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How can I find a mentor and where to find hand planes?

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Forum topic by SouthernWoodworking posted 07-09-2014 02:29 PM 1442 views 0 times favorited 58 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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SouthernWoodworking

92 posts in 183 days


07-09-2014 02:29 PM

Topic tags/keywords: plane

So, since the general consensus of my last thread was ” Learn more”, how can I do that? My town has very few woodworkers and the only ones who do it make cabinets and they dont want to teach anyone.

Who are the type of people I should call? I know one contractor who does nice work but most of his stuff is simple repair and any molding work is bought from the store then nailed on. The Highland Woodworking is about 2 hours away but they want a lot of money for a class. I would love to learn jointery like dove tails and things like that.

On the note of hand planes, since I can afford a planer or jointer, where can I find hand planes? Its gotta be used because a new one cost almost the same as a used planer or jointer. Craigslist didnt have any within 200 miles.

Thanks guys

-- Noah Lambert, Georgia, 2x2 Designs.


58 replies so far

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

513 posts in 1508 days


#1 posted 07-09-2014 02:39 PM

Reading your post suggests you may be in the Atlanta, GA or north GA area. It would be helpful if you would post your location. I live in Atlanta in the Sandy Springs area and would be glad to help, even by phone or e-mail. This would be to answer your questions and give you some direction. I am not full time instructor and don’t want to be. If you are interested, contact me at rufus.carswell@yhoo.com

Planeman

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View SouthernWoodworking's profile

SouthernWoodworking

92 posts in 183 days


#2 posted 07-09-2014 02:42 PM



Reading your post suggests you may be in the Atlanta, GA or north GA area. It would be helpful if you would post your location. I live in Atlanta in the Sandy Springs area and would be glad to help, even by phone or e-mail. This would be to answer your questions and give you some direction. I am not full time instructor and don t want to be. If you are interested, contact me at rufus.carswell@yhoo.com

Planeman

- Planeman40


Im actually in Perry, Ga. about 2 hours south of Atlanta. I may take to up on your offer.

-- Noah Lambert, Georgia, 2x2 Designs.

View Lumberpunk's profile

Lumberpunk

224 posts in 1084 days


#3 posted 07-09-2014 02:43 PM

Sounds like you are in a remote area like myself, best thing is to watch all the videos and read all the articles on the internet about woodworking, subscribe to the magazines (Fine Woodworking, Shopnotes etc) and talk to every one about what you do or want to do, you may find there are woodworkers you don’t know about in your area. I started 4 years ago, am completely self taught and will make about $3000-4000 this month from woodworking (not every month is like that but this one is).

As far as hand planes go all of my second hand ones came from antique shops… not craigslist and they were all cheap cheap and needed lots of love.

View SouthernWoodworking's profile

SouthernWoodworking

92 posts in 183 days


#4 posted 07-09-2014 02:48 PM



Sounds like you are in a remote area like myself, best thing is to watch all the videos and read all the articles on the internet about woodworking, subscribe to the magazine and talk to every one about what you do or want to do, you may find there are woodworkers you don t know about in your area. I started 4 years ago, am completely self taught and will make about $3000-4000 this month from woodworking (not every month is like that but this one is).

As far as hand planes go all of my second hand ones came from antique shops… not craigslist and they were all cheap cheap and needed lots of love.

- Lumberpunk


I have spent the last 3 years watching every video possible. From Roy Underhill to Izzy Swan ive seen them all. Read a lot of articles but I get more out of watching something then reading it. They say a takes 10,000 hours to master somthing. Im trying to get their.

Are their places I should look? i know the obvious answer is like a phone book but are their any places I dont know about?

-- Noah Lambert, Georgia, 2x2 Designs.

