Granite surface plate/flattening/where to buy?

UKworkshop.co.uk

Help Support UKworkshop.co.uk:

D_W

Established Member
Joined
24 Aug 2015
Messages
9,517
Reaction score
1,909
Location
PA, US
Design constrained by Mrs demands to fit between mantle and wall. Let's see something you did by hand last year. I saw your fence post test cut demo and thought it was a ruse. My tool work is literally everywhere on these forums, too, and I've never had someone get a plane back from me and suggest it wasn't better.

You literally bloviate about endless nonsense that you're not qualified to offer an opinion on and get upset if someone actually knows enough to say whether or not something makes a difference in plane setup. Your response is test pieces and pine. You don't even recognize what you don't know.
 

Jacob

Pint of bass, porkpie, and packet of crisps please
Joined
7 Jul 2010
Messages
22,396
Reaction score
2,494
Location
Derbyshire
Seeing as you asked:
I'm retired now and messing about doing all sorts of things. My last big job was 10 of these windows and this staircase. Midwinter sunrise.
The windows were beyond repair so I made replicas. At 14' tall required a lot of hand planing. I've always done a mixture of machine/hand-work as necessary - with a bias towards hand work where it's viable.
The staircase - and another similar one, had a lot of 4" square newel posts also reaching 14' so these too needed a lot of hand planing (2 sides square by hand, the other 2 through the thicknesser.)
I've also done lots of odds and ends of furniture but most of what I did was architectural.
Biggest single job ever was a huge set of sashes and doors for a big house in west of Ireland, meticulous copies of 1812 originals. Needed three excursions through the year and a little team of us camping on site. Did a bit of tourism too - Matt Molloy's bar in Westport, Croagh Patrick, a few nights in Dublin etc
I've nearly always done replica work with occasional repair/renovation, which entails an incredibly valuable learning curve as you are looking at minute details , down to tool marks, pencil marks, over the shoulders of those did the work first time around. You see their mistakes too!

IMG_3603 copy.JPG
 
Last edited:

D_W

Established Member
Joined
24 Aug 2015
Messages
9,517
Reaction score
1,909
Location
PA, US
Jacob, that's coarse work that you're showing with near nothing planed. No wonder you don't have a clue. Note that I called my case utility furniture (it was, i had to copy the proportions from another case exactly and the mrs. wanted soft close hinges which I have a distaste for, but the cabinet is used by the kids and that's that. No face frame, no center post - broke all of my personal rules. I made it, anyway, and hid in the chance to try things while making it - the other choice was to have my mrs. try to find someone like you to create some horrid overpriced piece screwed together (at least that one is properly joined).

You have windows and coarse work. There's nothing there notable in terms of hand tool or planing work. All of the railings look like assembled parts from a lumber store. Let's be realistic about what that stair work is, it's crude.

Let's see the part where you planed, resawed, created sliding dovetails, etc. It's always missing.

you have an opinion about planes all the time, but you never show any tidy work done with them. Maybe everyone doesn't want to assemble sticks.

The last point about this, as I've taken interest in actually using planes, this is my hobby. There should be no part in this re: planing that you have a better sense of, but it's backwards. You post work where the planing is missing, and while there are plenty of folks on here who post wonderful hand work, you never do. Your opinions about how good of condition planes need to be in are always backed up by the work you show.
 

D_W

Established Member
Joined
24 Aug 2015
Messages
9,517
Reaction score
1,909
Location
PA, US
by the way, if someone had a window question, I'd send them to you or to someone I know here who makes one off casement bits. where you fall off the wagon is that you don't have a good grasp on planes or what they're actually capable of or what makes them work well, just as you don't know enough to know when to stop when it comes to abrasives. You've had to do little with it, it's apparent (the abrasive side), and you have no means of testing after the fact, anyway. So you choose a slower way to do things than my suggestions, but you can't stop yourself, and then one that is less accurate, but you can't stop yourself from opining that it is. When we see your work, we know then why you have no idea.

I can only lead people in the right direction with planes. I wouldn't bother to comment on windows, but I know that I know little about them. Of course I could do peripheral work on them, but it wouldn't be enough to get me to give advice to other people. That's where you really are with planing and sawing.
 

segovia

Established Member
Joined
13 Aug 2009
Messages
294
Reaction score
17
Location
Merseyside
I picked up some granite worktop offcuts from a Kitchen fitter, I was surprised when I ran a straight edge over it that it wasn't flat. Over 30" it was 0.005" out
 

D_W

Established Member
Joined
24 Aug 2015
Messages
9,517
Reaction score
1,909
Location
PA, US
There's no shortage of fine furniture in the older areas of the united states if one wants to make fine furniture. I generally make tools. I count 16 pieces of case work or cabinetry in my house that I've made, and a laddered bed. And 8 guitars (and probably more than 100 tools). That's enough for me for the furniture, though the jones to make things out of wood will probably change that.

