Hand Tools Archive

Cap irons have always needed work

david charlesworth
Having assisted hundreds of people to set up their planes, I am quite clear that cap iron front edges need fettling.

I am also clear that very few of the new or old ones we saw were fit for use.
Blunt square edges, chips lack of fit to blade back, were all issues to be checked.

On the u/s of front edge we checked fit and clearance angle.

On the top side we created a small bevel at 45 degrees and polished the surface.

Bill Tindall's photo in previous thread was very helpful.

Now I do not expect new C/Bs to be ready for use, so making minor adjustment to L-N new style models is not a hardship. Once fettled they work extremely well.

I have used the KK recipe (50 degree C/B) to plane the most refractory of
timbers, and it works. I just wonder why this knowledge was so little known during my career.
Best wishes,

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Cap irons have always needed work
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