Tom King

Lee Valley Shooting Plane

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It's nice.  The only complaint I have is not really a complaint, but I don't know what category to put it in.  The iron came in a separate package, and stated on it, and in the instructions that came with the plane that it was sharp to start with.  In my book, it wasn't.  It would barely shave hair on my arm.  I got the O1 iron, so thankfully it was easy to finish sharpening it. 

 

The iron looks like it was cut on a shear, and one side is rough with some rust on it.  It is nice and flat on both faces.  I may or may not get around to cleaning up the sides, but I guess it really doesn't matter.

 

Every detail about how the plane was designed was well thought out.

 

For a long time, I've used a Lion Trimmer for jobs that you would do with a shooting plane.  I have a job coming up where we will need to do some precision fitting with 1/4" thick parts, so it looked like this was a good time to get a shooting plane, and build a board.

 

I stuck a board together out of scraps, and the first advantage I noticed over the Lion Trimmer is that you can more accurately gauge how much you are taking off.  For instance, if you have the plane set to take a .001 shaving, you butt the piece to the front of the plane ahead of the blade, and that's exactly how much you will take off.

 

I have some Corian ordered to make a board out of.  When I get around to making the board, I'll post some pictures.

 

I knew I could use one of my other planes, but none of them are that comfortable sideways, and I have all of them set up for a specific use.  After getting this one, I'm glad I did.  It's very comfortable to use, and works like a charm.

 

The bad thing is now that I have the right handed one, I also want a left handed one, which they offer.

 

The $336 for this one seems like a good buy next to the $500 LN.

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Congrats tom!

I agree about the out of the box sharp. It is acceptable in the industry but not to my standards. Both my lie nielsen and vertias blades went through my sharpening regiment to get them to my standards. I am eager to know ur thoughts on the o1 blade, i am waiting for mine to arrive for my ln no4. I bought it to test the steel and form my own opinion as opposed to repeating online reviews.

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The steel is fine.  I didn't see any difference in it and any other O1 iron, other than it being really thick.  I don't have any problem taking transparent shavings with stock irons, so I don't really expect that this one will be superior any kind of way as far as sharpness goes.  The nice thing is that the plane doesn't require any kind of tuning to be able to take advantage of a sharp edge.

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Do you guys remember the article that PWW did a while back on the lapping process that LV plane blades go through? I did and I had same expectation as you. My experience has been mixed. Sharpened my new skewed rabbiting block plane last night, flattening the back only took about 20 min. Spent HOURS recently though flattening LV shoulder plane blade back. Both were the new PM-V11. So when tuning up a new plane blade, apparently YMMV.

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I played with one today at the show and I really enjoyed it.  I think the major advantage is the skewed blade...cuts end grain with almost no effort.  And it was very comfortable to use.  But IMO if you already have a low angle jack or jointer plane, the purchase probably isn't worth it unless you got money to burn...or if you're shooting TONS of miters on a regular basis.

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I agree that it costs more than it's worth for normal usage.  We have several hundred small pieces to fit together, as well as long edges to joint that are too fragile to do it any other way without a whole lot of trouble setting up.  Sample tests show that this works like a dream for what we need.  The time saved, and the quality level it should raise the finished pieces too will make it a very worthwhile deduction.

 

I got around to making the Shooting Board out of Corian on Friday, but I forgot to carry the camera that day.  It turns out it was a good bit of luck to get the one from LV because we are going to need the left-handed one too, and LN doesn't make a lefty of theirs.  Heart Pine absolutely has to be backed up, and a fixed fence is easier than moving some backup piece for every cut in that direction.  It should be a nice pair.  Having the track for the plane to run in makes it MUCH easier than having to hold something else on edge against the fence for many (any) repetitions.

 

My biggest complaint is the movable tote mount.  I wish they had just picked the standard angle and made a strong, fixed mount.  I'm used to grabbing a plane and toting it by the tote.  With this one, I'm a little shy of doing that because of the adjustment thing.  Other than that, it works fantastically.

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I also recently purchased a veritas shooting plane. (Still need to make a shooting board though). I have multiple veritas planes, all with the pm-v11 steel as well as a pm-v11 chisel. I have to flatten the back of all the plane blades and my chisel before they're ready for use. I think that may be true for every manufacturer. I think it may just depend on how much time you have to spend getting the blade ready for use is what makes the difference between the different manufacturers. That and steel quality. I do wish that lee valley wouldn't put that coating on the back of their plane blades though. It is annoying getting that off the first few strokes on my sharpening stones cause it has a lot more friction than just the bare steel. At least it comes off easily.

