LN Vs Veritas 41/2's

Page 1 of 2  
I had the chance to test the two planes today, side by side. Some comments, in no particular order of importance:
LV: well machined, but not finished to the level of the LN has a very well machined bed for the frog innovative adjustable mouth no slop detectable large grip
LN: very well machined and finished fixed mouth small (Stanley standard size) grip zero backlash
General. I would be very happy to own either plane, but would only buy and use one - the LV. First, I have large hands and the LN does not let me grip the handle unless my little and ring fingers are crossed over - awkward. Second, in use, my 'pointer' finger is in contact with the back of the blade. When I squeeze the handle to push the plane my finger digs into the blade parts (screws etc) - painful.
Value for money, the LV beats the LN hands down. After careful fettling of the LV, I'd be very surprised if the two didn't perform the same, with the LV being more flexible due to the adjustable mouth.
As a disclaimer, I own LN planes but no LV, yet. My viewpoint is as a user that likes very well made tools but insists on great useability coming with a high price. In my comment above, relating to the finish of the LV, it should in no way be taken to mean a lack of precision in the manufacture of the item. I am referring specifically to the 'cosmetic engineering' aspects i.e. plating, polishing, rounding edges etc. I am confident that the engineering tolerances would be very similar between both companies.
Greg
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks for the review. I have been trying to decide between exactly these two planes myself. Lee Valley it is.
It strikes me that LN might better serve our market by allowing for the fact that people have just gotten bigger in the last 50-70 years and make some adjustments accordingly.
My grandfather might have been very comfortable using the LN design but he was 5'7". My dad was 5'10" and I am 6'4". I wouldn't want to wear Grand Dad's clothes or ride his bike. They just wouldn't fit.
Cheers, Dave Day

comments,
grip
with
of
aspects
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

comments,
I have the LN #4 1/2 and have never touched the LV. Let me make a few observations.
You mentioned your index finger brushing the back of the blade. You are supposed to use a plane similar to a saw, with your index finger pointing the way. Still, for my fat hands, that's still too tight, so I point with two fingers. Works great. Doesn't take a lot of effort to pull the plane back, and you don't use those fingers to push anyway.
The LN mouth is not fixed. That's what the frog adjustment is for. The frog moves forward to close the mouth. The mouth on my 4 1/2 is somewhere around .003". The chip breaker is about the same behind the edge of the blade.
I have 9 LN planes, and the only one that appears to have "nearly" zero backlash is the large shoulder plane (#93). They are relatively tight, but there is some backlash. It's built into the design.
The high angle frog really improves the performance of this plane in hard to plane woods.
The new chip breaker is awesome. Easier to attach to the blade (don't have to flex and screw), stiffer, outstanding match to the blade. Makes a noticeable difference in performance. I'm told it becomes standard on all LN planes starting in 2004.
Cheers, Eric
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Eric, with the beginnings of arthritis and planing Australian Redgum, I tend to use all the fingers to hold the plane, that's just my technique.

The LV mouth fully supports the blade as it moves, it's an elegant design. See http://tinyurl.com/ykff or http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.asp?pageD751&category=1,41182,41187&abspage=1&ccurrency=2&SID Scroll to the bottom and click on the "Tech" hyperlink, it provides an excellent sectionalised diagram showing the design.
I also note the hand grip shown in the diagram is just as I use it. My handsaw technique is as you described though.

but
Yes, good point. I have a Stanley garden variety number 4. In comparison to the LN though, "zero" is not innacurate.

to
have
I didn't mention that, although it was fitted to the plane I was looking at. A good feature indeed.
cheers,
Greg
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I've read many articles on tuning up old stanleys and have taken a class which went very well. I now have a finely tuned #4 and #5 that work great. My question is since I have no experience with the LN or Veritas how much better are they then a well tuned old Staney. Maybe even an old stanley with a hock blade. This still would be less expensive than either the LN or the Veritas. I understand the quality is there in both the LN and Veritas but is it that much better than an old stanley that has been brought back to life? Thanks, John

pointing
with
plane
tend
somewhere
http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.asp?pageD751&category=1,41182,41187&abspage=1&ccurrency=2&SID>
to
hard
all
at.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

