Tightening Tool for Veritas Router Plane

For more information on the router plane, see our beginner site Common Woodworking.

From my Journal Tuesday 7th February 2017

I made yet another tool for my Veritas router plane this week. The design of this router is pretty much flawless, let me say that up front, but at my speaking engagement last week I forgot my thumb turn-screw to cinch up the depth limit; it’s one I made to cinch up the lock screw for securing the cutter throughout incremental depth adjustment setting.

The two flanges slide into the grooves I added and also I made a groove across the top from side to side to connect the two, so there is plenty of support.

I found that the depth of the cut kept shifting to a deeper setting because the “O” ring lock doesn’t truly keep the set like the Stanley & Record routers do using full thumbscrews.

Because I want instant and secure setting, sometime back I developed an improvement to the Veritas model by cutting grooves into the knurled locking setscrew and then made a brass key to fit the channels. It works fine but I improved it further by adding it to an old polypropylene plastic doorknob. You might recall my making something similar to my door–knob camera–mount screw driver mentioned previously here.

By slipping the keyway retro-make into a hacksawed cut in the handle, and then adding a hoop in steel from some steel tube, I have a great way to lock off the knurled locking feature.

Here are the steps:

Use either an old doorknob or turn one on the lathe. I had to search through my stash of ferrules and steel tubes to get one close to fit and then rasp and file the plastic handle to size to the tube. It goes fast and eyeballing it works fine.

I used my existing thumb turn fitted to the grooves. I’d cut in the screw sides and top face that tightens (or should tighten) the “O” ring onto the cutter. This I further fitted to fit inside to tube.

I cut a recess into the knob so that the brass thumbscrew fits inside snuggly.

Removing the outer face of the knob gives access to the inner area where I poured a mix of 2-part epoxy around the brass.

To stop flow out I cut a circle of masking tape to plug the opposite side.

For the steel hoop/ferrule  I simply added superglue – this is enough as no pressure is applied to this.

Now my thumbscrew works perfectly and I feel confident that the cutter no longer slips.


  1. The knurled tightening knob on the Veritas router is a real flaw in the design of an otherwise near-perfect product. I can never achieve a reliably tight lock to secure the cutter, and each time I try to tighten it up it hurts my fingers and I curse it! Even then, 50% of the time there will be significant play and I have to try again. I’ll be making one of these, but it really shouldn’t be necessary to have to correct a flaw like this in their product – simply changing the knurled knob to a traditional flat thumb screw seems obvious, and I’m surprised Veritas haven’t made that change – this problem must affect most (if not all) users. I hope Veritas pay attention to your post on the subject.

    1. It is strange because I told them some years ago that the design was indeed flawed and needed only a thumbscrew to correct it.

        1. I have one being delivered today. I’m hoping I’m one of the lucky ones. If not, I now know the fix.

  2. In a pinch, or when you have misplaced this fine tightening knob, a little scrap of rubber shelf lining can significantly improve purchase on that brass ring.

  3. I had the same problem, but at least for my plane I don’t agree with the conclusion.

    The blade would come loose no matter how hard I tightened the screw. After fiddling it for a while, I found that if I wiggled the collar when I tightened the screw, it would hold up, even with much less force on the screw knob. There was some issues with seating the screw to the stem or something.

    Then, a few weeks back, the threads on the lock screw became stuck. I managed to get it apart, and I found some brass filings. It looked like what you get when threads are pulled out, but the threads were all fine. I don’t know where that brass came from. Anyway, I cleaned it out. Had to scraped out some brass from the inside threads on the collar. Applied som oil and put it back together again.

    Voila, it worked again. Not only that, but now I could tighten it without wiggle or much force.

    So, I would advice you all to take it apart and clean up any filings or sharp edges from the machining process. Maybe that will do the trick.