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I also recently purchased a veritas shooting plane. (Still need to make a shooting board though). I have multiple veritas planes, all with the pm-v11 steel as well as a pm-v11 chisel. I have to flatten the back of all the plane blades and my chisel before they're ready for use. I think that may be true for every manufacturer. I think it may just depend on how much time you have to spend getting the blade ready for use is what makes the difference between the different manufacturers. That and steel quality. I do wish that lee valley wouldn't put that coating on the back of their plane blades though. It is annoying getting that off the first few strokes on my sharpening stones cause it has a lot more friction than just the bare steel. At least it comes off easily.

 

Just give them a soak in acetone for 20 minutes before you first go to the stones.

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We had a job come up inlaying a bunch of pieces into an oak floor, and the shooting board has been used a LOT.  I like the plane a LOT too.  I found myself holding it on the metal body instead of using the tote after the first 50 or so pieces. You might see the smudge where my thumb rests in the picture.

 

I haven't bought the left handed mate to it yet, but intend to when we get on another job where both will be useful.

 

It's a great benefit having one that runs in a track, rather than using another plane that you have to hold against the edge.

 

This plane has been sitting out in the shop since I first got it.  Bare metal condition is thanks to CRC 3.36 being used on it several times.  Today when we left for the week, I rubbed it down since it had been used a lot this week, and the thumb smudge came right off.

 

The 01 iron hasn't been sharpened since it first came but one time.  Hundreds of 1/4" thick 2-1/4" Oak floor inlays this week, and it still cuts just fine. 

post-14184-0-63654900-1406231482_thumb.j

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Another happy owner . .. especially since I got it for Xmas ;-)  I went with the PM-v11 iron as I have several other irons and chisels of this material and they have performed very well.  Having more positions for the handle could benefit some users but, he two they have suit me well.  I would strongly recommend this to anyone wanting a plane of this type.

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Another happy owner . .. especially since I got it for Xmas ;-)  I went with the PM-v11 iron as I have several other irons and chisels of this material and they have performed very well.  Having more positions for the handle could benefit some users but, he two they have suit me well.  I would strongly recommend this to anyone wanting a plane of this type.

I hope my wife heard my suttle hints that I would love one of these for fathers day this year.

Do you use the lee valley shooting board track with it?

Sent from my SM-N910W8 using Tapatalk

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On 1/29/2014 at 11:58 AM, Freddie said:

Congrats tom!

 

I agree about the out of the box sharp. It is acceptable in the industry but not to my standards.

The paperwork that came with mine stated that the iron is lapped and ground to a certain bevel and microbevel but, I didn't see anything about it being ready to go right out of the box.

From the instructions:

"The shooting plane comes with a blade ground to 23° with a 25° micro-bevel. The back of the blade is lapped flat to 0.0005" over the working surface."

From the webpage:

" Includes a lapped blade, made of either O1 or PM-V11® tool steel, which we find offer the best performance at low bevel angles."

Maybe they've refreshed the wording since it would be hard to economically provide a blade that was as sharp as many of us like our edges.  Mine took a fw swipes to bring into readiness which is a lot less than some other cutters I have received ;-)

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1 hour ago, shaneymack said:

I hope my wife heard my suttle hints that I would love one of these for fathers day this year

MRS SHANEYMACK!!!!!

HEY!!!!  MRS SHANEYMACK!!!!!

Shane *really* *really* needs a Veritas shooting plane with the PM-V11 blade.  He will absolutely love it. 

Oh, and all the other kids have one and will be making fun of him starting the day after father's day if he doesn't have one.

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MRS SHANEYMACK!!!!!

HEY!!!!  MRS SHANEYMACK!!!!!

Shane *really* *really* needs a Veritas shooting plane with the PM-V11 blade.  He will absolutely love it. 

Oh, and all the other kids have one and will be making fun of him starting the day after father's day if he doesn't have one.

Hahahah!! You can betchyerass I will show her this post. Pressures on now!!

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11 hours ago, shaneymack said:

I hope my wife heard my suttle hints that I would love one of these for fathers day this year.

Do you use the lee valley shooting board track with it?

Sent from my SM-N910W8 using Tapatalk

Sorry Shaney.  I missed this.  Yes I use the 24" track.

Shootingboard v2 (4).jpgShootingboard v2 (5).jpg

It is easy enough to make your own captured chute as I have for my LV LAJ but, it was Christmas so I went all the way in.

SB-Guide-Rail-1.jpgSB-Guide-Rail-3.jpg

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1 hour ago, gee-dub said:

Sorry Shaney.  I missed this.  Yes I use the 24" track.

