What Planes To Buy?


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I've got a question:

 

What are the advantages and disadvantages of low angle planes?

(A google hasn't given me a straight/unbiased answer to this)

 

They *seem* (please correct me if I'm wrong) to be a relatively recent invention. If that's the case, why did we not start using them until recently?

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Before accepting any list of 'must have' planes, ask yourself what you want to do with handplanes. Are you buying handplanes to replace the functionality of a jointer and/or thickness planer? Or are

Based on Keggers' info and replies, I would say spend your money on joinery planes. With a wide jointer and planer, it is probably safe to assume you won't be milling lumber by hand to no need for th

This question is to all you hand tool experts. To be exact - hand plane experts. I've decided to buy three new hand planes. The sky is the limit as to price, but I am planning on buying them from Lee

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I am going to go out on a limb and answer without much empirical evidence but I would guess that it has a lot to do with the expanding market for squirrelly exotics. The vast majority of woodworkers were building with locally available timbers years ago. I know a lot of antique wooden hand planes utilize steep bed angles and this achieves much the same result with an easier to build plane. There is also the cabinet scraper. I think achieving good results with steep bed angles and scrapers just left people not really thinking about building things differently until recently and that is the nature of ingenuity.

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This question is to all you hand tool experts. To be exact - hand plane experts. I've decided to buy three new hand planes. The sky is the limit as to price, but I am planning on buying them from Lee Valley. I've never used a hand plane, but I decided if I was going to learn how to use them, I'd buy the best that I could. So, the question is, which three should I buy. I'm limiting it to three because I really don't want four. Well...maybe four. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

I should mention, that I do have a shop full of power tools. 12" table saw, 12" jointer, 15" planer, mortiser, bandsaw, router table, 5 different routers ( I like routers). So I have a complete shop and am now wanting to learn to use hand tools. I like to build furniture and clocks and have had instances where a hand plane would have been very handy.

Kent

This question is to all you hand tool experts. To be exact - hand plane experts. I've decided to buy three new hand planes. The sky is the limit as to price, but I am planning on buying them from Lee Valley. I've never used a hand plane, but I decided if I was going to learn how to use them, I'd buy the best that I could. So, the question is, which three should I buy. I'm limiting it to three because I really don't want four. Well...maybe four. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.I should mention, that I do have a shop full of power tools. 12" table saw, 12" jointer, 15" planer, mortiser, bandsaw, router table, 5 different routers ( I like routers). So I have a complete shop and am now wanting to learn to use hand tools. I like to build furniture and clocks and have had instances where a hand plane would have been very handy.Kent

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I've never bought or used western plane. I'm from Hawaii where we have a large Japanese population. My teacher was of this population. It's unusual for one to step out of this community to teach a white guy. When I asked why he did this his reply was thatno matter what I teach you you'll never be as good as me.

I use Kanas (Japanese planes). They have a longer in feed are pulled instead of pushed that give excellent control. The blades are excellent and keep an edge for a long time. Ever wonder why Japanese don't use sandpaper? The kana is the reason. There are quite a few videos on line as to set up and use. Most of the blade makers come from a long line of sword makers that switched to making chisels and plane blades

Walter

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On July 31, 2013 at 8:22 AM, Andrew Pritchard said:

I've got a question:

 

What are the advantages and disadvantages of low angle planes?

(A google hasn't given me a straight/unbiased answer to this)

 

They *seem* (please correct me if I'm wrong) to be a relatively recent invention. If that's the case, why did we not start using them until recently?

Recent as in the last hundred years? Stanley has the No. 62 which is a low angle jack plane and they also made the No. 164 which is a low angle smoother. I know they both where being made well before WWII. And of course there is the low angle block planes No. 60 , 60 1/2, 61, 65. I think there's a few more in there too. Oh yeah the no. 62 too. Plus other companies like Sargent made a really cool low angle jack No. 514, I think that's the model number.  Also can't forget about the Norris, Spiers, Mathieson....type infill mitre planes which have been around for hundreds of years. These planes are in a league of there own. I've seen, copies of course, wood block prints of guys using these types of planes from the 1700's. A little bit of history if you're interested

https://www.toolsforworkingwood.com/store/blog/143/title/The%20History%20of%20Mitre%20planes%20-%20Pt%202%20-%20The%20early%2019th%20Century%20Before%20Infill%20Bench%20Planes%20Were%20Developed

Hand planes started to fall out of favor with the rise of power tools and a lot were discontinued. But thanks to the resurgence of traditional woodworking and companies like Veritas and Lie-Nielsen are making these kind planes available once again. 

One pro with using a low-angle plane is it cuts easier i.e. end grain but you have a greater chance of tear out. 

Here's a good site explaining the geometry of pitches

http://www.handplane.com/45/perfect-pitch-bedding-angles-explained/.

Here's a pic of some of my favorite low angle planes.image.thumb.jpeg.c85c86548281c3ab68834fa

Wouldn't shoulder planes be considered low angle planes too?

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I think many of us can still be surprised how long some formats have been around.  The point has been driven home that what you need as a starter set of planes may not be what I need as a starter set of planes.  That being said, if I had to give up all but a few I would hang on to:

- My Lee Valley Apron plane over my block planes (gets much more use)

- My Number 5 (actually a Millers Falls number 14)

- My Lee Valley medium shoulder plane ask an owner)

I would grieve for any others left behind but, I could survive with these.

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I recently added #4 and #5 Wood River V3 planes to my collection.Make no mistake,they are by no means as nice as Lie Nielsen planes but for 1/3 the price they are good work horse planes. Both have flat soles and the frogs sit flat on their base. It took minimal time to flatten and polish the backs of the irons. A little candle wax on the soles and they glide smooth as any high end plane that I own. These are definitely worth the $ spent. (Did I mentions that I bought them on Sale at 15% off)

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Looks like you have had plenty of replies but I'll just add a few things that may be helpful.

Many years back I began making James Krenov style planes for my own use. Some worked out and some did not. Out of the many planes I made two turned out to be exceptional. What I learned from making all those planes cannot be written down. Its something you end up sensing. I don't mean that to sound as esoteric as it does but my point is this. The more planes you handle and use the more you learn about what you like and don't like.

I suppose its like the old conundrum of how do I get a job without having any experience?

Just something to chew on.

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I do have to say that as long as you avoid the cheap hardware store Stanleys and as long as you replace the often thin plane irons with thicker irons such as those made by Hock, I am not as convinced that the old Stanleys are wildly better than the modern ones. I've used old Stanleys that weren't much good and new that were, and vice versa.

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On 10/24/2018 at 2:10 AM, Serhij said:

I do have to say that as long as you avoid the cheap hardware store Stanleys and as long as you replace the often thin plane irons with thicker irons such as those made by Hock, I am not as convinced that the old Stanleys are wildly better than the modern ones. I've used old Stanleys that weren't much good and new that were, and vice versa.

That's what I did with my old Sargent fore plane. Put a Hock blade and chip breaker in it and it's good to go! The original blade was pretty flimsy, I thought. 

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