View Richard Hillius's profile

Richard Hillius

157 posts in 428 days


#5 posted 07-09-2014 02:50 PM

I know it’s a bit expensive and a bit of a trip but The Woodwrights School offers a one week benchwork class using all traditional hand tools taught by two excellent instructors in N.C. On the plus side Ed’s store upstairs is an amazing place to browse around and see what kind of tools are out there and he is very knowledgable about them. Spending a entire week immersed in hand tools like that taught me a ton and I really came away a lot more confident.

Shorter term check out some of the videos on http://www.renaissancewoodworker.com. Shanon has a few videos on restoring planes, sharpening and using hand tools on his free site that are really good as well.

View JayT's profile

JayT

2616 posts in 958 days


#6 posted 07-09-2014 02:53 PM

#1. Where are you located? There are Lumberjocks all over the country and odds are there is one not that far from you that may be willing to help you get started. Edit: I see that was covered while I was typing. There are quite a few LJ members in the Atlanta area.

The internet is your friend. It won’t replace hands on or personal instruction, but if you absolutely can’t find someone to teach a particular skill, a good web video and some practice is a pretty inexpensive way to learn.

Hand planes. You are correct that good quality new planes are pricey, so vintage may be the way to get started. There are other challenges with vintage planes, but once tuned up, they are capable of doing anything you need done. The best way would be to purchase from someone who is knowledgeable and can get you a good quality plane for a decent price that is tuned up and ready to go. Once you are familiar with how a plane should work, it is much easier to learn to fettle one on your own.

There are several LJ members that buy, rehab and sell vintage planes that you could contact. DonW, sikrap, Mark E. jump to mind immediately and usually have some stock available. There are others like me that do it more sporadically and someone may have a few ready to go. You could purchase planes on ebay, but really have to know what to look for or you can get burned.

I would recommend at least starting out by purchasing from someone who will make sure to steer you right. Besided the LJ member metioned above a couple other options in that vein is Walt at “Brass City Records.”http://www.brasscityrecords.com/toolworks/new%20tools.html I haven’t purchased from him personally, but several other LJ members have reported being very happy with his product and service.

-- "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money." Alexis de Tocqueville, 1835

View SouthernWoodworking's profile

SouthernWoodworking

92 posts in 183 days


#7 posted 07-09-2014 02:55 PM



I know it s a bit expensive and a bit of a trip but The Woodwrights School offers a one week benchwork class using all traditional hand tools taught by two excellent instructors in N.C. On the plus side Ed s store upstairs is an amazing place to browse around and see what kind of tools are out there and he is very knowledgable about them. Spending a entire week immersed in hand tools like that taught me a ton and I really came away a lot more confident.

Shorter term check out some of the videos on http://www.renaissancewoodworker.com. Shanon has a few videos on restoring planes, sharpening and using hand tools on his free site that are really good as well.

- Richard Hillius

Im 17 in still in High school. For me to pay for gas in my truck, hotel for a week, and the classes would be impossible. It would awesome to do but i cant afford it.

-- Noah Lambert, Georgia, 2x2 Designs.

View SouthernWoodworking's profile

SouthernWoodworking

92 posts in 183 days


#8 posted 07-09-2014 03:00 PM


#1. Where are you located? There are Lumberjocks all over the country and odds are there is one not that far from you that may be willing to help you get started. Edit: I see that was covered while I was typing. There are quite a few LJ members in the Atlanta area.

The internet is your friend. It won t replace hands on or personal instruction, but if you absolutely can t find someone to teach a particular skill, a good web video and some practice is a pretty inexpensive way to learn.

Hand planes. You are correct that good quality new planes are pricey, so vintage may be the way to get started. There are other challenges with vintage planes, but once tuned up, they are capable of doing anything you need done. The best way would be to purchase from someone who is knowledgeable and can get you a good quality plane for a decent price that is tuned up and ready to go. Once you are familiar with how a plane should work, it is much easier to learn to fettle one on your own.

There are several LJ members that buy, rehab and sell vintage planes that you could contact. DonW, sikrap, Mark E. jump to mind immediately and usually have some stock available. There are others like me that do it more sporadically and someone may have a few ready to go. You could purchase planes on ebay, but you really have to know what you are looking for or you can get burned.

