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UTC quote
Edit: see last post for a follow up question...

I'm working on a set of lawn chairs, and I'm using cedar wood. That wood comes with rough surfaces, so I need to finish it, and all I have is a palm-size plane, designed for more intricate work.

So I'm thinking of buying the right size plane, but I remember having seen some at a woodworker's store for between $200 and $500. Way too much for what I will ever need (I don't intend to make precision furniture).

So, how much do I have to expect to spend for a decent quality tool, and would you get that from harbor freight or stay away from them, in this case?
⚠️ Last edited by windbreaker on UTC; edited 1 time
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UTC quote
Look for them on Ebay or garage sales. Get a Stanley; an old Stanley because the newer ones come from china and are pretty iffy.

Flea markets, garage sales, etc where all us old guys are getting rid of our tools, or our widows are.

I'v got a bushel basket full that I haven't used in a decade, but I'll die with them.
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UTC quote
ice cream cornet
get an electric plane and a orbital palm sander....... you dont need to spend mega£s just buy the stores own make
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UTC quote
...or go on a woodworking forum and ask the same question What The? emoticon
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eeeee bip
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Pole
Didn't Paul McCartney give Heather Mills a Plane for her Birthday and some Veet for the other leg ?

Bill
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UTC quote
Lee Valley
Largest line a wood planes I know of.
Nice one too.
http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/page.aspx?cat=1&p=41182
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UTC quote
A smoothing plane is probably all you'll need,
They are the basic plane used by professional woodworkers.

A very good all round plane for most uses.

You can probably pick one up cheap at your neighbourhood big box store,
Rona, Home Depot. Etc...
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UTC quote
Lie-Nielsen
If you are buying a plane, check out lie nielsen. They make the best planes out there and are reasonably priced. They copy most of the old stanley planes. Don't buy junk from a big box store... you'll just toss it.

http://www.lie-nielsen.com/
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UTC quote
Re: Lie-Nielsen
SanJoe wrote:
If you are buying a plane, check out lie nielsen. They make the best planes out there and are reasonably priced. They copy most of the old stanley planes. Don't buy junk from a big box store... you'll just toss it.

http://www.lie-nielsen.com/
I'll have you know I did my apprenticeship with a piece of junk and I still have it.

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Re: Pole
Bill Dog wrote:
Didn't Paul McCartney give Heather Mills a Plane for her Birthday and some Veet for the other leg ?

Bill
ROFL emoticon ROFL emoticon ROFL emoticon
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UTC quote
Re: Lie-Nielsen
Big Foot wrote:
SanJoe wrote:
If you are buying a plane, check out lie nielsen. They make the best planes out there and are reasonably priced. They copy most of the old stanley planes. Don't buy junk from a big box store... you'll just toss it.

http://www.lie-nielsen.com/
I'll have you know I did my apprenticeship with a piece of junk and I still have it.

I feel sorry for you... That's some learning...
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UTC quote
This forum is awesome! Who needs a woodworker's forum, Boulty. That was so uncalled for.

Thank you for the constructive tips. I ended up buying a Stanley copy made by Anant at Timberline. I got a #3 Smoothing plane for $30 (floor model).

Sounds a liiiittle bit better than the $265 for a copy by Lie Nielsen.

Off to the workshop I go...
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UTC quote
Sorry I was unable to post earlier. I'm a very serious amateur WW and the two best planes out there are Lie Nielson (Maine/USA) and Veritas from Lee Valley (Canada) followed closely by the traditional British makers. Avant is made in India if I remember right and the quality control is not up to the other companies mentioned above. For a one-time project, it is probably fine.

There are several important factors in choosing a wood plane and I refer you to: Fine Woodworking (FWW) for a more in-depth analysis and write up.

I'll also agree with Boulty. I've about 10 LN planes but use power tools most of the time and I'd agree with his suggestion specially if working with a hard wood (though cedar is soft).
Best
Miguel
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UTC quote
cheap new or used planes will be fine for what you are doing. just make sure the sole is flat. most of the difference comes with the sharpening, adjustments, and technique in using the plane. there should be info online on this.

one can actually spend hundreds of dollars on special grinders and stones for sharpening and honing the blade. the plane should do the work if it is sharpened correctly. if it takes extra force, chances are it is not adjusted properly or sharp enough.

my first week assignment as a furniture design major was to sharpen all my chisels and plane blades.
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UTC quote
The Lie-Nielsen and Veritas planes are worth every penny. They work well right out of the box. Cheap planes and old Stanleys can be made to work well, but they require hours of "tuning up" or they won't work worth a damn. This includes flattening the sole, filing the frog where the blade bears on it so that it seats well, and sharpening and honing the blade. And you have to know what you're doing to do this properly.

The expensive planes use very heavy castings and thick blades, which helps prevent chatter. They also do not commit the sin the budget manufacturers do: machining the critical surfaces on castings that are still "green". Cast iron must cure at least six months after casting before machining, or the castings will warp slightly and leave the flat machined surfaces no longer flat.

There is nothing more frustrating to try to use than a cheap, poorly tuned plane.
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UTC quote
I have my grandfather's plane. Properly setting it up for use takes a long time but the results are amazing. Right now the blade is due to be sharpened and this is a tedious process. Generally it takes me about and hour or two just to get everything set up for proper sharpening.

Then you have to make sure to remount the blade properly and check to make sure all the adjutments are spot on and blade depth is set correctly. It's a lot of work to keep the old tool working but I don't use it a lot so it's kind of a joy when I get it right.

Here are some pics from my old house project. Going to sell this one as soon as it's done...I hope. Razz emoticon Those reworked french doors needed a lot of planing to get the fit right and the old plane did well. I personally like the antique planes they are just more challenging to use sometimes.
Master bedroom. I refinished the woodwork in this house right where it stood. That's tedious some times.
Master bedroom. I refinished the woodwork in this house right where it stood. That's tedious some times.
Entry way, front room. Refinished the stairs and the floors. That's about 6 to 8 coats of high gloss on those floors.
Entry way, front room. Refinished the stairs and the floors. That's about 6 to 8 coats of high gloss on those floors.
Some salvage doors I picked up before the refinish and rework.
Some salvage doors I picked up before the refinish and rework.
Salvage doors now french doors between the living room and dining room.
Salvage doors now french doors between the living room and dining room.
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UTC quote
I'm sure you have already bought your wood, but next time try going to a place where they have cedar that has already been surfaced. Sure takes the work out of things. But another idea is to take all your existing boards down to a place with a wide-belt sander. Many are 36" wide. They could probably rough sand nearly all of your wood, assuming you are working with wood of the same thickness, in one pass. three, four or five boards could be passing through the sander at once, side-by-side. This also works great if you have glued up a small table top that is less than 36" in width.
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UTC quote
I like the stuff made by Boeing.
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UTC quote
Thank goodness I like hardware and I like to tinker. I had no idea what using one of these planes involved, and that a new plane needed to be tuned before it can be used right. That's probably the reason why I wasn't too happy with the results from that Anant plane. Very obviously, the iron wasn't honed and cambered, and other parts probably needed finishing touches as well.

What I'll do is return this plane and see that I find a better Stanley plane on ebay. One of the high-end planes would be nice to have but they are out of my league right now, and I don't really need a plane that often.

So, again, thank you to the folks who have helped me and who have proven that there is ample talent for almost every discipline present on MV.
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UTC quote
Chetwynder wrote:
Bill Dog wrote:
Didn't Paul McCartney give Heather Mills a Plane for her Birthday and some Veet for the other leg ?

Bill
ROFL emoticon ROFL emoticon ROFL emoticon
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UTC quote
shitty job
made this the other day and didnt use a plane at all ..... i have some better stuff but its all on me other memory card
Forum member supplied image with no explanatory text
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UTC quote
My best plane:
External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

I also own several Lie-Nielsen and Veritas, but making your own is the bomb.
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UTC quote
http://www.aircraftdealer.com/aircraft_for_sale/Cessna_172/94/page-1.htm

You can pick up a twenty-year-old Cessna for $38,000.


What?

Oh. Never mind.
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Bear in mind that buying the plane is only part of the picture- you must be able to sharpen it to get the best use from it. Check out woodworking forums for instructions. Look for the cheapest way, as many of the methods are expensive. Remember that the edge needs to be straight, so some type of jig is a must for beginners - but you can make your own. I use a flat aluminum plate with sandpaper- I made a roller to hold it at the correct angle. You can also use this plate to dress the sole of the plane (they are often not smooth and flat!). I am not O-C about this stuff, but you will never be satisfied with your results if your tool and the blade are not "right".

Remember, you only have to buy/make the sharpening equipment once, and it will be good for the rest of your life.
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shankhill wrote:
Bear in mind that buying the plane is only part of the picture- you must be able to sharpen it to get the best use from it. Check out woodworking forums for instructions. Look for the cheapest way, as many of the methods are expensive. Remember that the edge needs to be straight, so some type of jig is a must for beginners - but you can make your own. I use a flat aluminum plate with sandpaper- I made a roller to hold it at the correct angle. You can also use this plate to dress the sole of the plane (they are often not smooth and flat!). I am not O-C about this stuff, but you will never be satisfied with your results if your tool and the blade are not "right".

Remember, you only have to buy/make the sharpening equipment once, and it will be good for the rest of your life.
Thanks for spelling it out, that is what was surprising to me when I dug in deeper. BTW, I also learned that the cutting edge, in fact, needs to be not straight but rounded (with a camber) to some degree, depending on your desired result. The hard part is that this camber needs to be rather minimal, and to control the degree is where your mentioned jigs and expensive stones come in...plus the skill to use them.

