I went to a Lie-Nielsen Hand Tool Event last weekend in Dallas (pictures)

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Blog entry by BTimmons posted 04-14-2014 06:59 PM 1599 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This weekend I drove to Dallas and attended a Lie Nielsen sponsored hand tool event at Wood World of Texas. A few reps from Lie Nielsen were present with their amazing goodies. I don't want to bother resizing everything through Photobucket's slow as molasses interface, here's a link to details and the hi-res pictures.

-- Brian Timmons -

6 comments so far

View Oldtool's profile


2762 posts in 2521 days

#1 posted 04-14-2014 07:26 PM

It looked like a pretty interesting show & display Brian, especially the vintage tools like those with Mr. Dowd. Did you really notice an improved operation with the Lie-Nielsen smoother?, or could it be they went to great lengths to sharpen and set the tool correctly for the show?
I very much enjoy using hand tools, and I’ve got 5 metal planes (4 Stanley & 1 Record) and quite a few wooden ones. I’ve read a lot about the restoration, setup and use of old planes, and I’ll agree the thicker iron provided by the high end manufacturers like L-N provide better chatter prevention, but beyond that, I question the actual value versus the price. The remainder of the plane is simply a carrier, a devise to hold the blade.
Well, anyway, just curious about you L-N opinion. I’ve never had the opportunity to actually touch one myself.
Thanks fir showing.

-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 2816 days

#2 posted 04-14-2014 07:40 PM

All of the planes I handled were excellent, the smoother included. They had a sharpening setup in the corner with waterstones, but I didn’t see them touch up a single edge on any of the tools all day. This is with dozens of people using them the whole time. I guess they keep those there in case an edge gets nicked somehow.

Compared to my circa 1910 Stanley #4, the Lie-Nielsen did seem more of a smooth operator, just a touch more buttery. That could come down to sharpening prowess or a number of other factors. So while I acknowledge that brands and marketing aren’t everything, Lie-Nielsen did make a very favorable impression. Rather than leaving me saying “I’m not sure what the hype is about”, I was thinking, “I get the hype now. These are damn good tools.”

As I mentioned in the link, what really struck me the most was the tapered dovetail saw. I hadn’t handled a saw that high quality before, and after a few minutes of using one, it’s rocketed straight to the top of my “got to have” tool list.

-- Brian Timmons -

View jawqn87's profile


26 posts in 2930 days

#3 posted 04-14-2014 08:14 PM

I went to the one in Chicago that was April 10th and 11th. I had the same impressions that you did, the tools were sharp and there was plenty of space there for people to try the tools out. The L-N people were very helpful with an questions or even some techniques for certain tools. They helped me with my scraper sharpening dilemma. I saw the sharpening station in use, generally explaining how to sharpen the tools that people were using.

I went to make sure that I would like the #7 that I had my eye on. I most certainly did, though, I did make some adjustments to it. In the process, I might have added the #4 1/2 to my list of tools that I want. I ended up ordering the #7 with a 50 degree frog from the event. The guy taking the order was very helpful and explained everything very well.

Compared to my Craftsmen smoother (circa 1950) the #4 was easier to push through the wood due to the extra heft of the plane, even though it didn’t feel too much heavier. If I have the opportunity, I would definitely go to one of these events again.

View barecycles's profile


257 posts in 2659 days

#4 posted 04-14-2014 10:54 PM

Well shazbot! How did I miss that?

I’ve been way too busy lately, I really wish I could have attended. I see it was not too far from me.

-- Sweeping up sawdust in Texas

View AandCstyle's profile


3202 posts in 2588 days

#5 posted 04-14-2014 11:36 PM

Dang! I wish I could have been there. I like WoodWorld just for drooling at all the different species they have and this would have been icing on the cake. Thanks for the report.

-- Art

View wunderaa's profile


248 posts in 2533 days

#6 posted 04-15-2014 01:47 AM

Dang! Missed it and it was right down the road!!

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