Let me start with the #45 (or #55 if you want the Cadillac model)
Like a chisel plane, it has no "mouth" and no "chip breaker", both
needed for fine, controlled shavings. THAT means that the wood
must be as close to MDF as you can find because the iron WILL try
and follow the grain. Not a problem when cutting "downhill"
- but if the grain changes direction and you start cutting "uphill" . .
I picked up an old #45 at one of the City of Austin Garage
Sales - for a wopping $80. Also picked up the T&G plane
with the flip around fence (fence in position 1 to cut
the groove, flip it around and cut one side of the tongue
then go to the other side of the board and cut the other
side. Spent lots and lots of time getting all the "irons"
flat backed and sharp and still had "challenges" getting
them to work - even adequately.
But if you want to dabble a bit before jumping in with
both feet, check out the LN Beading Tool. It's a beautiful
shiny bronze spoke shave like tool with a set of neat
scraper/scratcher type cutters that'll do beads and half
round grooves, etc.
For the results these types of planes "do", a router
bit will do it a lot better and a lot faster with better
The larger of the two router planes is a tool that
lets you fine tune the depth of a dado or rabbet/
rebate. Also comes in handy for leveling the
"field"/background around a carving.
Another handy hand plane is an adjustable
mouth block plane. Chamfer/ease edges, chamfer
the ends of tenons to make it easier to align with
a mortise etc.. Better yet, the LN Rabbet Block
Plane - a block plane with a special iron that,
at the bottom 3/4 of an inch, is just slightly
wider than the plane body, which has openings
on both sides to accomodate the special iron.
Works like a block plane AND lets you trim
up tenons and deepen a rabbet/rebate a little.
A much overlooked neander tool is the marking
knife. Pencils are great for writing and drawing
but not good enough for joint layout marks AND
scribe lines can't be rubbed off - accidentally
or by intent. You want a "left" and "right" single
bevel knife, each with a long bevel and sharp
just more to confuse you
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