Flattening the Sole of a #7 Hand Plane - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 1Likes
  • 1 Post By BigJim
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 8 Old 11-02-2017, 10:39 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 2,571
View Tool Agnostic's Photo Album My Photos
Flattening the Sole of a #7 Hand Plane

I bought an ordinary Stanley #7 jointer hand plane at the swap meet the other day. I want to use it as a jointer for jointing (straightening and "right-angle-ing") board edges. Someday I want to buy a powered jointer, but I need something now, and it wouldn't hurt to learn hand planing skills.

The plane looked perfectly flat at the swap meet, but when I got it home and put a straightedge to it, you can see a little light shining from underneath the sole. The sole looks very slightly worn in the center and slightly higher on the front, back, and sides.

I own a set of DMT diamond stones (mostly the two-sided six-inch, but I have one 8 inch extra-extra-course DMT stone. The problem is that this is a very long plane. I don't want to make things worse by trying to flatten the sole with small stones.

Here are my questions:

1. The gap is very small. Am I better off leaving the sole alone and simply using the plane as-is?

2. If it is worth flattening the sole, then how do I do it without making things worse? Can I use the diamond stones? Do I need to find a really big piece of glass and use multiple sheets of sandpaper? Any better ideas?
Tool Agnostic is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 8 Old 11-02-2017, 11:14 AM
Ole Woodworker
 
BigJim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Chattanooga, Tennessee
Posts: 4,536
View BigJim's Photo Album My Photos
I personally would use sand paper on a very flat surface. They do make sand paper on a continuous roll. If the gap is small, it shouldn't take much to get it flat.
Jim Frye likes this.

http://www.diychatroom.com/
The Other
BigJim

If you do what you've always done, you will get what you've always got.
BigJim is offline  
post #3 of 8 Old 11-02-2017, 11:19 AM
The Nut in the Cellar
 
Jim Frye's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Northwest Ohio
Posts: 1,033
View Jim Frye's Photo Album My Photos
Use belt sanding belts cut and glued to plate glass to flatten the sole and sides of the plane. That should give you a continuous piece of abrasive for this long plane.

Jim Frye
I've gone out to find myself. If I return before I get back, have me wait for me.
"Sawdust is Man Glitter"
Jim Frye is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 8 Old 11-02-2017, 12:20 PM
J_L
Senior Member
 
J_L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: West Palm Beach, FL
Posts: 253
View J_L's Photo Album My Photos
You can buy rolls of self adhesive sandpaper. The rolls I use are 2 3/4" wide. I'd put 2 strips down side by side on a cast iron table or piece of granite and start working it.

To me it's worth doing so I'd say go for it.

I also use the same process for chisels and plane blades. I'll use the sticky back paper in 100 grit up to 320 before switching to diamond stones.
J_L is offline  
post #5 of 8 Old 11-03-2017, 10:49 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Near Boston, Massachusetts
Posts: 1,530
View amckenzie4's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tool Agnostic View Post
Here are my questions:

1. The gap is very small. Am I better off leaving the sole alone and simply using the plane as-is?

2. If it is worth flattening the sole, then how do I do it without making things worse? Can I use the diamond stones? Do I need to find a really big piece of glass and use multiple sheets of sandpaper? Any better ideas?
How small is "very small"? The thickness of a sheet of paper? A playing card? Your finger? That's really the critical question here.

Here's the ugly truth: Wood Moves. It sounds like your plane is probably very slightly worn down in the center, where it cut most often before you got it. If you're talking "sheet of paper" or less, I'd use it as is. You can flatten it, but in the end a straight edge today (on the wood) may be a curve tomorrow.

That said: there's nothing wrong with making it flatter, and it may make things easier. For that, I'm with everyone else: get a roll of sandpaper and find a known-flat surface to stick it to. For something like this I'd probably start at 80 or 100 grit, and work up to 400 or so, then coat it with paraffin wax. I've gone higher on one plane, and it didn't seem to make any real difference in usability. It sure was shiny, though!
amckenzie4 is offline  
post #6 of 8 Old 11-04-2017, 10:48 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 2,571
View Tool Agnostic's Photo Album My Photos
I went to the glass shop yesterday and got a nice thick piece about 10 x 30, which can support two regular sheets of sandpaper end-to-end, or several long strips.

Thanks to everyone for their ideas. I think this one is a keeper. Once I get it restored, then I want to teach myself to use it well.
Tool Agnostic is offline  
post #7 of 8 Old 11-04-2017, 10:51 PM
Generic Weeb
 
WeebyWoodWorker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Gorgeous Oregon!
Posts: 982
View WeebyWoodWorker's Photo Album My Photos
I flattened the sole of a harbor freight plane at one point. Took me WAY to long to do it in my opinion. Just don't be cheap like me and use fresh sandpaper.

It's not bad to dream. But you also have to consider what's realistic. -All Might (Boku no Hero Academia)
WeebyWoodWorker is offline  
post #8 of 8 Old 11-04-2017, 11:43 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 443
View Larry Schweitzer's Photo Album My Photos
I use wet & dry paper. You can buy it at auto finishing supply stores. Just wet it and it will stick to any slick flat surface, no glue required. You can put several pieces end to end. Use it wet. The water will flush away the slurry and make cutting go faster. The sole of a plane doesn't need to be polished, just flat. Wet & Dry paper is silicone carbide so it will cut metal (Cast iron in this case.)
Larry Schweitzer is offline  
Reply

Tags
hand plane, plane, plane restore

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
flattening water stones Endre Hand Tools 4 12-14-2017 02:15 PM
Flattening the surface of wood slabs - what tools ? Allen Lee General Woodworking Discussion 10 01-24-2017 12:20 PM
Flattening a table top with limited equipment Nathan Parker General Woodworking Discussion 8 12-18-2016 01:53 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome