|Forum topic by Tony1212||posted 12-10-2015 04:42 PM||963 views||0 times favorited||16 replies|
12-10-2015 04:42 PM
I decided to make some Christmas gifts this year. The first time I ever tried anything like that. So I figured I’d make something fairly easy to start with – a votive candle center piece. Just edge glue a few boards and use a forstner bit to make the dugouts for the candles. No problem, I thought! My family will be greatly impressed by my skillz.
Once I had the lumber, I realized that the wood was all slightly different thicknesses. I quickly rationalized that I really need a planer. But having no money and no time, I had to think of an alternative. Suddenly I remember the plane and sharpening jig that I got as a birthday present a while ago. It’s an older Stanley No. 5, but I’ve never used it before, so I had no idea if it worked. So I tried it on a scrape piece of maple. It BARELY worked.
So I decided to jump into the Scary Sharp method to make the plane work like everyone on this board says it should. That is, it should make paper thin shavings while being pushed with a newborn’s pinky finger.
I never got anywhere close to that, but I was able to get acceptable results. And I found that planing is REALLY fun. So much so that I probably wouldn’t have been too upset to see all of those nice votive holders end up as shavings on my floor.
But I spent a LOT of time sharpening. Most of that time (like 90%), I was trying to establish the primary bevel. I was using 180 grit wet/dry sandpaper. So maybe it would have been quicker with a lower grit, but the main issue was that I couldn’t match the bevel that was originally there. Is that common? I assume most everyone uses a jig to set the length of the blade in the holder to get repeatable bevel angles. But I also figure, everyone’s is slightly different.
I also assume that I will have to do this for every blade I get from now on. Is this the usual, or am I doing something completely wrong here?
I did the best I could with matching the bevel the first time, but didn’t set up a jig to repeat it, figuring I just need to get through this batch of gifts. Sure enough, halfway through the plane starts tearing everything up. Had to resharpen. This time I set up a jig, but I still couldn’t match the first bevel I put on it. Yet another 2 hours of setting the primary… Guess I learned something and got to work on my sharpening technique, but man, that was tedious.
-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs