In the beginning I couldn’t think why my mentoring craftsman always used but one plane except perhaps he couldn’t afford two. Then I realised he had loaned me his second one. Of course not everyone uses two planes and not everyone owns two either. I started out with one and then, because planes cost so little…

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The panel plane I treasure here has no mechanical adjustment and relies on setting the depth of cut and blade alignment to the sole using simple and positive hammer taps. I know that many people, mostly engineers and such, might consider tap adjusting archaic and inaccurate, and I understand that, but really it’s far from that.…

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Shoulder planes date back to the early 1800s with the zenith here in Britain being throughout the late 1800s and into the mid decades of the 1900s when they effectively lost purpose and therefor favour as a tool used by professional cabinet makers (furniture makers not ply-box kitchens USA) and joiners. The chief market for…

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To stave off some of the questions about setting up a new or secondhand plane (high-end, low-end and any in between), and future ongoing maintenance and adjustments, you might want to watch woodworkingmasterclasses.com here. You will need to subscribe for the free membership but that’s straightforward enough. You can also watch on youtube too. Here is…

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Question: Paul, what are the “higher engineering standards” you speak of relative to plane makers or any hand tool makers? Answer: There can be no doubt that Stanley UK planes slopped out and have been poorly pumped out since the 1970s by the slipshod standards assembly line work has an innate propensity to engender. Of course…

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You’ve asked me for a video on how to set up and even restore hand planes for some time and we put this one together as a starter video. It’s just over an hour long realtime at my bench. I hope it clarifies some of the the nuances for plane initialisation including total restoration work.…

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Question: Paul, I was hoping you would explain why that (nice) little plane was rounded in both ways. I inherited an ancient plane from my grandparents with the same rounding both ways, but bigger than the one you made. I haven’t been able to figure out what this plane was used for and this is…

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Question: Mr. Sellers, When using a plane, no. 4 or larger, I have a tendency to remove more stock at the end of my stroke than at the beginning. Is there a technique you can recommend to keep my stock removal level? Thank you, B C Answer: There are several reasons for this happening, some we…

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The questions I will be answering in the upcoming blog series were posed as a result of my inviting them two months ago. You sent in over 300 the last time I looked and every one of them was good. Most of the questions are indeed answered in my new book Essential Woodworking Hand Tools out…

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The request for questions surrounding planes went over 300 and they were all interesting and stimulating. There are of course many perspectives from trialling various planes in magazine articles and then the individual views we all have personal insights into. Reading the questions you posed has really helped me to realise how much everyone cares about the future…

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  • Allen R. on Recovery IIII'm unwilling to advocate for unbridled progress until somebody is willing to tell me what we're progressing towards :)
  • James Perales on Favourites From 2019Hadn't been on your site before, but found it from a roundup post of woodworking blogs. Love the highlights. That small chest with the drawers is gorgeous. Really like the leather…
  • David Lindsay Stair builder 80 years of age Newcastle, Australia on Recovery III agree with all the above. Thank you for bringing sanity to the struggles of life
  • Paul Sellers on Recovery IIIOh, Ed, though it was a real battle, the mocking and the scoffing I went through, and then the rejection too, but I would not trade one lick of it for a free tablesaw or a power ro…
  • Ed on Recovery III"...it was indeed necessary for a sledgehammer-to-nut endeavour..." Interesting. I hadn't thought in terms of the battle that was being fought. I have a machinist friend who likes…
  • Jurandyr on Recovery IIIThe Industrial Revolution and its consequences. We used to need skilled artisans to produce any item, today anyone can buy an electric machine and plastic jigs and produce it. The…
  • nemo on Recovery IIINearly 20 years ago, in my late twenties, I decided to run a quick errand to a store 2 km away by bicycle. Not sure what made me use the bicycle that day, as I did everything by ca…