Popular Woodworking 2006-02 № 153, страница 42

Popular Woodworking 2006-02 № 153, страница 42

If the length of the fore plane is an asset, why not make them really long? Working with fore planes is strenuous, so having them shorter and lighter makes them easier to handle than a longer plane. Whenever I use my fore plane, I marvel at its perfection of design. It's exactly long enough - but no more.

Once you know that the fore plane is for roughing, this also tells you how to set up the tool for use. The flatness of the sole isn't a concern for rough work. If the sole looks flat and the tool won't rock when the tool is flat on your bench, you're in good shape.

I wouldn't recommend you spend hours flattening the sole of your fore plane so you can take .001" shavings. Save that drudgery

Fore planes need a wide-open mouth to pass the thick shavings they produce. A tight mouth will clog and slow you down.

for another plane (or avoid the drudgery - more on that later).

My metal fore plane is a sorry old Stanley No. 5 with a handmade tote that looks like it was fashioned by a blind beaver. The tool is rusty in spots. The sole's flatness is questionable - but it works like a dream.

Back to set-up. Because you want to remove thick shavings, open up the mouth of the tool and make the tool easy to push by cambering the tool's cutting edge. A fore plane with a blade sharpened straight across (like you would with a chisel or block plane) can be quickly immobilized by a tough patch of wood. And the cambered iron (I like an 8" radius) helps reduce tear-out because there are no corners digging into the wood. If your plane has a chipbreaker, set it so it's back at least Vl6" from the corners.

Fore planes are pushed diagonally across a board's face. Work diagonally one way across the face, then diagonally the other. Check your progress with winding sticks. Working diagonally will generally get you where you need to be, but if there's a persistent high spot, work at it selectively with the fore plane. The goal is to get the board flat and almost to your finished thickness - as close as you dare.

Working diagonally is the key to using the fore plane. The diagonal motion reduces tear-out and assists in truing the face.

Jointer Planes:

Join the Flat-World Society

When the work is nearly flat and nearly to finished thickness, fetch your jointer plane - sometimes also called a try plane. Jointer planes are tools with soles 22" long or lon-

A silhouette of the shape of my fore plane's cambered iron. It's an 8" radius, which allows me to take an almost Vi6"-thick shaving in softwood.

Cambering the iron on a fore plane is a task best handled on a bench grinder.

ger. Longer is better in the world of jointer planes. In the Stanley system, the No. 7 (22" long) and the No. 8 (24" long) are the jointers. Wooden-bodied jointer planes can be much longer.

The jointer plane is the "medium" tool. It brings the surface of the board to a state where joinery can be performed. Jointer planes take a finer shaving than the fore plane, but nothing that would be called gossamer. I generally go for a shaving that's about .006" thick. That's about the thickness of two or three sheets of typing paper. The length of the jointer plane is its greatest asset. When you can push a jointer plane across the entire surface of the board and remove a full-width, full-length shaving from every point, the board is quite flat (flatter than most machinery can

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102 Popular Woodworking February 2006

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