Ancient Bucket Master Class with Stefang #1: DIY convex plane - so far

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Blog entry by daltxguy posted 02-05-2011 12:30 PM 4074 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Ancient Bucket Master Class with Stefang series Part 2: Plane body glue up »

I am following Stefang’s master class on building a Nordic bucket using the medieval ways

The first steps are to make the tools required to make the bucket.

The most important tool is a plane to curve the inside of the staves of the the bucket and in true medieval fashion, this is being done with largely hand tools ( ok, and a bandsaw from well into the future).

This blog series is to show my progress of the master class.

Anyone can follow along and jump in any time to his class. His blog is excellently written and photographed and others following along ( particularly mafe and his progress blog provide excellent additional resources)

So far I’ve chosen some recycled Rimu for my plane body, planed, squared and sized the body to my stanley #5 blade ( 2”).

The sole will be a piece of wood I had lying around which seemed straight grained, clear and hard. I thnk it is a piece of walnut but not actually sure.

I skipped a lot of steps and just show them here together:

Then I skipped ahead a bit and decided to mark and grind my plane blade.
I decided I wanted a slightly bigger bucket than Mike ( stefang) is building ( his is about 8”) and I wanted mine closer to 10” ( actually 25cm) so my radius is set to 125mm

I don’t actually have a compass, so I cobbled one together from a set of calipers. It’s equipped with a felt tip marker for marking the radius on the plane blade

Marked out the radius on the blade and ground to shape using a hand powered grinder

And then the results after about an hour or so! This is before honing

And that’s all I got so far but I have everything ready to start assembling the plane now…

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

6 comments so far

View mafe's profile


12591 posts in 3826 days

#1 posted 02-05-2011 01:21 PM

It seems like you are close now, the rest is ‘just’ to do it, the thinking is over.
I look forward to see it.
Some wonderful tools you have there, I love that hand grinder, do you have to spinn the handle all the time, or does it run when in speed a little by it self?
Best thoughts, and congratulation,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View stefang's profile


17039 posts in 4071 days

#2 posted 02-05-2011 01:41 PM

Great work Steve, and without some of the higher tech toys some of us have. I think you will fine that once the plane is finished, the rest will fall into place quite well. Your rounding of the plane iron came out really well too. It’s wonderful to see your results so far. Keep up the good work.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View moshel's profile


865 posts in 4420 days

#3 posted 02-05-2011 08:01 PM

excellent stuff! the grinding looks perfect! and i am still sorting my workshop (sigh) while everyone is having fun!

-- The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep...

View bigike's profile


4057 posts in 4025 days

#4 posted 02-05-2011 08:12 PM

wow nice work everythings looken great so far.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://[email protected]

View daltxguy's profile


1373 posts in 4651 days

#5 posted 02-05-2011 08:53 PM

Thanks everyone. I was also quite happy with the grinding. I will explain how I honed it in the next update. It’s quite tricky but it is now shaving the hairs off my arm.

Mads, the grinding wheel is connected to the handle by gears. It will keep going after I stop turning but not enough to grind with as it will stop quickly with a bit of friction. Grinding is pretty much a two handed operation, one to turn, one to hold the blade but since you have complete control over the speed, this is not as bad as it might seem.

Thanks for the encouragement!

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

View swirt's profile


5109 posts in 3708 days

#6 posted 02-06-2011 06:28 AM

Nice work. I have a smaller version of that hand grinder. When I need both hands on the blade, I have my 2Yr old turn the crank. Right now he thinks that is the coolest thing ever. I fear I have to get all my grining out of the way before he turns three and starts hating manual labor ;)

-- Galootish log blog,

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