with
is
life?
John,
my personal view is no, they are not much better, if at all. Originally, I was comparing two new planes, not two new planes and a highly tuned old plane.
Value for money depends on a number of things and the relative importance varies by user. For example, someone with the time and skill could successfully rebuild a (seemingly worthless) plane shell by using electrolysis, welding, machining, lapping, scraping, making new handles, finishing, fettling etc. It depends on how much of the journey you enjoy.
The end result, ie the finish imparted to the wood, is all that concerns the customer, and the customer pays. So, for the pro cabinetmaker, the journey needs to be as short as possible. Most of us in this group are somewhere between.
A second hand Stanley can be a great buy, but is it a better buy than a second hand LN or LV?....hehe.
For me, I can spend a lot of money on fuel just driving around looking for that "killer gloat", in fact, I have done just that. I have spent more money on fuel than I would have on a few planes - with no luck. If I were to factor in my hourly rate and wear and tear on the vehicle... - well, let's not get depressed here.
I value my time as I don't get a lot to spare, for others, the equation is reversed. The decision is ultimately up to the individual and no 'one' decision can be wrong because it is a highly individual decision. In fact, it is not dissimilar to the normite/neander discussions.
Have I cleared that up? Thought not!
Bottom line - all well designed planes in a well maintained and highly tuned state perform well.
regards,
Greg
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
woodguy wrote:

Probably depends on what you can afford, and how good you are at using the enhanced features in the first place. Like with anything else, really.
I could get much better peformance out of a $10,000 flute. It would deliver better timbre, better intonation, more certain action, perfect balance, and gobs of melodious pulchritude... in the hands of a top quality flutist.
In my hands, I could probably see a difference with a $1,000 flute vs. the eBay special 20-year-old cheap student flute I play now. The difference between a $1,000 flute and a $10,000 flute would be meaningless.
The cheapo special is better than nothing, and it's paid for, so it will do just fine. It's not like I'm a professional, or even a remotely noteworthy amateur. My cheapo planes do just fine too. One un-prized early '60s #5, and one un-prized brand new #4. They're paid for, and they're a lot better than nothing. At this stage of the game, I suffer more from poor technique than poor equipment.
--
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < snipped-for-privacy@users.sourceforge.net>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I've got the same - obsessively tuned up #5 w/ Hock blade. Which I've always liked a great deal.
And now a LN #5. It's way better. Way way better. Mass matters. Rigidity matters.
But I'm a tool geek.
Jim
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I'll second this guys opinion. I for one, have a well tuned 601/2 Stanley low angle block plane, with well sharpened Hock iron in it. I put ohh, umm 4-5 real hour into tuning and screwing with the Stanley. THEN I broke down and bought a Lie-Neilsen 60 1/2 adjustable mouth low angle block plane...........................big bucks for a little plane. In REAL time I might have spent 1 hr - 45 mins. Sharpening the iron, up to 6000 grit waterstone. DID NOT tune the plane body, did not need to. The LN is WAY better than the Stanley, hands DOWN ! I have not enough time in the world to PLAY around with tuning, planes. I want to plane wood, period ! I made my own wooden body planes and fooled with all kinds of others. Buy a LN bite the bullet and plane wood. Need I say more?..........................Some of us need the cash back sooner than others. I make money with my tools...................what do you want to do ?

great.
much
with
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Well, if you want to accurately compare a L-N and an old Stanley, you'd need to compare the L-N to the Stanley Bedrock series of planes. Right there you've changed the monetary comparison, as Bedrocks go for *quite* a bit more, especially if they are in good shape.
I had a regular #4-1/2 that I added a Hock iron to, and tuned within an inch of its life. I was able to get it to perform quite well, but when I had some discretionary cash I bought the L-N #4-1/2. The difference was immediately noticeable. The L-N has quite a bit more mass (a *good* thing for a smoother used on tricky woods). It also had less slop in the lateral lever, and lever cap and considerably less backlash in the depth adjustment mechanism. This may not seem like a big deal, but for doing fine work, achieving and holding a setting, and being able to easily reproduce it (i.e., repeatability) are all key.
For my other benchplanes (non-Bedrock jointer, fore and jack), I haven't bothered to upgrade to a L-N or Veritas, as tuning them and adding an aftermarket iron seem to be all that is necessary to get them to perform well enough for those roles. And depending on the types of woods you work, a super-tuned Stanley #4 or #4-1/2 might be sufficient as a smoother. If you aren't inclined to work with lots of figured woods or exotics, the pricier planes might be overkill.
My own "philosophy" regarding buying L-N or Veritas tools is to invest the extra money when the old Stanley is in roughly the same ballpark price-wise (usually specialty planes, like the #164, #112, #140, for example), or the extra precision would make life easier (the #4-1/2).
There is also an aesthetics angle to consider. Some prefer the old tools (and some just like bringing them back to life), while others appreciate the looks of the L-N enough to make it worthwhile to pay the difference.
As an aside, the times I have compared L-N and Veritas planes side-by-side (#164 and #112), the Veritas planes have come out ahead as far as bang-for-the-buck. The L-N are ahead in aesthetics, but IMHO, not enough to justify the price tag difference. (And I actually prefer the Veritas knobs/and totes from an ergonomic standpoint.)
Chuck Vance
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 11 Dec 2003 05:38:17 -0800, Conan the Librarian wrote:

