Reply by MikeUT

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Posted on What am I missing? Beginner tool set.

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195 posts in 1843 days

#1 posted 07-18-2017 02:39 PM

Stanley Bailey #5 plane. There are so many different ones on eBay: 1/2”, 1/4”, different lengths, etc. what should I look for?

Also, what sharpening equipment is mandatory for them?


I’m not sure what you mean by different lengths of planes. you might be seeing 5, 5 1/4, 5 1/2 planes. The fraction denotes a different width. Stick with a regular #5, it is the best entry-level plane. It is the most versatile and the cheapest. Go watch how Paul Sellars restores a plane. Look up the ‘Scary Sharp’ method of sharpening.

A plane is a good idea, buying wood and making a workbench is a great idea. You’ll need a bench and it will help you hone your skills. When I first started out, I focused on the projects I wanted to build and planned my tool purchases accordingly. Don’t spend $200 on a router if you need a router, more clamps, and a saw to complete the project.

One more sliver of advice: Start checking craigslist regularly for tools. You get much more bang for your buck and there is no difference between a second-hand tool and a third-hand tool. You can buy a functional $50 router that will work just fine until you are ready to upgrade to something better. Then you can sell the router for the same $50 and put it in to something else. It’s actually pretty easy to sell a used tool for more than you paid for it if you are patient and found a good deal.

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