    1. My Veritas router developed this problem through use and I had arrived at the same solution – wiggling the collar which holds the thumb screw and cutter post. Had zero problems once I started to do that and it has become second nature and only adds a second to the adjustment each round and with much less knob pressure. I will have to disassemble the unit as you suggest – it will be interesting to see if I have the same problem in regards to filings and/or dirt in the mechanism. Hoping it will help!

      1. Thanks everyone for all your inputs. I think that this went a bit awry though really. I would recommend this router to anyone. I don’t have any problems with the router as such because it is well made except that I need added guarantees. I love the router to bits. It does have this one problem with locking off though and I couldn’t trust this ‘O’ ring mechanism without just a tad more torque. I did something about mine and now there is no problem. Others too have benefitted from the information here so old version, new version here’s the answer. I did ‘all of the above’ to get mine to work well and it didn’t until I made a thumbscrew insert for it. I’ve advanced my version and now I love having the ability to guarantee no movement. Actually, it doesn’t need to be locked off every time, just when it might create a depth problem that could cause problems for my work such as inlaying that might go a fraction deeper than I want.

  4. I never use the depth stop on my Veritas router plane for the same reason. It never tightens down enough to stay put.

  5. Instead of tightening anything I just back depth adjuster off to remove the slag. Then it never slips while cutting. Very happy with result.

    Depth limit I never use on the latest version of large router. Depth adjuster has great mechanical advantage against depth limit knob and it is very hard to sense when limit is reached because blade moves with some friction too. Instead I use existing groove to match others. Maybe there is a better way.

    1. Sorry, but I have known the opposite where, riding on a chip, it’s pushed the cutter upwards too. The fact is compared to the Record and Stanley there can be slippage and it should have a design correction really.

  6. Personally I have no problem locking either of the nuts on the veritas,but this looks so nice with the brass it’s definitely worth me knocking one together. Veritas are easily my favourite of any modern maker. I believe them to be very good value ( not cheap but worth every penny) thanks Paul and team

  7. I had the same problem with the Veritas small router plane. The round nut with just knurling did not allow enough locking pressure to be applied. I replaced it with a regular fine thread wing nut. Filed the wings back just a little. I also ground some blades from hex keys. That isn’t an issue with the larger router plane, and one mighy have to use a wind screw -if there is such a thing- or a thumb screw as you suggested.


  8. I’m glad to have seen this BEFORE surrending $150 on the veritas large router plane. Not much annoys me more than having to re-engineer something to get it to work the way it’s supposed to. Though it seems that’s what must be done with nearly everything these days, from small appliances to cars.
    I can appreciate that the Stanley is the benchmark and Record a close second, but good luck finding a router plane from either of those manufacturers. If anyone knows of a reliable, reasonable supplier, please let me know.
    It’s a sad but undeniable fact that hand tools are becoming harder and harder to find as the art of the trade slowly fades away. I take every opportunity to promote tradecraft of every type. The future sends as though it will be very shy of tradesmen and so they’ll be in high demand, earning big dollars… One can hope…

    1. It’s still a good router plane, just could have been fixed for little money/effort. Mine’s nice now. There’s another issue and that’s rarely noticed so I’ll park that for another time when I have time.

    2. Ed-
      I still find pretty good deals on the old Stanley and Record routers on Ebay. With the Vertias blades fitting the old stanley I find it win-win for me.

  9. I continue to have this happen. Using the router to trim tenons to fit, I get the depth setting. After 4 or 5 tenons, the router is cutting too deep, and the tenons no longer fit. Ruined a work piece just now because of it because I didn’t know it has slipped.

  10. why not just use a large wash or a Kennedy 50 cent peice ( U.S.)
    you are such a practical man and I know palabra is not your style.

  11. A very few LV router planes have had difficulty tightening down. There is an incredibly simple fix …

    Here is the collar and the knob that tightens the collar …


    At the other end of that knob is a piston. This is spring-loaded and pushes against the end of the collar to tighten it.


    If the piston gets gummed up, then it will not spring out. Just clean it. Done.

    Regards from Perth, Australia


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