<snip>
Aesthetically, LN's appeal to me and for me that makes their extra cost worthwhile. Although my primary reason for buying them is that they work out of the box and go on working and working well.
LN's range is pretty hard to beat too and some of their planes aren't made by anybody else AFAIK eg: " infill shoulder plane - the business for trimming tenons.

I haven't used the Veritas planes but having read reviews, it sounds like they are excellent planes.....but aesthetically they leave me cold (sorry Rob Lee!)
The block planes are fine with the black finish on the lever caps but the bench planes with the reddish wood (bubinga/paduak?) knobs clash badly with the black lever caps to my eye. A big improvement IMO would possibly be maple/ash handles possibly ebonized, if they did that (and sold them in the UK!) I'd be very tempted. Wouldn't a yellowish wood fit in better with LV corporate colours too?
I've also got a couple of Cliftons which I like although they required a bit of tweeking before use. I also stripped off the nasty shiny lacquer from the handles & Danish oiled them. A problem I've found with them is that the chrome plate on the lever cap will rust/tarnish if you're not careful (certainly in my unheated shop) although I guess it will polish out as it looks like pretty thick plate.
With the British racing green paint, bubinga knobs & chrome lever cap they're pretty handsome - work well too. Certainly worth considering alongside LN & LV although they don't do a 4.
BTW, what angle is the LV 4 frog pitched at? With the LN you can get a York pitched frog, which would head it for the LN (for me) assuming the LV is only pitched at 45. Depends what timber the original poster is hoping to tackle with it though.
--

Frank


Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@SPAMLESSesperance-linux.co.uk (Frank Shute) wrote in message

Yep, each L-N I have bought was perfectly capable of taking decent shavings right out of the box. Of course you still need to hone the iron before doing any serious work, but they are the most ready-to-go planes out there, IME.

I don't know if LV has any plans for an infill, but they are continually expanding their line, so they are worth keeping an eye on.

I can understand that. I'm no fan of their look either, but I've noticed that in the instances where I have both the L-N and LV planes (#164 and #112), I reach for the LV tool first. Simply put, the LV planes are more comfortable in use. Obviously, YMMV.

The LV is a standard 45 degree frog. Like you, I have the LN #4-1/2, and I was seriously considering the 50 degree frog. However, after reading Rob Lee's suggestion that you back-bevel the iron to get the same effect I gave it a try and it works quite well.
Anyhow, I don't see myself giving up my L-N planes anytime soon, but I can still heartily recommend the LV tools. They are a fine mid-priced alternative and basically do everything you could ask of them. And the fact that LV is aggressively pursuing their line of planes is a good thing for all of us who like handtools, IMHO.
Chuck Vance
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 15 Dec 2003 05:23:09 -0800, Conan the Librarian wrote:

How do the LV planes compare on that front? I'd guess they are pretty much ready to go too. I'd also be interested to know what tolerances the LV planes are machined to, my understanding is that LN's are better than a thou', Clifton's a couple of thou'.

I did try & persuade Tom Lie Nielsen to produce a 3/4" infill shoulder plane but he's going to be producing one along the lines of his 1" shoulder plane. I also pitched the idea of making a decent carpenter's brace - he agreed that the current offerings stink, so I remain hopeful on that front. He also mentioned that he'll be making some decent cabinetmakers screwdrivers.

That's interesting, I wish I could get my hands on one to try it out. If Robert Lee is reading, when are Brimarc in the UK going to start selling your planes?!

I don't like the idea of that....I don't have a 4-1/2 yet so it would mean I'd lose my excuse to buy another plane ;)
I've currently got Clifton's #3 & #5 and a LN low angle #4 - a #4-1/2 with high pitched frog would go nicely with those for facing.

