-back, at a 45, down the length, then down the length with a jointer. Skipped the smoothing plane in favor of the ROS, because the surface was pretty good after the jointer.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View JayT's profile

JayT

4786 posts in 1678 days


#3 posted 09-30-2015 01:29 PM

I like a #5-1/2 or #6 for flattening panels. Others prefer something slightly larger or smaller—anything from a #5 on up in size should work fine.

-- "Good judgement is the result of experience. A lot of experience is the result of poor judgement."

View BalsaWood's profile

BalsaWood

29 posts in 625 days


#4 posted 09-30-2015 04:05 PM

Right now, all I have is a low quality smoother plane. If I purchased a jack plane, could I do all the above with it?

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1836 days


#5 posted 09-30-2015 04:12 PM


Right now, all I have is a low quality smoother plane. If I purchased a jack plane, could I do all the above with it?

- BalsaWood

Yes, you could. I’d cross-grain, followed by 45 degrees to that in one direction, then 45 in the other direction, then along the length, all taking thin shavings. I did my benchtop with a #5 before I got the #7, it’ll work. Scribbling across the top with a pencil will also help you see where the high/low spots are. Winding sticks, if needed.

If you have any antique stores near you, they’re a good place to look. Also Craigslist. Or, if you can afford to go new, I hear the WoodRiver and Veritas are nice, but I wouldn’t know. I picked up a #5 and 2 #4s (only enough salvageable to make 1 #4 from them) off Craigslist for $15.

Whatever route you go, make sure the sole is flat, and the blade is sharp.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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