Making it work

Doing some testing

Doing some testing

The not-always-so-fun part: getting the desired results. The blade has been hardened but I probably didn’t draw the temper far enough (new oven), it is pretty hard, which made sharpening the profile a tedious pain. Since I’ve only done this a couple of times, I was trying everything I could think of.  The one big thing not to do is make the curve too wide, if you do you’re screwed as part of the cutting edge won’t be exposed and the plane will high center. So how do you sharpen the sides [inside the curve]? Don’t know, I sharpened pretty square.

Different things that worked: sand paper wrapped around a dowel (or file in my case), [narrow rounded over] slip stone, slip stone with diamond paste on it, the edge of a strop with green goo on it. The strop was interesting; it is glued to a piece of wood (hide glue) and over hangs an 1/8″ or so. This makes the edge pretty stiff and that worked great fbase beador polishing the inner profile. I found it easiest to clamp the blade in the vise at the bevel angle and use the slip stone horizontally. Not surprisingly, the plane worked better and better the sharper the blade got. Still, too deep a cut results in tear out and the blade is too light to back out by smacking the back. When I was able to cut end grain, I called it good.

Setting the blade: Using a chunk of profile, set the plane in it, let the blade rest on the profile, smack the wedge then tap tap to the desired depth. The blade is then centered in the body.

marked iron One thing I had wondered about: the wedge angle. I normally use around 10° so 14° seemed kinda high. It is and the wedge action is a go/no go thing (vs being able to almost set the wedge by hand). Takes a good smack to seat it securely. Probably a tapered iron thing but I have noticed that some of the old [moulding plane] irons I have are scored on the back, I’m guessing to dig into the plane bed. Hmmmm. The disadvantage of the abrupt wedging action is, if the blade wiggles (eg hitting a knot or digs a bit when starting), it will pop the wedge loose. I just took at Caleb James plans (see references two posts ago) and he uses a 10° wedge angle. Ahhh, I feel better now. sharpening

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2 Responses to Making it work

  1. Tom Harper says:

    Cool man. Making a groove in something like cedar, then applying diamond paste to it seems to work better for me than a slip stone. I think the closer fit helps. Nice looking plane. Too bad concave cutting edges are needed.

    • Zander K says:

      I agree but I didn’t have a “mother” profile use (I do now!). Plus I needed to hog off a fair bit to get an edge and haven’t had real good results with coarse diamond.
      And the concavity is an ellipsoid (because of the bed angle) and I would have probably screwed it up.

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