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Camber on Plane Irons

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Forum topic by Dorje posted 12-27-2007 07:03 PM 3138 views 1 time favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Dorje

1763 posts in 2683 days


12-27-2007 07:03 PM

Topic tags/keywords: camber plane irons

I spent most of yesterday tuning tools. One thing I wanted to accomplish was putting camber on plane irons. I did okay freehand with the #4’s iron (as a test), though thought there could be a better way to do it. I scribed a pencil line across the back and tried to take off about half the line towards each corner (roughly trying to taper off a 64th more than the center point).

Then last night I saw a post that mentioned the use of the camber roller for the LV MkII guide. I asked Mot what he thought of it and he told me that the use of the roller puts a faint camber on the outer corners. Exactly what I want to hear. The camber roller has been on the list a long time, but I’ve been hesitant to purchase it…

So before I do, I wanted to find out:

1. Do you put camber on your irons?
2. If not, why not?
3. If you do, what method do you use?
4. How much camber do you put on your irons?

I was using the following guidelines (expressed as a center-corner difference for specific plane irons) that I got from FWW, but would like to compare:

scrub - 1/16th

jointer - 1/64th

jack - 1/32nd – 1/16th (less if you use it as a smoother)

smooth - 1/64th

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA


11 replies so far

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

3966 posts in 2750 days


#1 posted 12-27-2007 07:19 PM

Looks right to me.

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

View Daren Nelson's profile

Daren Nelson

767 posts in 2592 days


#2 posted 12-27-2007 08:11 PM

I am probably different than most. No camber on a jointer. Of course no jigs either, just a few arcing strokes with more downward pressure on the corners as I lift the iron off the stone.
I guess I have never measured how much I do put on. It even depends on what material I am working with. Figured wood is a little hard to plane. I will use a little more camber to cut the irregular grain on the edge of the iron, instead of catch it and stand it up with a sharp corner.

-- http://nelsonwoodworks.biz/

View johnjoiner's profile

johnjoiner

160 posts in 2580 days


#3 posted 12-27-2007 08:20 PM

Hi Dorje.

Yes, I camber the blades.

I do that just by pushing more on each outside edge for about 5 passes (each edge) when I sharpen on the water stones. I think I got this from a David Charlesworth video. And I’d guess it makes a smaller camber than the ones you listed, but I’ve never measured. I do know that it’s enough of a camber that I can joint an edge square to the sides using the left or right side of the blade as needed while holding the plane flat against the board.

I also knock off the corners of the blade. I think that’s what Daren described?

Don’t recall seeing that FWW article.

-- johnjoiner

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6663 posts in 2666 days


#4 posted 12-27-2007 09:38 PM

Hi Dorje,

Happy Holidays.

I too camber the plane blades, but not necessarily to a science. More of a feel I suppose. As with everything else, testing provides the right information, based on the plane itself, the wood it is being used on, and even you’re technique.

Also, I don’t use a guide other than to keep track of the strokes used on both sides of the blade, and trying to maintain the same angle of the blade to the stone. (waterstones exclusively).

I suppose I’m a little nuts because I’ve spent many hours planning boards just for the FUN? of it. I alter the angles, the direction I’m planning in, the plane I’m using, and the wood used, just to ”listen” to the results, along with seeing and feeling the results.

See, I told you I’m nuts!

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

View mot's profile

mot

4911 posts in 2723 days


#5 posted 12-27-2007 09:45 PM

Lee, then we should both be committed. I spend many of my shop hours, hand planing scrap boards that are for no purpose. I practice putting chamfers, I try and get a feel for grain direction and the pitfalls of hand planes. I intentionally make a non-uniform surface, then flatten it. And then, when the board is planed down to a size I can no longer make shavings with…well, it goes in the fireplace. Just clamping a board in a vise, and running a plane down it’s edge…I can do that for a long time and never get bored. It’s peaceful, quiet, and give the joy of using the tool without having the pressure of making anything.

To answer your question, Dorje, I camber the corners when I think about it. I did use the camber roller for awhile, but now just use more pressure on the corners while it’s on the stone. Less hoopla for an indiscernible difference in outcome.

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View ThreeJs's profile

ThreeJs

82 posts in 2626 days


#6 posted 12-27-2007 11:12 PM

I had the #5 out over the holiday, and was planing rough cut stock smooth. Then turning around and putting it on the lathe for turning. Take the practice where you can get it.

-- David, Charlotte NC (http://beechcreeknaturals.etsy.com)

View Dorje's profile

Dorje

1763 posts in 2683 days


#7 posted 12-28-2007 07:57 AM

Sounds like a bit more pressure on the corners is the way to go…

I’m with you guys that flatten boards just for the fun of it…better to learn on scrap to see what works…and what doesn’t…

Save yourself a little tear out…

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View Don Niermann  's profile

Don Niermann

209 posts in 2659 days


#8 posted 12-29-2007 05:15 AM

I use the MKII ajnd put the camber roller on for ,a few passes after the blade is sharp. Don’t really measure the amount but eyeball it to see that I have some. Works for me.

-- WOOD/DON (...one has the right to ones opinion but not the right to ones own facts...)

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6663 posts in 2666 days


#9 posted 01-04-2008 05:36 AM

Hi Tom;

You’re right, we should both be committed! Hopefully it will be in a place with a woodshop, right?

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

View Dorje's profile

Dorje

1763 posts in 2683 days


#10 posted 01-04-2008 08:25 AM

I met up with LJ, Mike Lingenfelter, yesterday and he showed me the David Charlesworth technique for adding camber to irons…it was exactly what I needed…very systematic and effective…

He also loaned me the camber roller for the Mk.II – so I’ll give that a shot at some point soon and see what that’s like…

Thanks Mike!

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View Derek Cohen's profile

Derek Cohen

180 posts in 2655 days


#11 posted 01-04-2008 02:43 PM

… Then last night I saw a post that mentioned the use of the camber roller for the LV MkII guide….The camber roller has been on the list a long time, but I’ve been hesitant to purchase it…

So before I do, I wanted to find out:

1. Do you put camber on your irons?
2. If not, why not?
3. If you do, what method do you use?
4. How much camber do you put on your irons?

Hi Dorje

An excellent review by Alf (with a small contribution by yours truly) of the camber jig is at
http://www.ukworkshop.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?t=9742

Regarding camber, I would consider this most important – used in diferent degrees – for all plane blades except those used for shooting edges and ends, plough planes, shoulder planes, block planes … in other words, all planes that are used for detail work or fine tuning.

All smoothers must have camber otherwise they will leave track lines, and this is unacceptable in a plane used for finishing a surface. At the other end of the spectrum, a jack or scrub plane needs the camber in order that it may take a deep shaving.

David Charlesworth has best described the strategy for doing this: in a nut-shell, my modified version (I call it “Cambering by Numbers”) is …
(1) with a straight bevel, create a very fine wire edge along the full length on your grinding stone (e.g. 800-1000 grit waterstone). Now hone the back of the blade on your finish stone (e.g. 8000 grit waterstone) to remove it.
(2) Stay with your grinding stone. Place pressure on the one corner of the blade until you obtain a wire edge in that area (less for a smoother, more for a jack). Count the number of strokes it takes to achieve this wire edge.
(3) do exactly the same number of strokes on the opposite side.
(4) remove the wire edge.
(5) Now move to the finish stone and hone the centre (how many strokes does it take to get the wire edge?), and the sides (use the same number of strokes as for the centre).
(6) Remove the wire edge and you are done.

Regards from Perth

Derek

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

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