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Forum topic by Axle505 posted 07-03-2016 06:02 PM 950 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Axle505

137 posts in 302 days


07-03-2016 06:02 PM

Topic tags/keywords: clifton hnt gordon ron hock kit veritas lie-neilsen preston stanley sweetheart shop fox shoulder plane bullnose rabbet rebate tool

Hi, all!

I’m attending a community college program part-time, after work. I’m a hobbyist who is learning and it’s a joy. I also love buying decent tools—but I don’t like buying something I don’t need. I know you can never have too many tools, but anyway…

I’m in line to take a class called “Hand Tool Joinery I”—it’s about handmade furniture using handmade dovetails, etc. I’m told by other students that there is an initial shock at the beginning of the class where students need to dish-out some money for tools in order to keep up with the curriculum. Many students have warned me to start collecting and tuning tools in preparation for this class. At the moment, it’s summer and school is out—no one is really around to ask. Most professors will tell us to get LN or LV, but this seems to be a default answer. They also know that these makes are expensive and never sneer at a well turned and sharpened used Stanley. Heck, some students have walked into classes with Chinese and Indian tools—if you can get them to work and your assignments are completed well, then cool…. I have nothing but respect for my profs, by the way!

Clifton, HNT Gordon, Ron Hock (Kit), Veritas, Lie-Neilsen, Preston (?), Stanley (sweetheart), Shop Fox. (There seems to be an animal called Bridge City, but this seems to be the thing of legends and Kings. I envision these planes sitting on the desks of Illuminati members….)

Shoulder plane, Rabbet/Rebate plane, Bullnose. (I’ve read some argument about need/usage for these planes—and straight as opposed to skewed blades. Do I really need all three? Not that I’ve been told to get all…but there is the Hand Tool Joinery II class.)

3/4”, 1”, 1 1/4”. (Will one size suffice for a hobbyist?)

I appreciate the advice! And, I will base my choice upon the comments in this thread.


15 replies so far

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5765 posts in 952 days


#1 posted 07-03-2016 06:13 PM

A shoulder plane has a specific purpose and it’s great for that purpose. Beyond that it is limited in what in can do. Some love them and some get by without them.

It’s hard to go wrong with vintage stuff if you can fettle with it. Knowing how to bring a plane from poor to great user condition is a skill that need to be learned in and of itself.

If you have then money then LN or veritas is about as solid as it gets. I’m transitioning my tools to both brands. I like LN chisels and bench planes and veritas marking gear and block planes.

To me, if I have to go through a new plane to make sure everything is flat seated properly I’d just save my money and buy vintage. If I want something that comes ready to go after setting up the iron I’d go LN or veritas.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Axle505's profile

Axle505

137 posts in 302 days


#2 posted 07-03-2016 06:33 PM

The Fridge, hi! Yeah, I have never owned a new plane—except for the wood ones I made in a class using Hock blades. Restoring a plane is a rewarding activity for me. I have though done some reading on the difficulty of getting some old shoulder planes to have sides with a sole that are perfectly perpendicular to each other.

Some have done this by visiting a machinist, but the cost for this seems to break the law of diminishing returns—warranting the purchase of straight and sharpened LV or LN planes.

View JayT's profile

JayT

4786 posts in 1678 days


#3 posted 07-03-2016 06:49 PM

I’d recommend the large Veritas shoulder plane to start with. Avoid the new Stanleys, they’ve had problems getting the base square to the iron bed and it a HUGE pain to correct. I got one that had that issue and it seems to be very common—there’s quite a few reviews out there that mention it and at least one other LJ has one with the same issue. A vintage Stanley 92 or 93 could be fine, but they tend to run almost as much as a new Veritas. No experience with the Hock kits, but if you like making your own tools, then the kit may be a good way to go.

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

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5765 posts in 952 days


#4 posted 07-03-2016 07:03 PM

About shoulder planes: what jayt said

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Axle505's profile

Axle505

137 posts in 302 days


#5 posted 07-03-2016 08:07 PM

Veritas seems to have differing grades of blade steel at, “A2, O1 or PM-V11.” What’s the difference?

Oh, I forgot another plane—WoodRiver (WoodCraft brand).

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5765 posts in 952 days


#6 posted 07-03-2016 09:04 PM

A2 is harder. To sharpen as well.
O1 less so but takes a keener edge.
Pm-v11 is supposed to combine the best attributes of both. Edge retention and ease of sharpening.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Loren's profile

Loren

8313 posts in 3114 days


#7 posted 07-03-2016 09:19 PM

Fine Iwasaki files can substitute for the shoulder plane
to some extent. I kid you not.

