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paulc

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My saw action is not yet perfect and I need to smooth and level out many of pieces I cut before assembly , what kind of plane should I buy , what kind of plane is most essential in beginning woodwork?
 

Scrit

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From experience, probably a jack plane (#5 or #5-1/2) first (for general work, planing to size and jointing at a pinch), then a smoother (#4 or #4-1/2) next (for triming work, etc), finally a block plane with a blade adjuster )for end grain, etc)

Scrit
 

Midnight

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paulc":3kt7919p said:
My saw action is not yet perfect and I need to smooth and level out many of pieces I cut before assembly , what kind of plane should I buy , what kind of plane is most essential in beginning woodwork?
Paul..
That's a pretty heavy question... I doubt there's a short answer to fully cover it without getting more info from you first. With hindsight, I'd try to tackle your saw action prob first. Get yourself a copy of the Axminster catalogue and have a good read. You'll find plenty tools and aids in it to give perfect cuts. They're bound to have something to suit your budget.
As for which planes, that's going to depend on what raw material you're working with. For example, the hardwoods I work with are rough sawn, unjointed and kiln dried. To change them into stock ready to build with I use a combination of planes. I've tuned my #5 to work like a scrub plane, the buisness end of the blade has been sharpened to a distingtly round profile. I've found this is best to get rid of the saw marks and start the initial shaping of the board. Sticking with the #5, a blade chage lets me start flattening the board. I've found that the #5 is long enough to to start to flatten any ridges in the board, yet light enough to let me work with it for hours at a time without tiring too much. To get the board to final flatness and joint an edge on the board, I'll switch to my #7.
Best tool for smoothing is a difficult question to answer. I've found that it depends heavily on which species of lumber you're working with, and the degree of "figure" in the board. Long straight grained wood can be worked easily with a well tuned #3 or #4, slightly wilder grain needs a different cutting angle which is where a #62 or 4 1/2 with a York pitch frog come into their own. Highly figured grain may tear out no matter which direction you try to plane it in, in which case I switch to either my #112 or hand held cabinet scrapers.

Not exactly a straight forward answer I know... but like I said... it depends on the stock you're working with. If I were limited to starting over with just one hand plane, I'd pick the #5 and get a couple of spare blades for it, each blade honed to a different profile to suit the different stages in working a board.
Last bit of advise; check out the books section in the Axminster catalogue. Lots of choice there; all of it highly recomended.
 

Noel

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Mike,

Speaking of scrapers I think it's time I got aquainted with some. I've never even seen a scraper, let alone used one. Anysuggestions? There's a few in the Ax catalogue -Clifton and Ax's own brand. What's the difference between hard edged and hard milled? (other than the various profiles)?
And do I need a burnisher?

Rgds

Noel
 

Alf

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Noely":1c8cdh1y said:
Speaking of scrapers I think it's time I got aquainted with some. I've never even seen a scraper, let alone used one.
You'll need Ralph Brendler's scraper tutorial then. http://www.brendlers.net/oldtools/scraping/scraper.htm

Noely":1c8cdh1y said:
Any suggestions? There's a few in the Ax catalogue -Clifton and Ax's own brand. What's the difference between hard edged and hard milled? (other than the various profiles)?
Not a lot at a guess. The manufacturers have to say something to try and deflect you from realising you're buying a piece of sheet metal. :wink: If you don't mind a little effort, you could get an old saw and make scrapers from that. Or broken glass works well, with tape on the edges you hold for safety, natch. The scraper itself is so far from being rocket science it's silly. Getting the edge, apart from on glass, can be another matter.

Noely":1c8cdh1y said:
And do I need a burnisher?
Yes. See Ralph's page for the lowdown. If you happen to have an old or unwanted solid carbide router bit, they make great burnishers. Just stick a handle on it.

Cheers, Alf

P.S. I fully realise I'm not Mike, btw. :wink:
 

Midnight

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Noely":tv43bis3 said:
Mike,

Speaking of scrapers I think it's time I got aquainted with some. I've never even seen a scraper, let alone used one. Anysuggestions? There's a few in the Ax catalogue -Clifton and Ax's own brand. What's the difference between hard edged and hard milled? (other than the various profiles)?
And do I need a burnisher?

Rgds

Noel
Noley...
Hand on heart... I got no clue bud... only just started with em myself... If and when I figure out how the damn things work I'll get back to ya... one thing I WOULD recommend though is the Veritas holder for em... saves carbonising the fingertips and a TON of strain on the thumbs...
Meanwhile... I'm still trying to figure how I sharpen the 112....

Other than that....
:arrow: at Alf...

what He said....
 

Gill

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Hi Noel

Most of my work involves a fretsaw so I don't use scrapers very often. That said, the polish that the Veritas scraper gave on some roughly planed wild grain yew I had after the scraper was properly set up with the Veritas burnisher was breathtaking! I hardly ever use abrasives now on flat surfaces.

Mike and I might disagree when it comes to tablesaws :) but I think we've reached a consensus where scrapers are concerned. To my mind, the burnisher is the most important component of the Veritas setup because it comes with comprehensive instructions and makes setting the scraper such a simple task. Of course, you can use the scraper without a holder, or you can make your own holder; to my mind, however, it's worth paying a little bit of dosh for the complete Veritas system.

Yours

Gill
 

Alf

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Yeah, I keep thinking about prising open my wallet to buy a Veritas holder, and then I get to thinking about making a simple one in wood and the moment passes! A good tip I ran across a while back is to use a couple of those thin magnets, the flexible sort that you see sometimes, to give the ol' thumbs a bit of a break.

I think the Veritas variable burnisher is a clever bit of kit (You do mean the black plastic one with the dial, right Gill?), but it's worth learning how to use the simple rod sort too. 'Cos when you get to using shaped scrapers, the gooseneck and curved types, the Veritas is going to let you down.

Cheers, Alf (also still having the odd teething trouble with the 112)
 

Midnight

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Alf":2oyauvam said:
Yeah, I keep thinking about prising open my wallet to buy a Veritas holder, and then I get to thinking about making a simple one in wood and the moment passes!
<makes a note to buy shares in WD40....

j/k

:wink:

excellent link BTW Alf..... thanks.......
 

Gill

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Alf":1cfvmotn said:
You do mean the black plastic one with the dial, right Gill?
Indeed I do. I haven't plucked up the courage (or had the need) to try scraping curved surfaces yet. I quite agree with you, Alf, that anyone with such a requirement should certainly consider an apprenticeship with a plain old-fashioned rod. The Veritas burnisher can probably deal with convex curves but it would struggle with concave.

Yours

Gill
 

Alf

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GillD":2il6anrf said:
The Veritas burnisher can probably deal with convex curves but it would struggle with concave
Ah, that's interesting. I wasn't even sure it would do that, but after actually thinking about it there's no obvious reason why it shouldn't. Of course it's not one of those tools you get to play with at any of the shows; presumably because it'd let the cat out of the bag about how good scrapers are, and smoothing plane sales might drop off in consequence. :lol:

Cheers, Alf

P.S. Mike, are you suggesting my wallet might be a little, er, tricky to open from lack of use? Heck, I replace the moth balls in it once a month regular... :p
 

Midnight

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Alf":1x0u42ss said:
[
P.S. Mike, are you suggesting my wallet might be a little, er, tricky to open from lack of use? Heck, I replace the moth balls in it once a month regular... :p
Who MEEEEEEE......??????

As if I would......
Ahem....

<muffled chuckle...
 
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