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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 04:28 PM Thread Starter
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So I had hoped to get to Lee Valley while in Vancouver before we left for our Alaskan Cruise but the promise of going to Butchart Gardens one day took the whole day and the flight from DC to Vancouver left the first day with us exhausted so there was no getting to Lee Valley as hoped. And flying back from Fairbanks niched any chance.



So as much as I wanted to I'm lead to deciding on a low angle block plane which I intend to use for taking the edge off some corners and for planing end grain which I hear it does quite well. Better than sanding if truth be told. I need it to be perfectly flat on the sides for end grain and using a homemade sled which Lee Valley shows works quite well using plywood and making the groove for the plane. Of course they show this for use with their special shooting plane but should work equally well for the bench plane I would think, maybe a slight variation if needed.



The second plane I see a need for would be a nice dado plane. Now maybe not totally necessary but I can see a real need for its use in some of my works and plans for other projects. I'm trying to blend hand tools with these wonderful machine I already have. Along those lines I'll need to start thinking of a good rip saw, crosscut saw, and dovetail saw.



For now I'm working on the hand planes. With the #4 Smoothing plane and the #62 Jack Plane already secured I think these next ones will fit fine. Just need to determine which ones. From what I saw at the Woodworking Show a few months back the Lee Valley Low Angle Block plane should do very well. Any corrections? Suggestions otherwise?



The Dado Plane, well I haven't looked at any so I'm wide open to good suggestions. I rather get one good one then something that really isn't worth it. Old/new, really doesn't matter. Doing a good job is what I'm interested in. Good quality.



Thanks for listening.....



-Steve


(posted on another woodworking forum as well in case this sounds familiar)
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 05:06 PM
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I found a really good condition Stanley 71 dado plane which is what the Lee Valley one is modeled after. In fact, I’ve bought some extra blades for it from LV as they interchange. I’m not really sure if the LV one offers anything that the Stanley doesn’t but it is a lot prettier.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 07:23 AM
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Steve, I have not tried one a shooting board yet (plan to), but for general purpose uses, Japanese planes, and handsaws for that matter, leave one pleasantly surprised. The good ones are not cheap, but I suspect most of the cost goes into the hand-forged blades, rather than cast metal bodies. Some fettling may be needed for initial setup, but thereafter very little.
There are dado models as well, although each plane is limited to a specific blade and width.
Try one before you make a final purchase decision - it may up-end your thinking. Ditto for the handsaws - I got a little six-inch dovetail saw from LV that is jaw-droppingly effective, and their Korean-made. Rosscut saw is also a pleasant bang for the buck.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 09:54 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the response Biagio. I do own a few Japanese saws and really like the control they afford. Cutting on the backstroke gives better control, at least for me. I use these mainly for trimming and much finer cuts. I haven't looked at their planes at all but will certainly do so now. I hadn't even thought or considered that before. Thanks for the suggestion.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 02:08 PM
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Don't know if you can still find it, but my dado problems disappeared when I found a DadoWiz, which guides a router to make exact fit grooves and dados, including stopped dados. It is guided on a straight edge clamped to the workpiece. You fit a piece of your stock between a couple of pins and position the router so it cuts one side first, then return and make a second pass with the router positioned for the other side. I found I had to add a couple of pieces of paper to allow a little room for glue. It came with a 3/8ths down cut spiral bit, it also came with a bushing.

DadoWiz went out of business a few years ago, but apparently Infinity bought the patent and it is still on their site.

Infinity Cutting Tools makes something that looks exactly like the DadoWiz for $130. I don't see any difference between it and DadoWiz. It comes with bit and bushing. Here is Infinity's promo video:

Rockler makes an exact fit jig for $90 Here it is in use:

As much as I enjoy using hand planes, I think the DadoWiz and router is definitely an upgrade. Fast and easy to use, very accurate. Traditional? No. Happy with it? Yes.

The more I do, the less I accomplish.

Last edited by DesertRatTom; 06-06-2019 at 02:14 PM.
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