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Forum topic by MikeUT posted 08-29-2016 06:35 PM 762 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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MikeUT

123 posts in 827 days


08-29-2016 06:35 PM

I am a big fan of old school planes and have a full line-up of bench planes and block planes. I have never been tempted to buy a Lie-Nelson or Veritas plane in the past because of my love for restoring old planes and the process of bringing them back to life. I am seriously considering buying a new bevel-up plane. I want to check out the hype about bevel-up planes and it doesn’t seem practical to go after a Stanley 62 as they are usually as expensive or more than a new plane. I am leaning towards Veritas but I’m not sure what to buy. I don’t know if I should go for a jack or a smoothing plane. I’m leaning towards a smoother because I think that is what I would use it for primarily but the jacks seem to be more common.

What are your opinions? Should I buy one or the other or are the low angle planes overrated all together? I am stuck and would appreciate a push in either direction. Thanks!


9 replies so far

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gargey

490 posts in 243 days


#1 posted 08-29-2016 07:07 PM

I haven’t encountered any situations where I needed my LN 62. I definitely prefer my 4(1/2) as a smoother. My LN No. 7 is better for shooting due to weight and width of blade unless I’m shooting a very hard wood, in which case the low angle helps a bit.

I try to tackle challenging grain with extreme sharpness and fine settings on my LN 4(1/2). There may be situations where the 62 could work and the 4(1/2) couldn’t, but I haven’t found them yet.

I know about the “have a million different blades” strategy for the 62, but I’m not gonna spend time switching in and realigning blades all the time. I’m gonna reach for the plane that I’ve set up perfectly already.

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MikeUT

123 posts in 827 days


#2 posted 08-29-2016 07:20 PM



I haven t encountered any situations where I needed my LN 62. I definitely prefer my 4(1/2) as a smoother. My LN No. 7 is better for shooting due to weight and width of blade unless I m shooting a very hard wood, in which case the low angle helps a bit.

I try to tackle challenging grain with extreme sharpness and fine settings on my LN 4(1/2). There may be situations where the 62 could work and the 4(1/2) couldn t, but I haven t found them yet.

I know about the “have a million different blades” strategy for the 62, but I m not gonna spend time switching in and realigning blades all the time. I m gonna reach for the plane that I ve set up perfectly already.

- gargey

Thanks Gargey. That has been the main thing holding me back. There isn’t much I’ve ran in to that I can’t plane with a 4 1/2 or my other bench planes. It isn’t a whole lot of fun making shavings through wide rock maple or other really hard woods so I was thinking having a bevel-up might make it easier for that but maybe the difference would be negligible.

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jmartel

6578 posts in 1617 days


#3 posted 08-29-2016 09:01 PM

For a smoother, something with a chipbreaker is better than a bevel up. So if you need a new smoother, buy a LN #3, 4, or 4 1/2. The bevel up comes into its own for low angle work while still being versatile enough for normal planing tasks. Cleaning up dovetails, shooting, etc.

For more difficult woods, you need to have a high angle blade on the bevel up planes. Once you get above the standard 42-45 degrees, the effort required to push increases dramatically. So while you won’t get any tearout with a 55-60 deg effective angle on a bevel up plane, you’ll lose a lot more sweat doing it. On a normal plane you can set the chipbreaker super close and take lighter shavings and not worry about tearout.

Unless you have a specific need for bevel up, I wouldn’t buy one given your already acquired planes. It’s a great choice to start out on as you can essentially have multiple planes in one, though.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

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OSU55

1063 posts in 1457 days


#4 posted 08-29-2016 09:52 PM

It’s always interesting the different opinions that come out with these questions. I have both BU and BD planes, and I work a lot of difficult figured oak which loves to tear out. The typical 45° BD plane can only do so much, even the premium brands. That’s where a BU with a steep bevel, or a BD with a steep angle, or a scraper plane, or a card scraper (uneven surfaces) is a must have if you desire tear out free surfaces. While harder to push, it’s the only choice. The shavings are thin and the effort isn’t herculean. I use the Veritas BU smoother or Veritas scraper plane, or a Mujingfang rosewood smoother with a 63° bed for those times. Otherwise, I use a 4-1/2 Stanley Bailey.

I also have a Veritas BU LAJ that is used on s shooting board, for panel end grain, shorter jointing work, and flattening panel glue ups when my #7 creates tear out when flattening those panels. I have a set of irons with different bevel angles for the BU planes. It’s really about matching the tool to the job, which is why there are many choices when it comes to hand planes.

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bbasiaga

758 posts in 1462 days


#5 posted 08-29-2016 11:01 PM

I have an old #4 that I consider to be pretty well set up, with a close mouth a sharp blade and a well fit chip breaker, but I still can’t plane maple with it. The grain reverses a lot, and there is always some tearout no matter which direction I come at it. Sometimes minimal, but there.

I just got a LN LAJ for my birthday. I haven’t tried it yet on the maple, but my plan is to keep one blade at 25degrees for end grain, and do the other at 38degrees for an effective 50degree angle of attack. Hopefully that helps the grain. I’d also like an LN #4 with a 50 or 55degree frog in the future, but that’s more of a want than a need if the LAJ works out ok.

Its a beautiful and well put together plane. If you buy it with an extra blade and get some use out of it, but decide its not enough, you won’t lose too much money reselling it. The ‘rental cost’ isn’t too high, if you think about it that way.

Brian

-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2035 days


#6 posted 09-02-2016 11:49 PM

I have a #62 LN. If I had it to do over again, I’d get the #164.

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

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TheFridge

5765 posts in 953 days


#7 posted 09-03-2016 12:06 AM

I’m not sold on bevel up.

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

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Don W

17971 posts in 2035 days


#8 posted 09-03-2016 11:41 AM



I m not sold on bevel up.

- TheFridge

I agree. My #62 is one of the least used planes in my shop. But I am convince one always needs one more hand plane.

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

View Derek Cohen's profile

Derek Cohen

296 posts in 3436 days


#9 posted 09-03-2016 05:18 PM

If you work with straight grained woods, then you can use a plain jane Stanley and not see the advantage in a premium smoother (other than the pleasure of using a special, better made plane).

Assuming that you want to work with more complex, figured grain …

If it is a smoother you are after, you essentially have two choices:

A bevel up with a high cutting angle (a high cutting angle for me is 60 degrees cutting angle). The absolute best BU smoother in the market is the Veritas Bevel Up Smoother (BUS). This is an easy plane to set up, and it produces the highest quality, with ultra reliable results.

The other choice is to use a bevel down plane and with the chipbreaker closed up. This has a moderate learning curve attached to it, but the advantage is that you can use a common angle plane, such as a Stanley, and work the most interlocked woods. I like a Stanley #3 and a LN #3 with this technique. I also have a Veritas Custom Plane #4 with a 40 degree frog, and this produces the best surface of all (since the cutting angle is lowest). Note that these all only work on interlocked grain because of the chipbreaker.

If you are interested in the latter, you may wish to read this article on my website: http://www.inthewoodshop.com/ToolReviews/VeritasCustomPlanes1.html

Regards from Perth

Derek

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

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