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Brand new handplane set up?

3507 Views 4 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  KentS
I was just wondering everyone has a plane restoration project on every site in every book but you hardly hear anything about the setting up of a new handplane? I know how to set one up i just want to know how other people set up their new planes when they come across one on ebay from a friend in a store etc. I'm talkin about all brands of new planes, i also know lie's come ready to use but i also hear of people still going through a process of setting one up by honeing the blade lightly sanding the sole to make shure it's as flat as posible etc.

My question here is what is a good or you LJer's think is a good or even a great way to set a new plane up? ;)
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I personally think most people over think it. Flatten the back, sharpen the blade, make sure the chipbreaker is tight against the blade and not too far back, and make sure the throat is tight enough to match the work. Set the blade depth and get to work. It is wood we are working with, not precision machinery. The sole does not have to be flat within 0.005 in. Wood moves and compresses. Getting out your micrometer is a waste of time.

Of course that I my opinion and many will disagree. C'est la vie.

Keep it clean and keep the rust off of it and it will last forever.
To start with, I work the iron. Like a cheap chisel, the back side usually has deep mill marks, and flattening it is a bear of a job. Once done, and a good honed bevel on it, then its to work until I see something else needing fettling. If you are going to use it on a shooting board, then its best to square up your side of choice to the sole, but that is only after you make sure its going to plane flat first.

Step two is to wax the sole. Smoothing or flattening is on an "as needed" basis after I see how it works.

dkirtley has the right idea in my way of thinking.

I'm not a plane fanatic, but I follow the same process with a new one that I do with one I'm restoring. the only difference for me is that I expect it to take a lot less time with a new one. The steps are the same but I can get through them faster and with less effort.
I agree with Tim, there is little difference between tuning up a new or old plane. The biggest thing is there is no rust on a new one to deal with--well usually. On a cheap plane you could have tons of flattening to do, both on the sole and on the iron. That's why cheap planes are--cheap! If I paid myself by the hour, I probably could have bought a Lei-Nielsen.
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