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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Stanley No. 45 Combination Plane

I love this plane. Picked this up online not long ago and I have had the chance to test it out. Works really well and is very well taken care of for being over 100 years old. I think it dates to around 1895 if I'm not mistaken. The box that it came in is made of chestnut and is still in pretty good shape too.

The plane came with a couple of extra hollow/round attachments for the bottom along with the cutters. Haven't tried them out yet though.

Here are a couple of sites for more info on the tool.

Toolemera Press - for a manual of the 45 Combo plane.
Hans Brunner Tools - general info regarding most Stanley planes.

click the "Read more" link to see some more photos...

Monday, May 17, 2010

Roubo-ish Workbench - Finished

When I first began building this back in March I had posted a couple of blog entries and had planned to do more as the build progressed. Unfortunately that never happened and now here we are at the end of the journey.

Personally I would rather spend the time in the shop than sitting in front of the computer blogging about my time in the shop.

more photos after the jump...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Stanley No. 4 Smooth Plane

Here is a Stanley No. 4 smooth plane I picked up from the same place I found the No. 8 Jointer.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Handplane Essentials - Book Review

Handplane Essentials by Christopher Schwarz
First I want to say that I'm in no way associated the author of this book or the publishing company. I'm simply a woodworker giving my honest opinion about a product I've purchased and want to share my thoughts. Maybe this will help another woodworker make a decision on whether or not to purchase the same thing - maybe not.

This is a beautifully published book. All black and white (duotone or tritone - haven't checked with my loupe yet) photos. A lot of good information organized into various categories including some reviews and historical articles.

One thing that I wasn't expecting however was the fact that most of the book seems to be an aggregation or reprints of past magazine articles previously written by the author. If you are someone that has read a lot of the articles written by the author you may be disappointed. That is really the only negative I can find about this book. But for me it doesn't take away from all the great info contained within. I've read it through and often find myself referring back to it when needed. I'm not sure if this is considered companion material to the Handplane Basics DVD but the two work well together in my opinion.

New Workbench - Part 2 - Beginning to Build the Top

I ended up buying some 2x12x8 Southern Yellow Pine on sale for the top. For now this is a better alternative to using some of the reclaimed oak I've brought home recently. I'll save that for future furniture projects down the road a bit. Final dimensions of the top will be 6'x2'x2.5". I know for some the thicknes may not be thick enough but for me it's a balance between budget and the type of work I do.

The 2x12's were ripped to 2 1/2 inch widths, marked for grain direction and surface planed to make them all the same thickness. Sorry, no jointer as of yet, not a perfect solution I know but I have to make due with what I have. Each of the 2 1/2 inch strips are then glued up in sets of 4 to make 4 large individual sections. Those individual section will then be jointed with my No. 8 Stanley and then surface planed to uniform thickness. Then they will be glued in to one large piece that will eventually be flattened with the jointer plane once they are attached to the legs.

The photos are from the a glue up of one individual section and one section that has already been glued and jointed.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Norton Waterstones - Review

Let me start by saying I've never owned a premium set of water/sharpening stones so this review is not geared towards comparison to other products. Just my experience as someone beginning to learn more about sharpening technique.

Recently I purchased a set of Norton Waterstones from Peachtree Woodworking Supply that included 220/1000 stone, a 4000/8000 stone, a flattening stone, a waterstone tray, and a bonus DVD all for a really good price. At least I thought so based on a few weeks of research and shopping around online.

After watching the included DVD and the Handplane Essentials DVD I was able to get some great results when sharpening plane irons for the first time.

Overall I higly recommend this as a starter kit for anyone interested in getting started with or enhancing their sharpening skills.

New Workbench - Part 1

Time for a new workbench. For some reason I woke up one morning and that is the thought that popped in to my head and I just went with it. Could be something to do with the fact that my current, scrapped together, workbench has finally overstayed it's welcome in my shop. Could also have something to do with the fact that I recently finished reading Christopher Schwarz's book Workbenches: From Design And Theory To Construction And Use. Good book by the way. I've also had a new vise sitting around for about a year that I was planning to put on a new workbench - retrofitting the old one to fit the vise was not really an option. Sort of like putting new wine in old wineskins.

Initially I thought I would use all reclaimed materials but I opted to use some Southern Yellow Pine that was on sale at a local home center for the top. I'm still using reclaimed lumber for the base which includes the legs and the stretchers.

The photos are some of the 2x4's that I pulled from a small barn/shed late last fall. They were pretty rough but a few passed throught the planer did wonders.

Reclaimed 2x4's before removing the nails and planning. One important thing to note here is that I use a Lumber Wizard III to check for any remaining metal or nail fragments that may have been missed when pulling nails.

Legs beginning to take shape. Here they are cut to size and aligned so the grain is going the same direction for further planning.

Leg blanks getting glued up in one shot.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Handplane Basics - A Better Way to Use Bench Planes - Review

For anyone interested in learning more about handplanes or making sense of all the planes available this is a great place to start. The DVD walks through three different types of bench planes, the purpose of each type, how to sharpen and set them up, and how to plane a board in an efficient manner. There are also some extras on the DVD-ROM.

Before owning the DVD I always found myself laying aside my planes in frustration after trying to use them on projects, vowing to someday take the time to learn how to properly add their use to my arsenal of tools.
Now I can say with confidence that the day has finally come where I feel like I'm headed in the right direction. I'm by no means an expert and may never be but I can honestly say that the information on this DVD has allowed me to increase my skills exponentially. From the first time I watched it I could feel the tumblers clicking in to place as the mystical secrets of hand planning were finally beginning to unlock themselves. I found the style of teaching easy to understand and absorb and have found myself referring back to it multiple times as a refresher.

I ordered it from the Woodworkers Bookshop at the regular price with some birthday money. Of course, as is typical with my luck, it went on sale after I had ordered it and before I had received it in the mail. I decided to e-mail the customer service team and explain the situation and asked if I could get the discount even though I ordered it before it went on sale. Not more than a couple of hours went by and I received a reply telling me they would be happy to refund the difference between what I had paid and the current sale price. It goes without saying that I was extremely happy and sent an e-mail back to customer service telling them they had just earned a repeat customer.

I'll close by saying I highly recommend this DVD if you are like me and want a clear direction on getting started with or increasing your skills with handplanes.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Stanley No. 5 Jack Plane

Here is an older Stanley No. 5 Jack plane I picked up at a flea market last fall. I think I paid about 20-25.00 for it. When planing rough stock it's typically the first to be used and is designed to quickly remove material from the board surface by running it across the grain.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Rocking Foot Rest

Commissioned piece. The customer saw the prototype online and e-mailed me requesting different dimensions. Made from 3/4” Birch ply. Finished with English Oak stain and wipe-on poly.

Stanley No. 8 Jointer Plane

Here is a Stanley No. 8 Jointer plane I picked up off of ebay a while ago. It's in really good condition and I'm satisfied I got if for a really great price.

Reclaimed Oak Barn Wood

Truck load of reclaimed oak from an old barn that is soon to be torn down. This is the second truck load I've brought home so far. I could probably get another full load but not sure when or if I'll be able to make it back now that the ground has thawed for the spring. Hopefully the ground will dry up before the fields around the barn get planted so I can get back.

Most of the wood appears to be White Oak with some Red Oak mixed in.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Grizzly G0457 Resaw Bandsaw

Let me start by saying this is the first bandsaw I have ever owned and operated so I don’t have any past experiences to compare it to. I decided about 6-7 months ago my next major tool purchase had to be a bandsaw. Since that decision I’ve been reading and reviewing not to mention saving money.