I am looking for a bit of advice. I have been into woodworking for 5+ years but it has always involved power tools. Recently I started building small wine glass holders that are roughly 12 inches long by 7 inches wide. They are made up of several different types of wood laminated together. In the past i would clean up the glue squeeze out and fix any dips/valleys with a lot of sanding. After watching your videos on YouTube I believe using a hand plane would not only allow me to level these glue ups without creating a cloud of dust, but also provide a much cleaner end result.
What I am not sure of is where to even start. I am on a pretty strict budget and would like to stay under 100 dollars, but if needed I could go up to 150 dollars. Is there a plane you would recommend for these small glue ups within that budget? Perhaps you already addressed this in a blog that I missed while searching for information, if that is the case could you please point me to it?
Thank you for your time.
I am glad that we are finally emerging from the dominant and unfortunate culture of using mass-machine methods to at last recognise the value of real woodworking and hand work in particular. You are right to seek out new qualities for your hand work. You are joining the ranks of real woodworking and the simpler work you describe will enable you to deliver a product more superior than anything you have made before. The unfortunate culture of machine-only woodworking seems so distant to the intimacy hand work delivers, so here are my thoughts.
It’s more than likely you will achieve the finest results with perhaps four planes the cost of which should be no more than the $100 you allow as an initial investment if you shop secondhand cutiously. In actuality you can phase in the planes one at a time. Start by buying a #4 Stanley smoothing plane and restore it by following this sharpening video we made for YouTube.
Buying an older plane that has been well used usually means the plane will be ready to use apart from sharpening.
Different woods side by side can sometimes be more problematic as can the same woods that are laminated. A well sharpened Stanley will usually take care of anything and the pieces are so small you should not have a problem. if you do, then a #80 scraper comes to the rescue. This tool will work any different wood including laminations of different woods.
The Stanley 4 should cost you no more than $30-40. Later, after you’ve mastered the first, buy a #5 and work with that one. After that go for a #4 1/2 and later, if you feel you need the extra width, but #5 1/2.