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Better Chamfers with Hand Planes

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Forum topic by Build4Fun posted 11-21-2020 02:14 AM 670 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Build4Fun

26 posts in 113 days


11-21-2020 02:14 AM

Topic tags/keywords: chamfer jig chamfer tool block plane chamfer resource

I wanted to share a simple idea for making better chamfers with a hand plane. I made two prototypes and the 2nd one does a great job whereas the first had alignment problems. Hope this is helpful !

https://youtu.be/KAwGAm1T9nM

-- Brian, North Carolina, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs7GL-KlJe1eY0x7_Ya6vBg/


13 replies so far

View SMP's profile

SMP

3203 posts in 881 days


#1 posted 11-21-2020 04:45 AM

Hmm, certainly cheaper than trying to buy a vintage Stanley chamfer plane. Pretty interesting idea. How long did it take you to make the 2nd one?

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Build4Fun

26 posts in 113 days


#2 posted 11-21-2020 03:50 PM



Hmm, certainly cheaper than trying to buy a vintage Stanley chamfer plane. Pretty interesting idea. How long did it take you to make the 2nd one?

- SMP

Actually, it was pretty quick. The video does not show that I use a dado blade to make the unibody shape before drilling and removing the center. The angled pieces can be made with a router or hand plane.

-- Brian, North Carolina, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs7GL-KlJe1eY0x7_Ya6vBg/

View SMP's profile

SMP

3203 posts in 881 days


#3 posted 11-21-2020 03:57 PM


Actually, it was pretty quick. The video does not show that I use a dado blade to make the unibody shape before drilling and removing the center. The angled pieces can be made with a router or hand plane.

- Build4Fun

How hard do you think it would be to make an adjustable angle? I do a lot of undercuts on table/desk tops like on traditional furniture, where its a shallower slope.

View AlanWS's profile

AlanWS

111 posts in 4534 days


#4 posted 11-21-2020 04:37 PM

It looks like a nice idea that works well for you. I wonder whether the short grain of the unibody version might be fragile. If that’s a problem, it would be easy to reinforce.

Perhaps a single thicker block or might be used for the whole thing including the angled pieces.
An order of operations that might allow that would be:
1 Using a dado blade, hog out a groove at the top of the block to fit your plane width.
2 Glue square reinforcement blocks to fill the groove at the front and back of the plane position.
3 Now you can cut the V-groove at the bottom using a tablesaw. The blocks glued into the top prevent cutting into two parts, and keep everything aligned. Note that tilting the blade to 45 degrees allows that type of chamfer, but you can cut to whatever angle you want by tilting the blade a different amount and cutting the two sides of the vee with one cut flat to the tablesaw top, and the other on edge. You need to readjust fence and blade height, but not angle, for the second cut.

My guess is that if you want various angles, it would be simpler to make two of these than to make it adjustable. If you prefer that, I’d bolt on the bottom angled blocks, and make variant angled ones. This also suggests a way to vary the cut depth: make at least one of the two angle blocks bolt on, and give it a little room to slide sideways before doing so.

-- Alan in Wisconsin

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Build4Fun

26 posts in 113 days


#5 posted 11-21-2020 06:26 PM

Interesting thoughts. I think you could do this by simply changing the angles of the two runners (angled pieces) along the bottom. I sometimes use 45 deg chamfer and other times prefer a 60 deg chamfer. So, I was thinking similarly about a prototype that would accommodate both. Maybe having one runner 30 deg and one 60 deg.

Actually, it was pretty quick. The video does not show that I use a dado blade to make the unibody shape before drilling and removing the center. The angled pieces can be made with a router or hand plane.

- Build4Fun

How hard do you think it would be to make an adjustable angle? I do a lot of undercuts on table/desk tops like on traditional furniture, where its a shallower slope.

- SMP

Actually, it was pretty quick. The video does not show that I use a dado blade to make the unibody shape before drilling and removing the center. The angled pieces can be made with a router or hand plane.

- Build4Fun

How hard do you think it would be to make an adjustable angle? I do a lot of undercuts on table/desk tops like on traditional furniture, where its a shallower slope.

