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Making the body part one.

Low angel shoulder plane
Because it's fun….

Before you start reading I want to tell that I finally managed to make it run!
It was giving me a headache, but once I found out the problem it was right on.

Here is a video showing it in action.

But I will blog a improved version also in this blog serie.

Not so long ago I followed a class here on LJ with Stefang where we build a bucket, part of this project was to make a convex hand plane (Krenov style).

So what have this to do with a low angle shoulder plane that I now build alongside Div's blog
The fact that they are both based on the same technique, where you cut up a block of wood and glue it back together rather than hollow out (to cut is fast and easy), Krenov style traditionally add a cross pin and a wedge, where Div's shoulder plane skips the cross pin and just makes a wedge that fit the hole and let the shaves out sideways, so when you have made one plane it is no sweat to do the next's (trust me on this).

If you want to build a traditional and way too cool shoulder plane, you can use Divs blog to make a bevel down 45 degree bed shoulder plane.

This is a Div shoulder plane, made by Div. (Yes I am really proud to own one).

I choose to be a naughty boy and make my version of the shoulder plane as a low angle bevel up, where Div make it a medium angel (45 degree) bevel down (look at drawings). The reason for this is that I am so lucky to have received one of Div's wonderful planes as a gift from him, so it would be more interesting for me to try new ways to be able to compare after.

This is where we are going now.
As you can see I made a new design just for my pleasure, I am going to play with the circle here, so the opening will be a half circle and then I will shape the plane also from this center.

Ok I start my blog here, sorry I had not thought I would make a blog.
I have already chosen the dimensions of my plane, the width after what I need and the rest just to match my wish for size.
Look here for the basic cuts:
When I had these dimensions I cut up a block of wood that matched that, and then 'cut of' the sides in a thickness that will make a strong plane. The smaller the plane the thicker the sides need to be compared to the total width. Here app 1/6 of the width for each side.
So I have now a center piece and two shoulder pieces as you see on the picture.
All rest in the middle of drawing tools and a sketch of my ideas for the plane.

Div's plane is a bed angel of 45 degrees and bevel down plane iron, the one I will make will be a 12 degree bed and a bevel up plane iron, if you make only one then make the 45 degree bevel down, in this you get a relly cool and well functioning plane, where the 12 degree bevel up is a tricky lady to get dancing and might be never really rhe thing, at least if you make a 12 degree then make it bigger size to provide stability.
The difference is as you can see on my illustration how we approach 'attack' the wood.
With the bevel down the angel is fixed once the plane is done (unless you start honing back bevels).
With the bevel down you can change your bevel angle and in this way change your planes approach.
Why should you ever want to do that? Because different types of wood can require different angles for a good result. I do it just for the fun of it, and will make the bevel on mine 22 I think that gives me a total of 34.


I have been thinking of advantage and disadvantage of each version
The 45 degree version have a more solid bed to place the iron on since it is more solid, and should then make less shatter (the blade wobbling), but then the bed stops at the bevel and this makes the last piece of the iron hang free, so it probably more or less equals it I think.
What I do think can be improved is that it would be better with a higher wedge, this would give more stability and the wedge can be made pointed towards the opening so it will not make the shavings get stocked.

Enough theory let's get to it!

Take the top piece of the three and use this to draw the layout on (I use the center piece here since I already did the other).
Make a point where you want the mouth of the plane to be, I choose a little over center of the sole.
From this point make a line of 12 degrees back.

Like this.

Hold the iron on top and draw the thickness of it on top of the first line.
(If you don't have the iron yet just draw the thickness).

The wedge I design here are after the Div model and is a long slim one.
But you should follow the red change and make a higher wedge, this will support the blade better.
I have no number here but I will say 8-10 degrees.

Now I want to decide app where I want the mouth so I hold up the blade and make a point app at the end of a 22 degree bevel.
And you can see the change line for the wedge.

Now I can draw my half circle and find my 'center' of the layout.

Some 1,5 mm brass rod for pins to hold it together while it's being made and later for beauty.
You can use wood pins also.

I decided that the pins also should be placed in the circular system, so I make a second circle app 1 cm offset from the outer.

And mark 1 cm from the sides where the circle strikes this.

With an awl mark the points so the drill will be controlled.

