hand planes explained


pilotless 2 bench plane unless you stumble on some unique application. Three Reasons Why Oak Furniture Is So Expensive, Your email address will not be published. This means that the jointer plane will not take out some of the roughest snarls in the grain as easily as a fore plane but will be able to cover more of the workpiece quicker. 7 at work, I keep a No. Wood Staining Guide For Beginners: All You Need To Know. There seem to be some tipping points when it comes to the sizes of planes, and the No. They are one of the most important tools in my kit, though many woodworkers go their entire careers without picking one up. On top of that, the various points of adjustment are positioned differently on a bevel-up plane with the blade adjustment using a smaller knob that requires you to stop working to adjust it. Heres the drill: You dress all your lumber with your machines and then use your No. 4-1/2 is an excellent size tool, though its more apt to wear me out faster because its heavier and has a wider cutter. The one thing the tool doesnt do very well is to work as a fore plane. The bevel-up jointer plane is easier to use than its bevel-down cousin. 7. 4s for every one No. Unlike the fore plane, you would use a jointer plane which, while larger than the fore plane, does not take as aggressive a bite out of the wood. The Lie-Nielsen bevel-up plane, the No. The primary job of jointer planes is to straighten the wood, a task it excels at by virtue of its long sole (the longer the sole, the straighter the resulting work). 6 bench plane, which Stanley actually called a fore plane, gets a bad rap. With traditional bevel-down planes there are separate controls for depth adjustment and lateral adjustment (which centers the cutter in the mouth of the tool). However, as can be seen, the world of wood planes is vast with a wide range of different options for different types of wood removal. I was introduced to woodworking by my grandfather when I was 11 years old. 1 is not a useful size for building most furniture. And with a scraper plane that is long (like my No. A spring joint is where you plane the middle section of the edge a wee bit hollow. By virtue of its longish sole it also tends to straighten the wood to some degree. Heres another clue that the No. 164, is adjusted laterally with hammer taps, so it has a different feature set. 1 for their children. That said, the smoothing planes name still holds some intuitive sense as these types of wood planes is used to smooth out the final touches and provide a finished surface. Theres a lot of controversy about how the jointer planes iron should be sharpened. The vintage ones were 2-1/4 lbs. If you focus more of your woodworking craft on producing smaller projects with a high degree of precision and detail, you will need a vastly different wood plane than if your projects focus more on larger pieces of wood. But in reality, the No. Well, its not that simple. 4-1/2 smoothing plane is more popular now than it was when Stanley was the only game in town. 7 for everything as well. Heres how he puts it: You Satan worshipers out there might find them a useful prop during your goat slicing schtick by placing three of them alongside each other.. 1, such as working linenfold panels. Chris is the former editor of Popular Woodworking Magazine. First, theres the position of the controls. I had read a multitude of articles before I got started with handplanes and if I had had seen this one first, all the others would have made a lot more sense. The bench plane has three jobs in the woodshop: to straighten the wood, to smooth it and to remove it. Yes, there are trade-offs (see the section above on the bevel-up smoothing planes), but these bevel-up tools are extraordinarily useful, versatile, adaptable and easy to use. The shoulder plane, for example, features a blade that sits flush with the sole of the body and primarily handles dadoes and tenon joints. English craftsmen would use a panel plane for smoothing large surfaces. That is why this article examines the humble wood plane, breaking down the different types of manual wood planes and their uses. Save up to 64% and get a free gift. Did I hear you say thats nuts? In fact, its quite possible to do all the typical bench plane chores with just one tool (more on that later). The answer is to buy one of the bevel-up jack planes. You have to be the judge here. 4-1/2 is a little bigger than the No. You dont need one bench plane of each size to do good work (though dont tell my wife that). Given their small size, it only makes sense that you will use a black plane sparingly and for specific situations that require such a refined tool. But dont fool yourself into thinking that youre going to use it all that much. This works as a bit of a double-edged sword since Japanese planes are otherwise extremely easy to use, but they are also a bit more limited in terms of an individual planes scope. Has anyone tried that? In another example of Japanese philosophy applied to woodworking hand tools, the Japanese plane aims to achieve a higher degree of precision over raw power. Japanese planes also follow in their other woodworking hand tool techniques in that they are designed to be pulled instead of pushed like western planes. Your email address will not be published. I meant to put the No. 8 in my shop at home (perhaps so I dont have to share). Good press. And of course, this heavily depends on exactly how precise you want the project and the degree to which you are willing to work in order to hone your craft. Typical furniture parts range from 2 wide to 24 wide and 12 long to 48 long. It is worth noting that some mid-level woodworkers assume that they can get by without a jack plane, instead of relying on the jointer plane for larger workpieces and the smoothing plane for smaller ones. It is an excellent balance of sole length and cutter width to be useful for typical furniture parts. 