Woodworking Talk banner
1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,455 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi fellas. Im looking at purchasing a quality hand plane to begin learning how to use them. I can only justify purchasing one without feeling totally irresponsible :laughing: and I cant spend a ridiculous amount of money, although I'd prefer to buy top-of-the-line whenever possible.

I'd also prefer to buy new since I'm inexperienced and would like to learn the use of said plane before getting into a restoration project.

So my question is what brand and size/type of plane can some of you experienced guys recommend? I'm looking to use it for surface flattening primarily, at least at first. Any help would be much appreciated!

I guess I should add that I know how to hone an edge, and I know I'll have to hone the iron before use so thats a non issue.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
7,222 Posts
If you want to learn about the different sizes of planes, many still follow the Stanley Bailey design.

Patrick Leach's site has a lot of very good information on the technical aspects of Stanley- Bailey planes.

http://www.supertool.com/StanleyBG/stan1.htm

Many people start out with a No. 5 also called a Jack plane, as in Jack-of-all-trades.

I have a No. 5 almost restored. I just have to put this back together and take the final pictures. This will make a good user plane.

http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f11/restore-not-restore-no-5-a-48981/index2/

I have two other No. 5's in the queue, and just started on a No. 6. I also have a No. 4 just received this week. Likely shorter than you want at the moment.

If you want to purchase new I can recommend the Veritas planes made by Lee Valley.

http://www.leevalley.com/US/Wood/page.aspx?cat=1&p=41182

If you consider a low angle plane, you can purchase blades with different bevels and quickly change configuration to help with wild grain/ end grain / knots.

http://www.leevalley.com/US/Wood/page.aspx?p=49708&cat=1,41182,52515

Lee Valley is now selling blades made from PM-V11 which is meant to keep its edge better, but still be easier to sharpen.

If you want to drive down to the Lehigh Valley, I can give you a hand plane lesson.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,900 Posts
I've been using a Stanley #5 for years now. It does what I want.
If I had become a builder of fine furniture, only then could I appreciate a big dollar item.
Being a wood carver, the Stanley doesn't often fit into the scheme of things.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,128 Posts
Hi fellas. Im looking at purchasing a quality hand plane to begin learning how to use them. I can only justify purchasing one without feeling totally irresponsible :laughing: and I cant spend a ridiculous amount of money, although I'd prefer to buy top-of-the-line whenever possible.

I'd also prefer to buy new since I'm inexperienced and would like to learn the use of said plane before getting into a restoration project.

So my question is what brand and size/type of plane can some of you experienced guys recommend? I'm looking to use it for surface flattening primarily, at least at first. Any help would be much appreciated!

I guess I should add that I know how to hone an edge, and I know I'll have to hone the iron before use so thats a non issue.

I am guessing that because of your job you can sometimes get your 'personal' blades sharpened for free... I would take advantage of that here as well with your plane blades.

I would suggest a new Stanley from the local HDepot or Lowes to start with and IMMIDIATELY begin your search for a spare blade. (Stanley website will NOT be of much luck to you with extra blades - I recently looked there and was sorely disappointed)

My older Stanley blades were all made in England and marked as such - Those were/still are great blades. Not sure if the newer blades are 'china' stuff or not.

I am currently looking for a source that can make (or sell) me some 'good quality' spare blades and will let you know what I find if you are interested. :thumbsup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
517 Posts
Maybe I should start a new thread, but what in general makes up a "good" plane:

Is there a list of characteristics that make up a "good" plane, and conversely, a list of characteristics that make up a "bad" plane?

I would imagine for bench planes something like having an adjustable mouth is (which I think means having an adjustable frog) is GOOD, while having a NON adjustable frog is bad.

Are there other things that we should look for in general?
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
7,222 Posts
Maybe I should start a new thread, but what in general makes up a "good" plane:
Pertinent question, but perhaps it would be better as a new thread so that your question does not take over this thread.

Is there a list of characteristics that make up a "good" plane, and conversely, a list of characteristics that make up a "bad" plane?
Yes, but it depends on the type of plane

I would imagine for bench planes something like having an adjustable mouth is (which I think means having an adjustable frog) is GOOD, while having a NON adjustable frog is bad.
Good example for a typical bench plane. Not relevant for a scrub plane.

Are there other things that we should look for in general?
Quality of materials.

Fit and finish. Do the components fit well, are adjustment mechanisms smooth to operate.

Blade adjustment mechanism. Conventional "Y" lever vs two screws with nuts in the blade like this one from Harbor Freight.

http://www.harborfreight.com/media/...b33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/i/m/image_12474.jpg

Is the sole machined reasonably flat.

Are the sides machines to be 90 deg to the sole.

Hard to tell just by looking, but a good plane can keep it tuning. A bad plane does not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,455 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Ok so here's an update. I decided to go vintage rather than new for a couple reasons. Quality new planes are crazy expensive, so I was able to pick up a No 6 & No 7 Stanley that needed work and a No 5 Stanley that Dave Paine took pains to make functional & beautiful again - all for way less than a new Veritas #7. Add a donated Craftsman No 4 into the mix and I ended up with a good starter set of bench planes.

On top of all that, there's just something about using a plane that is 60, 70, 80 years old and reflecting on who else that tool served over its life, what it may have helped build, where it's been...

The 5 is done (except for finish on the sweet looking cherry knob & tote Dave made) and cuts so smooth



Jack plane Wood Plane Rebate plane Table



The No 7 is in progress but functional. I stripped the old japanning off with zip strip and removed the rust with vinegar & a wire brush. Repainted with engine enamel. Lapped the sole, flattened the cap iron & sharpened the plane iron. Here she is



Wood


Haven't addressed the knob & tote yet but I'm thrilled with the way it cuts. The iron was pretty badly butchered & all knicked up, so it took a lot of time & patience to get it right again. Especially since I don't know what I'm doing lol



Block plane Plane




Cuisine


So this weekend I hope to begin the No 6 and finish up the Craftsman. I absolutely cannot wait to get these guys into some walnut & begin learning a new skill.

Thanks for all the help fellas, and thanks in advance for all the help I'm sure you'll offer in the future when I screw something up lol!
 

·
Sawdust Creator
Joined
·
8,046 Posts
I as well have opted to go the vintage route, but am having problems finding units to restore. I anyone comes across any old Stanley's in the 3-7 range, I'd be happy to buy a few off of you for my use. On the flip side, I have an old 7 that is missing some things and a few parts beat up that I'm willing to offer for parts if anyone's in need.
 

·
In History is the Future
Joined
·
6,423 Posts
I as well have opted to go the vintage route, but am having problems finding units to restore. I anyone comes across any old Stanley's in the 3-7 range, I'd be happy to buy a few off of you for my use. On the flip side, I have an old 7 that is missing some things and a few parts beat up that I'm willing to offer for parts if anyone's in need.
Ryan, unfortunately I'm not in a position to sell or otherwise part with any of my planes (still buying more for the school) but I am in need of a 6/7 lever cap for one of my planes of you have one.

Thanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
713 Posts
restores

I as well have opted to go the vintage route, but am having problems finding units to restore. I anyone comes across any old Stanley's in the 3-7 range, I'd be happy to buy a few off of you for my use. On the flip side, I have an old 7 that is missing some things and a few parts beat up that I'm willing to offer for parts if anyone's in need.

I sometimes have some "as found" for sale. http://timetestedtools.wordpress.com/tools-for-sale/
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top