See earlier thread on some tearout I was experiencing with purple heart and
edge grain plaining using a mostly untuned Stanley No 4.
My "new" number five arrived middle of last week, after some gunk cleaning
and placement of a professionaly sharpened blade (original was badly pitted
for about 3/4" behind it's existing edge and needed MAJOR removal to be
used), I used it to surface the same purple heart. I experienced less tear
out than with the No. 4 and I expect this was due to a much smaller throat
opening I was able to achieve with the No 5.
Still a bugger to plane, there is tearout on all the boards and it will
take quite a bit of sanding to "fix it".
Are there Stanley planes with higher bed angles better suited to tropicals
or will I need to move into Asian planes, Knight toolworks type planes?
Purpleheart is a beast to plane no matter how you try it.
I have a Lie-Nielson smoothing plane, just about the optimism plane
wouldn't ya think? - and I still get tearout. This plane, used with as
sharp an edge as I can manage, at a very shallow cut and used at an
angle to the direction of planing, can do a lot of good work.
Until you hit a grain reversal, say, or a bump in the wood from
not-quite-complete previous smoothing.
I was once trying to smooth some p-heart cabinet legs, 4 feet long by
about 1-1/2" thick and wide. I could start on one side, see which way
it planed best, then go about it very carefully, and it would come out
THen I'd turn the leg 90 degrees to the next side, and rip hell out of
it. I'd have to reverse the leg to cut in the opposite direction. You
need to start each side with light, careful planing to see which
direction is best.. A grain twist or direction change can soon trip
you up, though!
I had tearout for which I needed to do some finish sanding, even after
the Lie-Nielson. Since the wood is so hard, regular sandpaper is sorta
I used Norton's "3X" paper, which can actually do a good job on this
wood. I still had some bits of tearout I chose to ignore.
Purpleheart is hell! (but pretty)
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