7. You can have a shortish jointer plane that is good for jointing edges up to 36 long. While bullnose planes may seem somewhat similar to a shoulder plane, their purpose is mostly to work into corners and with rabbet finishing. In this instance, storing a wood plane is not functionally different from storing any other tool whether hand or powered with the most important factor being away from the elements. Despite the fact that the No. No, this isnt an error. It was really too short to joint an edge accurately. That said, bevel-up planes tend to be even more expensive than the already somewhat high price of wood planes in the first place. Fore planes have a sole that ranges from 14 to 20 long. 8 seems only a little bigger than the No. 1 planes. I own some cheap imitations of LN like WoodRiver #4,5 and 6 which are not bad tools all together and a LA Veritas Jack plane, which I consider my Cadillac of planes. So its not the simplest of trade-offs to calculate. Granted, if you are not as worried about the degree of precision for your project, then you may not care as much about how flat your dimensional lumber is and skip planing altogether. It allows you to create precise cuts, plane grooves, level the bottoms of joints such as dados or mortises. It can be set-up to take anything from a thick shaving to a wispy gossamer shaving. It truly is a useful tool. Wonderful article on Bench Planes. Lots of high-profile woodworkers have sung the praises of this size tool. 3, but the longer sole prevented it from getting into hollows like a smoothing plane.

You dont even have to remove your hand from the tote to adjust the depth. But if you work with mild domestics, you should consider the trade-offs between the two forms before you make a purchase. That said, the function of a wood plane is inherently slow and laborious specifically so it can maintain a high degree of precision and accomplish its task effectively time after time. People tend to end up with several of these (sometimes even in the same sizes). Keep trying to find one for a bargain that is in rough enough shape I would mind modding it. There are far too many joinery planes (which are different from jointer planes) to cover every single one, but the main thing to remember is specialization. Home Learn Woodworking Plane Types Explained.

Instead, a smoothing plane is used for one of the last steps when making a woodworking project potentially right before you treat the wood if you plan to do so. 6 fore plane with a scraping insert installed. In this article, Im going to walk through the entire line of forms of the metallic-bodied bench planes and describe what each tool is good for. Youll be happy. For more on all things handplanes from Chris, get his book Handplane Essentials now in paperback. This is a very helpful blog with lots of good well-thought-out information. Believe it or not, there is a way to make sense of all the different sizes and configurations of bench planes out there and to select the few that you need in your shop. In other words, I can feel plumb better with a bevel-down jointer plane. 5-1/2 is the same size as a historic English panel plane, a form of tool that was uncommon in the United States. 8 works like a freight train. 7 plane for all their planing needs. I do hear occasionally that the No. On top of that, jointer planes still leave the workpiece in a palpably rough state that you can feel with your fingertips. 4-1/2 is ideal for woodworkers who like a big and heavy plane (a legitimate preference) and those woodworkers who work on larger-scale furniture. Make sure that the wood plane will not get wet as this can cause the metal parts to rust and the wooden parts to swell. I also have one set up with a scraping insert. Second trade-off: lateral-adjustment controls. 6 as a fairly useless chunk of iron. Some people love this arrangement. This means that when smoothing out end grain, you can employ an extremely low angle to slice through the end grain, but this also works out well when cleaning up previously used workpieces as well. The primary job of the smoothing plane is to prepare the wood for finishing. This can be helpful with some stock because the ends of your panel will lose and gain moisture more rapidly than the center. After that, you need to understand what step of the wood preparation process you are at to choose the proper wood plane for your stage. Which tool should I buy?. Heres how I use a jointer plane in my shop. You can tell a lot about what a plane is supposed to do by the length of its sole. 8 harder to push around when the iron gets a little dull. Required fields are marked *. Its not as rare as its smaller and cuter sibling, nor