For more information on planes, see our beginner site Common Woodworking.
Here is a video we put together on misplacing your bench plane.
It’s been a struggle but we’re gaining ground. I have learned from the maxim that, whereas practice makes perfect, it also makes permanent, paralleling the maxim that old habits die hard. There is a reality to the fact that we often develop patterns and habits that had meaning in former generations. Nothing wrong with that in general. The problem might arise when it’s passed on to and through subsequent generations without query or even thinking that it can become an issue. This reality is never more present than in workshops where woodworkers, amateurs and professionals, have developed the habit of laying the bench plane on its side, fully believing that the reasoning has a current validation for all. If it were true, that plane irons somehow get damaged by standing them upright on the bench, what about other tools like chisels and draw knives, spokeshave and such? Reality is that the plane irons don’t really get damaged at all if they are stood up on the sole, as is the case with all other edge tools too. Plane irons are more likely to get damaged laying them down on their side and exposing them as in established patterns. The pattern was established for school workshops when kids dumped the planes on all kinds of other metal pieces and tools. My question is why continue an old habit if it no longer makes sense in our own shops? Surely we know what’s on the bench and where we are placing our planes. I’ll leave the choice up to you. My planes are always upright and placed ready for action. I never saw any of the men who trained me lay their planes on their sides, only insistent school teachers.