I would recommend at least starting out by purchasing from someone who will make sure to steer you right. Besided the LJ member metioned above a couple other options in that vein is Walt at “Brass City Records.”http://www.brasscityrecords.com/toolworks/new%20tools.html I haven t purchased from him personally, but several other LJ members have reported being very happy with his product and service.

- JayT


Im in Perry, about 2 hours south of Atlanta. I have to drive very sparingly cause my truck drinks gas and I cant afford it right now. How much would a used plane cost? The only reason I wanted a hand plane is because thought it was cheaper than a regular Planer or jointer

-- Noah Lambert, Georgia, 2x2 Designs.

View JayT's profile

JayT

2616 posts in 958 days


#9 posted 07-09-2014 03:53 PM


How much would a used plane cost? The only reason I wanted a hand plane is because thought it was cheaper than a regular Planer or jointer

- SouthernWoodworking

Depends on the size. A ready to use #5 jack or #4 smoother can be had for $25-50, depending on brand, type and features. If you are wanting a jointer plane, such as a #7, you’ll be looking at $100 or so for one tuned up and ready to go. A good alternative for someone starting out is to use a #6 size for most jointing chores. For some reason, they are not as in demand, so prices are much lower (in the $40-60 range), yet the plane can do most of the same tasks as a #7. I love my #6 sized planes for edge jointing and panels up to about 5 ft long—longer than that and I get out the #8.

As far as I’m concerned, there is no downside to learning to use hand planes. Even if you eventually get a powered jointer and planer, there are quite a few tasks that can be done better or faster with hand planes.

-- "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money." Alexis de Tocqueville, 1835

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

513 posts in 1508 days


#10 posted 07-09-2014 04:07 PM

It sounds like you want to begin using hand tools. Its a good place to start. With hand tools for woodworking a MUST is SHARP tools!!! And by sharp, I mean razor sharp. Each tool should be sharpened to the point you can shave the hair off your arm as a test. For this reason, knowing how to sharpen is lesson no. 1. You don’t need to have an expensive power sharpener, but you do need a selection of sharpening stones. There are various kinds of stones and each has its pros and cons and some swear by one and some swear by another. Then there is the selection of hand tools – saws, planes, etc – to begin with. Good but inexpensive tools and used tools are available if you know where to look. In your area I imagine there are yard and garage sales and even small antique stores. Many times you can find an old Stanley plane or serviceable saw with nothing missing and only a little rust. A good clean up, some rust removal, and a “tune up” can provide a great tool. Then sharpen it to a razor edge and get to work! Searching for great old tools and collecting them is half the fun. We can get into all of this if we talk. Its too much to go into here.

Planeman

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View Loren's profile (online now)

Loren

7822 posts in 2395 days


#11 posted 07-09-2014 04:18 PM

There are woodworking clubs all over the country. Do some
investigating and you may find some retired guy who
wouldn’t mind showing you some stuff.

I understand you’re still in school. Once you get out you
might consider pursuing a timber framing apprenticeship,
which you’d have to travel to do. Typically owner/builders
hire an experienced traveling timber framer to help
build a house right and that framer may wish to bring
his own help, which is where you would come in. Look
on the Forestry forums and Timber Frame Guild sites.

Put up little 3×5 cards or something like that in local hardware
stores and other bulletin board locations. Say you’re
a high school student looking for used woodworking tools
and machinery to make furniture. You’ll get calls from kind
people who may practically give you the stuff.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View SouthernWoodworking's profile

SouthernWoodworking

92 posts in 183 days


#12 posted 07-09-2014 04:49 PM


How much would a used plane cost? The only reason I wanted a hand plane is because thought it was cheaper than a regular Planer or jointer

- SouthernWoodworking

Depends on the size. A ready to use #5 jack or #4 smoother can be had for $25-50, depending on brand, type and features. If you are wanting a jointer plane, such as a #7, you ll be looking at $100 or so for one tuned up and ready to go. A good alternative for someone starting out is to use a #6 size for most jointing chores. For some reason, they are not as in demand, so prices are much lower (in the $40-60 range), yet the plane can do most of the same tasks as a #7. I love my #6 sized planes for edge jointing and panels up to about 5 ft long—longer than that and I get out the #8.