Shootingboard v2 (4).jpgShootingboard v2 (5).jpg

It is easy enough to make your own captured chute as I have for my LV LAJ but, it was Christmas so I went all the way in.

SB-Guide-Rail-1.jpgSB-Guide-Rail-3.jpg

That looks like a sweet setup @gee-dub. Can you give me some detail on your board? Right now I have two seperate boards, one for miters and one for 90. i will definitely want to make just one board when i get this plane. Do you have threaded inserts to screw into to change the fence from 90 to 45?

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The design kind of followed the length of the track (24").  16" was too short and 20" was mostly long enough so I just stayed with the 24".  This meant that the far end was pretty far away.  While I do shoot things a foot wide or so now and then, mostly it is narrower stock.  As long as I was going to have multiple positions I put one close for real small stuff as well.

The fences are held with carriage bolts from below, no threaded inserts.  The right hand hole for two of the three 90* positions is used for the two 45* positions.  Additional holes on the left hold the left side of the 45* fence.  All left hand fence holes are 1/16" oversize to allow fine tuning.

Shootingboard v2 (7).jpg

Here's some other shots BUT, I feel like I'm thread-jacking ;-(

 

I have three positions for the 90* fence

Shootingboard v2 (1).jpg

Shootingboard v2 (2).jpg

Shootingboard v2 (3).jpg

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The design kind of followed the length of the track (24").  16" was too short and 20" was mostly long enough so I just stayed with the 24".  This meant that the far end was pretty far away.  While I do shoot things a foot wide or so now and then, mostly it is narrower stock.  As long as I was going to have multiple positions I put one close for real small stuff as well.

The fences are held with carriage bolts from below, no threaded inserts.  The right hand hole for two of the three 90* positions is used for the two 45* positions.  Additional holes on the left hold the left side of the 45* fence.  All left hand fence holes are 1/16" oversize to allow fine tuning.

Shootingboard v2 (7).jpg

Here's some other shots BUT, I feel like I'm thread-jacking ;-(

 

I have three positions for the 90* fence

Shootingboard v2 (1).jpg

Shootingboard v2 (2).jpg

Shootingboard v2 (3).jpg

I had the 16" on my wishlist. Seems like the 24" capacity would rarely be used. Have you ever needed the 24" capacity?

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On 5/21/2016 at 11:22 AM, shaneymack said:

I had the 16" on my wishlist. Seems like the 24" capacity would rarely be used. Have you ever needed the 24" capacity?

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I went through the same internal discussion and decided that for the small increase in price I would rather cut a too-long track shorter than try to make a too-short one longer ;-) 

The questions are "how wide do I want to be able to shoot?" and "how much plane am I willing to have unsupported during the stroke?"  The plane is 16" long so on a 16" track you start to move the plane off the track as soon as you move forward or backward from a centered position. 

I thought I might cut the track down to about 20" but, in fact this saved me very little room and made no difference in where I stored it so, I left it.  As long as I now had the "extra" length I went ahead and added another fence position. 

This lets me leave the fence in the middle for most of my work.  In the event that I will be doing a lot of small close work I can use the closer fence position and if I am shooting things over 8" wide or so I can use the rear position. 

This also let me put the cleat forward a bit which bring the whole board toward me allowing me to stand a little more erect which eases and strain on the back/neck. The benefit of this will vary with what you do and how you do it.  I feel it was $7 well spent and I wouldn't have felt bad lopping some off if that served my purposes.

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I went through the same internal discussion and decided that for the small increase in price I would rather cut a too-long track shorter than try to make a too-short one longer ;-) 

The questions are "how wide do I want to be able to shoot?" and "how much plane am I willing to have unsupported during the stroke?"  The plane is 16" long so on a 16" track you start to move the plane off the track as soon as you move forward or backward from a centered position. 

I thought I might cut the track down to about 20" but, in fact this saved me very little room and made no difference in where I stored it so, I left it.  As long as I now had the "extra" length I went ahead and added another fence position. 

This lets me leave the fence in the middle for most of my work.  In the event that I will be doing a lot of small close work I can use the closer fence position and if I am shooting things over 8" wide or so I can use the rear position. 

This also let me put the cleat forward a bit which bring the whole board toward me allowing me to stand a little more erect which eases and strain on the back/neck. The benefit of this will vary with what you do and how you do it.  I feel it was $7 well spent and I wouldn't have felt bad lopping some off if that served my purposes.

Good point gee-dub, 24" it will be.

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