In terms of trimming tenon cheeks, a very sharp 1.5” wide
chisel gets it done. The set you get may not have
such a chisel available.

Shoulder planes are tricky to manufacture well. Only L-N
and Veritas among current manufacturers can be trusted
to get it right, imo. I got lucky with an old Record. The
current Clifton’s are nice looking but I’ve seen enough complaints
to be wary. I haven’t used it but I really like the pivoting
knob on the Veritas because a shoulder plane can
be difficult to hold in such a way that your fingers
are safe.

View JohnChung's profile

JohnChung

372 posts in 1541 days


#8 posted 07-04-2016 04:20 AM

If you are strap for cash I would buy an old shoulder plane and tune it up.

But if you are determined as I was. As to not change interest or motivation on wood working. Try a veritas shoulder plane. It is a plane worth keeping.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2034 days


#9 posted 07-04-2016 12:37 PM

You can look at a tool purchase as an investment.

I have the medium Veritas, but I agree with JayT, if I had it to do over I’d have bought a large.

If you buy a vintage and clean and fettle it, you can probably sell it at a profit. An LN can typically be sold for very close to purchase price, and a Veritas at very little loss.

As you move down to things like woodriver, they can start to loose value quicker. Some can still be decent tools, just not as highly praised.

Good luck in your hobby.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.net

View splintergroup's profile

splintergroup

829 posts in 689 days


#10 posted 07-04-2016 02:10 PM

I have the Veritas. Very well made, but I rarely use it since I do most tennoning on the table saw. If you are going to be using all “meat powered” tools, a quality back saw can get you square tendons and a good rasp can fine tune them if needed.

The shoulder plane is a specialty item, wonderful when needed, but not on my top 10 list of hand tools for general furniture building.

View Derek Cohen's profile

Derek Cohen

296 posts in 3435 days


#11 posted 07-04-2016 04:33 PM

While a shoulder plane is a useful tool, you actually can get by without one for now.

I rarely use a shoulder plane on the shoulders of tenons – I use a wide chisel into the knife line. This is more accurate.

I never use a shoulder plane on the cheeks of tenons – I either use a router plane, a chisel or a rasp.

On the other hand, a shoulder plane is great for tuning rebates (rabbets) or mouldings. In this case, a 3/4” wide shoulder plane would be a good all rounder. My favourite, however, is a 1/2”. (Incidentally, I have all the Veritas shoulder planes, and a few others. Mostly they sit on the shelf).

Regards from Perth

Derek

-- Buildiing furniture, and reviewing and building tools at http://www.inthewoodshop.com

View Axle505's profile

Axle505

137 posts in 302 days


#12 posted 07-04-2016 08:54 PM

Hi, Derek:

Yeah, the 3/4” medium Veritas came to mind for cleaning up rabbets, as well.

Very informative website you have!

Rich

View AandCstyle's profile

AandCstyle

2575 posts in 1724 days


#13 posted 07-04-2016 10:10 PM


I haven t used it but I really like the pivoting
knob on the Veritas because a shoulder plane can
be difficult to hold in such a way that your fingers
are safe.

I have the LV medium shoulder plane and like it a lot. I really appreciate the safe fingers feature. DAMHIKT :D

-- Art

View WhoMe's profile

WhoMe

1468 posts in 2710 days


#14 posted 07-04-2016 10:37 PM

Avoid the new Stanleys, they ve had problems getting the base square to the iron bed and it a HUGE pain to correct. I got one that had that issue and it seems to be very common—there s quite a few reviews out there that mention it and at least one other LJ has one with the same issue. – JayT

++1 on what JayT said.
I may not be the LJ that Jay is taking about but I do have one of those Stanley “skew” shoulder planes. I have used maybe a half dozen times before I stopped using it because of the blade not being parallel with the base. I have tried to fix the problem but at this point, it is really not worth the effort.
Like others have said, buy the Veritas and be done with it. That is my plan after I get a couple other hand tools that are a priority.
Bottom line, avoid the Stanley sw shoulder plane.

-- I'm not clumsy.. It's just the floor hates me, the tables and chairs are bullies, the wall gets in the way AAANNNDDD table saws BITE my fingers!!!.. - Mike -

View Axle505's profile

Axle505

137 posts in 302 days


#15 posted 07-10-2016 07:01 AM

Done—medium Veritas shoulder plane ordered.

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