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Jointing with a hand plane?

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Forum topic by builtinbkyn posted 03-21-2016 08:45 PM 962 views 0 times favorited 26 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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builtinbkyn

651 posts in 401 days


03-21-2016 08:45 PM

OK so this is totally new for me. I figured what better time and place to start using the hand tools I’ve accumulated than now and on a small project I committed to do for my wife. She wants a small step stool to use in the closet and to possible place a plant or or some other object when not needed for reaching the upper shelves in her closet.

I have some scrap cedar remaining from my yard project, which was also used for the leg structure on my workbench. The stuff remaining was what I culled after re-sawing for the bench legs. It was checked, cracked and a bit warped. Yesterday I started to break the pieces down again by re-sawing them on the bandsaw and then running them thru the planer as one side was already mostly flat, being the milled side. I got them all to a uniform thickness, but the bandsaw re-sawing wasn’t like running them thru on the table saw. So today I grabbed the 608 and went at it. I figured if I mess up here, well no real loss in terms of good hardwood being ruined by my novice hands. However I think the results aren’t all that bad. Nothing is glued yet, but this is the results so far.

The strips aren’t uniform in width, but they do seem to join well at the glue line. I checked them with a micrometer and any single board is within a few 100ths along it’s length. A few boards have a little cup un them, but cauls should help with that during glue-up. Checking with a square, the faces are square to one another.

What I would like to know is, was there a better way to go about this? (Jointing the boards by hand) I used clamps to assist in holding the boards to the face of the bench. I know I could have used one of the holdfasts I picked up, but didn’t want to spend the time right now, to drill the holes in the skirt required for that. Other than that, does anyone have pointers for this task?

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn :)


26 replies so far

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Combo Prof

2373 posts in 738 days


#1 posted 03-21-2016 09:40 PM

It looks like you may want to flip some of the boards so that the grain patterns alternate. Boards 3 and 4 from the right don’t look like a good arrangement to me. Once glued up use diagonal strokes with your jointer and jack to get the panel to a uniform thickness. Follow with a smoother. Use winding sticks to detect twist If you make the grain rise along the length in the same direction with all the boards in the panel, it will make smoothing and thickness-ing a whole lot easier.

-- Don K, (Houghton, Michigan)

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builtinbkyn

651 posts in 401 days


#2 posted 03-21-2016 10:00 PM

Hi Don. OK understood. Boards 3 & 4 from the right. They were just placed in the pipe clamps to see where I was in terms of overall width for the top, but I understand about the orientation of the grain to prevent cupping once they are glued.

I can see that if I wanted all the boards to be equal widths, I’d have had a much more difficult time of it. There were times I overshot one end of the board or the other and sometimes I took too much in the middle. I had to stop. Pull the board and see where I needed to make adjustments. I guess that consistency will come with practice. That’s what this was to determine. How far I need to go to get consistent in taking wood and keeping true and flat in my stroke.

Thanks for the input.


It looks like you may want to flip some of the boards so that the grain patterns alternate. Boards 3 and 4 from the right don t look like a good arrangement to me. Once glued up use diagonal strokes with your jointer and jack to get the panel to a uniform thickness. Follow with a smoother. Use winding sticks to detect twist If you make the grain rise along the length in the same direction with all the boards in the panel, it will make smoothing and thickness-ing a whole lot easier.

- Combo Prof

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn :)

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JayT

4772 posts in 1672 days


#3 posted 03-21-2016 10:02 PM

When jointing for glue ups, I do match jointing.

Lay all the boards out in the way you want to glue them up and mark across all boards in some way to get them back in order and alignment. I use a big V across all of them on one side. Take the first two boards and fold them together so that either both top faces or both bottom faces are touching and put them in the vise that way. Use the plane to joint both boards at once.