Clamp the three pieces together and drill a hole in one end.

Now fit a pin in the hole.

And cut off.

Do this in the other end also so it will be fixed, and then you can remove the clamps and do the rest since the pins will hold the three parts in place now.

Time for tobacco.

Ohh yes and look at the mail.
Ironically today I received a vintage brass compass I got of E-bay for a dollar, this must be a sign that my circular design is the way to go now.

Look how funny.
The old beautiful brass compass - the newer mass produced ugly version of this that are less steady. Then a new quality compass for drawing (from I was a student making technical drawings) - and a modern made in China version with no charm and also less steady.
Yes life goes in circles, and in my life I often end back where we call it vintage du to the wonderful quality back then.

Sorry I'm back from dreaming!
Drill a hole somewhere in the area that will be the opening for shavings.

Time to cut out this piece, I'm lucky to have a motorized saw here, but a hand scroll saw will be just as good.

And cut!
But leave some at the area that will be the mouth, so it will be possible to adjust here.

Here we are.

Time to saw out the area that later shall hold the wedge.
I use a brass bar that has traveled all the way from US (thank you Maddie and Rand) to hold my saw at 90 degree. You should try and stay focused here since it is going to be the bed of the iron and we want it to be flat and in angle.

And saw some more (I use here the little inexpensive Zona saw since it has extremely fine teeth and makes absolutely no tear out).

And out it came.
Keep the piece, then you have the angle for the wedge later.

Put the body apart.

And find your favorite glue. I have a soft spot for two component epoxy, probably because of all the knifes I have build with this stuff. It is rock hard and will never fail.

Mix the glue and spend the time doing it good.
I use a 16 hour dry time epoxy here, since I want time to make sure it come together fine. If you are in a hurry you can use a fast version, but don't drink coffee then.

I add glue to two pins and position then in each end then add glue to the one surface of the plane core and then place it in place using the pins as guides.

Now it's the top piece tour.

And time to clamp and clean off glue.
Since this epoxy gets rock hard, it is a good idea to spend a little time now.
And remember to clean the hole for the wedge.

Clamped up.

Ohh yes and two mistakes here!
The picture is not sharp and I made a hole to close to the bed…

So a quick repair (yes I do like to show my mistakes also).
Making a little wood pin from the same wood as the plane.

Dipping in glue.

And hole in one…

Now the plane body has to dry for 16 hours before the clamps can be removed.
So it's time to split the blog here.
Next part will be making the shoulder plane iron (in this version from an 'old' plane blade).

I hope this blog can inspire others to go for a low angel shoulder plane, or any plane at all, the satisfaction by making your own plane is priceless.

Thank you div for playing with me my brother.

Best thoughts,
Yup, definately I'll build a few too. Power tools aren't made for fine tasks.

· Registered
878 Posts
Making a blade from another plane iron.

Low angel shoulder plane
Making a blade from another plane iron.

This is the second part of the blog, in last part the plane body was made.

This is where we will end, Div's shoulder plane on top, then mine and finally what this part is about; the plane iron.

Since I have a handful of block plane irons I got for next to nothing, I will 'kill' one of these.
Measure the width of your shoulder plane and add a little for later tuning (I added 1mm).
Draw this on your plane iron (what ever iron you have).

Find the length of the wide part of the blade by measure the deepness of the mouth and the hole for shaves, as shown on the illustration.
Mark this length on the blade also.

I use a Dremmel tool for cutting the blade and hold my finger on the iron to feel when it is so hot it needs to be cooled down. Be especially careful on this part, since this will be the cutting part of the blade.
(You can probably guess now what the reason for the size on my plane was).

Tome to make the part of the blade that will be inside the body, so measure the width of the hole for the wedge.

Mark this out on the blade.

Can you see it?
And notice I use a none slip ruler after.

Now mark up these lines, I use a hard point to do this, so it will be easy to trace with the Dremmel.

And also the shoulders of the iron.

Cut, cut and cut and dip once in a while when too hot.
I used 11 of the thin cutting discs before I was done
(If you stop just before you cut through the metal you will use less discs, and then you can break the last part of this is a easy trick.

This is what it should end up like.

Now correct the sides.

Flatten the back of the iron.

And here we are!

And here where it fits right in.

