Planing oak joinery stock

planing a long rail

I got a new log last week, and have started in on planing it. Daniel & I are finishing up a video about splitting and planing, but there’s lots of that to be done – so here’s a short post about the planes I’m using this week. When I have a lot of pieces to plane, I usually keep several planes going at once. In this case, 5 of them.

5 planes

From the top left to bottom right – an American jointer 28 7/8″ long, a German jointer, 223 1/2″ long. Then another American plane, just a bit shorter, 22″, and an Ulmia (German) smooth plane 9 1/2″ long and a Dutch-style plane ground as a scrub plane. Its body is only 6″ long. Why so many? I tend to set a couple to different depths-of-cut, so that I switch planes rather than adjust irons when I want either a heavier or lighter cut. Depending.

German plane, marked J Holst Hamburg

I dragged this German plane out of the tool chest recently, and have been using it as the primary plane the last few days. I got it years ago from Josh Clark, I bought it because it’s oak. It feels pretty heavy, I weighed it today – it’s 7 lbs 9 oz. The American jointer behind it is more than 5″ longer and weighs just about the same.

Working 4-foot long rails, I was finding this plane easier to get full-length shavings. At first I thought it was about the weight, but I then looked at the placement of the iron in the body.

compare iron placement

The American one on top is 22″ long, its cutting edge is 7″ from the end. The German one at 23 1/2″ long has its edge 9 7/8″ from the end. Finally, the large jointer is 28 7/8″ and its iron is 9 1/8″ from the front end. So the German one has more mass ahead of its iron than the other two. Maybe that accounts for the different feel. The angles the irons bed at are pretty similar. I didn’t measure those…

Here’s the maker’s mark from Holst.

J Holst Hamburg

The internet search I just did wanted to take me to Gustav Holst’s “The Planets” instead of Holst planes. I found one hit, what’s listed as a hornbeam plane – https://www.holzwerken.de/museum/profilhobel/treppenhobel3.phtml One of those views seems to show pronounced medullary rays – similar to the plane I have. I looked up European hornbeam in the wood database – that entry doesn’t mention ray fleck figure – it does discuss the end grain – but I can’t see anything on the end grain of this plane. So I keep thinking it’s oak, the medullary rays look like white oak to me – but maybe it is hornbeam – which is what someone told me 9 years ago – I’m a slow learner. https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2012/10/24/im-an-oak-man/

this picture is from when I bought the plane in 2012

Here’s Josh’s site, if you’ve not seen it before https://www.hyperkitten.com/

Next video for making a joined stool

stiles & planes

While I wait for the legs of the brettstuhl to dry, Daniel & I worked on catching up at the beginning of the joined stool video series. This one will do it, planing the stock. It’s got a couple of blips in the video, I had some trouble with one of the cameras. And some fumbling around on my part – had I been watching Daniel I probably would have had him edit some stumbling out – but in the end, it’s probably good to show it. Yes, I fumble around some too, looking for tools, setting the cap iron too close to the cutting edge & more.

I’ll organize the joined stool playlist when I think of it – now it should be the whole project. When I get going full-tilt on the joined press cupboard there’ll be a lot of videos about that – I’m really looking forward to it. I don’t have a log yet, but some ideas in the works.

Hey, you – your tongue is too long!

 

If your tongue is too long, it can lead to problems. As I found out today when I was fitting the center floor board in a joined chest. Here is the first test-fit of the middle board. It slides under the rear floor rail, and it has tongues cut on each edge, to engage grooves in the boards left & right of it. Seems to be going well, but…

middle-board

It got tight before it came near the front rail, where it will fit into a groove. Front of the chest is to our left in this photo…

floor-board-tested

So I checked a few things to see what was holding things up. Made sure the thickness of the board wasn’t binding against the drawer below this floor. Nope, that was fine. But, I noticed the tongues were bottoming out in the grooves…

tongue-too-long

I pulled it back out, and a few shavings off each edge left a little space for things to work better.

trimmed-tongue

Here is the next test-fit, and at this point I can see that with a good whack it will go all the way into the front rail. (this time front is to the right) But to this point, I hadn’t trimmed the front end yet. So back out again. And that’s why I haven’t beveled the front end yet – if it has to be knocked back out, right now the front end is thick enough to strike it with a mallet. If it were trimmed to fit the groove, it would be too fragile to hit. Yes, I learned this the hard way.

trimmed-tongue-tested

Beveling the front end of the floor boardbevel-front-end

This one is out of sequence – but this is what the “tongue” looks like. A rabbet on the top face, and a broad bevel on the bottom to form the tongue. I saw this version on some chests I first studied way back when, & I use it whenever I’m not copying a specific chest’s construction…you could use a dedicated tongue & groove matched set of planes too. Or one of many other ways to do this…

tongue-detail

Drive it in for real.

hammer-home

Then trim the extra length out back…here I’m bending the saw so my knuckles don’t get chewed up.

sawing

This chest will have 2 full-width drawers. I didn’t have time left to begin tackling the 2nd drawer, (first one’s done) so instead I dug out some molding tools and began cutting the applied moldings that decorate 3 sides of this chest. I hadn’t worked moldings with planes in quite a while…it was fun. For this work, I use methods I learned from Matt Bickford, both from his book & video, and from classes with him. His book is so clear, it’s a great explanation of what can be complicated. work. https://lostartpress.com/products/mouldings-in-practice  and https://www.lie-nielsen.com/product/moldings-in-practice

To begin (after preparing the blanks) first step is to cut rabbets and chamfers for the hollows & rounds to ride on…

rabbet

Here the hollow plane is making a rounded profile on this ogee with fillet molding…

dark-hollow

I was running out of daylight, so I cut three moldings, then began to miter enough to frame one panel. Here’s the planes & moldings:


planes-moldings

And here’s the test-fitted framing. The vertical one on our left will have to be re-done…but it can be used elsewhere, or chopped down for a horizontal. It was nearly dark in the room by this point. Time to come in & write this post. That crooked panel is just plain tough luck. But, as always, I can find old ones that look like that too…I’ll sleep fine tonight.

tested-frame

I forgot to add – still a few spoons left… https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/spoons-for-sale-jan-15-2017/

 

I don’t make sausage meat myself…

PF fore plane
PF fore plane

Our friend Martha is studying local ceramic history for some degree or other. She sent this note the other day. Me, I’m a vegetarian. But I do use a fore plane from time to time, so in the interest of tool-use, I will post it here…

 

“I was reading in an 1851 New England Farmer journal (as they frequently preach against the evils of lead glaze there). There was a sausage recipe submitted by “a subscriber” who makes sausage meat by freezing it, then “I take a fore plane, set rank, and plane it to shavings” Apparently the meat needs very little chopping after that.  It wouldn’t hurt the blade, only add some grease- rust prevention through sausage! Yikes! They didn’t actually leave a name so you don’t really know if it’s by a man or woman, but they put the recipe in the “Ladies Department.”  What exactly is a “fore plane” ? 

Martha”

So – we all use Moxon’s description to understand this tool:

It is called the Fore Plain because it is used before you come to work either with the Smooth Plane, or with the Joynter. The edge of its Iron is not ground upon the straight, as the Smooth Plane, and the Joynter are, but rises with a Convex-Arch in the middle of it; for its Office being to prepare the Stuff for either the Smoothing Plane, or the Joynter, Workmen set the edge of it Ranker than the edge either of the Smoothing Plane or the Joynter; and should the Iron of the Plane be ground to a straight edge, and it be set never so little Ranker on one end of the edge than the other, the Ranker end would (bearing as then upon a point) in working, dig Gutters on Surface of the Stuff; but this Iron (being ground to a Convex- Arch) though it should be set a little Ranker on one end of its edge than on the other, would not make Gutters on the Surface of the Stuff, but (at the most) little hollow dawks on the Stuff, and that more or less, according as the Plane is ground more or less Arching.  Nor is it the Office of this Plane to smooth the Stuff, but only (as I said) to prepare it, that is, to take off the irregular Risings, whether on the sides, or in the middle, and therefore it is set somewhat Ranker, that it may take the irregularities the sooner off the Stuff, that the Smoothing Plane, or the Joynter, may afterwards the easier work it Try. The manner of Trying shall be taught, when I come to Treat of the use of the Rule. 

