Huge round molding plane - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 Old 06-04-2016, 06:38 AM Thread Starter
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Huge round molding plane

I've been playing around with some mujingfang rosewood hollows and rounds lately, and have been having a lot of fun. One thing that I realized though, is that I can't cut very large coves. Even with the largest size they offer, I'm only getting a 1 1/4 inch plane. I could cut a cove that's a fair bit wider than that, but I've seen some huge cove moldings that I don't think I could even approach.

So I had a thought - what would happen if bought a cheap old wooden bodied jack plane, shaped the sole into a round, and then ground the iron to match it?

I feel like this could get me a 2" wide round plane for pretty cheap. Only thing I can't picture is what the mouth of the plane would look like after this operation. I may have to close up the mouth somehow in order to have a usable plane. Definitely couldn't make the sweep of too small a radius, or I'd risk removing too much of the material that holds the blade in place, I'd think. But a fairly large radius wouldn't remove the much material, and would allow me to make quite a large cove in thinner stock.

Right? Anyone ever tried something like this?
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post #2 of 11 Old 06-04-2016, 06:48 AM
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Once coves get over 6-8",they typically are built up using multiple pcs of wood.

Can't say for sure,species and figure enter in,but there comes a point in larger radius's that you aren't planing longitudinal anymore.You are planing tangentially,or at an angle.It cut's better on build ups...as strange as that may seem.

This is on really big cornice coves,think 24" and more.

Doesn't answer your question though,sorry.BW
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post #3 of 11 Old 06-04-2016, 12:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremymcon View Post
I've been playing around with some mujingfang rosewood hollows and rounds lately, and have been having a lot of fun. One thing that I realized though, is that I can't cut very large coves. Even with the largest size they offer, I'm only getting a 1 1/4 inch plane. I could cut a cove that's a fair bit wider than that, but I've seen some huge cove moldings that I don't think I could even approach.

So I had a thought - what would happen if bought a cheap old wooden bodied jack plane, shaped the sole into a round, and then ground the iron to match it?

I feel like this could get me a 2" wide round plane for pretty cheap. Only thing I can't picture is what the mouth of the plane would look like after this operation. I may have to close up the mouth somehow in order to have a usable plane. Definitely couldn't make the sweep of too small a radius, or I'd risk removing too much of the material that holds the blade in place, I'd think. But a fairly large radius wouldn't remove the much material, and would allow me to make quite a large cove in thinner stock.

Right? Anyone ever tried something like this?
I can't help you because I don't know either, but would you post the answer when you find out, I would like to know also. Do you have another wooden molding plane you can check the mouth on?

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post #4 of 11 Old 06-05-2016, 10:13 AM
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Look into some old English-style hollow & round planes. They are designed to be able to work around the inside radius of the cove without being limited by the body of the plane itself.

Cutting irons on traditional H&R's are designed to cut 30 degrees of an arc, and are ground to match a particular radius. Therefore the cutter to match a 3" radius cove may only be an inch wide. The final shape of the cove is controlled by the radius of the iron AND how you shape it, since it needs to be done in several passes.

Shaped this crown for a fireplace mantle a few years ago by hand, using traditional molding planes, Stanley no 5, and a rabbet plane. If you search the hand tool forum for "crown moulding by hand" you can see the whole thread.
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post #5 of 11 Old 06-06-2016, 02:44 AM Thread Starter
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Th molding is sweet! Out of curiosity, how long did it take you to make that? I wasn't able to find the original post...

One problem I have with the mujingfang hollows and rounds is that they have a shoulder on both sides, rather than being constructed more like a rebate plane with a curved sole. I can see that the traditional planes would be more useful for larger coves in that regard.

Advantage of the mujingfang planes, of course, is their price! Also the steel the irons are made of seems to be quite nice.
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post #6 of 11 Old 06-07-2016, 11:13 PM
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Thanks. It was my first attempt at something like this, so it took a little longer than it probably should have. To actually cut and shape the profile start to finish was probably about 3 or 4 hours. I can't seem to do it from my phone and my laptop is on my desk at work, but when I can I'll post a link to the old thread on this one.
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post #7 of 11 Old 06-08-2016, 09:57 PM
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post #8 of 11 Old 06-14-2016, 12:52 PM Thread Starter
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Very cool! I like that molding a lot. I actually am a bit more intimidated by those miters you cut in it than making the molding itself! That's a huge molding to be making miter cuts in.
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post #9 of 11 Old 01-23-2017, 12:07 PM
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Traditional hollow and round planes included sizes up to about 2", according to this page.

I'd be hesitant to try to re-shape an old jack plane, though... the mouth would probably open up much to quickly, so you'd end up needing to add material. Old European hollows and rounds are much taller, and the irons have a very narrow piece to pass through the body of the plane.

It might work, and it might not... let us know if you try it!
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post #10 of 11 Old 01-23-2017, 12:16 PM
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I cut wide coves on the table saw. The widest cove I've ever cut is just under 3 1/2".
A table saw can cut a cove in only a few minutes that would take hours to cut with a hand plane.
Bottom line: When finished, no one will know what method was used to cut the cove.
Why make it more difficult?

If you don't have time to do it right the first time, when will you have time to do it over?
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post #11 of 11 Old 01-23-2017, 01:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toolman50 View Post
I cut wide coves on the table saw. The widest cove I've ever cut is just under 3 1/2".
A table saw can cut a cove in only a few minutes that would take hours to cut with a hand plane.
Bottom line: When finished, no one will know what method was used to cut the cove.
Why make it more difficult?
In my particular case, my permanent shop space is six feet square, plus a 24"x48" set of shelves, and has a single (ungrounded) outlet. So for me, the difficult option is trying to figure out how to get a table saw into my shop.

Using a pair of 1/4" hollow and round planes from Mujingfang, plus a cheap straight rabbet plane, I can cut a simple profile on a two foot board in a couple of minutes, which is faster than I can set up a router to cut the same profile. That's a small piece, but something of similar complexity on a wider board really shouldn't add a lot of time, although increases in length will. I just don't have the moulding planes to try it.

This was my first attempt ever, so it's not very well shaped. Also, it turns out that trying to hand cut a profile into low quality red ok doesn't actually work very well... it went a lot better in poplar, as I recall. One of these days I'll have a piece of nice hardwood scrap to try it on, but I mostly work with softwoods, so I did what I had.

HR Plane Test by a_mckenzie_4, on Flickr
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