Anyway, I will find a way to make this work. Your tip of sandpaper on a flat surface is excellent.
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UTC quote
If you were building furniture by hand in the 1930's, you would want that camber. It is hard to achieve without specialized sharpening equipment that is expensive. But, you can get it (to some degree) by rotating the blade on the sandpaper with alternating strokes. Here's where the O-C comes in: you have to rotate while you are making the passes, otherwise you get an angle, rather than a camber. Clear?

My guess is that having the camber will make little or no difference for what I understand you will be doing. I have a bunch of planes, and I only use one more than once a year or so. I also have an electric plane, and I use it much more, especially when I am wanting to take off shavings on a long surface, like a door edge. For just touching up, the manual plane, with or without a camber, works great, and doesn't need an extension cord. If you are working outside, keep it out of the sun, for obvious reasons. Also, you can buy replacement parts online for just about any popular make. I am thinking handles (which break easily when you drop the plane), and blades. Not very expensive, either.

Have fun.
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UTC quote
Boulty wrote:
...or go on a woodworking forum and ask the same question What The? emoticon
Should of put "NSR" in the subject line but it seemed to work its way out.

When I saw "plane" I thought maybe a Piaggio engine was involved.

Best,
David
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UTC quote
Following the link that Miguel provided, I found this video on cambers. It describes what I experienced with my new and untuned plane: I got stepped edges after each move.
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UTC quote
[quote="shankhill"]Bear in mind that buying the plane is only part of the picture- you must be able to sharpen it to get the best use from it.
[quote]

buy a honing guide .... you dont need to be a wetstone whizz

ive sharpened blades on 80grit sandpaper and an oilstone and ended with an edge thatll slice paper ... id have cut a tomato but didnt have one to hand Razz emoticon
stanley do a cheapy
stanley do a cheapy
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⚠️ Last edited by T5bitza69 on UTC; edited 1 time
UTC

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UTC quote
These work great for sharpening all kinds of blades, but you can make your own out of scrap wood and a couple of bolts with wingnuts. Bear in mind that you set the angle by eye- there is no scale on the tool.
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Molto Verboso
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UTC quote
shankhill wrote:
Bear in mind that you set the angle by eye- there is no scale on the tool.
Not necessarily. From Lee Valley:

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text
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Well, technically you are correct, but what I meant is that there is no specified degree settings ON THE TOOL, and from a practical perspective, you eyeball it anyway (set the bevel flat on the stone so you don't get two bevels). I have used this tool, and I understand its setup, but I can't believe anyone would use it for anything other than establishing a NEW precise bevel angle, which would take forever. When I have had to make a new angle, I have used a disk sander, and then finished it with the jig, again, eyeballing it.

All you really need is a jig to hold it at a fixed angle (adjustable) with rollers.

So, my apologies (sort of).
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Molto Verboso
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UTC quote
Many expert sharpeners recommend a compound angle, which is difficult to do without a precise jig like the Lee Valley, regardless of how you establish the original angle. Sharpening is a personal zen, and each person needs to find the technique which is repeatable and successful for themselves.
@windbreaker avatar
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UTC quote
If you haven't yet, do check out this video. In it, he is just using his fingers at the right spot(s) to maintain the existing bevel. Wouldn't that be all one needs to do? I mean, the new irons do come with the correct degree bevel.
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Molto Verboso
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UTC quote
Yes, that is all one needs to do. But, I must say, it is a difficult technique to master. If you are just beginning to do sharpening, I would really recommend one of the jigs.
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UTC quote
chukstr wrote:
My best plane:
External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

I also own several Lie-Nielsen and Veritas, but making your own is the bomb.
Now you're talkin!
Hand crafting a tool, to hand craft a piece of furniture or renovate your home.
Does it get any better?

Argh argh..
Forum member supplied image with no explanatory text
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2006 GTS
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UTC quote
pictures make threads so much cooler!
Forum member supplied image with no explanatory text
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Molto Verboso
Dragon Rosso LX 150
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Molto Verboso
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UTC quote
A plane like that should be in a display case, not in the workshop. That is a beauty.
@chukstr avatar
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Molto Verboso
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UTC quote
changerang wrote:
pictures make threads so much cooler!
Aaron, your designs and craftsmanship are beautiful. Nice web site, too!
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UTC quote
chukstr wrote:
A plane like that should be in a display case, not in the workshop. That is a beauty.
I don't own this plane, just found the picture online. I appreciate everyone else's pictures.
chukstr wrote:
Aaron, your designs and craftsmanship are beautiful. Nice web site, too!
Thank you chukstr. My summer goal is to get my garage/shop set up better than before. A generous friend is helping me add some dedicated breakers and 220 and 120 outlets in the garage. Woohoo!
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