 

It’s worth your time, believe me

I have much to write about, but this one’s easy for tonight…

Denne handsaga laga av Jan Arendtz var ein del av leveransen av verktøy i 1664. Tilsvarande handtak finnast mellom verktøyet frå Vasaskipet. Også Rålamb har teikning av ei tilsvarande sag. Det er eit fantastisk fint handverk i både bladet og skaftet. Foto: Roald Renmælmo

Do not pass Go, do not collect $200, just get over to Roald’s blog & see the Skoklosters Slott tools in detail like you’ve not seen them before. If you are new to the story, it’s about a castle built in Sweden 1650s-1670s. They ordered a slew of woodworking tools from Holland, and they are still there. with the paperwork.

Roald Renmælmo posted his photos from a recent trip to study the tools. I have linked before to his workbench blog; along with his colleague Tomas Karlsson. Good stuff, they’ve even posted some stuff in English for us uni-linguists!

here’s the link – http://hyvelbenk.wordpress.com/2014/03/21/verktoy-pa-skokloster-slott/

Poor Matt Bickford, undeservedly bumped from the rotation

matt video

Poor Matt Bickford. There I was, gobbling up his new DVD from Lie-Nielsen about how he uses hollows & rounds to make moldings, when the video about Wille Sundqvist arrived. Eject, went Matt. In went Wille.

Now, some time has passed & I’m back to Matt’s disc.http://www.lie-nielsen.com/dvds/moldings-in-practice/

As you can imagine, I’m partial. I’ve got to know Matt & his family through Lie-Nielsen events; took a weekend class with him once to boot. His teaching method is excellent.  The way he breaks down these moldings is simplicity itself. Things are presented very clearly on this disc, you’ll find it a great companion to his book of nearly the same name. It’s almost 3 hours’ worth of instruction. Makes me itch to get out some planes & make moldings…

here’s an earlier look at Matt’s work:

https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2013/03/04/ive-always-known-they-were-good/

The book: http://lostartpress.com/collections/books/products/mouldings-in-practice 

 

Some Dutch planes

I had a few minutes recently to take a quick look at a grouping of 18th-century Dutch planes. Like this:

overview

I have always like these planes since I first saw some 20 years ago on Cape Cod.  Several of this batch are panel-raising planes, most have skewed mouths. And, all are carved. Some better, some pretty good. They often are trimmed at the back end like this one. Makes handling them easier, more comfortable I guess.

 

skewed mouth smooth plane
skewed mouth smooth plane

 

 

sole
sole

This one’s got a straight mouth, longer body than the ones above. Not like a jointer, though…I’d guess about 14″.

 

longer smooth plane
longer smooth plane

better view
better view

 

carved mouth
carved mouth

Here’s a couple of wedges that got away from planes…

carved wedges
carved wedges

One of the original irons, quite thin. Tapered in thickness and width.

iron
iron

Quite thin, not like 19th-century plane irons.

tapered iron
tapered iron

Here’s some of those scroll planes – a “gerfschaaf” in Dutch.  Gerrit van der Sterre says it is sometimes called a “hobbelaar” or “rocking plane.” Says the sole can be straight, hollow or rounded in cross-section, as well as straight or curved lengthwise. Thinks they are for roughing out… these are small. maybe 8″ – 10″ long. Not more…

2 scroll planes

two scroll planes

scroll plane

 

Then the full-blown jointer plane. Munged up a bit, but still a great tool. It makes me want to make one next week – but I have to wait til I finish a bunch of other stuff!

