Hand Tools Archive

V11 vs. O1 end grain

David Weaver
Bill tricked me into testing end grain tonight by telling me that it would take few feet to damage the irons.

I used a 9" wide cherry flatsawn board, very agreeable wood, and I'll admit this test is idealized. Generally, we are truing up the end of the board with saw marks on it or something of the sort, and the cut is interrupted. I can't prove it, but I think this interrupted cut is probably much harder on an edge.

Plus, well, this is cherry. If you've ever pared good cherry, it's relatively agreeable and the straws are really close together.

I weighed the shavings, and I'm glad I did. sort of.

- (the back of the board is beveled to prevent spelching so the average shaving is 8.75" or so.
- PM V11, 1088 strokes. 794 feet, approximately. 150 grams planed (that's not a misprint)
- O1, 1013 strokes, 738 feet, approx. 175 grams planed (also not a misprint)

The wear profile on the blades was obviously different. No loyalty to beam strength on the shavings, so no rub type wear on the back scooped out due to the cap iron (which was set off a little bit, but close enough that it would've affected the wear pattern in long grain).

I'm not doing any more end grain tests.

Sharpening was charlesworth type method again, 1 micron diamond finish, 35 degree bevel.

Planing is easy at first and gradually gets harder, but the iron in both cases stays in the cut longer. Why is that? I don't know. Is it because the end grain doesn't have the spring that the long grain has?

The O1 entices you to keep planing longer. The resistance increases faster, but keep advancing the iron little by little and it keeps cutting.

The quality of the shavings at the end of each was in favor of the V11. Both still had continuous shavings at the end, but V11's shavings hung together a little better.

Another test where the numbers don't tell the tale of shoulder fatigue - I think the O1 had a lot more planing resistance, and probably the evidence that it will keep cutting but entice you to increase shaving thickness is in the weight planed.

The target for this was shavings .003" thick, but it is difficult to be precise with that because they're hard to measure. you pick them up, they fall apart. If they're folded over a little bit, you straighten them out and they break.

This board, by the way, has been planed in the past and was approximately 3/4" wide.

(this is house O1, of course). I can post pictures another day if anyone is interested.

I don't think I'm going to plane any more edge quality tests. This is probably the last of the planing, and would've been accelerated, I'm sure, with something much tougher or more fibrous, like oak. I don't keep oak on hand because I have a severe distaste for its appearance.

Out of curiosity, I wanted to see how thick of a shaving I'd need to set to get a clean shaving with the O1 iron on the beech long grain board that the abrasive and angle tests were done on. 3 1/2 thousandths. That's very dull.

Because it's no the same type of wood, I can't really translate these results against the beech (as in, beech heart long grain with a 2-2 1/2 thousandth shaving - 840 feet vs. 740 in ideal endgrain cherry, is that reasonable? It's actual, so guessing at reasonable doesn't matter. This is too plain of a test to cheat on the results).

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