It is good. Before LV & Clifton came along there was no competition for LN, you'd think the competition must drive prices down and quality up. Although to be fair, I think Tom Lie Nielsen and Robert Lee would prefer to be out of business than produce crap tools.
--

Frank


Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

<snip>
<snip>
Hi Frank -
That's a question you have to ask Brimarc - they have an offer....!
Not sure if you've ever seen the people below - but they have a shipment on the way...just across the channel from you. Nice people too.... Language may or may not be an issue!
Cheers -
Rob Lee
http://www.hmdiffusion.com /
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 17 Dec 2003 16:36:38 -0500, Robin Lee wrote:

Hi Rob,
(Apologies for mangling your name!)

OK. It would be nice if they carried more of your products. They could stimulate demand by sending a few out for review to the woodworking mags (I'm sure they'd get good reviews).

Thanks. Checked out the site & discovered the French for plane :) but it looks like they haven't updated their site yet. It's fairly easy for me to buy from the continent as customs & excise can't get their sticky hands on the gear and start demanding money with menaces....

Thanks,
--

Frank


Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@SPAMLESSesperance-linux.co.uk (Frank Shute) wrote in message

The irons on the LV planes I've got needed a bit more work to get ready than the L-N planes. They were rougher and needed a bit of lapping to flatten the back. Otherwise, it was just a matter of adjusting the plane and going for it.

Rob Lee could probably answer that for you better than I could, but I will say that when I received the prototype for their low-angle smoother for testing, the fit of the sliding toe-piece left a bit to be desired. (There wasn't any lateral play, but there was a slight gap along the sides on the sole that could pick up "crumbs" and potentially ding your work.) But that was taken care of in the production version. The appearance wasn't quite as impressive as the fit on the L-N low-angle, where the junction of the sliding piece and fixed sole is almost invisible, but it was plenty good enough.
As far as other specs, this is from their website (describing the #4-1/2): "The sole is guaranteed to be flat to 0.003" concave, never convex. The wings are square to the sole within 15 minutes (1/4)."

Oooops, sorry ... my bad. :-)

Yeah, and at the other end of the weight spectrum, if you're into wooden planes, you could go for the Clark & Williams wooden smoother. They'll make it for you at any angle between 45 and 60, IIRC. Mine (55 degree) is still my "special reserve" plane that gets called on when everything else is having trouble.

Agreed. Tom's offerings still have more cachet to them, and I doubt that he'll ever try to compete directly with Rob. But, Rob and LV have shown that you can be innovative in tool-design and produce a very high quality product that is still affordable to the hobbyist woodworker who doesn't have an unlimited budget.
(BTW, it's *Robin* Lee.)
Chuck Vance (who doesn't work for LV, but probably wouldn't mind getting a job with them as a fulltime plane tester)
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks for the follow ups to my question. From what I gather most people who make their living working wood don't have the time to mess with tuning the older Stanleys. This of course makes perfect sense to me. Since I do this as a hobby the couple of hours I spent on my old #5 were worth it to me since I 1. enjoyed it, 2. have about $8 bucks in the thing (I still am going to get the Hock blade) & 3. At my skill level I am getting results I'm happy with at the moment. Thanks again....
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

tend
NP. I was taught to point, and I watch the LN people at the shows use the same technique. I just learned to point with both my index and middle fingers because if I try to keep three fingers wrapped on the handle it tends to pinch just a little bit, wearing my hand out, while two fingers wrapped gives me plenty of directional control and my arms wear out before my hands.
I learned a lot about tuning and using a plane just watching and asking questions at the show. The guy at the LN booth, whose name excapes me at the moment, is very good at taking the mystery out of it. Considering how many tools I've bought from them, they're happy to see me coming.;-) The other guy I've learned a lot from is Graham Blackburn, one of the show's seminar speakers.
Cheers, Eric
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Hey Eric,
Where did you hear about Lie Nielsen's new chip breakers on all their planes? I'd like to hear more details about this. Will the model numbers change?
On Wed, 10 Dec 2003 06:15:58 GMT, "Eric Lund"

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The Lie Nielsen reps at the Costa Mesa woodworking show said so when I visited their booth. They didn't give me any other specific information, but I wouldn't expect the model numbers to change. I would expect the price of a plane to go up just a bit. They will also have to make some new sizes, because they don't currently make one wide enough for the #8. I also expect the new chisels will come out in the 2004 catalog.
Cheers, Eric
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.