I’m making a hope chest from oak for the next book due out in the new year. I’m working with the bandsaw on this one so there’s a lot to work through as we are principally using the bandsaw for al of the donkey work and following through with bench planes for surface planing and so on.
Today I corrected severe twist in a section of 3″ x 8″ white oak before bandsawing to 2 1/4″ sq stock. My strategy for even severe twist as I had in this case is to use a regular #4 smoothing plane but with a heavy curve along the cutting iron. I keep a separate iron just for this so I can trade out the irons for this type of heavy cutting.
A curved cutting edge like this reduces the effort of planing by around 50% and also, relying on a convex bevel gives strength to the cutting bevel itself, which reduces the amount of sharpening I need as edge fracture is reduced too.
I always use winding sticks to check for the amount of twist. This takes out any guesswork and gives me the exact amount of stock I need to remove to correct the problem. Of course the curved cutting edge is rough-cut level only and subsequent shaving with the regular # 5 1/2 bench plane.