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Forum topic by Brad_Nailor posted 11-30-2007 05:38 PM 1504 views 1 time favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2539 posts in 4191 days

11-30-2007 05:38 PM

Topic tags/keywords: hand planes tools

Hey guys! I have been wanting to unlock the secrets of the hand plane for a long to use to sharpen to adjust the blade so they cut properly. I was at Woodcraft (my home away from home) the other day and I noticed they are having a hand plane basics class on Dec 8. After reading many posts and looking at allot of your hand plane restoration projects I decided to sign up for the class. I know there are allot of books out there about hand plane basics and I will probably buy one to use as a reference but I am a “visual” guy..I like to see things demonstrated for me to understand better.

My question is, I see that Woodcraft has this combo set on sale by Groz. Its a #4 bench plane and a low angle block plane together for 50 bucks. Here is the link to the items I was wondering if these are decent? Even though I am just beginning with planes, I still don’t want to buy junk. I have other Groz items and I think they are decent quality, but I would like to hear from the hand plane hierarchy! The price variance between planes seems rather large so I want quality without going overboard. What do you guys..and girls think?


4 replies so far

View Marco Cecala's profile

Marco Cecala

189 posts in 4267 days

#1 posted 11-30-2007 05:52 PM

I have the Groz #4. The fit and finish is very good for the price. If you really want it to perform great, you will want to work the blade and chip breaker. I also polished the base just to make it work easier. All told, I spent about an hour tuning it up, and now have a very reliable planer.

My advice, buy it, learn how to use it, and it will reward you with good results.

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 4191 days

#2 posted 11-30-2007 07:15 PM

So maybe I should buy them one at a time and spend more money on each plane, increasing the quality…The Lie Nielsons look nice, but a small block plane is more than the Groz two for..


View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4035 posts in 4297 days

#3 posted 11-30-2007 07:40 PM

Hey David (Brad Nailor),
If you don’t have to your own plane in hand for the class on the 8th, I’d recommend holding out for a retrieved Stanley or a Sargent. My Sargent (Escape From The Rust Bucket with links to two masters here: David Pruett and WayneC’s exhaustively thorough plane rehabs) has become my new favorite plane. The Stanleys have tons of references available online. Two great links are Patrick Leach’s Blood and Gore and a widely reproduced key to identifying the make and model of the Stanleys.
I went with the Sargent because getting old Stanleys has become a bit more expensive in recent days, and they are solidly made by a close competitor of Stanley using many of the patents that were designed by Leonard Bailey the same designer that Stanley bought out, later to go into the public domain for all to adopt.

Pre-WWII Stanleys are the model for many of the superior (read more costly) planes manufactured by Lie Nielsen and Clifton today. Thomas Angle has encouraged me to learn planecraft with a rehab before I ponied up the big bucks for a Lee Valley/Veritas bench plane or a Lie Nielsen. Many of my less than satisfying experiences with bench planes have occurred because I haven’t learned the basic skills as of yet, so I am starting from the ground up with rehabs that only took a few hours to get to top performance. I hope you can take the class at WC if you have a mind (maybe they will let you have a loaner). If you do, I’m sure you will learn things you could share with other plane newbies (like me) here at Lumberjocks.

And frankly, buying eBay listed planes can be fun in and of itself, when you are armed with the facts and ask a few basic questions of the seller. Have fun, come back and become an hand plane expert here at!

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 4196 days

#4 posted 11-30-2007 10:39 PM

Well said, all. The Hand Plane Book by Garrett Hack. David, you might learn a lot at that class at woodcraft.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

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