Swooshy smoothing plane

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Project by Dave Polaschek posted 03-15-2019 08:23 PM 1352 views 2 times favorited 46 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a smoothing plane I made for the 2019 Spring Surprise Swap.
My recipient was Jerry, aka Turns4Wood The plane body is a sandwich of birch, African mahogany, and elm with an ipe sole. The elm was spalted and has been stabilized. The wedge is pear. The blade is at 45°︎ so it’s fairly general purpose.

The looks of the plane are roughly based on a 1935 Auburn Speedster. I think that’s a pretty good looking car, and kept it in mind while I was shaping the plane body. I think I did ok, and definitely a lot better than my first try, which looks more like a VW Beetle.

The plane uses the Veritas small plane kit with an O-1 blade.

Rough shaping was done with a bandsaw, then a belt-sander, and finally hand-sanding using the sanding blocks I got in one of my first swaps. Thanks again for those, Pooh!

The wedge is a piece of stabilized pear. I got the pear from HokieKen, and it was pretty soggy, so I wasn’t sure if it would stabilize well, but I dried it in the oven without it cracking, and after it was stabilized, I carved in my mark. Until now I had burned the mark using a small laser engraver, but that died so I carved it by hand, and then filled the carved lines with black wood filler. I need some more practice carving.

I sanded up to 240 grit. Finish is two coats of linseed oil, followed by three coats of blonde shellac.

I sent the plane to Jerry in a hand-made wooden box, but that’s a separate project.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

46 comments so far

View GR8HUNTER's profile


8337 posts in 1765 days

#1 posted 03-15-2019 08:33 PM

one very beautiful plane you have made there Dave reminds me of Kuffys 57 plane GREAT JOB :<))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN :<))

View Kelster58's profile


759 posts in 1593 days

#2 posted 03-15-2019 08:41 PM

Wow, that’s a great idea and a very nice plane. AWESOME job Dave !!!

-- K. Stone “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” ― Benjamin Franklin

View EarlS's profile


4398 posts in 3401 days

#3 posted 03-15-2019 08:57 PM

Smooth very smooth…... I like it!!

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

7245 posts in 1635 days

#4 posted 03-15-2019 09:00 PM

Thanks Tony, Kelly, and Earl. It was a fun one to make, too. First stabilized wood I’ve used in one of my own projects (except for the prototype).

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View Bill Berklich's profile

Bill Berklich

1179 posts in 1441 days

#5 posted 03-15-2019 09:12 PM

Gotta say that is a cool plane. Very graceful Though could use fenders ;-) well done.

-- Bill - Rochester MI

View Oldtool's profile


3195 posts in 3243 days

#6 posted 03-15-2019 09:16 PM

Nice, very nice indeed. You do excellent detail work, and wood grain selection – those spalted sides look super.
What is the finish?

-- "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 Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

7245 posts in 1635 days

#7 posted 03-15-2019 09:29 PM

Oh! The finish is linseed oil and then three coats of blonde shellac. I should go back and add that to the write-up.


-- Dave - Santa Fe

View oldrivers's profile


2517 posts in 2619 days

#8 posted 03-15-2019 10:59 PM

That is a Beautiful Plane, Dave. I like the style you based this model on one Beautiful Automobile, Thanks for sharing that aspect and in including a photo of the 1935 Auburn Speedster one of my favorites.

-- Soli Deo gloria!

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

7245 posts in 1635 days

#9 posted 03-15-2019 11:09 PM

Thanks! It felt pretty good in my hand, too.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View Tom Regnier's profile

Tom Regnier

506 posts in 3600 days

#10 posted 03-15-2019 11:17 PM

That’s some pretty fine work Dave…just beautiful.

View Oni's profile


77 posts in 940 days

#11 posted 03-15-2019 11:26 PM

This plane looks amazing! Great job.

View jeffswildwood's profile


4876 posts in 3030 days

#12 posted 03-15-2019 11:38 PM

Very nice job buddy. A lot of skill went into this.

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way that says "I meant to do that".

View duckmilk's profile


4468 posts in 2377 days

#13 posted 03-15-2019 11:42 PM

I like the shape Dave. I’ll bet it’s pretty comfy to handle. Kudos!

-- "Duck and Bob would be out doin some farming with funny hats on." chrisstef

View builtinbkyn's profile


3027 posts in 1993 days

#14 posted 03-15-2019 11:47 PM

Smooth work Dave! Add some wheels and you could have entered that in the soapbox derby ;) Cool plane.

-- Bill, Yo! Brooklyn & Steel City :)

View LittleBlackDuck's profile


6925 posts in 1873 days

#15 posted 03-15-2019 11:59 PM

Simply COOL DP... that is definitely not a plain plane… !

Sometimes I wonder whether items like that should reside in a display cabinet rather than rough-it-out (or is it out the rough) in the workshop.

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

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