Equipment SAFETY tips: The Hand Plane

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Forum topic by MsDebbieP posted 1176 days ago 2600 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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18615 posts in 2787 days

1176 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: safety gateway plane


Safety in the shop tips for the hand plane

What are some tips to work safely on and around a hand plane?



-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

9 replies so far

View mafe's profile


9483 posts in 1715 days

#1 posted 1175 days ago

Keep your iron as sharp as possible, most accidents happen when people try and force things.
Stand in a good position and let your body do the work not just the arms.
Best thoughts,

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View dbray45's profile


2488 posts in 1402 days

#2 posted 1175 days ago

Handling the blade. After spending time sharpening and your hands get tired, you really don’t want to drop the blade and cut your leg or foot. May not want ot drop the plane on your foot either.

Thats when other people need hearing protection.

-- David in Damascus, MD

View DaddyZ's profile


2380 posts in 1666 days

#3 posted 1175 days ago

ON small boards you should always use a clamp to hold them, Not your hands.

Never put your Hands in line with the blade.

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View WayneC's profile


12260 posts in 2723 days

#4 posted 1175 days ago

Don’t drop the plane on your big toe…. Damn. David already got it. : ^ )

There is a serious possibility of becoming addicted.

Also the danger of your wife, husband or signficant other finding out how many you have purchased and at what cost. They could seriously injure you.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View stefang's profile


12874 posts in 1960 days

#5 posted 1170 days ago

When testing your plane blade for sharpness, be sure to take it out of the plane before shaving your arm with it (unless you are shooting for a dead flat arm).

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View mafe's profile


9483 posts in 1715 days

#6 posted 1170 days ago

Mike I suggest you stay in the garden… Laugh.
Best thoughts,

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View HorizontalMike's profile


6923 posts in 1540 days

#7 posted 1129 days ago

I have found that the tool trays on my workbench allow me to keep the plane upright and with the blade down when temporarily not in use, WITHOUT setting the plane on the blade. I just span the plane over the tool tray opening.

When I had laid the planes down on their sides I have managed to accidentally slice one of my knuckles open when I banged up against the blade when using another tool. Lacking a tool tray, it would be easy to make a simple plane stand with a slot wide enough to hold the blade off the surface of your bench/work-piece while on/at the bench for use. Two scrap boards can even do it in a pinch.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Dan's profile


3543 posts in 1506 days

#8 posted 1031 days ago

If the mouth in the plane gets clogged with shavings don’t turn it over and pull them out with your fingers. I did this the other day when some shavings got stuck and I got a nice little slice on my finger tip.

-- Dan - "Collector of Hand Planes"

View Bernie's profile


414 posts in 1463 days

#9 posted 1027 days ago

#1 rule, like mafe said – keep the sharp. I was a Scoutmaster for 20 years and always taught the boys to use sharp knives. Dull ones are the most dangerous tools.

Then you need to keep them sharp like Mike explains.

A 3rd point is to properly set the blade. I always had a hard time doing this until a friend showed me the right way. Take a sheet of paper out of your printer and set your plane on it so the blade falls off the edge of the paper (heel of plane on the paper). The thickness of a sheet of paper should be the right height for the blade in your plane to do fine work. If that’s not enough for you, try 2 sheets of paper etc. etc.

-- Bernie: It never gets hot or cold in New Hampshire, just seasonal!

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