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Thread: What planes do you use?

  1. #1
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    What planes do you use?

    I do most of my woodworking with electrons. I have however started using hand planes, chisels, and scrapers more. I've got a LV block, #4 Stanley with an upgraded Hock blade. I picked up a #5 1/2 Stanley at the local flea market for 25 bucks last summer. I'm about to start a rehab on the 5 1/2, new blade and probably chip breaker. I also have a LV medium shoulder plane on my short list. I've been debating between it and a router plane. I want the shoulder/router to trim tenons to fit.

    My question is what are the planes you use most ofter and if you only had 4 or 5 which ones would you have?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Daugherty View Post
    ...My question is what are the planes you use most ofter and if you only had 4 or 5 which ones would you have?
    You're off to a very good start.

    My most-used planes are pretty much just what you already have - or want.

    A low angle block plane, a couple smoothers (3's or 4's or 4½'s, or your LV), a jack (your 5½) a shoulder plane (the LV is a really good one!) and a router (look for an old #71 - they're plentiful and relatively cheap.) are the ones you'll use most. You might want to add a jointer plane (#7 or #8) to your list - or you can 'make do' with a #6 (the #6 will be cheaper, because many folks don't like them - but I do.)

    So there you are. Out of the about 125 planes I have, those are my most used.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  3. #3
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    What Jim said is spot on. Bear in mind the router plane and the shoulder plane are not interchangeable. You'll probably want and use both. Another plane to consider is a scrub, and you could do well with a metal one, but European style wooden ones are cheap, plentiful, and work very well. If you have more than one #4, you can put a back bevel on one, effectively giving you a high angle frog for wood more prone to tear out.

  4. #4
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    Im not a hand plane type of person, but I own a few planes.
    I have used my block plane on every build Ive done since I purchased it.
    I use it to trim faceframes, trim up tenons if needed, trim off excess on plugs, pocket screw plugs, anything I leave proud of the surface,(today I started trimming off walnut strips I inserted into shallow dados and Im using the block plane to level them to surface of maple) use it to bevel legs,beveling almost any piece I want a small bevel on, and a few other times
    I think it might be the handiest hand tool I own by far. Eventually, Im going to get a really sharp edge on the blade, but right now its doing its job.
    Its a great tool since its small and fits in one hand, and can get into places or positions to make certain tasks very easy.
    Last edited by allen levine; 02-12-2011 at 11:58 PM.

  5. #5
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    You have to be careful pretty soon you'll need some place to store all of them.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by ken werner View Post
    What Jim said is spot on. Bear in mind the router plane and the shoulder plane are not interchangeable. You'll probably want and use both.
    +1 on both! I used both today in forming small but long rabbets on 1/4 thick boards I am using for the bottom of a sliding tray.


    Quote Originally Posted by ken werner View Post
    Another plane to consider is a scrub, and you could do well with a metal one, but European style wooden ones are cheap, plentiful, and work very well.
    I would place a scrub lower down on the "must have" list, but that being said, I used mine today. Not in the normal way most people think they are used, ranking off the face side of a board in the process of flattening or thicknessing it, but ranking off the edge of the same bottom board to a scribed line. I could have cut off the 1/2" I needed trimmed on the bandsaw and finish up with a block plane, but it was just as fast using the scrub and more fun. I finished up the edge with my block plane.

    No electrons were used today except for keeping the shop lit!
    “When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece.” - John Ruskin
    “Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.” - Oscar Wilde

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Satko View Post
    ...I could have cut off the 1/2" I needed trimmed on the bandsaw and finish up with a block plane, but it was just as fast using the scrub and more fun...
    Yeah! There's just something satisfying about the sound and feel of a scrub plane taking big shavings off a rough board, isn't there?!!
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ken werner View Post
    What Jim said is spot on. Bear in mind the router plane and the shoulder plane are not interchangeable. You'll probably want and use both. Another plane to consider is a scrub, and you could do well with a metal one, but European style wooden ones are cheap, plentiful, and work very well. If you have more than one #4, you can put a back bevel on one, effectively giving you a high angle frog for wood more prone to tear out.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Satko View Post
    +1 on both! I used both today in forming small but long rabbets on 1/4 thick boards I am using for the bottom of a sliding tray.




    I would place a scrub lower down on the "must have" list, but that being said, I used mine today. Not in the normal way most people think they are used, ranking off the face side of a board in the process of flattening or thicknessing it, but ranking off the edge of the same bottom board to a scribed line. I could have cut off the 1/2" I needed trimmed on the bandsaw and finish up with a block plane, but it was just as fast using the scrub and more fun. I finished up the edge with my block plane.

    No electrons were used today except for keeping the shop lit!
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim DeLaney View Post
    Yeah! There's just something satisfying about the sound and feel of a scrub plane taking big shavings off a rough board, isn't there?!!
    yup on the scrub, and those before me are giving yu great advice..and today, i am looking hard at the better planes instead of the cheaper ones...saw a cartoon a little bit ago and agree with the sentiment..
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  9. #9
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    Thanks for all the advice. I'm defiantly starting to lean more toward hand tools. I'll be using my #4 a lot more since my ROS crapped out a couple of weeks ago.

  10. #10
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    John my go to plane is like Allen said the block plane.

    Mine is the older model low angle lee valley one. That is just one really nice tool.

    Then i have a great Canadian made Stanley Jack plane that Larry gave me and its a real keeper.

    My Ebay Stanley jointer is a great plane but it dont get much use.

    I hope to use more of my planes now that i have been through sharpening the lot. That was always stopping me.
    cheers

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