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Difference between shoulder plane and rabbeting block plane?

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Forum topic by mikecorwin posted 09-21-2012 06:27 PM 1015 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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mikecorwin

14 posts in 1270 days


09-21-2012 06:27 PM

Topic tags/keywords: shoulder plane block plane

What is the difference between a shoulder plane and a rabbeting block plane? Where would you rather use one over the other?


7 replies so far

View crank49's profile

crank49

3481 posts in 1690 days


#1 posted 09-21-2012 07:37 PM

I have a Stanley SW #92 which is a shoulder plane.
I use it for trimming the shoulders and cheeks of tennons.
I wish I had a rabbiting block for the cheek work because the cutter is wider.

Also, the block looks like a more comfortable plane to hold and work with and it would be useful for more kinds of work.

If I had a rabbiting block, I think the only time I would use the shoulder plane would be where I need the narrow body, like in a dado or something. But, then a router plane would be better for that.

Come to think of it, I don’t know why I bought a shoulder plane other than it was on sale.

Your mileage may vary, but that’s the difference from my point of view.

-- Michael :-{| “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” ― A H

View Loren's profile

Loren

7808 posts in 2367 days


#2 posted 09-21-2012 07:42 PM

Mass. Fine shoulder planes have concentrated mass which helps them
make demanding paring cuts on end grain. You can also use them
on their sides referencing off a tenon cheek to cut the shoulder
perfectly square. You can push the plane or flip it over and pull
in towards you, which is not as friendly a method with a skew-blade
plane, assuming you have access on both sides, the acute and
obtuse corners of the iron cut differently in terms of feel and
adjustment.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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bondogaposis

2685 posts in 1070 days


#3 posted 09-21-2012 07:52 PM

Shoulder planes can clean up dados.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View Don W's profile

Don W

15398 posts in 1287 days


#4 posted 09-21-2012 07:54 PM

Sounds like its been said , but I’ll reiterate. Shoulder plane for shoulders, block for cheeks. Wider blade for wider cut like on the check and lots of side reference and weight for the shoulders

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

View Cosmicsniper's profile

Cosmicsniper

2199 posts in 1878 days


#5 posted 09-21-2012 08:01 PM

I use my LN rabbet-block most of the time. But sometimes, a part maybe small enough where I can’t clamp it down (I don’t have a nice workbench for that). Then, I might use the shoulder plane (new Sweetheart #92) because I can do it in my hands (holding it down only with my left hand and trimming with my right). As Loren says, the mass makes a difference.

Don’t know if that makes sense, but it’s kinda a “feel” thing. If I can’t do it with the LN, then I resort to the SW.

-- jay, www.allaboutastro.com

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Cosmicsniper

2199 posts in 1878 days


#6 posted 09-21-2012 08:10 PM

Oh, and I like what Loren said about using the shoulder plane by pulling it towards you…I did that on a box top I made the other day.

And while I’m thinking of it, sometimes the width of the work is too narrow to keep the rabbet-block plane reliably square. That’s a prime job for the 92.

-- jay, www.allaboutastro.com

View mikecorwin's profile

mikecorwin

14 posts in 1270 days


#7 posted 09-22-2012 03:10 AM

Thanks everyone! Good advice, never really thought about how it might be hard to balance the rabbeting block plane on a tenon shoulder. Gonna check out both at the Lie Nielsen tool event in my town next week!

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