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Which hand planer to use

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Forum topic by RussellAP posted 04-16-2012 09:13 PM 1520 views 0 times favorited 21 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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RussellAP

3059 posts in 1753 days


04-16-2012 09:13 PM

I’ve never given much thought to hand planes before. I have a couple now that I have no idea about. I use them and they seem to work okay, but I don’t get those long curls like I see most of you get.
The other day I was planing some walnut blocks which are about 16 inches in length and they turned out pretty good, but the blade could use some sharpening.
I do know enough to not sharpen a blade on a grind stone. I have several files and rocks that I use for that.
I’d like to get a plane that is about 8-10 inches long, but I have no idea what the angle should be for planing stuff to a uniform flatness.
I don’t want to spend a fortune either.
Can anyone tell me about some planes and their uses or link me somewhere trustworthy?
here are some pictures of what I have now. Maybe someone can tell me if they are any good.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.


21 replies so far

View Rex B's profile

Rex B

320 posts in 1717 days


#1 posted 04-16-2012 09:22 PM

I’m a hand plane noob like you, but while researching the other day I found this page. Seems to have some good beginner info.

-- Rex

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Bertha

13003 posts in 2159 days


#2 posted 04-16-2012 09:37 PM

^I think I’d probably spend the time on that transitional (the wooden one); I think it has far more potential than the metal one. I hate to promote my own thread but the guys in “handplanes of your dreams” are very approachable and they’ve surpassed my knowledge a long time ago. Hit them up with any questions that you have but beware, this hand plane stuff is addictive:)

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2034 days


#3 posted 04-16-2012 09:43 PM

Your transitional (it looks like a Stanley #35) can certainly be made to be a fine smoother. It may take a little tuning and the transitional’s are a little harder to set. I can’t tell what the bench plane is, but it should be able to be tuned up to work well.

Look here for some links.

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

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RussellAP

3059 posts in 1753 days


#4 posted 04-16-2012 09:45 PM

Don, the black planer is one I picked up at HF. It’s cheap but does the job. The other is a stanley as you said. I got it at an antique store for about 18 as I remember. I want to learn about these planers and when i see a good one at an antique shop I can get it. As far as tuning goes, I have no idea what that means or entails.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2034 days


#5 posted 04-16-2012 09:58 PM

Welcome to the slippery slope. Once you get started its hard to stop.

Here is what I typically do to tune a plane. There are several blogs (I have a few) and many other with much more detail.

Make sure the iron is sharp.
Make sure the frog is seated solid.
Make sure the frog is flat so the blade sits flat on it.
Make sure the mouth is adjusted. (open for a jack plane with a camber. Tight for a smoother.) For a smoother you should just be able to slide a piece of paper through.
Polish the end of the chip breaker and make sure it fits tight against the blade.
For a smoother you want the chip breaker about 1/16” off the tip of the iron.
Make sure the sole is reasonably flat. (A smoother need to be flatter than a jack, which needs to be flatter than a scrub)
Wax or oil the sole.

My blog about restoring will help. , just skip over the repainting stuff, everything else should be relevant.

Look through some of the links I sent sent your way.

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

View ShaneA's profile

ShaneA

6476 posts in 2065 days


#6 posted 04-16-2012 10:27 PM

Russell, I probably have an extra bailey or two if you would like to test drive.

View RussellAP's profile

RussellAP

3059 posts in 1753 days


#7 posted 04-17-2012 06:22 AM

Shane, I’m working on a 16”x4”x7” walnut block and it’s cupped on one side. Hand planing is the only thing I can think of to smooth it out. I don’t have a planer or jointer.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

13738 posts in 2085 days


#8 posted 04-17-2012 06:38 AM

Russell- the method I used for getting material (walnut, actually) into shape is here, hope it’s of some use…

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

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RussellAP

3059 posts in 1753 days


#9 posted 04-17-2012 07:32 AM

Smitty, I had my eye on a Stanley #5 earlier today. http://www.amazon.com/Stanley-12-905-14-Inch-Contractor-Smooth/dp/B00004UDKW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1334647869&sr=8-1

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2034 days


#10 posted 04-17-2012 11:16 AM

russell, I have a very nice Stanley #5 I just restored. I haven’t listed it for sale yet because I just finished it. Its probably one of the nicest one I’ve seen. It will be cheaper and better then the one you listed, I guarantee it. PM me if you’re interested. I have a few others as well.

For flattening you’ll want a jack sharpened with a camber. Look ate Plane #1 or #3 that I have listed in the link above. Either will work well. You would then want a smoother, something like the ones you have.

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

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

13738 posts in 2085 days


#11 posted 04-17-2012 11:38 AM

^Don is the man when it comes to refurbing these tools, Russell. Highly recommended.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View dbray45's profile

dbray45

3187 posts in 2243 days


#12 posted 04-17-2012 12:04 PM

Agree with Don but I would also add - Make sure the mouth where the blade comes through is not chipped or cracked Make sure the blade and chipper match Make sure there is a chipper

If you are buying an old plane – before you buy it, disassemble the blade and chipper down the the frog. and make sure there are no missing screws and they are tight.

I have seen many planes where there are screws missing in the frog, the blade doesn’t advance or retract (should have a lot of slop), the blade adjustment for angle – works.

If the person that is selling the plane has a problem with you inspecting the plane to this level – do not buy it. I do this in stores with new ones also. Remember, unless you are buying parts, this is a tool to be used – if it doesn’t work, its a waste of money.

-- David in Damascus, MD

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RussellAP

3059 posts in 1753 days


#13 posted 04-17-2012 03:31 PM

Don, can you tell me what that piece on the planer that moves left and right is for?

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

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RussellAP

3059 posts in 1753 days


#14 posted 04-17-2012 03:33 PM

Shane. I’m started down the slippery slope here man. Are the planers you have for sale and how much. I’d be interested in any tool that will help me save time and turn out a better product.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

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RussellAP

3059 posts in 1753 days


#15 posted 04-17-2012 03:36 PM

Shane, here is what I’m doing with some walnut chunks I got from Jim the other day. He ran them through his jointer for me so I could have a couple good flat sides to work with. My table saw was used to cut them down from there then a bit of planing and sanding. They look really nice.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

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