Plane knob turned on a drill press

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by 489tad posted 04-19-2011 07:41 PM 8432 reads 1 time favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My contractor grade Stanley #4 came with plastic handles. Some years back the tote cracked do to a very cold garage. I loaned the plane to a neighbor who returned it to me with deep scratches in the sole and a huge knick in the blade. He needed it to level a stair case landing. Apparently the flake board and staples were too high to tile over. Anyway I now had to learn how to tune and sharpen a plane. I got the plane working fine but the tote was still cracked. I found plans at Lee Valley and made the tote. Now I needed to get the knob turned. I sent the plastic knob, stock, and a drawing of the knob to a friend, I think that was about a year and half ago. John, no rush on the knob:). (He’s busy with mission work for the people of Haiti). There have been times when I could have use the plane but with no knob it was a no go. I mentioned this to a fellow jock and inspired by Mafe’s drill press knob turning I went for it.
I cut the stock to size, pre-drilled the holes and put the stock on a 1/4” carrage bolt with washers,lock washers and nuts. I knocked off the corners with a block plane. the tool rest is a block of cherry held in the vise clamped to the table. I used a 1/4” chisel to rough the shape. I switched to files then sand paper to get the final shape. The cherry knob and tote have a wax finish. I tried the plane on a piece of cherry. It felt good in my hands and made some nice shavings. It took me about four hours total and I would never do that again! Thank you for looking.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

6 comments so far

View Dan's profile


3653 posts in 4043 days

#1 posted 04-19-2011 08:08 PM

Really nice looking replacements… I have restored a lot of planes but have yet to make new totes or knobs. I actually have a few planes that need replacements so I think I will be trying this soon. I like the Cherry wood.

-- Dan - "Collector of Hand Planes"

View chrisstef's profile


18133 posts in 4169 days

#2 posted 04-19-2011 08:14 PM

Nice work Dan … ive got a few of these i need to do myself. Ill have to dig up Mafe’s post on it. You should ppick up an old handyman for the neighbor to borrow lol.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View dbhost's profile


5777 posts in 4395 days

#3 posted 04-19-2011 09:26 PM

Just think, if you can do that well turning on a jerry rigged drill press, imagine how well you could turn on a real lathe with proper turning tools!

Nice knob and tote by the way. I wouldn’t have thought to use Cherry for something like plane parts… I love the results…

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View David Kirtley's profile

David Kirtley

1286 posts in 4161 days

#4 posted 04-19-2011 10:23 PM

The first one takes a while, then it gets easier. The nice thing is that you can fit it to your hands and way of working. Even if it takes a while, it is a once in a lifetime (or two) bit of work. These last a long time.

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune:

View Ken90712's profile


18051 posts in 4352 days

#5 posted 04-20-2011 12:28 AM

Now that is cleave would not have thought of doing this on the drill press.!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View Don W's profile

Don W

20121 posts in 3730 days

#6 posted 11-01-2012 01:51 PM

nice job!

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics