View Full Version : Hand Plane--Blade Sharpening
01-26-2004, 03:49 PM
I received my first of a few hand planes in the mail yesterday. This is actually a new Stanley Block Plane. I have read that I need to tune it up before using it.
On the blade, I assume I don't have to do any grinding since there are no dents/dings or anything like that. I plan on using the scary-sharp method to sharpen the blade, but am not exactly sure where to start other than around 600 grit sandpaper?
Thanks for any help here.
01-26-2004, 10:39 PM
I would start by getting a honing guide and some plate glass. Start with about 120 grit silicon carbide and work your way through each grit, up to at least 600 just flattening the back of the iron (the blade). Then put it in the honing guide and start over at 120. Within a few strokes you will see by the scratches if you have the right angle. The way i do it is with each grit try to get all the scratches to look the same and obliterate the scratches left by the last grit. For the last little bit, I give it a few strokes (about 10) on the bevel and then a few on the back. Lighten up on the pressure and repeat. Wipe it and move up to the next grit. I do this all the way to 2000 grit. Some people only hone up to 600 and then hone a microbevel all the way up to 2000 grit. To hone a microbevel, just increase the angle from 5 degrees, i.e. from 25 to 30.
FWIW, take the time to REALLY tune your plane and sharpen, there is nothing like making little curly shavings. Its mesmerizing, even addictive, kinda like lathe work. I would recommend getting Garret Hack's "Handplane Book", as would many others. I constantly use it for reference and just for reading pleasure. Of course, I am a geek. :)
"Ever notice how good enough, is usually neither good nor enough?"
01-27-2004, 10:51 AM
Ditto what Darrin said.
I also use my air hose and nozzle to blow off the sandpaper every few strokes and a large magnifying glass to inspect the scratches (my eyes ain't what they used to be).
The expert at anything was once a beginner...
01-27-2004, 11:21 AM
Get the "Handplane Book" first. Anyhow, your new plane may need a fair amount of tweeking before use. Often the beding plane (the part of the plane where the blade rest on) will need to be flatten and some work may need to be done on the mouth. Both of these can be done quite easily with a small file. The blade will take the most work and flatening the back can take quite awhile. With scary sharp you may need to drop down to 36 grit (sometimes) but usually 80 or 120 grit will do for flattening the back. The bevel usually can start at 220 grit. You'll want to take both up through 1500 (at least).
01-27-2004, 12:46 PM
check this out. Pretty entertaining reading. http://www.shavings.net/SCARY.HTM
Get the Garret Hack book, it should be required reading for anyone geting into hand planes.
And finally, do a forum search using "Dano Plane Basics" as the search criteria. Edit: I found it! http://www.woodworking.com/dcforum/dcboard.pl?az=read_count&om=999&forum=DCForumID4
Good luck and enjoy.
01-29-2004, 12:58 PM
upon Ken's and Steven's advice I went out and bought the Handplane Book - required reading if you own one or thinking about.
The is an excellent section on how to grind the various parts of a plane.