decent hand plane wanted /recommendations

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I have a No3 with wooden handles and a No4 with plastic handles,they both work well.Having worked with a variety of different Tufnols,I would confirm that it is a durable material but I wouldn't be in any hurry to make a plane handle from it.Would it attract much disdain from the traditionalists for having a plastic resin holding the cloth together?
Also, the smell, the awful smell, when working it, and the nasty dust.....
I regularly use Tufnol for various projects as I have a stash of offcuts from when we used to stock and sell it, great for gears, jigs etc but I wouldn't dream of using it for a plane handle and as said it's not pleasant to machine or work by hand.

In 60 years of woodworking and extensive use of handplanes I've never broken a handle, doesn't happen if they're looked after and in the event of an accident solid wood is easy to repair and cheap to replace. I have some planes with plastic handles and they're not to my taste at all.
Maybe the padouk wil turn dark, or else this plane will have a colour accent :D

Have to say, the "rosewood" of these handles (cocobolo) isn't great. It did have some figuring when sanded, but as soon as I had some oil on it, all dark.
Not sure why you put rosewood in quotes? Cocobolo is a legitimate rosewood.

The Quangsheng/Luban/Wood River handplanes are great value for money. Not quite the fit and finish as Lie Nielsen or Veritas, but not far from it.
It's just that the term rosewood implies high quality, and while the handle is not bad, beech handles and knobs are every bit as good.
If really nicely figured rosewood would hae been used, that's another matter.
It's just that the term rosewood implies high quality, and while the handle is not bad, beech handles and knobs are every bit as good.
If really nicely figured rosewood would hae been used, that's another matter.
Did you do the repair?
Nicely done and you could stain if it bothers you, personally I wouldn't. If you did want to use cocbolo, a cheaper source for small pieces is a pen blank usually 20-25mm x 150mm easily available.
Yes, I did the repair. I bought the plane on eBay, knowing it had a chunk of the handle missing. Grabbed an offcut, debated about purplehart, padouk and american walnut (all materials I recently used and had offcuts from). Also thought about ebony, but that is a little bit harder to work with. Figured the wood (the cocobolo of the handle) would probably turn out a bit lighter after sanding and fresh oiling, but that was not the case at all.
Fantastic little plane, closed the mouth up quite a bit, fine work only. Just requires a bit of juggling with fingers because of my large (but slender) hands.
Still debating whether I'll try to find a cocobolo knob for it.
The only way to break a wooden handle is to drop a plane, in normal use (not ape on meth use) I don't think you'll ever break one, especially since that nowadays, we use them for finer work.
But if you drop a plane, that's another matter, you'd also run the risk of cracking the cast iron too. Better to be careful with a precision tool.
I hear you, and I've never broken a plane handle myself, but most 2nd hand planes I've ever acquired, even a Veritas that was glued up well enough that I missed it when I was buying it, have been broken.
It is a fact that the shape of a plane handle doesn't play well with wood grain. There is always a point of weakness.
I love the feel of wood but I also own custom knives that cost as much as a Lie Nielsen bench plane and know that synthetic laminates like micarta can be sculpted and polished to an premium finish while being massively stronger than wood.
As a material though, it is made in small batches and far too expensive for anything short of a custom handmade plane.
Hi my son is completing his joinery apprentership and i have been looking for a decent quality hand plane as a gift a no 4 or a no 3 he tried a no 3 from another chippy and realy liked it 90% of his tools a cordless but wanted something that would last for years if looked after but is practical as well.
i have been going in circles trying to decide on one so looking for recomendations / advice would realy like one in a gift box. or where ii can buy a plane box that would fit
no not a faithfull one thank you . looking for something a bit nicer budget about £150 any links thank you all the best ghostrider
Id go Record
One of my favourite planes is a no.4 Record that I got off eBay for a tenner. I’m not a plane nerd but it has smooth frog and rosewood handles.
On the other end of the scale, I bought a veritas 5 1/4 about 5 years second hand in great nick. I just had a look and was surprised to see they are £300 new..I’m sure I payed about £190 and I still question why. Maybe because it’s shorter than a normal Jack and the iron is closer to the centre, it just feels weird to use. It’s not £190 nice, in my opinion.

For £150, I’d be looking on eBay, or here, for some nice old Stanley, record or Woden planes. Even though they go for higher prices nowadays.

if you want something new, the Stanley sweetheart low angle is pretty for about £90. I’ve had one for a few years and it’s been great. The only issues I’ve had is they can struggle with awkward grain, the Norris adjusters are a bit fiddly. The last thing, I tend to rest my index finger on the iron, which isn’t there on a low angle so it feels weird at first. A spare iron sharpened at a different angle can overcome the awkward grain situation,

I probably shouldn’t admit this…When I go out on site, I’ve got a faithful no.5. Absolutely everyone slags these off but I found mine to be fine. I spent a small amount of time flattening the sole, even though it was ok out of the box and Making sure the cap iron had good contact and it works just as good as the no.4 plus I dont Mind it rattling around in my toolbox
No. I've seen two or three but never used one. I remember when they were first introduced as a premium plane over a standard Record. Heavier casting, better finshed, Norris type adjuster which some like and some don't.
I had a Calvert Stevens some years ago. Don't, whatever you do buy one as a 'user' as there's a casting fault resulting in a 'hill' just behind the mouth and you'll have to take a coarse file to the sole to remove it. The effort involved simply isn't worth it, but if you want a decent No.4 (in a box) go and see my mate Matt Platt at Workshop Heaven and get a Quangsheng; difficult to beat for the money - Rob