Well, maybe not *the*
first. I have a cheap, crappy Stanley block plane
that I might have gotten to make shavings once, a long time ago. It's been
sitting here waiting on the Veritas angle fixture thingie so I can sharpen
the iron properly. Freehand is getting me nowhere fast.
So I picked up a #5 today. One of the new ones that I'm sure is vastly
inferior to the stuff they made in 1928, but it's a start.
No angle doodad, and I don't want to ruin another plane iron, so I gave it a
shot out of the box. Clamped a piece of rough 4x4 dunnage to my workbench
and futzed around with the thing a bit until just an eeensy bit of blade
was protruding. Lo and behold, the damn thing makes shavings. I'm sure it
will get better once I tune it up and sharpen the blade properly, but
yeehaw, the damn thing makes shavings! That's pretty cool!
This is going to be expensive I think. My bench is one of those crappy
pre-cut kits, and the top is completely irregular, and pine. I don't have
a good way to clamp things for planing. Don't have a proper woodworking
vise or dog holes, and half of my bench space is eaten up with
metal-shaping gizmos besides. (And I need the metal-shaping gizmos. I
Actually, I *do*
have a woodworking vise. It's some honking *huge*
Made in the USA at some period way back yonder, but I don't think I'm ever
going to get the thing to budge. Rusted together. Google back if anyone
cares. I described it in detail many moons ago.
So I need a proper wood vise, and some dog holes or other means of clamping
stuff down. I can see from using Quick-Grips to try to do this, it ain't
So how 'bout this notion... Our kitchen counters are seriously ugly. That
faux "granite" white flecked with gold stuff that was so popular 30 years
ago. Probably real Formica. I priced out counters, and they're something
we could maybe think about doing, maybe.
What if I buy SWMBO some new counters that aren't ugly and take the long
section that doesn't have a sink hole in it, cut it to fit and fasten it to
my bench as a new top?
Not as good as something made from carefully joined and jointed maple and
all that whatnot, but I'm trying to think cheap here, and buying SWMBO new
counters gets me enough SWMBO points to cash in for a vise and maybe a few
more planes. Would a particle board/formica thing bolted to the top of a
crude, twisted, irregular 2x6 bench work? What if I plane down the bench
itself? Any chance that unfinished pine in an unheated, un-insulated shed
type environment would stay put if I got it smooth?
Could I maybe get away with just planing the bench for now with this #5?
Though I guess planes aren't supposed to work as well on soft wood, are
they? (Or is that cabinet scrapers?)
Damn, I've been missing out on everything by attempting to belt sand away
the sort of problems I hope to address with planes.
Sorry, I'm rambling. I'm giddy. I made shavings. :)
(Planer/jointer machines are out of budget and no room. So I'm thinking
hard about doing shavings the old fashioned way here. I think I will
become addicted like so many of you who have gone before me.)
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < email@example.com>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
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