Wooden bench plane question

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Forum topic by Oldtool posted 08-06-2018 01:04 AM 685 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3354 posts in 3476 days

08-06-2018 01:04 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question plane joining milling

I have a 16” wooden bench plane that I like to use for edge jointing rough cut lumber, and for surfacing panels. Problem is that the iron keeps being pushed back up in the throat when I hit a hard spot with reversing grain, or a knot area.

The wedge looks to be original, same wood as the body, and the iron / chipbreaker assembly seems to fit pretty well although I have no way of knowing if it is original.

I’ve tried light sanding on the wedge contact areas with 320 grit sandpaper just enough to remove a glaze that was there, thinking this smoothness wasn’t gripping the iron. Didn’t help, and further sanding could alter the wedge to make it too loose.

I’ve set the wedge with some pretty good hits, and the iron is very sharp, neither of which helps.

Any suggestions from anyone having experienced something similar & finding a cure will be most welcome.

If this is to be expected due the hard spots I mentioned, then if so advised I’ll learn to live with it.

Thanks for any advise you can offer,


-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

5 replies so far

View recycle1943's profile


5964 posts in 2907 days

#1 posted 08-06-2018 01:39 AM

I can’t help with the plane because I don’t own one, however when I need to get a good edge on any lumber for glue up I make sure I have a SHARP 80 tooth Diablo blade on the table saw and start cutting.
The first cut on each edge would be whatever it takes to get fresh wood and a straight edge. Then I cut as little as 3 or 4 thousands off to accomplish a glue edge and again I might have to cut several times.
If I weren’t such a cheapskate I’d buy a jointer and save some time and electric or maybe I should have kept the 6” Delta that I sold

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

View mohawk's profile


3 posts in 3144 days

#2 posted 08-06-2018 03:02 AM

I am no expert by any means but it seems to me you still have a wedge issue. I had the same problem and had to work on the correct setting of the wedge in the abutments, a very tedious job and very slow but slow and easy wins the race. Keep trying, they are great planes and a whole lot of fun to use ounce you get them set.

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Don W

20245 posts in 3853 days

#3 posted 08-06-2018 09:34 AM

When I’m tuning a wooden plane and have a similar issue I hit the mating surfaces (including the iron) with 80 grit paper. 320 is getting pretty close to polish.

Next you need to make sure you have a firm bedding. If the wedge doesn’t fit right, it doesn’t work right.

If you don’t want to work with the original wedge, make a new one to experiment with.

I have found old planes with a leather strip in the bed. I’ve never tried adding one, but can see how it may help.

It may also be your just not setting the wedge tight enough.

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

View OSU55's profile


2899 posts in 3275 days

#4 posted 08-06-2018 11:48 AM

Had the same issue with a couple of oriental woodies. Using 80 gr is good advise, and using candle soot on the iron to check contact to the bed finally got mine sorted out. Check iron to bed contact 1 st, then the wedge. Never did find a great marking substance for wood to wood contact.

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Don W

20245 posts in 3853 days

#5 posted 08-06-2018 01:52 PM

. Never did find a great marking substance for wood to wood contact.

- OSU55

I hold a piece of sandpaper stretched over the iron. Move it back and forth short distances. If you can’t see the spots, mark the wood with a pencil. For wood to wood, once the wood is scuffed up with 80 gr, just the forced contact should reveal any parts that do not touch.

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

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