One of the most useful of all planes is the 22 in (558 mm) try-plane/'jointer No. 07 with 23/8 in (60 mm) cutter. Shorter planes in this category are known as 'fore' for general levelling, and longer planes jointers' for shooting square edges, etc., but the middle size will do everything necessary. Jack-planes can either be 14 in (355 mm) or 15 in (380 mm) long with 2 in (50 mm) or 23/8 in (60 mm) cutter (Nos. 05 or 05V2). The name itself is probably a corruption of 'jackass' or 'Jack of all Trades' and fit for anything; it is, therefore, reserved for the rougher work although it is as much a precision tool as any other. It is often recommended that the jack-plane iron should be ground to a slight
51 Types of plane. (By courtesy of Record Ridgway Tools Ltd)
51 Types of plane. (By courtesy of Record Ridgway Tools Ltd)
Block-plane arc, but while this makes heavy cuts easier it destroys the plane's general usefulness and the cutting edge should be ground truly square, although the corners can be nicked or rounded over if preferred. Smoothing-planes for final surfacing follow the same general pattern and can be either 8 in (203 mm) long with 13/4 in (44 mm) cutter (No. 03), 9 in (228 mm) with 2in (50 mm) cutter (No. 04) or 10 in (254 mm) with 23/8 in (60 mm) cutter (No. 041/2); the middle size is probably the most useful. Detachable cutting edges for the irons have lately been reintroduced after many years, but it is doubtful if they offer any real advantage. All the sizes and numbers quoted above refer to metal planes throughout, with screw-adjustable cutter, lateral lever-actuated depth movement for the cutter and adjustable mouth (the latter movement is rarely used as much as it should be, for a finely set iron and fine mouth are invaluable for surfacing hard or difficult woods). The merit of all these metal planes over their wooden counterparts is their ease of adjustment, but wooden jack- and smoothing-planes are still obtainable and their stouter m|
cutting irons can be an advantage, as there is probably less friction between wood and wood and metal and wood. Some companies take advantage of this by supplying a pre-fabricated beech plane which embodies the easy adjustments of the metal variety.
Again, metal planes are obtainable with corrugated soles which, it is claimed, cut down friction and tend to hold the lubricant applied to the sole. This lubricant should never be oil or soft grease, but a few strokes of a hard candle end or paste wax along the sole will make an astonishing difference.
A smaller version of the smoothing-plane not available in wooden form which can be held in one hand is the metal block-plane, and this 6 in (152 mm) plane is best obtained with an adjustable mouth and cutter. The cheaper versions are not fully adjustable and the cutter position must be set by trial and error. For working large rebates (rabbets) in which a heavy section is to be taken out, a special bench rabbet-plane is obtainable, and for general light rabbeting, etc., the improved rabbet-plane which, if fitted with sliding fence, depth-stop and spur for scoring across the grain ahead of the cutter to prevent tearing out, becomes the rebate- and fillister-plane, although the term 'fillister' is tending to die out. (Rabbet: probably a carpenter's corruption of rebate [to deduct from, to diminish]. Fillister also means a groove or rebate.) Truing up the sides of rebates and cleaning up the shoulders of tenons, etc., can be done with the shoulder rabbet-plane with machined parallel sides and through cutter. This plane is worked with both hands, while the smaller, single-handed version known as the bullnose rabbet-plane usually has a detachable nose, distance-pieces and variable mouth for fine or coarse work. If the nose is detached it becomes a chisel-plane, allowing the cutting-iron to work up to the end of a stopped rebate. Both these planes should have screw adjustment to the cutting-iron which should be ground truly square to the machined body of the plane, as there is no lateral adjustment. For cutting grooves within the body of the work, i.e. away from the edge, either with or across the grain, some form of adjustable grooving-plane is necessary. This should have a sliding fence, depth-stop for determining the finished depth
of the groove, spurs for cross grain and a range of cutters for different widths of groove. In its simplest form it can be purchased as a plough-plane with three cutters, as a standard plough with eight cutters, and as a combination- or multi-plane which will undertake rabbeting, ploughing (grooving), tonguing and grooving, beading, etc., and, if fitted with special bases and cutters, rounding and hollowing. The Record multi-plane, No. 405, is supplied with 23 standard cutters and a range of special-purpose bases and cutters.
The standard plough or multi-plane is usually supplied with two sets of arms permitting grooves to be worked up to 5 in (127 mm) from the edge of the wood, but for greater distances or where the groove or trench is curved on plan then a router-plane is necessary. This has a vertical cranked cutter, rather like a jackboot, which cuts with a chisel action, bevel uppermost, and flat to the wood; the cutter is clamped to a cutter-post and fed down by a knurled screw as the work proceeds until the correct depth is attained. As the square-edged cutter will tend to tear up cross grain a spear-headed smoothing-cutter is provided which cuts with a slicing action.
For the odd occasion a suitable chisel wedged into a block of wood on the principle of the 'Old Woman's Tooth' can be used, but the metal router with its easy adjustability will pay for its keep. Both the multi-plane and hand routers have been superseded in most workshops now by the portable power router.
A useful plane for truing up the shoulders of rebates, grooves, etc.,is the metal side-rebate or edge-trimming plane whose upright sole allows it to be used in narrow spaces. It has two crossed irons allowing right- or left-hand working, detachable nose and reversible depth-stop. Here again the cutting-irons must be very carefully ground at the required angle to give equal projection of the cutting edge.
Was this article helpful?
There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.