Shop made smoothing plane

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Project by RS Woodworks posted 10-09-2013 05:45 AM 4957 views 14 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here’s a little (big) smoothing plane I made recently. I wanted a nice high angle wooden smoother for tougher woods, and here is what I came up with.
It is made of birch, kingwood, and sports a 3/8” thick ipe sole. The wedge is also kingwood, and like the front top edges of the sides, has just a touch of sapwood that kinda blends nicely with the birch. The strike button is also kingwood.
The blade is a vintage Scottish made iron, marked “Carrick & Craig, Glasgow”. At a full 1/4” thick at the business end (tapered), I chose to go without a cap iron. The blade sits at 57 degrees and with a slight backbevel, has an effective cutting angle of about 58 degrees. The mouth is not quite as tight as I would like for a fine smoother, but it handled the curly cherry and birdseye maple I threw at it without blinking an eye. No tearout at all.
Overall I’m very happy with this plane and will likely make a matching block plane to go with it.

This one is 9 3/4” long, 2 5/8” wide, with a 2 1/8” wide iron. It’s quite hefty for a woody, I’m guessing about 3.5lbs or so.

As you can see, it left the BE maple glassy smooth!

Thanks for looking. As always, comments / questions / critique welcome.

-- I restore the finest vintage tools! If you need a nice plane, saw, marking tool or brace, please let me know!

17 comments so far

View 489tad's profile


3979 posts in 4019 days

#1 posted 10-09-2013 12:59 PM

Beautiful woods. The next one I make will be a high angle. Thank you for posting.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View sras's profile


5867 posts in 4137 days

#2 posted 10-09-2013 01:31 PM

Wow! That is one beautiful plane.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Gibernak's profile


124 posts in 2854 days

#3 posted 10-09-2013 03:44 PM

that’s the stuff I like, very nice work. thanks for sharing

View Lynn Bradford.'s profile

Lynn Bradford.

71 posts in 2870 days

#4 posted 10-09-2013 03:59 PM

Good job! Very snazzy!

-- Lynn Bradford | Indiana | A poor excuse is better than none.

View bfergie's profile


83 posts in 3324 days

#5 posted 10-09-2013 04:02 PM

Beautiful plane!

-- Fergie in CO

View Don W's profile

Don W

19889 posts in 3575 days

#6 posted 10-09-2013 04:03 PM

nice looking plane!

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 3493 days

#7 posted 10-09-2013 04:22 PM

Well done. What a knockout.

-- Brian Timmons -

View Ken90712's profile


17972 posts in 4197 days

#8 posted 10-09-2013 05:39 PM

A reak beauty! I just love these home made tools….

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View kocgolf's profile


408 posts in 3186 days

#9 posted 10-09-2013 07:11 PM

Wonderful design! I am more a weekend warrior with mostly power tools, but I long for hand tools. I had been considering a smoothing plane as my next purchase, and was wondering about making one. What is the advantage to a high angle vs a low/standard angle?

View Northwest29's profile


1707 posts in 3498 days

#10 posted 10-09-2013 07:19 PM

That is one beautiful hand plane, almost, too pretty to use. I would like to make one of those myself one day. It’s on my bucket list anyway. Nicely done. Did you build this from some plans?

-- Ron, "Curiosity is a terrible thing to waste."

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 3300 days

#11 posted 10-09-2013 08:18 PM

Very attractive plane!

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View bobasaurus's profile


3711 posts in 4192 days

#12 posted 10-09-2013 08:44 PM

Fantastic-looking plane. I love the sapwood on the kingwood. The shape of the body looks very comfortable to use, too.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View ColonelTravis's profile


1976 posts in 2902 days

#13 posted 10-09-2013 09:51 PM

Lovely, hope I can crank out something like that one of these days.

View tsangell's profile


216 posts in 3701 days

#14 posted 10-09-2013 10:21 PM

kocgolf, the high cutting angle tends to reduce tear-out in figured or difficult woods, with the tradeoff that it is more difficult to push.

What’s the finish on this plane? It is lovely.

View aussiedave's profile


3114 posts in 2832 days

#15 posted 10-09-2013 10:33 PM

Very nice plane, the wood is beautiful and judging by the shavings in the background it cut smoothly plus the thicker blade would add to the smoothness…excellent job.

-- Dave.......If at first you don’t succeed redefine success....

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