Wooden Hand Planes

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Review by Kent Shepherd posted 06-30-2009 11:31 PM 8580 views 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Wooden Hand Planes Wooden Hand Planes Wooden Hand Planes Click the pictures to enlarge them

My wife and I celebrated our anniversary last Friday. I thought I was doing really well when I brought Roses home for her. Then I opened my new HNT Gordon Spoke Shave (The one I’ve been lusting after for quite some time) My first thought was—Oh crap, I only got her roses. I must do better next year. She bought me the 1/2” Shoulder Plane for Christmas last year (and no, I wasn’t that good——She’s just an incredible woman) Anyway, back to the review.

So often in tool reviews, you relate the process of unpacking, set-up, problems, trials etc. I simply took it out of the box, inserted the blade and wedge, tapped a couple of times with the hammer, and Wow!!!—-instant shavings. Some minor adjustments and I found myself planeing, and planeing, and planeing—-oh well, you get the picture. You have to understand, I’m a guy who was raised on power tools, and not much else. I really didn’t know how to properly set up a plane until 2 or 3 years ago. I, like so many of you, have discovered the sheer joy of using hand tools. No, I will never give up my jointer or planer, but hand planes just make you feel good. I also included 2 other Gordon planes in this review because they all pretty much set up and operate the same way. The quality is outstanding. Beautiful wood and workmanship. I know there are plenty of fine plane makers in the world today, and don’t want to diminish their work, but these happen to be the planes I have, and I would highly recommend them to anyone looking for a great handplane. There is a learning curve to set up and use wooden planes, but the rewards are incredible. The smoothing plane was my first, about 2 1/2 years ago. I frequently plane highly figured maple with no problem. That hooked me for life. I plane more for the fun of it, than actually doing someting.

On all three planes, I did not hone the blades out of the box. I wanted to see how well they did. I was not disappointed. The blades are all very thick, and ready to use. Easy to maintain also. Normal sharpening methods work well.

The only flaw I’ve found is I don’t have enough of these fine planes.


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Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 4053 days

4 comments so far

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 4352 days

#1 posted 07-01-2009 12:12 AM

I bough a number of German hand planes on German ebay last year. I have not sorted them out yet but they are very nice.Have fun.Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View a1Jim's profile


118065 posts in 4344 days

#2 posted 07-01-2009 12:29 AM

Hey Kent
What more could you want a good woman and she buys you cool tools to boot. You better crank it up a notch next year. Good review and fine planes.


View grimt's profile


24 posts in 4327 days

#3 posted 07-01-2009 03:41 AM

I also have the HNT Gordon Shoulder plane and find it a pleasure to use. I’m currently trying to decide what kind of trying plane to buy. Until I read your post my options were:
1) Buy and fettle an old Stanley #7 or #8
2) Fork out $500+ NZD on a Veritas Bevel up Jointer

Your review reminded me that HNT Gordon make fine planes so thanks for adding yet another variable to my quandry.

Thanks for your review.


View Splinterman's profile


23074 posts in 4128 days

#4 posted 07-01-2009 02:20 PM

Hey Kent,
Great review…..but…..I hear that you are taking your lovely Lady out to dinner this week-end….Yes.!!!!!

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