Smash, Bake and Cut

This step is where the metal bits are permanently attached. I generally don’t like to smack things with a hammer, my aim is poor and my arm is strong, which leads to lots of swearing. And if you don’t have a light touch, you gets lots of distortion. I do a lot of welding and am pretty good with a torch so I’d prefer to use heat to attach things. Which also induces distortion, but I’m used to that. So I’m making two planes, which are identical, except for attachment: one is peened double dovetails and the other is soldered finger joints. The solder is a low temp (400F) silver bearing (something like 6% silver, I use 56% for brazing bicycles but it melts at 1200F). The advantage of the low temp is it a bit lower than the anneal temp of the brass; if the brass has been hardened, it won’t soften after soldering. Also, since the solder is so soft (being basically tin), it is easy to remove. The strength is 17,000psi, which should be just dandy for this. We’ll see. After attachment, the planes are milled square.


I didn’t take pictures of the process (I did for the shoulder plane I’m building). A torch was used (oxy-acetylene with a 000 tip and a very light touch). The mouth was milled before assembly.

The soldered plane is the top one and the wedge retainer is going to be added later so I can access the insides on the mill.

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