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Thread: How on earth do I hold this tool?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Catalunya
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    How on earth do I hold this tool?

    I'm sorry to say it but this shoulder plane is a pain to use.

    I haven't been able yet to find a proper way of holding and using it. Unless someone can illuminate me I think I'm going to design one myself and send it to LN.

    Honestly each time I have to use it I'm tempted to throw it away.
    As far as I've seen it is a copy (or inspired) of old Record or Preston planes so I must assume that it's me the one who is doing it wrong but... I'm not that stupid either so

    I presume that there must be a way of holding it, if anyone knows it please, please do show it to me.

    Many thanks in advance
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 042_sm.jpg  
    Best regards,
    Toni

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _________________
    web site:http://www.toniciuraneta.com
    I also dream of a shop with north light where my hands can be busy, my soul rest and my mind wander...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Bradford, Vermont
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    They're not very intuitive, are they? I've got a little different style, but the positions of the hands remain pretty much the same.

    Here's my shoulder plane:



    First, I lay my right hand LOOSELY across the rounded rear, like this:



    Next, I lay my left hand LOOSELY across the raised front "bump", like this:



    (My right hand was omitted from the picture for clarity; in use I actually leave it there )

    So - with both hands on the plane, both still lying LOOSELY, it ends up like this:



    It's important to keep both hands loose - these planes don't want to be clenched. There's a little provision for some grip, but that's more for lifting the plane & drawing it rearward than for pushing the plane in use.

    Mine's a little more convenient, because I can also hold my right palm directly on the rear end of the plane, still leaving my fingers loose except for lifting it to draw it rearward for another pass.


    EDIT: Yes, that IS VINYL flooring.
    -- Tim --

  3. #3
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    somewhere east of Queen Creek, AZ - South East of Phoenix
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Hofstetter View Post
    EDIT: Yes, that IS VINYL flooring.
    Thats what I was thinking but since I don't own one I held off.

    I also was going to ask about the floor..
    "There’s a lot of work being done today that doesn’t have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesn’t have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  4. #4
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    Toni

    This might help

    There is part #1 on Setup and part 2 on Using.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    I'm sorry to say I agree with you. I owned a large Record shoulder plane (like the one in the picture) and it just never felt good in my hand - I eventually sold it.

    The Lee Valley medium shoulder plane was the complete opposite. It just fit my hand in a very natural way the first time I held it.

    I know that's not what you asked but I thought I'd pass along my experience.

    Mike
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Record 073.jpg  
    Last edited by Mike Henderson; 11-08-2009 at 12:56 AM.
    Ancora imparo
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    Reno NV
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    Very helpful. I was using my LV medium shoulder plane today and like Toni, It just felt awkward. Of course it didn't help I was using it on some rather short shouldered tenons in pine.

    I was basically just practicing maybe mortise and tenon joints by making some of the 'fancy' kind of sawhorses that seemed to have been in a couple of magazines in the last couple of months.
    Programmer - An organism that turns coffee into software.
    If all your friends are exactly like you, What an un-interesting life it must be.
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  7. #7
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    RETIRED(!) in Austintown, Ohio
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    Toni,
    I have that plane, and it is a bear to hold onto without causing pain. I've found a two hand hold to be best - left han on the front of the plane, and the web of the thumb of the right hand UNDER the brass handle, with the thumb gripping the left side and the index & middle fingers gripping the right side.

    I have medium large sized hands, and this is what works for me.

    One good feature of this monster is that it hass good mass, so once moving across a tenon, it goes smoothly and nicely.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    Reno NV
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    I'm guessing it also helps to secure the workpiece, very securely.
    Programmer - An organism that turns coffee into software.
    If all your friends are exactly like you, What an un-interesting life it must be.
    "A door is what a dog is perpetually on the wrong side of" Ogden Nash


  9. #9
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    Oct 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Dowell View Post
    I'm guessing it also helps to secure the workpiece, very securely.
    That it does. If ya don't, ya end up chasing your workpiece across the vinyl-tiled floor.
    -- Tim --

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Hofstetter View Post
    They're not very intuitive, are they? I've got a little different style, but the positions of the hands remain pretty much the same.
    Thanks a lot Tim for taking the time to make this tutorial.
    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Cook View Post
    Toni

    This might help

    There is part #1 on Setup and part 2 on Using.
    Thanks a lot Greg, I've just watched them and found that I'm not doing anything wrong.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Henderson View Post
    I'm sorry to say I agree with you. I owned a large Record shoulder plane (like the one in the picture) and it just never felt good in my hand - I eventually sold it.
    It is a relief to find out that I'm not the only one...

    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Dowell View Post
    Very helpful. I was using my LV medium shoulder plane today and like Toni, It just felt awkward. Of course it didn't help I was using it on some rather short shouldered tenons in pine.
    I was basically just practicing maybe mortise and tenon joints by making some of the 'fancy' kind of sawhorses that seemed to have been in a couple of magazines in the last couple of months.
    Another opinion that confirms me that the ergonomics of this plane are not the best ones

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim DeLaney View Post
    Toni,
    I have that plane, and it is a bear to hold onto without causing pain. I've found a two hand hold to be best - left han on the front of the plane, and the web of the thumb of the right hand UNDER the brass handle, with the thumb gripping the left side and the index & middle fingers gripping the right side.
    I have medium large sized hands, and this is what works for me.
    One good feature of this monster is that it hass good mass, so once moving across a tenon, it goes smoothly and nicely.
    Thanks Jim, mine is only the medium size one. To me the most difficult way of holding them is single handed, specially when working in "not on bench" positions like when you have to deepen a rebate or groove in a door frame.

    I've also tried putting the thumb under the brass handle but the rear end of the blade sticking out further than the handle digs into my palm.

    If I put my hand on top of the brass handle, the fact of having to have my fingers stretched to hold it and my wrist bent downwards creates such a tension in my forearm and wrist that is really painful to use it.

    The only way I've been able to use comfortably to a certain extent is clamping the pieces very low, even under the level of my bench top.

    One of these days I have to relax and spend a whole morning making friends with this plane if it wants to, if not well... e-bay is there..
    Best regards,
    Toni

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _________________
    web site:http://www.toniciuraneta.com
    I also dream of a shop with north light where my hands can be busy, my soul rest and my mind wander...

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