Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Wood Stock Planes

I'm in the short rows of the second side table build, chamfering the tenons and shaping the legs before work today and I hope to get to shaping the aprons and chopping the mortises in the aprons for the top hold downs tonight. Anyway, while using my wood stock planes I started thinking about wood stock vs. metal.

I use my metal planes more than the wood stock planes, but there are many uses where the wood stocks are better mostly because of lighter weight and the ease of working in both directions. An example is cutting bevels and chamfers. The light weight when planning a vertical board and being able to work both directions make it a no brainer as to which plane to use. Shaping beveled legs is another example, after cutting with the band saw, rough shaping with the spokeshave, and then smoothing with one of the wood stocks is much less a workout vs. doing the smoothing with a #3 or #4. Add in the weight of a modern Bedrock pattern plane like a LN for smoothing and there is no need for the gym afterwards.

Another big advantage of the wood stock plane is cost.  Some scrap wood and a LV or Hock iron with chip breaker (if you are really cheap, a recovered iron and chip breaker from a junk Stanley) and you have a very good plane for $40 to $50 USD vs, $100 to $500 for a new Bedrock style plane.

While I use the metal planes more, mostly because they can be faster and a little less fussy, if I could have only one type, wood stock or metal, I think I would end up with wood stocks. YMMV.

BTW, after making and shaping many Krenov style planes I've settled on a shape that works for me. Very simple almost Japanese style but taller and not as wide. With that shape I have almost infinite options as to hand placement, number of hands, and direction. Examples of my current shape are at the top of the Blog, reposted here. 

No comments:

Post a Comment