- SMP


-- Brian, North Carolina, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs7GL-KlJe1eY0x7_Ya6vBg/

View Build4Fun's profile

Build4Fun

26 posts in 113 days


#6 posted 11-21-2020 06:41 PM

I am often involved in building benches or rectangular tables with a Chamfer along the bottom edge. So, this works well for those, but not necessarily for every chamfer width or angle. However, you do get some depth adjustment since the depth of the block plane blade is adjustable. While the unibody design does not feel fragile to me once the runners are attached, I really like several of your comments on modifying the design. For example, building the top the way you describe would not rely as much on the angled runners to make it sturdy. I could then use threaded inserts on the runners to change them out and accommodate different angles. Making a slot instead of a circle would accommodate your other idea and make it adjustable.


It looks like a nice idea that works well for you. I wonder whether the short grain of the unibody version might be fragile. If that s a problem, it would be easy to reinforce.

Perhaps a single thicker block or might be used for the whole thing including the angled pieces.
An order of operations that might allow that would be:
1 Using a dado blade, hog out a groove at the top of the block to fit your plane width.
2 Glue square reinforcement blocks to fill the groove at the front and back of the plane position.
3 Now you can cut the V-groove at the bottom using a tablesaw. The blocks glued into the top prevent cutting into two parts, and keep everything aligned. Note that tilting the blade to 45 degrees allows that type of chamfer, but you can cut to whatever angle you want by tilting the blade a different amount and cutting the two sides of the vee with one cut flat to the tablesaw top, and the other on edge. You need to readjust fence and blade height, but not angle, for the second cut.

My guess is that if you want various angles, it would be simpler to make two of these than to make it adjustable. If you prefer that, I d bolt on the bottom angled blocks, and make variant angled ones. This also suggests a way to vary the cut depth: make at least one of the two angle blocks bolt on, and give it a little room to slide sideways before doing so.

- AlanWS


-- Brian, North Carolina, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs7GL-KlJe1eY0x7_Ya6vBg/

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

7013 posts in 1550 days


#7 posted 11-21-2020 07:44 PM

If a person was totally committed to hand tools only your idea would add some consistency to their plane. I am blended , and have a router with an edge guide permanently mounted, as I am sure several here also have. I can put any angle chamfer bit in, and probably will do the next 15 or so projects, at least the time chamfering them in less time than your making your jig for just one angle.

Smart idea for hand tool users though.

-- Think safe, be safe

View Build4Fun's profile

Build4Fun

26 posts in 113 days


#8 posted 11-21-2020 08:38 PM

Interesting, my woodworking is hybrid as well and I even use a CNC router for production pieces. However, I always find the set up time for a router, the changing of router bits, depth setting on a scrap piece, and the rolling around of equipment (I have a small shop) slower than grabbing a hand plane (at least for a few pieces). So, I have started to use planes to round over and chamfer edges when possible. For edges that are more complicated, like an ogee, my router is still my friend…but that too may change someday. Basically, there is a time and hassle break even point, but when I am doing a lot of the same piece over and over, a power tool can be much more time efficient.

Along the lines of comparing efficiency between power and hand tools, I have also found a similar time-hassle trade off with rough cutting lumber (mostly to length) with a hand saw or table saw. This is most certainly more efficient only because I am doing a few pieces and do not need to move around equipment. I can see the story might be different in a shop with more room.


If a person was totally committed to hand tools only your idea would add some consistency to their plane. I am blended , and have a router with an edge guide permanently mounted, as I am sure several here also have. I can put any angle chamfer bit in, and probably will do the next 15 or so projects, at least the time chamfering them in less time than your making your jig for just one angle.

Smart idea for hand tool users though.

- therealSteveN


-- Brian, North Carolina, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs7GL-KlJe1eY0x7_Ya6vBg/

View builtinbkyn's profile

builtinbkyn

3026 posts in 1916 days


#9 posted 11-21-2020 08:54 PM

Nice idea and nicely implemented. Someone mentioned fragility. Possibly using a tight grain hardwood would work well and also be more slick over the surface of the piece being worked on. Oh nice video too!

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)

View fritzer1210's profile

fritzer1210

19 posts in 1362 days


#10 posted 11-23-2020 08:27 PM

Remember the “Radi Plane?”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNuAVZJ1q8M

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

27523 posts in 3659 days


#11 posted 11-23-2020 09:20 PM

Or…the Stanley No. 72?

