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    Bearing steel

    Does anyone have any information as to what this is, and how it compares with say O1? It was mentioned in a recent article in Carving magazine as being used in carving tools by a niche tool maker. I have one of their small carving tools, which does seem to keep a very sharp edge, but I am not...
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    Emir workbench

    This is a very solid old school workbench, originally double-sided. 5' L.x30"W . I have raised it on blocks to 35" high. The top is 2 lengths of solid beech with a ply central tool tray. Front vice is a Record 52, end vice from Axminster. It has served me very well for 20 or so years, but house...
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    Rexon BS10SA bandsaw

    I have had this for probably 20 years, and apart from replacing the flimsy fence, it has worked well in an amateur's w/shop. Recently, however, the plastic/resin band to the inside of the vee on the top alloy wheel has broken away. Still seems to work ok, but I cannot trace any Rexon parts...
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    Making wood screws.

    I bought the 1-1/4"tap and die set at an auction some years ago, but could never get the thing to work properly. Yesterday pm, I tried again with the same results. For the first time the screws holding the top plate came apart, and I could see that the threads below the cutter were blocked with...
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    Drilling brass

    Recently, cross drilling a 1-1/2" diameter brass rod, with new drills, the drill bits were catching and jamming, dragging the chuck out of the bench drill column. I seem to recall that there were such things as drills ground specifically for brass. Are they still available? Axminster, etc. don't...
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    Infill Planes

    Is there a generally agreed definition of what constitutes an "infill plane"? I have assumed that an infill is one where the blade is supported on a timber infill, as with Norris, Spears and, currently Konrad Sauer, whereas Mr. Holtey's recent designs are supported on a metal cross piece, and...
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    Cast iron boat shaped plane

    These are the photos of the cast iron plane I referred to in another post. It is 8" long,2 3/4" wide, with a 2 1/4" blade. Weight is a hefty 3lbs. 13oz. There is no makers mark, but the cap iron is from Matheison, and the blade a very worn Thos. Turner. The lever cap is a neat brass casting...
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    Piano wire

    Having recently moved house, I discovered some piano wire I had acquired decades ago. I did use some of it for micro chisels back then, and water hardened. How does it compare with say silver steel in edge holding? Is water or oil better for hardening? Mike
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    Afrcan Blackwood

    I am currently making some micro chisels/gouges, with African Blackwood handles. It is the first time I have used this, and I love the weight, texture and subtle grain. I have finished with a very fine sanding medium, and am in two minds as to whether to apply a finish, or leave well alone. I...
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    Hardening a new plane blade

    Nearly finished shaping a new O1 plane blade. Previous results have been fairly good, but not always consistent. Question - harden then grind primary bevel, which seems most logical, or primary bevel then harden? I am intending to use vegetable oil which worked well the last time, but any...
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    Where to make a living making hand-made?

    I was prompted into starting this query by a recent blog by Richard Maguire on the subject of poor profitability, particularly in making small items like boxes, needing a lot of handwork. I was talking at the end of last year to an ex-pat Australian baker, working in England, who reckoned that...
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    Hand saws tooth shape

    I have two 20" crosscut hand saws - a Disston D8 and an S&J. The D8 has been well looked after and beautifully sharpened, although only a "1" is visible now to show how many TPI it had originally. That suggests that the toothing was to an odd number. Can that be right? The S&J is 10TPI, has the...
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    Cast Steel

    Having gone in search of an old chisel to "Bill Carter", I chanced upon a 1"Marples firmer chisel, without a handle, in the damaged chisels drawer, which cost me £1. Having cleaned it up and had a better look, I am now thinking it deserves more respect, and probably a new boxwood handle. The...
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    Flicker Lazrus13's Photostream

    Has anybody else looked at this company's range of handplanes? I assume this is an American co., but haven't been able to find out much more about them. The range of planes is wide and appears very well engineered, if a bit at the heavy duty civil engineering end of the spectrum. Some very...
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    Record 61 "mini moxon"

    Anyone seen one of these recently? Bought about a month ago for £5, so no real hardship. I've made a couple similar to Robert Ingham, but given recent coverage, I couldn't resist. One main problem is that the holes in the front jaw are too loose, hence it's difficult to align the front and rear...
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    Damascus Steel - Dictum Tools

    Whilst browsing aimlessly, when I should have been working, I came across these steels in the Materials section of the web site. Apart from the fact that they look absolutely gorgeous ( try the magnification button), has anyone tried them for say plane blades, or are they only useful for knife...
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    Ward paring chisel

    I had mentioned this in another thread, but at Jimi's suggestion, I am posting separately. It is 1 1/2" wide and 10" long in the blade. The side profile is very fine and when I bought it some years ago, the principle bevel appeared to be the original. It does not get much use, and I am somewhat...
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    Laburnum

    I have some small pieces from a wood turning friend and am very taken with the grain, and the colour. Freshly cut it is yellow, which darkens over time. "Wood - Identification and use" refers to the wood darkening over time, but does anyone have any hands on experience of how quickly the timber...
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    Rust on plane bodies

    I have a Stanley 50(?) - full width plane blade - not that old, probably dating from the 90s/early 2000s, with white metal blade adjustment wheel, etc. The steel body just looks different to my other older planes, even the no. 5 I bought in the late 70s, and picks up surface rust more quickly...
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