That's it for now, I will probably add side bevels to the blade later when I sharpen the blade at the final tuning.
I do like to shape on that water grinder it is pure pleasure.

A link to my blog on how to make a adjustable shoulder plane iron from a spade drill:

Next part will be opening the mouth, and making the wedge.

I hope this blog can inspire others to go for a low angel shoulder plane, or any plane at all, the satisfaction by making your own plane is priceless.

Thank you div for playing with me my brother.

Best thoughts,
I'd go with the metal saw instead of the soft dremel discs, the harder ones work far better and last waaay longer, but a good metal saw remains the easiest and cheapest ways to do that (and then you can finish up the edges with the dremel)

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878 Posts
Making the body part two.

Low angel shoulder plane
Making the body part two.

So here we go.

In last blog we left the body to dry.
Now time to make one of the sides flat by grinding of the pin ends.

Then the band saw, for shaping that body.
In the back left my future dinner knifes, its Swedish steel and eight different woods for the handles, in this way people can choose, and find a favorite (sorry it has nothing at all to do in this blog).

Cutting after the circle that I decided for the design.

Shaping and removing pin ends from other side also. By the sander, be careful not to burn it.

Need a dead flat surface? Here are how.

This simple!

Flattening the sole.
And a needle files on the bed.
It almost look like a plane now!

Not bad.

Getting closer!
In the front another of Div's wonderful planes (I'm spoiled).

Hold the plane iron up and find out exactly where to place the planes mouth.
Makin a cut for the mouth.

And one more so we have an opening.
It is done with the Zona saw.

Paring the mouth with a dead sharp chisel.

Jaba daba dooo….

And look! It slides just in from the mouth.
(I thought this was not possible.).

Here we are!
As you can see this design has a few back sides.
The mouth can't be super tiny.
The last part of the plane iron are not supported due to the fact I need to get the blade in, and the wood dimensions, a bigger plane would be less trouble.

The little cut off from the body now comes in action as a guide for the wedge angle.

And sawing the wedge, now with a Veritas dovetail saw.
After sawing it, you need to make the part of the wedge turning down against the plane iron a slightly concave curved so it rest on the front by the mouth and the heal by the back of the plane, in this way the iron will be pushed down against the bed and you will avoid that the plane iron dig in or bend of the wood.

A match.

A fit.

Hmmmmmmmm… will that really work!

Marking the wedge.
Notice I have rounded the end of the plane iron.

The low angle shoulder plane is made!

The size.



Here it is doing shaves.

And here low angle and 45 degrees together.
Thank you Div, it has been great fun even I was quite frustrated for an hour this afternoon…

Here is a video showing it in action, it actually works.

And here the little wedge trick:

Rectangle Slope Triangle Font Parallel

A last trick is to 'hollow' the wedge a little, just a little - in this way you will make sure there are a optimal pressure on the front of the wedge.

Time to say good night here.

I hope this blog can inspire others to go for a low angel shoulder plane, or any plane at all, the satisfaction by making your own plane is priceless.

Thank you div for playing with me my brother.

Best thoughts,
I guess a Lignum Vitae sole would be the perfect fit for this kind of little plane.


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878 Posts
The basic cuts.

The basic cuts
This should have been first…

I know this was how the blog should have started but I had not planned to take photos when I started so this is why - but since I decided to make some more planes I took pictures after.

So here it is 'The basic cuts'.

As so often recycle is the basis - here a piece of Ash wood that comes from the cut out for a kitchen sink.
Its big wonderful staves that I simply cut out again by cutting in the glue line, and in this way get wood for plenty of tool handles and yes even hand planes.

Back in line.

This is where they are glued together in the length, it's really strong, but for this project I stay away from these.

A block of wood, all free.

The iron on top.

Marking for the sizes.
The side - tang - side.
Remember to add the thickness of the saw blade, and that the tang part needs to be a little wider so you can adjust.

And marking up with a gauge to control the saw cut after.


Ok I'm lazy!

Side - tang - side.
That is all to it!

Now we are ready to go to part one of the blog….

I hope this blog can inspire others to build some of these planes.

Best thoughts,
Recycle, recycle, and recycle. Okay, when are you going to build a plane from pallet wood? ;) If you don't do it quickly, I will be first!
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