Hand Tools Archive

Hand Planing Redwood

Glenn Mackey
I am curious if anybody else has had this experience with redwood. I’ve got some old unused water tank boards I’ve been working into a pair of doors for an out building. These boards are very soft wood yet are chipping the edges of all my plane blades. I have been hand planing for 28 years and have never experienced anywhere near this level of edge failure with any wood.

The resawing and planing of four sides is half done. I’m just stunned at how hard this wood is on cutting edges. I’m using both old and new irons in both wood and metal planes with the same result. I start seeing tracks in the planed surface after only a few minutes despite feeling very little resistance, as you’d expect with a softwood. These are fine edge chips that require coarse stones to remove.

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