Home-Made Shoulder Plane Contines
Well I after replying to another post about this plane, I felt maybe an update was needed. I started this hand plane quite awhile ago, but its a work in progress. I pick it up and fuss with it from time to time in my effort to make it flawless. I am starting to come to terms that this hand plane will never be that, but nonetheless it must work, and work right. The woodworker/ machinist in me dictates that.
So far I have made a few minor improvements. I have turned down a chunk of stainless steel for the adjuster knob. This is just to make the adjuster work and to keep as much parts on it out of stainless steel as I can. I will need to polish up the adjuster nut now too so that it has the same high luster as the plane body. That means a lot of sanding, filing and buffing, but its just something that has to be done.Other improvements were drilling and tapping holes in the sides of the plane to accept set screws. This is to help hold the blade from sideways movement and to prevent chatter. Finally I polished up the plane again just to give it more of its high-luster character!!
As for what needs to be done...well a lot really. I was thinking about drilling shallow holes in the wedge and epoxying two 2007 pennies into the holes; one on each side. This would act as finger holds and also date the plane. Now how do you guys feel about that; is it a foolish idea or does that have merit?
Another problem I have is with the current finger holes in the body. I placed the dimples there, but our ball mill was extremely dull and unfortunately we don't have a better one or a new one on the way. We just don't use ball end mills much at work and they are VERY expensive toolisng. Still I got to improve that dimple somehow.
On the knob, I thought about changing the knob from brass to stainless, but I have my reservations. I kind of like how the plane is made of silvery stainless, yellowish brass, brownish apple (wedge) and reddish Padoak. (infill wood). What says the panel of judges? Change the knob to stainless or keep it as brass?
Another thing I am on the fence about, is redoing two rivets. You can see in the picture I got a dimple in the small rivet located in the picture towards the back of the plane. I would like to redo this, but I am afraid all the pounding will do damage on the plane somewhere else if I am not careful about it. Its easier said then done so I am thinking maybe living with a slightly imperfect plane would be better then trying to get a perfect plane and make it worse!!
The last thing I got to do is lap the bottom of the sole. That is straight forward, I just know its going to be tedious work so I have been putting it off. Anyway that is how this project now stands...a lot of work left to be done, but its getting there. Here is a picture anyway as it now looks...
PS: I placed the quarter in the picture so you can see that this plane does shine like a mirror...
I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"