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

7013 posts in 1550 days


#12 posted 11-23-2020 10:22 PM


Interesting, my woodworking is hybrid as well and I even use a CNC router for production pieces. However, I always find the set up time for a router, the changing of router bits, depth setting on a scrap piece, and the rolling around of equipment (I have a small shop) slower than grabbing a hand plane (at least for a few pieces). So, I have started to use planes to round over and chamfer edges when possible.

- Build4Fun

I too will often use a hand tool for a small stretch, but here you are taking the time to make a jig, then fit your plane to it, and when done effectively you have just the one set angle. My point is I can drop in a bit, any bit, but here we are talking about a chamfer. Still I can use any angle, or size I want to use, and with an edge guide on, I can be routing in less than 30 seconds. I wouldn’t measure the depth of an undercut like SMP was mentioning. I’d just eyeball it, and go.


Remember the “Radi Plane?”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNuAVZJ1q8M

- fritzer1210

Interesting video, but like much in woodworking he isn’t talking about new anything. Edge planes have been around forever, and generally like the guy is saying are light, already set, ready to go plane like tools. I don’t remember the name of it, but back in the 60’s one would do a chamfer, or an ogee, roundover. It had replaceable irons you could swap out, and it had an all purpose mouth that allowed it. No fine curl mind you, but it could work

Today just a few of the many examples are seen below. Even WoodPeckers has an entry.

bandit makes a good point with the 72, though they were quite a bit more to drop in your workbelt, and go, but certainly did the job of a chamfer. I think for the most part, at least in carpentry, it was just the practiced use of a block plane, with your fingers as the guide, and you would just break the edge, up to an including wear a chamfer with several passes.

Probably a lot of the measuring, and detailing this out as a JOB, is what many woodworkers will do, versus carpentry oriented folks, who just did it. I imagine some could just use the barrel of a screw driver, or a hammer to take an edge down, maybe not chamfer it, but certainly break it.

-- Think safe, be safe

View Build4Fun's profile

Build4Fun

26 posts in 113 days


#13 posted 11-23-2020 11:06 PM

Well, it seems your post has taken a turn that has started to feel somewhat snarky. Who knows, maybe that was not your intent. Certainly others have also tried ideas for breaking edges and I would never challenge that point. Anyway, have a good woodworking journey… and goodbye

Interesting, my woodworking is hybrid as well and I even use a CNC router for production pieces. However, I always find the set up time for a router, the changing of router bits, depth setting on a scrap piece, and the rolling around of equipment (I have a small shop) slower than grabbing a hand plane (at least for a few pieces). So, I have started to use planes to round over and chamfer edges when possible.

- Build4Fun

I too will often use a hand tool for a small stretch, but here you are taking the time to make a jig, then fit your plane to it, and when done effectively you have just the one set angle. My point is I can drop in a bit, any bit, but here we are talking about a chamfer. Still I can use any angle, or size I want to use, and with an edge guide on, I can be routing in less than 30 seconds. I wouldn t measure the depth of an undercut like SMP was mentioning. I d just eyeball it, and go.

Remember the “Radi Plane?”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNuAVZJ1q8M

- fritzer1210

Interesting video, but like much in woodworking he isn t talking about new anything. Edge planes have been around forever, and generally like the guy is saying are light, already set, ready to go plane like tools. I don t remember the name of it, but back in the 60 s one would do a chamfer, or an ogee, roundover. It had replaceable irons you could swap out, and it had an all purpose mouth that allowed it. No fine curl mind you, but it could work

Today just a few of the many examples are seen below. Even WoodPeckers has an entry.

bandit makes a good point with the 72, though they were quite a bit more to drop in your workbelt, and go, but certainly did the job of a chamfer. I think for the most part, at least in carpentry, it was just the practiced use of a block plane, with your fingers as the guide, and you would just break the edge, up to an including wear a chamfer with several passes.

Probably a lot of the measuring, and detailing this out as a JOB, is what many woodworkers will do, versus carpentry oriented folks, who just did it. I imagine some could just use the barrel of a screw driver, or a hammer to take an edge down, maybe not chamfer it, but certainly break it.

- therealSteveN


-- Brian, North Carolina, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs7GL-KlJe1eY0x7_Ya6vBg/

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