Making an Infill Plane for Those of us Who Don't Like Working with Metal

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Project by Adam posted 06-26-2010 06:34 PM 22804 views 71 times favorited 27 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I wanted a Infill but could not afford one and metal is really not my specialty. The answer was to take a $2.50 knock off Stanley # 4 and grind out the guts and stuff it with Mahogany. I bought a cheep tapp and die set and a small amount of 1/2” thick brass for $5 and made the lever cap with a stationary belt sander. The Brass is fairly soft and was easy to shape with only sand paper and a 1/2 round file. I tapped a 1/2” hole thought he top center for the cap screw, which is a stainless steel bolt with the top ground round. I tapped two holes into the sides of the cap and tapped it with 1/8” tapp and took 1/4” brass rod chucked it in the drill press and filed one end down so that it could be threaded. I used a hacksaw to cut a slot in the lever cap screws for easy removal.

I shaped the infill and clamped it in plane and then drilled and tapped it through the sides and attached it with 1/4” brass screws. I tapered the tops of the holes to allow the heads of the Screws to seat right in but I left them proud so that I could sand/file them flush with the sides and remove the screw head. They were pretty tight but I epoxy them in anyway so they would not come loose.

The blade is O1 tool steel I got from a friend that works at a machine shop. it is 3/16” thick and ground at 30 degrees and bedded at 55 degrees for tough grain and overall smoothing.

The hardest part was the bed for the blade and getting it perfect along with the holes in the sides for the Lever cap, which you can see I screw up by the elongated holes. Oh well next time it will be better.

It is very heavy compared to what I started with, but the heft helps with the momentum of the plane and it cut very nicely. I chose not to use an adjustor as it is intended to take very light shavings and once it is set up it most likely not be changed.

Hope you like and as always all questions and comments are welcome.

Thanks for looking.

-- Adam, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada

27 comments so far

View Woodwrecker's profile


4240 posts in 4909 days

#1 posted 06-26-2010 07:21 PM

Boy O Boy, talk about making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear!
Kid, you could go in to business doing that!
That thing is a beauty and I bet you get a ton of use out of it.
Nice Job !!!

View CampD's profile


1833 posts in 4819 days

#2 posted 06-26-2010 07:26 PM

Very nice job, good use of old tools.
I have a couple old stanleys laying around that may just be on the list

-- Doug...

View OttoH's profile


891 posts in 4343 days

#3 posted 06-26-2010 07:37 PM

Wow! That is a gorgeous plane you have made for yourself. It looks like it would be quite comfortable to use.

Great Job!

-- I am responsible for how I respond to everything in my life - - Deadwood SD

View canadianchips's profile


2632 posts in 4330 days

#4 posted 06-26-2010 09:28 PM

Very Very nice.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View Bob A in NJ's profile

Bob A in NJ

1369 posts in 5332 days

#5 posted 06-26-2010 11:09 PM

Very clever indeed.

-- Bob A in NJ

View swirt's profile


7092 posts in 4305 days

#6 posted 06-27-2010 02:51 AM

Very nice. Are you sure that was a Stanley knockoff. It looks like it was a Stanley Handyman not that it had any value…it looks plenty valuable now. Great work.

-- Galootish log blog,

View Richard 's profile


394 posts in 4454 days

#7 posted 06-27-2010 04:10 AM

That looks like a plane I can use. It looks inviting to the touch and I bet it would suite its purpose well.

-- Richard Boise, Idaho

View michelletwo's profile


2795 posts in 4349 days

#8 posted 06-27-2010 01:03 PM

CLEVER & resourceful.. use it with joy!

View marcfromny's profile


45 posts in 4692 days

#9 posted 06-27-2010 04:58 PM

I’m so glad I found these pics! I’ve been wanting to do that for a very long time, maybe now I’ll attempt it. Great job!

View YorkshireStewart's profile


1130 posts in 5234 days

#10 posted 06-27-2010 05:23 PM

What a superb idea – beautifully executed Adam. Thanks for sharing it.

-- Res severa verum gaudium - True pleasure is a serious business.

View mafe's profile


13658 posts in 4422 days

#11 posted 06-27-2010 07:58 PM

Hi Adam,
Thats really a wonderful job you have done. I’m deeply impressed.
Can you tell me what the advantage of a infill plane are compared to a ‘normal’ no.4 plane?
Best thoughts, and deep respect,

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

View falegniam's profile


335 posts in 4286 days

#12 posted 06-28-2010 04:54 AM

for one who doesn’t like to work with metal, you do a very nice job.

-- If you work you eat - If you don't work, you eat, drink, and sleep.

View Don Alexander's profile

Don Alexander

14 posts in 5022 days

#13 posted 06-28-2010 02:43 PM

I second that! Your metal work is beautiful and I wouldn’t even attempt that!

-- Don Alexander, Jacksonville, Florida

View Adam's profile


85 posts in 4395 days

#14 posted 06-29-2010 01:06 AM

Mafe, some of the advantages are Mass. Tight mouth. Thick iron. Solid bedding. 55-degree bed angle for gnarly grain and it Looks cool.

-- Adam, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 4619 days

#15 posted 07-21-2010 10:56 PM

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