Hand Tools Archive

Re: So, I measured....

david weaver
And it resulted in this. I was working on a cabinet yesterday and decided to go for nutty sharp, and then after that, test the shaving thickness vs. cap iron set.

As to whether or not I was putting enough force on the plane - still debatable (this is just a re-break of a glued handle), I think so.

(If I had not dropped this plane in the past and broken the handle, It wouldn't have broken during this activity, but I've never broker a glued handle, either, and admittedly was horsing the plane much harder than I would've anything in regular daily use).


What I found was this: I could get just under 4 thousandths out of a set that was about 5 1/2 or 6 thousandths (cap iron distance from the edge). Around 3, the resistance was more than I'd tolerate on an edge that was about 1.1 inches wide (so planing the face of a board, I wouldn't be planing a 3 thousandth shaving with this set). A just under four, the handle let go.

I freehanded the front bevel of the cap iron on this plane, it's probably somewhere around 50-60 degrees.

I'd attribute some of the difference in our findings to the fact that beech is probably quite a bit stiffer than bigleaf maple.

I also noticed (re: the discussion about being able to see an edge that's not even) that I'd set the cap iron visibly different in projection, but only just so. So I took two pictures - one with the edge at the left and one at the right. I intentionally honed the edge straight across since I was playing with edge quality for pictures - to be posted separately. the front edge of the cap is straight end to end, so the center of the blade is somewhere between these two pictures. Point being, you can see very small differences in projection with the naked eye. If this looked even to me, I'd have taken a picture of the center only.



And for calibration, a picture of a piece of wire that is exactly .007"

I may try this in the future with cherry, but will need to do what I should've done a while ago - make a new handle for this plane instead of gluing a broken one.

(separate thought - the cap iron in the picture is where the line becomes uniformly black - it's above the edge and not below it. when I got this plane, it was sent to me just pre-production, and since the cap and the iron are both flat bevels and very well finished, I couldn't easily see the point where the cap met the back of the iron, so I used oxpho blue on the cap and made it easy to see. I suggested that to Lee Valley. I think that for all of us, oxpho bluing or any kind of cold blue on the cap iron is a large visual improvement. I have better sight than anyone I know, so I'd consider that to be an improvement for everyone no matter what you can or can't see. Seeing the difference in projection with the cap black (looks like about one thousandth) is something I can see clearly without much thought. Seeing where the cap met the iron with two flat surfaces was harder than seeing that thousandth).

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