The difference between you and me is I'll make something like this in a style that I don't really love, and squeeze out of it what I can. If someone asks me how to dimension the wood by hand, i can tell them precisely how to learn to do it. You will show a pine test piece.

If someone wants to ditch their bandsaw but still saw wide panels or guitar tops.
Wk0Llab.jpg


I can tell them exactly how to do it, and I can tell them how to make the saw out of shim stock and wood. You'll show a test cut with an old hand saw in a way that would get anyone to think it's too hard to do.

I'll show a case in process (even though it's not my favorite thing to make) joined top and bottom with dovetails and dovetailed shelves with hand planed T&G back installed later, and mouldings and base made entirely by hand (there was very little on this case that wasn't done by hand. I got in a rush on the top half and did skip about 20% of the wood through a thickness planer, I can't remember why - I probably wouldn't do it again as much of the other stuff that I've made is 100% solid from rough lumber with no power tools at all).



I've got pictures of the remnants of doing the work:




You talk about planes and show windows.

You haven't got the actual experience doing anything that you talk about. And I'm just a hobbyist. It should tell you something. If I thought you had a chance of having had enough detail go through your nerves to know the difference, I wouldn't be so rough on your suggestions, but you give terrible advice. That's all there is to it. Your advice leaves people thinking that closer work will be difficult to do, or that this stuff isn't easy by hand. If the planes are set and prepared properly, it's just exercise no matter what any reasonable wood or level of figure is. The resawing, just exercise. But with shoddy tools and ignorance of how they work, it could seem quite difficult.
 

D_W

Established Member
Joined
24 Aug 2015
Messages
9,517
Reaction score
1,909
Location
PA, US
I picked up some granite worktop offcuts from a Kitchen fitter, I was surprised when I ran a straight edge over it that it wasn't flat. Over 30" it was 0.005" out

Most of it probably isn't flat. If it's hollow that amount, you could probably get away with using it. When I built my bench, I spent about 15 minutes making sure that the area that my glass lap runs on had no visible light to a starrett edge. It's 15 minutes worth spending. The rest of the bench is flat, but not as intentionally flat. If you're making guitars or something of the sort, having an area that flat on the bench as a reference is a significant time saver.

The reason I mentioned above about the straight edge being useful is that sometimes you can get something really cheap and it is flat, but marginal straight edges won't know the difference.

I'll wait for jacob to mention that such things never matter, but anyone who has ever set up or built a guitar with frets 5 thousandths high in an area (especially if it's just a couple) will know how important it is to have a straight reference for flatness.
 

Jacob

Pint of bass, porkpie, and packet of crisps please
Joined
7 Jul 2010
Messages
22,396
Reaction score
2,494
Location
Derbyshire
I picked up some granite worktop offcuts from a Kitchen fitter, I was surprised when I ran a straight edge over it that it wasn't flat. Over 30" it was 0.005" out
Strewth - that's about the thickness of a human hair! Was the straight edge straight?
 

cowtown_eric

Established Member
Joined
4 May 2006
Messages
128
Reaction score
64
Location
Calgary Alberta Canada
I'm well aware of the"flat sole society" and can see the benifets. Don't want to argue the point at all, just want to know if anyone knows any proponent of "sole flatness" has actually measured the flatness proported to any degree (.0001 or finer) or just been satisfied with putting a straight-edge over it???

Eric in the colonies
 

Ttrees

Iroko loco!
Joined
18 Nov 2012
Messages
3,649
Reaction score
498
Location
In me workshop
I'm well aware of the"flat sole society" and can see the benifets. Don't want to argue the point at all, just want to know if anyone knows any proponent of "sole flatness" has actually measured the flatness proported to any degree (.0001 or finer) or just been satisfied with putting a straight-edge over it???

Eric in the colonies
Like this?
("timestamped" at the feelers)
 

cowtown_eric

Established Member
Joined
4 May 2006
Messages
128
Reaction score
64
Location
Calgary Alberta Canada
Ja like that, but .03mm equates to .0018", and I'm hoping to find someone whom has measured the "flat sole" down to .0001", an order of magnitude finer.

Please don't tell me it makes no difference, I know it doesn't-unless you got a "plane 0 shame", but what I want to investigate is a measurable effect of using an 8" deburring wheel on a flat sole. Some folks tell me it will create gouges, but I'm of the opinion it has less than .0001" difference.


I could absolutely put it on a surface plate, and try to put a feeler gauge under it ?ever tried to find a .0001 feeler gauge- but even that wouldn't tell me anything other than it won't fit under the outside edge, but anyone whom has flattened pane soles will show you how the deviations oft appear away from the outside, so the feeler gauge concept tells me nothing other than the outside edge is tight to a surface gauge.

Veritas block plane
is proprted to be to within .0015 but it's a short sucker...

