Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Twin rabbet planes

I've made these two rabbets planes  by copying a larger XVII century exemplar. The main characteristic is that it has only one open side. As a blade I used a file, properly shaped and sharpened. The body is mahogany, the sole wenge. The  metal bar on the side avoids flexion body when the wedge is forced into place and adds weight to the plane. You could avoid increasing the  plane body thickness or decreasing the width of the blade, but in both cases these are uncomfortable compromises.
The hole for chips ejection can be easily achieved with a Forstner bit. The body design is very close to the original and I must say that the fingers have a perfect support.
Having only one side useful for working you have to build two  twin planes, each working in one direction. One use for wich I found convenient is to finish the rabbets. In this one, made with the circular saw, I screwed the setting of the blade and the result was a visible residual step. A simple job for one of the little twins!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Tool Chest Bench

There are two important benefits to accommodate a good number of tools in the carpenter's bench: they are always on hand and, adding a consistent weight to the entire structure, greatly enhance stability. On my bench I obtained the most space possible: in addition to the classic dresser, I used the open compartment under the top to accommodate the wooden planes I use more frequently. In the shorter side where the vice is not present there is another space, built in the thickness of the legs and when I fixed some instruments for measuring and tracking.

Of course, the planes are king, occupying most of the available space. The two large drawers on the left side are occupied by combination planes. One of the drawers on the right side is devoted to tools for drilling, brace, hand drill, gimlet, tips etc..

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Sargent 507

After keeping it in a drawer for several months, I finally decided to restore an old Sargent 507, a model really exclusive that Stanley never put into production. It's the block version of the most famous Stanley 10. The 507 is a plane designated for cutting rabbets, very handy and suitable for using it with one hand. Very well finished, it mount the blade in bevel up position, thicker if compared to that of classical Stanley block planes. Needless to say, not limited to finishing rabbets and tenons, it proves to be reliable and capable of fine shavings also in finishing whit the grain.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Bench Stop

Many times just a simple stop is all needed for planing straight-ahead. It is fast and has the advantage of  avoiding distortions in the piece closed between the vise and dogs, especially in the case of reduced thickness. It is not difficult to build one cutting a through mortise (1"x 1 1/2"ca.) in which a plunger slides; its section is very close to section of mortise and  it's long enough to be easily adjusted by a wing nut screw system placed under the bench. One shown in the photo is the glorious Record 169, easy to fit in any work bench.