is it all that much more useful. Like many woodworking hand tools, the Japanese have a slightly different approach whether it is the pulling hand saw or the hand plane. So what is it good for? The only plane Ive had is a Record 5-1/2 purchased new many years ago. On top of that, Japanese planes often feature a simpler looking design than western planes with a solid wood body and little in the way of adjustments. My short stint with the tool was enough to convince me that theres a reason that its an uncommon size. This alignment allows errant slivers of wood to effortlessly glide up the chip breaker rather than be driven back into the mouth of the plane. If you like a traditional bevel-down plane, working with the bevel-up planes can be disconcerting. Id go straight to the bevel-up models. With the bevel-up tools you have to give up a few things. Still, this simple design lends itself well to beginners and masters alike as it only takes a couple of taps on the blade from either direction to adjust it. 2 bench plane. In the section on the number 7, where you say tension, I think you mean compression. 4 smoothing plane is historically the most common size. So the extra pressure keeps everything together when the dry season hits. 7 is the most common size of jointer plane. I would think the narrow width would lend it to work well there. Woodworkers are bewildered by them. I dress my stock using the machines, and then I further refine the faces and edges with a jointer plane. 6 than one of the longer planes. Like my experiments with a No. However, the chip breaker sees its beveled edge sloping in the opposite direction of the blades cutting edge. Sound fussy? It does work beautifully. Smoothing dimensional lumber refers to taking significantly less wood off of the workpiece than the prior two steps and is less for making the wood workable than refining it. What Are The Best Woods for Outdoor Furniture? Ive found that the No. It has met all of my needs so far. Because of my affection for the bevel-up jack plane, youd think Id have the same enthusiasm for the bevel-up jointer. You cant hold it like a regular bench plane because theres not enough space in front of the tote. In a traditional shop, the No. 2 in the category of cute but useless. Nothing could be further from the truth. Christoper Swartz does it again, with another great article. Paul Sellers also show how to convert a #4 into a scrub plane, so a 5-1/4 would be just fine. All rights reserved, Free Woodworking Downloads From Lee Valley, I Can Do That! Now that I own many more planes, I use the No. Of course, the advantage of the wider cutter is that youll get the work done in fewer strokes, so that might be a wash. And the advantage of the extra weight is that the tool will stay in the cut with less downward pressure on your part. 4 is useful and popular: When you are searching out a vintage one, youll find 10 No. Chris, I thought that maybe since you mentioned a 30 wooden bodied jointer, that you were going to elaborate on one, but alas nothing was said, so I did build a 30 long 18th century jointer plane from the instructions from the DVD that Bill Anderson made. And you have to keep the iron sharper than you do on the No. While someone sufficiently skilled may be able to pull this off, it is not advised for the best results or the easiest working pace. Sole length: 9-1/2 to 10 The extra weight does come at a price: Surfacing boards can be more tiring. However, anyone who has worked with wood for any length of time knows that dimensional lumber is far from flat or smooth. Some woodworkers like to use the No. If you buy a couple extra irons, you can have a longish smoothing plane with a high cutting angle. I spend most of my free time working on woodworking projects and writing for this blog. If you build armoires, youll love it. This depends more on your workbench with wood planes able to lay blade down on wooden ones but should be laid on their side on metal benches. 2 doesnt fetch the same prices as the No. 5-1/2 plane). Buy a decent older Stanley plane and learn how to fix it up and tune it. 4 for most of my typical cabinet work. 6 planes are fairly plentiful on the secondary market and reasonably priced. Cutter width: 2 to 2-1/4, One of the most common questions I get here at the magazine goes something like this: Im a beginner. liver segments mnemonic epomedicine triad hepatic artery divided supplied anatomy bile proximal aorta artyku 1 plane. However I find I reach for my Block Planes much oftener Easing edges, bevel, radius. 