 

 

 

jointer
jointer

tote profile

 

jointer tote

 

 

 

scrolls

Gerrit van der Sterre’s book is called Four Centuries of Dutch Planes and planemakers, published in Leiden by Primavera Press 2001.

Here is a plane from Randle Holme’s Academie of Armory or Blazon, 1688. Showing a Dutch-style plane, used in England. Was it an English style too? Or is it imported, or used by Dutch craftsmen working in England?

smooth plane dutch style

the cat’s out of the bag: that old joiner’s shop you saw here this fall….

Once again, remember this place? I’ve posted it a couple of times, https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2012/08/10/workbenches-lathe/ and https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2012/10/21/tool-racks/ and one more: https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2012/10/26/photos-from-a-great-day-of-study/

 

18th-century shop

 

Now you can read part of the story, from today’s Boston Globe:

http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/regionals/south/2012/11/23/eighteenth-century-woodworker-shop-found-duxbury-said-one-kind/ou50acy7YQ5xwTlEFI05XK/story.html

(Ahhh…the link now only gives me a preview – says I need to subscribe. If the link fails you, do a search for “Luther Sampson Duxbury shop” or something like that. Might be that I reached the monthly limit on freebies at Boston.com…)

I hope you can read it, it’s exciting stuff. Kudos to Michael Burrey for seeing it for what it is…and to the many who have worked thus far on documentation, research, etc.

 

 

TOOLS FOR SALE: BRACES ETC

red tailed hawk backlit & leaving

 

I haven’t had a chance lately to sift through some of the Jennie Alexander tools I have left for sale. Had a little time yesterday to get  some photos taken. Now I have posted some braces and a few odds and ends today. First come, first etc. Shipping’s on you. Any questions, email me. If you want any of these, leave a comment, or send an email to me at Peter.Follansbee@verizon.net

thanks

PF

https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/tools-for-sale-braces-etc/

I’m an oak man

I have lots of planes. Ones I use everyday, ones I use occasionally, some I keep for students in workshops. New ones, old ones. Some I’ve made.

a few planes

 

I have just sold lots of Jennie Alexander’s planes. Any of which I could have kept for myself, no questions asked. Some I did.

So what on Earth was I doing even looking at planes last week at the Lie-Nielsen Hand Tool Event at the Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking? Not the LN planes, but a bunch of them at Josh Clark’s table, Hyperkitten Tools.

Hyperkitten Tools

Hyperkitten Tools 2

When I spoke to Josh that morning, I saw a plane that really caught my eye. I told him he’d better sell it during the day, because I did not want to have to buy it. When I went by late in the afternoon, there it still was. So now, it’s in my shop.

jointer plane

a “small” jointer as Alexander used to call such a thing. About 26″ long, an iron somewhere around 2 1/2″ wide or so. I forget exactly. Great condition. But so what? I sold several of JA’s jointers in similar shape. Here’s a detail

what do you notice?

IT”S OAK!

I have only seen one other oak plane that I can remember & I bought that one too. It was a broken little live oak plane:

oak plane body

The new one from Josh is probably German, marked “Holst Hamburg” on its toe. Great chamfers, very heavy plane. Condition is excellent. It’s my new favorite plane. Got to shuffle some around to make room for it. I sharpened it up on Sunday and it’s shaving nicely.

new favorite

I was very impressed with the tools Josh has. I spent some time working beside Freddy Roman & kept commenting on various tools Freddy was using. Again & again he said, “I got that from Josh…” Some were planes I had never seen before. Lots of British planes, and other tools too. Josh showed me a nice lefty Kent-pattern hewing hatchet. Very reasonable. Sign up for his blog if you haven’t already. I don’t want to have to keep buying tools from him…so you should save me the trouble.

http://www.hyperkitten.com/tools/ForSale/Tools_FS.php

Thanks to all who have ordered spoons this week. I’m packing & shipping soon. A few are left, and another batch in a month or so.

PF