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Discussion Starter #1
A client of mine recently hired me to reproduce the returns on her fireplace mantle, which is really just a big beefy old crown moulding. The house is a 125 year old victorian estate, all the wood throughout is QS white oak. The mantle itself is a prow front, which is pretty neat. Here's a few pics


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So I did some homework, figured out the radii used to make it, and bought a few old moulding planes from everyone's favorite online auction giant. Read a few articles. Watched a YouTube video. Spent a few hours touch-up shaping & honing the irons and was ready to go.



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So I started experimenting with a chunk of Doug fir 4x4 so as not to mutilate my white oak stock. I laid out the profile on the end of the piece


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And used the TS to cut away the bulk of the waste.



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I don't have a snipe bill plane, so I used a little Stanley 75 to cut a groove in the center of the inside radius to give the round plane something to follow. I roughed out the outside radius with a Stanley 220, worked great.

Then I went to work with the moulding planes, carefully working the whole radius down to my lines on either side. A little light sanding and there it is



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The returns will be about 3' long, so they will be a bit more challenging. But I feel comfortable enough with the moulding planes that I can't wait to dig into it! First to take this mock-up to the client's & check the fit.
 

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Log dog
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Sweet job Brian!!!
You keep pushing the envelope, and your skills are improving.
Way to go bud!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Acercanto said:
Very nice! Are you going to try to reproduce the concave curve of the mantle? If so, how does one do that with planes?

Acer
No, I'm not touching the front of the mantle. The returns which go back either side of the chimney and tie into the bookcases have been lost to history at some point. So I've just got to straight shots of molding instead of that curved prow front. That would be pretty tricky to do I think. I believe you would need a compass hollow and round plane
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Keith Mathewson said:
Very nicely done. You don't need a snipes bill, you would use a rabbet plane for that.
Thanks Keith. I have to say, I got the idea to try to make the molding by hand after I saw an article you had written for the "this is carpentry" website. The article was about using hand tooling to make complimentary molding pairs in a staircase trim application. Just a few days before I read your article, my client had asked me if I could reproduce that molding for her. I scratched my head and couldn't figure out how I could do it economically. Then I came across that article, and the light bulb came on
 

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very nice Brian!

Everytime you post a photo that includes the shop, I get the impression that this is a "pro" shop you are working in with lots of big machines. I remember you saying something like that in an earlier thread ? How about some more photos, or a shop tour?
 
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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
woodnthings said:
Everytime you post a photo that includes the shop, I get the impression that this is a "pro" shop you are working in with lots of big machines. I remember you saying something like that in an earlier thread ? How about some more photos, or a shop tour?
I work in a commercial cabinet shop, so yeah there are some big fancy machines. My boss gives me the run of the shop whenever I need to be there. Actually he encourages it. Great guy.

Since we're in commercial cabinetry ("architectural" woodworking, if you will) most of what we do is plywood/melamine & plastic laminate/wood veneer, and laminate & corian counter tops. We do bank teller lines, store fixtures, and office cabinetry. So the machinery is geared toward that. There's no shaper, industrial planer, bandsaw, or jointer (until I brought my jointer in & bought a used Grizzly bandsaw a few months ago). We have an Altendorf WA-8 horizontal panel saw, a Holzma HPP 350 beam saw, a Brandt edge bander and a Weeke CNC router, as well as a spray booth & finishing room upstairs. I'll take some pics for you later today.

EDIT: so much for hand tools, eh? Lol! I'll post your pics in the power tool forum Bill
 

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Discussion Starter #14
woodnthings said:
Everytime you post a photo that includes the shop, I get the impression that this is a "pro" shop you are working in with lots of big machines. I remember you saying something like that in an earlier thread ? How about some more photos, or a shop tour?
Check the "Show us your shop" sticky. Leo is making fun of my jointer lol
 

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I managed to miss this thread before, so late to the party.

Well done Brian. Very nice work. Thanks for posting.

Good to see how this was done back in the old days. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Finally got back to this project this weekend, and into the white oak. Milled up a pile of WO to ~13/16" thick and ripped to rough dimensions, then glued up two 5"x3 3/8" blocks 4' long. Cut rabbets on the TS



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Starting to take shape



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