It is a total rabbet hole, and maybe a "folly", but I'm going there, maybe without success... who knows

Eric
 

Ttrees

Iroko loco!
Joined
18 Nov 2012
Messages
3,649
Reaction score
498
Location
In me workshop
Jack Forsberg had a plane scraped for him, he's pretty happy with it.
I've heard it said it creates extra effort, as to how much convexity one has,
i.e a plane like in Cosman's videos which is noticeably concave along the length
as is audible, and is said to be more consumptive of the wax, since the front will be scraping it off somewhat more.
Obviously preferable to something the opposite, and wouldn't take but a few licks on some new abrasive.

An interesting experiment to do, I haven't went there myself as material deflection is an issue on such a skinny bench top, but I hope to get at the proper bench someday, and am leaving off the tiniest bit of lapping of the no.8 I have for the job, as that is the tool IMO which will highlight this the most.

I would be eager to see what folks preference is where the plane will hinge from,
and if that differs on various sized planes.
It might be a more inclusive question, for the folks who don't have a guaranteed surface plate and all the rest.

Cheers
Tom
 

Ttrees

Iroko loco!
Joined
18 Nov 2012
Messages
3,649
Reaction score
498
Location
In me workshop
More so into this realm of the question maybe asked
Is there a trade off for that efficiency should want even less variables.

I've read of a few disliking the LN planes due to their weight,
but drag is less written about, and hard to know if a bit of that maybe part of this.
Although there is or was a college in UK which fettles even those.

Hard to find these answers, since many seem to plane in very variable circumstances.
I use my bench as one would check something on a surface plate, as I see it as more of a
certainty laminating and plugging expensive reclaimed timbers.
Everything else just looks odd, difficult, time consuming and wasteful to me.

Seemingly a big difference from someone who works traditionally, and doesn't have a polished bench which is easy to clean with one or two swipes from a bearer with no chips for detritus to stick into.

One could speculate this is why Roubo made them benches so thick, as the argument of convex vs concave bench & plane hinging debate was the sharpening debate of today,
but then again maybe discounted as the design is spoiled by those pesky through dovetails.😄
 

pgrbff

Established Member
Joined
29 Oct 2020
Messages
428
Reaction score
115
Location
Langhe, Piemonte
It seems to me that it is all a matter of individual preference. I'm not sure telling someone new to the hobby that flatness or sharpness or waterstones aren't necessary is very useful. Surely they need to be offered the full picture and be left to choose for themselves.
Could this be achieved with an old dished oilstone? I doubt it. Does everyone want to achieve this level? I doubt it.
Personally, I am just interested to know what can be achieved if you want to.

 

Jacob

Pint of bass, porkpie, and packet of crisps please
Joined
7 Jul 2010
Messages
22,396
Reaction score
2,494
Location
Derbyshire
......

One could speculate this is why Roubo made them benches so thick,
No need to speculate - the mass resists movement better when bashing away with hand tools. There is no other reason. Everybody does it, not just Roubo.
as the argument of convex vs concave bench & plane hinging debate was the sharpening debate of today,
Never heard of bench/plane "hinging". :unsure: Or "hingeing" for that matter. I guess it's just another silly idea you might encounter if you go down the modern sharpening rabbit hole!
 

Ttrees

Iroko loco!
Joined
18 Nov 2012
Messages
3,649
Reaction score
498
Location
In me workshop
No need to speculate - the mass resists movement better when bashing away with hand tools. There is no other reason. Everybody does it, not just Roubo.

Never heard of bench/plane "hinging". :unsure: Or "hingeing" for that matter. I guess it's just another silly idea you might encounter if you go down the modern sharpening rabbit hole!
Only kidding about the Roubo bench, but the point of a thick bench and all that, is what I was making.
That's not to say that how flat a plane is (how much bias a convex surface has.)
wouldn't be noticeable in other ways,
Match planing,
planing to remove ripples on a really dialed in machine, or however snipe maybe dealt with,
and likely a whole lot of other ways of consistent things which might make ones mind up about this.

Hinging, or call it pivoting if you like.
Its a term used for checking how flat something is.
Common stuff really, nothing new about it.
Should be in one of those old books you've read.

Tom
 

Jacob

Pint of bass, porkpie, and packet of crisps please
Joined
7 Jul 2010
Messages
22,396
Reaction score
2,494
Location
Derbyshire
....

Hinging, or call it pivoting if you like.
Its a term used for checking how flat something is.
I check stuff by looking at it. Or looking at winding sticks.
Common stuff really, nothing new about it.
Should be in one of those old books you've read.
Nope - news to me! Sounds like something from one of the newer books, or youtube!
 

TFrench

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2015
Messages
1,548
Reaction score
328
Location
Leics
I think the hinging thing is a crossover from engineering practice. When hand scraping components, checking where they "hinge" on a surface plate can reveal high spots. Personally I think its mildly OTT for a hand plane...
 

Latest posts

Top