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Hand Plane Journey

16100 Views 20 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Stick486
So after all these years it seems I've been seduced by hand planes. I had the pleasure of being introduced to some very well tuned hand planes recently and my initial thought was why bother when I have both a quality jointer and planer. Then I was able to see and use a few well tuned hand planes and something changed. I looked again at what my father-in-law used to use and thought that I needed something better. They hadn't been used in years and had been sitting in a cardboard box in my dry basement for 16 years and likely they hadn't been used in that many years or more prior. Dad was 3 months shy of 100 when he passed in the winter 2001. While we had many conversations over the years, at that point I had been married to his only daughter for 14 years, and most of those years her parents had lived with us. Off subject but that was a wonderful time for all of us. These were indeed some wonderful people. Unfortunately for me I was so busy with work that we shared precious little time in my shop so I wasn't able to learn from someone I considered a self taught elite woodworker. That I have regretted ever since.

Anyway after Dad hung up his shop apron I inherited his hand tools and was grateful but sincerely didn't see true value in his gift at the time. Even though they might have been humble tools they were certainly capable in the right hands as he had proven many times. And then I took a harder look after reading more about hand planes and their proper use. Now I've read and watched a ton of information on the various types and uses that I've taken a much closer look at what I have. I need to find an iron for a transitional plane and the either make or find a replacement tote for an old Stanley Sargent #409 that I've bought. The usual teardown cleaning, sharpening, adjusting, and so forth will be done to put these back into working order. It's not a distraction rather more an education primer to hand planes.

Any suggestion on sources for parts would be welcomed. I've done a preliminary search and most lead to Ebay listings. Even a source for templates for making the knobs and totes for various vintage planes would be great. I could always try my hand at making one.
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For best irons, Hock Tools is a great source. Hock Tools Home Page He has an occasional e-newsletter.

I also love hand planes. The big ones are Wind River, pretty close right out of the box. But I have a Stanley block plane and a couple of odd makes that I've tuned up nicely. A Veritas router plane tops the list. I also love to use diamond stones. After each use, I generally give chisels a few strokes to keep them razor sharp, including a little stropping with compound.

I'm another who will pull out out some scrap wood and make some shavings just to hear that sound, and to relish the glass smooth finish they leave.

Stick's library is pretty amazing.
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