4: Its not terribly heavy and wont wear you out as quickly as the bigger smoothing planes. Using a smoothing plane allows you to skip this risk, though this stage arguably requires the highest level of skill to achieve the best results. signals hand air circus flying aviation ground aircraft arm Keep in mind, this is not as big of a concern if you hand sand the wood, but a power sander can take off too much wood rather quickly and leave you with an uneven workpiece you need to re-flatten. Theres just less iron swinging around I guess. With bevel-up planes, the controls are low on the tool too low to reach without removing your hand from the tote. 5-1/2 trues up the work more than the machines can and it smoothes the work simultaneously. And if you set the tool up precisely and are a careful craftsman, youll find this is quite do-able. And the last part of that sentence is what is important here: typical furniture parts. With a price like that, its got to be one amazing and useful plane, right? All the extra mass and width makes the No. In fact, the two formats are so different in the hand that I think its worthwhile to take a test drive of each form to see which you like better. The jointer plane is used after the fore plane but before the smoothing plane. Some woodworkers use a No. 5-1/2 does handle more than 90 percent of your work-a-day chores if you own machines. You take this in the step in the process when you want to work on something that has far more length than the average workpiece like with a kitchen countertop. It is used for shooting the long edges of boards to form them into a wider panel. This might seem somewhat counter-intuitive given that few hand tools or power tools differentiate based on size, but this taxonomy favors size due to the specific task different sizes work better for. 4 with a 50 frog, which helps reduce tearing (a 55 frog also is available for reducing tearing in curly woods). So it requires more effort to push the tool forward. Smoothing planes have a sole that ranges from 5 to 10 long. No other plane that I own can do all three things like the bevel-up jack planes. 1 and No. Well theres a lot to choose from and different ways to configure them. Subscribe . 5-1/2 in the smoothing plane section. The front knob is big enough to grasp like a traditional bench plane. 8 definitely tips the scales into a whole different class of tool. The No. What Are The Best Food-Safe Wood Finishes? In fact, you can adjust the cutter while the plane is moving. While most high-end planes use high-grade steel for the blade, Japanese planes use softer steel at the top of the blade to make it easier to sharpen. Sole length: 14 to 15 Theres no place to rest your index finger except on the tote itself. Prized by collectors, the No. I fall into the love it category.

This approach allows the jack plane to accomplish significantly more tasks than either the smoothing plane or the jointer plane the two other major types of bench planes. We may receive a commission when you use our affiliate links. This means that even though smoothing planes and the like require finer tuning to achieve their results, even a jack plane needs to be properly calibrated to avoid having to redo work over and over. 2 is a good smoothing plane for children.

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Why is this? However, anyone trying to make a piece of furniture that they would not only like to show off but presumably use in their home for years, likely want the project to look as good as it can. I also learned that my #6 isnt as mysterious as I thought it was (and now, to find a scraper insert for it!). As one of the oldest professions and hobbies in the world, woodworking continues to innovate through the development of new and better tools. And it is used for dressing the faces of boards to make accurate surfaces for joinery. Bevel Up Planes are not technically a different type of plane as pretty much every type of plane on this list can be of a bevel up model. Buy one because you want one. Though I use a No.

8 is a big beast of a tool compared to the No. Sole length: 15 One of the more notable aspects of a smoothing plane is that it employs a shorter body of only 7 to 10 inches which prevents it from applying across a larger section of the wood. 2. The smoothing plane covers No.s 1 through 4 with the larger number representing a longer body and the occasional indicating the width of the next larger model (e.g. In this instance, you will certainly need to flatten the dimensional lumber before you begin working to make sure that every piece and joint can fit snugly without a seam. With Veritass bevel-down planes, both controls are integrated into one adjuster, called a Norris-style adjuster. Jointer planes have a sole that ranges from 22 up to 30 (in wooden-bodied planes). Lets take a look. Whether you choose a larger wood plane that takes out significantly larger sheaves of wood or a smaller wood plane for more refined work, the fact remains that it needs to accomplish its goal to the utmost degree. Jack planes can be seen as the Goldilocks of the wood plane group in that it is neither too big nor too small. Its a powerful, effective and useful tool, even in a shop filled with machines. This is not the tool Ill use for really tricky domestic woods or exotics I use a bevel-up plane for that (see below). The traditional (but by no means only) job of the fore plane is to remove material quickly. He's a hand-tool enthusiast (though he uses power tools, too). I was surprised how easy it was, once I got used to the weight of the tool and balancing it on small pieces of work. And holding the tool makes you feel like youre an awkward giant. 3 is one of the most overlooked planes in the pantheon. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality. In truth, the No. TL;DR: Main Types Of Planes You Should Know About: Block planes are far more similar to smoothing planes than any of the other types in that they are on the smaller side, but block planes take this to a whole new level. refined edge pirollo norman mountain