Toolmaking
September 1, 2007
Entry Details
 

# 609
Raney Nelson
Flemington, NJ
Dimensions (inches):  
  Width:   1-7/8
  Height:   2-1/4
  Depth:   6
Materials:   220 Cartridge Brass, O1 tool steel, Cocobolo

I have lusted after infill planes since I first saw one about 2 years ago.  Finally, a post from a fellow woodworker and this contest conspired to give me the inspiration to take a stab at making my own. Because I have very little experience with metalworking, I decided to work from a very simple design for a small smoother designed for work on tricky woods. The blade is bedded at 55-degrees, and is 1/4-inch O1 steel.  The mouth was carefully filed for the tightest opening that would still pass a fairly thin shaving. Because the plane is relatively short, and the blade rather forward of the centerline I chose to extend the sole about an inch forward of the sides to increase the effective registration surface of the plane.
 

There are very few 'decorative' components to the plane. There are simple chamfers on the edges of the side plates, and at the top and bottom of the front and rear faces. The front and rear have very gentle radii, and rounded edges for comfort.  The plane is equally comfortable when used one handed, or two.
 

The plane functions extremely well on tricky grain, and fills a niche in my handplane arsenal. The relatively high mass for its size, high bedding angle, and tight throat make it an excellent performer and I consider this first foray into infill-making a definite success.
 

Judges Comments
Brian : simple and honest form, good workmanship
CS : This was perhaps the best functioning finish plane in the bunch. The mouth is extremely tight. The iron is very well-bedded. The plane cuts and cuts and cuts and is hard to put down. My only quibbles with the tool were cosmetic – there were a couple gaps around some rivets.
Clarence : Nice user with good detail.

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