Using this method, even if you don’t keep the plane perfectly square, it doesn’t matter. Since both boards have the same degree of error, they will cancel each other out because of how they were placed in the vise. You do still have to be sure about keeping the edge straight down the length, but it gives one less thing to worry about as you work.

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

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Tim

3110 posts in 1422 days


#4 posted 03-21-2016 10:02 PM

Good save from scrap to something useful. Looks like your work holding solution worked pretty well. The only improvement really would be drilling the holes you mentioned, or pulling the bench out a bit and turning the clamp around so you weren’t running into the clamp handle.

Theoretically you should be able to press your jointed boards together with just hand pressure and have no gap, but for your first effort you did well, and it should do fine for the purpose. The only way to improve is to practice more, so you’ve got a good start.

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Combo Prof

2373 posts in 738 days


#5 posted 03-21-2016 10:07 PM

I was about to mention what JayT said. I think I misunderstood what you meant by width. I took it to mean the width of the panel. If do as JayT said it is also easier to control the widths of the strips. However I think some randomness
would look better then all the exact same width. you have them so close now I have doubts anyone could tell.

-- Don K, (Houghton, Michigan)

View TheWoodRaccoon's profile

TheWoodRaccoon

364 posts in 390 days


#6 posted 03-21-2016 10:45 PM

That’s a whole lot of shavings! Looks like fun. :)

-- still trying to think of a clever signature......

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hotbyte

841 posts in 2436 days


#7 posted 03-21-2016 11:48 PM

I’ve been doing more with hand tools myself and planing can be very enjoyable. As to planing boards to same width, what I’ve seen, but not tried, is to run a marking gauge line on sides off the reference face and then plane to that line.

I think it was in Shop Notes I saw a jig that went on top of bench with a peg in dog hole. Then a piece hung down the side with holes to insert supports for long boards. I don’t recall if there was a way to clamp to it or if board was just supported.

View Aj2's profile

Aj2

687 posts in 1259 days


#8 posted 03-22-2016 12:01 AM

Looks like your bench doesn’t have dogs and a tail end vice.Or a tail vice?
That’s how I plane boards.
If they are too thin I lay on their sides elevated up off the bench and run my plane on its side.
Kinda like a shoot board.
Cedar is nice to plane if it doesn’t have too much slica in it.
Nice.

View builtinbkyn's profile

builtinbkyn

651 posts in 401 days


#9 posted 03-22-2016 12:51 AM


I ve been doing more with hand tools myself and planing can be very enjoyable. As to planing boards to same width, what I ve seen, but not tried, is to run a marking gauge line on sides off the reference face and then plane to that line.

I think it was in Shop Notes I saw a jig that went on top of bench with a peg in dog hole. Then a piece hung down the side with holes to insert supports for long boards. I don t recall if there was a way to clamp to it or if board was just supported.

- hotbyte

I actually thought about using a marking gauge and a pencil to fill the line, then I stuck one of the pieces in the vise and just went to town. Maybe I’ll try that when the piece needs to be a specific dimension.

I like the idea of the jig you mention, but not sure how that would work with my vise. The inside chop is flush with the front of the bench. Anything hanging down over the edge would push the work piece out at an angle. Maybe I can figure out a way to incorporate a deadman on the bench.


When jointing for glue ups, I do match jointing.

Lay all the boards out in the way you want to glue them up and mark across all boards in some way to get them back in order and alignment. I use a big V across all of them on one side. Take the first two boards and fold them together so that either both top faces or both bottom faces are touching and put them in the vise that way. Use the plane to joint both boards at once.

Using this method, even if you don t keep the plane perfectly square, it doesn t matter. Since both boards have the same degree of error, they will cancel each other out because of how they were placed in the vise. You do still have to be sure about keeping the edge straight down the length, but it gives one less thing to worry about as you work.

- JayT

Ah I see how that can work. Then you flip one and joint it to the next the same way and do this all the way down the line?


