Hand Tools Archive

Re: Observations on wear after 400 feet planed

david weaver
I think the iron was white steel and there wasn't a blue steel study (but we'll find out after translation). Most of the steels listed, Bill wrote names beside or I could go find a couple of citations (I haven't seen the whole study, but the steels are labeled in a diagram). They're things like D2, M2 and M42. As far as whether or not the white steel was laminated, it almost certainly must've been unless they oil hardened it. I don't know, though.

I don't know if I can say enough smart to describe failure modes, because I'm still not sure. I thought maybe I could prove that uniformity was just as important as abrasion resistance within a relative range both for surface (of course) but also for shaving lifting.

Bill had a good animal analogy about different types of planers and what they're looking for, separating people who pick a plane up fairly seldom to trim and fit things vs. those of us who use one a lot. It separates us into shaving lifters and surface gazers, more or less. I'm a surface gazer (I want the surface to be similar all the time, no matter what the level of sharpness) where as a shaving lifter is someone who just wants to lift a shaving. The latter type of person uses a plane less but also has less desire to sharpen. Whereas a surface gazer is resigned to sharpening whenever the plane needs it for feel and quality, a shaving lifter won't do it (and may dread it) until forced. The latter won't care about quality and will search for the longest lasting iron that lifts a shaving for the most number of lifts.

I'm getting off track a little bit. The pictures on the K&K study (drawings in what I saw) of the wear profiles showed substantially more wear in volume on the white steel blades, but also a slightly different shape.

I think the wear occurs slightly differently, but I also think the mechanism is the same. Particles are pulled or abraded off the wood, not sure how much it's that or it's impact, but the more interesting things I was hoping to find - that toughness could be a contributor to uniformity and thus longevity - it probably is, but I don't think it will overcome alloy based on how the irons feel so far.

I think the blue steel iron is reasonably representative of white steel in wear, but I can't prove that. This iron exhibits behavior like O1, but how they compare to 1095 is something for a future test (I haven't made a good 1095 iron yet, but that's on the schedule as something to try. white steel is out for me unless hitachi starts making two layer rikizai available...I was able to find three layer at one point and have some, but the lamination on the bottom makes it worthless for making planes).

Long winded way of saying I think that we're not challenging toughness that much with planing in ideal conditions unless there is a defect from sharpening, but the forging definitely benefits chisels where there is more failure from impact.

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