from a pile of chisels to a smattering of planes

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Blog entry by garethmontreal posted 04-10-2020 02:03 AM 1152 reads 0 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch

First of all thanks to everyone who gave me advice on how to proceed on the pile of chisels. The general consensus of 80 grit sandpaper paper belts have improved things drastically in terms of flattening the blacks so thank you all. Unfortunately it’s going to have to be by hand. Even with a wife as wonderful and patient and supportive and understanding as mine there are limits. I am pretty sure belt sanding chisels in the living in the middle of the night is understandably a bridge to far. Also unfortunately I have to order all the components necessary for my new chisel plan off the internet as I can’t really leave the apartment under the Cora virus threat. I’ve got a history of lung problems (I actually caught Spanish flu a decade ago working as a chef in England and it literally almost killed me). So I’ve had a bit of time on my hands. As such I figured I’d take stock of what is going to comprise of the second part of my tool rehab series #2: a smattering of planes. I have to admit that up until about 3 weeks a go (when i started doing some research in order to understand what exactly i had in terms of planes) my knowledge of planes was pretty minimal.
I mean of course i used them at work on numerous occasions and could appreciate the difference between a decent user and a piece of junk. but that is about it. I didn’t know what a frog was. And when i began collection older tools starting about a year and a half ago I was definitely not prepared or willing too start collecting planes in a big way (my tool obsession of choice are antique British saws). If im being honest I wanted to stay away from planes because I know that they are by far the most collectable woodworking tool and the moment and there is such a vast array of different kinds of planes and these planes not only vary wildly in price but also in quality. Added to that of course is the fact are so many people actively collecting with years of experience and knowledge ahead i figured that it was a bad idea to even think about collecting planes actively without doing the proper research first. That said i have over the past year and a half acquired about 20 or so planes and spokshaves generally i got them as part of mixed tool lots where there other items i was more interested in as well picking up the odd plane from second stores or garage sales for 5 or 10 bucks. So all this is to say any advice from people with a greater knowledge of planes then me (which would be pretty much everybody ) would be greatly appreciated. so with out further idea here is the collection i have amassed so far.

I thought the best place to start would be to quickly deal with the garbage planes i will not be using.

on the far left is a blue block plane with no marking that feels like its made out of tinn and the front and rear metal raised pieces are actually spot welded to the body. In the middle is a no 5 plane made by este from what i could gather it was made shortly after ww2 in west Germany given the dire state of German industry at the time its hardly surprising that this plane is unwieldy unbalanced and poorly manufactured the iron has deep ridges across its entire body making incredibly unsmooth to work with. But it is the plane on the far left that really takes to the prize for worst plane i own. It is a no 5 plane made a company named plomb that produced planes from 1944-48 for craftsmen as their budget model (i know right craftsmen actually had a budget subsidiary). This plane is the most heavy unwieldy no 5 i have ever held.

As you can see from this picture they couldnt even be bothered to even make pretence of cleaning up hte sides of the plane and removing the slag or sharp ridges running the entire length of the plane. And of course the hulking behemoth fitted with a flimsy cast steel frog just to add insult to injury.

I hate to say it but there will be no rehab for these three planes they are to far gone. I will be keeping th last iron monstrosity near at hand though in case society collapses as it would make a solid bludgeon. Okay im going to end this post here because i dont want to taint the rest of my planes by making them share a blog post with these three.

-- it never ends well if you start by unscrewing the split nuts

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