Good save from scrap to something useful. Looks like your work holding solution worked pretty well. The only improvement really would be drilling the holes you mentioned, or pulling the bench out a bit and turning the clamp around so you weren t running into the clamp handle.

Theoretically you should be able to press your jointed boards together with just hand pressure and have no gap, but for your first effort you did well, and it should do fine for the purpose. The only way to improve is to practice more, so you ve got a good start.

- Tim

Tim the clamp only went thru to the split in the top. Once I figured out how to not catch my UHUMM! on the handle, I was GTG ;)

I didn’t want to trash those lengths of cedar and knew somehow I’d make use of them. This is a good first project to use them for learning to use planes for jointing. I flattened the bench top manually, but that was a bit more straight forward I think.


That s a whole lot of shavings! Looks like fun. :)

- TheWoodRaccoon

Hey Brandon. It actually was fun and a much needed change of pace from building shop cabinets :)

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn :)

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hotbyte

841 posts in 2436 days


#10 posted 03-22-2016 12:54 AM

The jig just had a space board that sits in the vise. The bottom of spacer board was notched to fit over the vise support rods and screw to hold it in place.

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builtinbkyn

651 posts in 401 days


#11 posted 03-22-2016 01:09 AM



Looks like your bench doesn t have dogs and a tail end vice.Or a tail vice?
That s how I plane boards.
If they are too thin I lay on their sides elevated up off the bench and run my plane on its side.
Kinda like a shoot board.
Cedar is nice to plane if it doesn t have too much slica in it.
Nice.

- Aj2

It has a wagon vise though. Actually I’m not sure why I didn’t try using it. :( I’ll try the wagon vise next time and see how that goes.

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn :)

View JayT's profile

JayT

4772 posts in 1672 days


#12 posted 03-22-2016 01:50 AM


Ah I see how that can work. Then you flip one and joint it to the next the same way and do this all the way down the line?

- builtinbkyn

You got it. It goes very quickly and with a little bit of practice, it’s amazing how tight of joints you can get. With good grain matching, the glue lines completely disappear.

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

View Tim's profile

Tim

3110 posts in 1422 days


#13 posted 03-22-2016 01:54 AM



I ve been doing more with hand tools myself and planing can be very enjoyable. As to planing boards to same width, what I ve seen, but not tried, is to run a marking gauge line on sides off the reference face and then plane to that line.
- hotbyte

That does work well. In fact, planing to a marked line was a lot easier to learn for me that learning to plane square in the first place. It’s like having some training wheels.
To get stock perfectly the same thickness, Paul Sellers did a video about making a jig, basically a sled for the plane that ensures exactly the right thickness. It’s free, but you have to sign up for his Masterclass website. There’s so much good stuff on there that’s not a problem.
Here’s the link after you’re signed up.
https://woodworkingmasterclasses.com/2014/05/thickness-planing/

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builtinbkyn

651 posts in 401 days


#14 posted 03-22-2016 03:20 AM

Tim thanks for posting that. I can see how it would help, especially when needing to do a lot of pieces that need consistent thickness for butt joining the way he showed.

Is a spoke shave the next step in fine tuning something? Or are they used to shape stock vs smooth?

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn :)

View JayT's profile

JayT

4772 posts in 1672 days


#15 posted 03-22-2016 11:26 AM

Spokeshaves are usually used for shaping and smoothing stock that is not flat, such as a curved chair leg or such. With a good spokeshave, you can set it to take a thicker cut when shaping and back it off for a thin, wispy cut when smoothing.

Card scrapers are another good tool for smoothing shaped or flat surfaces. They are also great for working small areas. Since they are cheap and don’t take up much room, I always have a few ready to use and go to them frequently. If scraping a large surface, a cabinet scraper such as a Stanley #80 or scraper plane (#12 or #112) will be much easier on the hands than card scrapers. Another advantage of scrapers is that they work well on areas where planes and spokeshaves cause tear out, such as highly figured grain.

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

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