Hand Tools

Re: (skew shooting infill) - little bit more

david weaver
The tapering is done using the drum on a belt sander and a coarse belt - with a bucket of water nearby. It takes about an hour (higher belt speed and more powerful belt sander, and it could be much faster), so it's not exactly good policy for more than a couple of blades.

I consolidated the work of the belt sander with a bowed-out vixen file on a wooden handle. Bowed so as to create a slight hollow across the width (if anything) as well as along the length. The iron is 0.26 at the business end, 0.2 at the far end, and between 0.22 and 0.23 about 40% of the way up from the edge.

Any error in hand grinding the taper will be taken care of in bedding the iron (since we have that option, and since this isn't an iron that is going to wear quickly). If there is an error, it'll be measurable on a diagonal as a few thousandths. Poor for a machine tool, but better than many vintage irons.

Yes on the sole plate - It's peined in place with 3 rivets made of 3/16th steel. If the sole was 1/4" thick, it wouldn't have been needed, but at 3/16ths, it might be iffy. it should still work at that if clearance on the primary is only 15 degrees, but more is better, and that kind of bedding seems to be common.

I can't remember what I calculated the mouth opening to be, but it doesn't really matter - I'll pattern that instead to be sure, and then open it once the plane is assembled to control it at about 6 thousandths or so (hopefully). that's always the last step. It's easier to hit a zero mouth than it is with a wooden plane, because everything happens more slowly.

I should've been more careful roughing the sole (where the hollow spot is), but that work is so physical that you sometimes get lost in the effort while you're doing it, and the urge to stop and check isn't strong enough.

If one made a couple of these and had...say...a shaper, they could be made profitably. I say a shaper because it would be nice to bias the bottom side a little bit thick at the top vs. where the dovetails are so that you'd end up with a favorable situation before squaring (you can do the metal removal up away from the tails, which eliminates the risk of finding pinholes in the dovetail fit, which requires careful closing and then removal of a little bit more, hoping at the same time that removal of the light peining marks doesn't make a pinhole show up elsewhere.

In a completely tooled up machinist type setup, you could control the precision of the dovetail fit a lot better and not have any of that, but my last plane is pinhole free with completely invisible dovetails.

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