As far as I m concerned, there is no downside to learning to use hand planes. Even if you eventually get a powered jointer and planer, there are quite a few tasks that can be done better or faster with hand planes.

- JayT


Wow, thats a lot of money. Thats assuming I can find one.

-- Noah Lambert, Georgia, 2x2 Designs.

View SouthernWoodworking's profile

SouthernWoodworking

92 posts in 183 days


#13 posted 07-09-2014 04:55 PM



It sounds like you want to begin using hand tools. Its a good place to start. With hand tools for woodworking a MUST is SHARP tools!!! And by sharp, I mean razor sharp. Each tool should be sharpened to the point you can shave the hair off your arm as a test. For this reason, knowing how to sharpen is lesson no. 1. You don t need to have an expensive power sharpener, but you do need a selection of sharpening stones. There are various kinds of stones and each has its pros and cons and some swear by one and some swear by another. Then there is the selection of hand tools – saws, planes, etc – to begin with. Good but inexpensive tools and used tools are available if you know where to look. In your area I imagine there are yard and garage sales and even small antique stores. Many times you can find an old Stanley plane or serviceable saw with nothing missing and only a little rust. A good clean up, some rust removal, and a “tune up” can provide a great tool. Then sharpen it to a razor edge and get to work! Searching for great old tools and collecting them is half the fun. We can get into all of this if we talk. Its too much to go into here.

Planeman

- Planeman40


Its not that I want to get into hand tools, ( though I think I might like it.) its that I need a tool that can flatten boards. I dont care wither that’s a hand tool or power tool. Im not partial to hand tools or power tools, each has their own place. I just need a cheaper option then doing a fundraiser ( Which seems to be viewed as horrible idea by most people) to get something to flatten boards. Id love to have a planer, jointer, lathe, and new table saw fence but it seems like I gotta choose one. Hopefully if I can flatten a board, I can make something to buy one of the other tools.

-- Noah Lambert, Georgia, 2x2 Designs.

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

513 posts in 1508 days


#14 posted 07-09-2014 04:58 PM

They don’t have to cost that much. As I said above, search the yard and garage sales, flea markets, etc. You should be able to find a good old plane that just needs a clean up and sharpening for $10 to $15, maybe less. Also, I like Loren’s idea about posting a small card in various locations.

Planeman

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View SouthernWoodworking's profile

SouthernWoodworking

92 posts in 183 days


#15 posted 07-09-2014 04:59 PM



There are woodworking clubs all over the country. Do some
investigating and you may find some retired guy who
wouldn t mind showing you some stuff.

I understand you re still in school. Once you get out you
might consider pursuing a timber framing apprenticeship,
which you d have to travel to do. Typically owner/builders
hire an experienced traveling timber framer to help
build a house right and that framer may wish to bring
his own help, which is where you would come in. Look
on the Forestry forums and Timber Frame Guild sites.

Put up little 3×5 cards or something like that in local hardware
stores and other bulletin board locations. Say you re
a high school student looking for used woodworking tools
and machinery to make furniture. You ll get calls from kind
people who may practically give you the stuff.

- Loren

Yea, Id looked on google and registered woodworking clubs and only one came up and it meets once every 3 months about 30min away. tried to get in contact with them about a month ago but they didnt reply. I like the 3×5 card idea but Im not sure how many store would let me do it. I know lowes or Home depot wouldnt. That leaves a little supply store in town that nobody goes to. Worth a shot I guess. Thanks for the idea!

-- Noah Lambert, Georgia, 2x2 Designs.

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