Wood body planes
  Re: Wood body planes by photobug (I am looking to add ...)
Very few shop tasks is more satisfying than tuning up and using a wooden body plane. Just this past Monday, I needed to repair a small 120 year old sash window from my attic. The bottom had rotted from years of exposure to the elements. I think I can salvage most of the sash, but needed to fabricate a new bottom rail. Looking through my router bits, I didn’t have a decent match and do not particularly like using the router. Then I remembered I might have a sash plane in a batch of a couple of dozen molding planes in my old tool chest.

I did find in my tool chest a dual blade Arthington sash plane out of Manchester. The width wasn’t a match though. It had already been shimmed for thinner stock by a prior owner, but needed more to match the width of my window. Fashioned an additional temporary fence out of the scrap pile and secured with double sided tape. After an hour of sharpening and tuning, it only took 5 minutes to fashion a new rail. It was the most satisfying task I’ve done in my shop in some time, and much more enjoyable than a noisy router.

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As far as an everyday user, a good wooden jack or jointer plane come in handy on large flattening jobs. The lighter weight is less tiring on a long job. But, not all wooden planes have to be lighter than its metal cousins. I have a Steve Knight smoother I purchased from him in 2005 that has a Bubinga body and an Ipe sole. It is similar weight as my Stanley #4, and the adjustable mouth, combined with a 50 degree bed makes it my go to smoother on figured boards.

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