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Hobbyist wood-butcher
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About a year ago, I finally got around to sharpening my plane irons, and got them somewhat functional (in this thread). Now I have to admit that I haven't "lapped the sole" as suggested, but have had the planes laying around, and I have been trying to 1) remember that Ihave them, and 2) use them when I "think" would be a good time use them.

A few weekends ago, I was making some sleds for my tablesaw, and I ripped down some Oak for the runners. They were a smidge too big, and usually I would try to make that adjustment on the TS. It dawned on me that the plane would probably work great for this, and IT DID! They fit perfectly.

Today, I was resawing some poplar, and had a ridge left over from where the TS blade ended and where the bandsaw finished it off. The ridge was roughly 1" wide and protruded about 3/32" above the rest of the surface. I at first figured I would just have the jointer take care of this, but then I thought, the plane would work better. What a joy it was making curls and seeing that ridge just disappear.

Unfortunately, I think I am limited by my choice of planes, but I think I will start looking for others. I don't even know what the types are that I have, but I figure that I may start looking for some larger ones, so maybe I can start flattening larger surfaces.
 
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Hand planes can be very useful.

I am trying to get my woodworking friend hooked. I recently sharpened his Bailey No. 4, which is the same as yours in the thread which you linked.

You have good examples of the speed of using a hand plane vs a power tool. Making nice fluffy shavings can be almost therapy.

These days I like to use hand planes to get a straight edge on rough sawn boards before I rip on the table saw. My edges are not square - yet - but it is amazing how much faster it is to move a hand plane over a 6ft or 8ft board vs manhandle this on the table saw with a jig to get the first good edge.

Planing a rough sawn board flat and square is hard work. I have not attempted yet, but I have collected a number of the hand planes to make it possible.

The Stanley No. 4 is a nice weight plane, but can be too short for planing long boards which is why Stanley made longer and wider planes.

If you want to read up on the Stanley hand planes of old, this is a good site to begin. A lot of technical details and background.

http://www.supertool.com/StanleyBG/stan0a.html

I am presently working on a restoration of a No. 7 shown in this thread. This will be a user not a collector item. WWII vintage.

http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f11/plane-restore-round-4-a-48338/

I recently had the casting and frog sand blasted and yesterday re-painted these pieces.

I have removed the awful red paint from the knob and am about to refinish. I am pondering whether to make a wooden replacement from the rubber adjustment wheel or to replace with all brass.

Let me know if you will be looking for a No. 7.

I have a No. 4 and three No. 5's in the queue for restoration.
 

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As usual, some good info here. Dave, I just might be interested in that number 7, but will have to do some more research to figure out what direction I want to go. I may do like you do, and try to buy ones to refurbish.... we will see.

Sean... I did see that episode on PBS, and even have it saved on my DVR. I don't think I could ever get as "Minimalistic" as Roy or Chris, but I do enjoy watching to see that powertools are really needed.
 

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get a good useable stanley #5 before the 7. the 7 is a large jointer plane and takes some getting used. I have a 6 and a 7 but rarely if ever use them anymore in favor of my 5's.

Agreed. I just started buying planes about 18 months ago, with a very nice turnkey #7. I love it, but it gets used very little. OTOH, I picked up a few 5's and a 5 1/2 over that time, and they are seeing a lot of use.
 
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I always go against the grain. The #5 is a jack plane, and very few people start out resizing lumber by hand. Yes a #5 can be used for other things, but why? It looks like you've got a nice #4. A better block plane would be one a good addition along with a Jointer. Depending on what size projects you do, find a nice #6, #7, or #8. A #6 is for smaller stuff. Probably under 4'. A #7 is perfect to start with, but I use my #8 (actually a 608) all the time.

If your not into tuning them yourself I've got a few for sale all restored and tuned.

If you need further help tuning and restoring (its where all the fun is) check out my blogs on tuning and restoring.
 
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