What is a carpenter hand plane ?
The hand plane is a necessary tool for any woodworking amateur or professional. Unlike its electroportable counterpart, the electric plane, it is a more traditional tool. It is used in many ways, such as smoothing wood surfaces, planing a piece of wood such as a door sill, correcting irregularities, chamfering. The hand plane reduces the thickness of the wood by removing large or small chips.
The composition of the hand plane
The hand plane is composed of several parts:
- The body of the plane, it is usually made of iron, wood or synthetic material.
- The "sole", which is the lower part, is flat in contact with the surface to be smoothed.
- The "iron" is the blade that will penetrate the wood to remove chips. It protrudes a few millimeters and can be more or less inclined.
- The "chipbreaker" is a blade in contact with the iron and a little further back that breaks the wood chips created during the smoothing to facilitate the movement on the surface to be smoothed.
- One or more handles, present to ensure a good handling of the tool.
- Adjustment bolts, to set various parameters of the plane.
How to choose the right bench plane ?
Each plane has a use and must be chosen according to the tasks you want to perform. Although its main role is to smooth they allow you a range of different actions specific to each. A hand plane to smooth a large surface will not necessarily be the same as a plane to make bevels, to make finishes or to break angles. So here are the different models of hand planes to help you better choose what suits you.
The different models of planes :
- The Jack plane
- The bench plane
- the block plane
- The smoothing plane
They usually have a strong blade and an elongated body (except the block plane). These planes are used for smoothing and leveling large and flat surfaces, or for finishing. Their length allows them to get rid of the hollows and bumps of the piece of wood.
It is generally used for more precise tasks. It is most often used to make rabbets and grooves. It is often used with a side stop. It is an ideal tool for smoothing corners.
The chamfering plane is a tool specially designed for carpenters. It is used to work the edges of a piece of wood. This plane takes more wood with each pass than a bench plane, to leave a consistent bevel on the first pass.
How to use a hand plane
Setting your plane
To be able to use your plane, you must first set it correctly. This adjustment requires several adjustments. You must make sure that the blade is parallel and sharp. Then you have to adjust the iron and the counter-iron to make sure that the plane slides well under the wood chips and breaks them. Finally, you need to adjust the plane's light to remove the right amount of wood so you can plane efficiently. The hand plane is used flat on the work surface, with one hand for a palm plane or two hands for a larger plane. With smooth, even strokes, the planer should be pushed against the wood to be planed. Ideally, it should be positioned at a slight angle to the surface to be planed to facilitate cutting and avoid marks on the wood.
RALI hand planes provide unprecedented comfort in woodworking. The adjustment of the chipbreaker is instantaneous, your blade is always parallel and you can adjust its cutting depth very quickly with a simple lever easily accessible. Our range of hand planes and blades allows you to work accurately and optimally. They are equipped with adapted soles which confer an optimal inertia. The different blades are suitable for working on all types of wood (soft, medium or hard wood). Our equipment is designed to be quick and easy to use, and provide a professional finish to your work. With just a few easy adjustments, your hand plane is ready to use.
How do I sharpen my plane ?
Sharpening an iron for a traditionnal plane
The iron of a plane should always be sharpened to ensure that your plane is ready for use. A dull iron will make your cut lose quality and will make you lose time. You need to remove the planer's iron and use a sharpening stone to sharpen your iron while keeping the angle of the bevel to ensure good efficiency.
RALI blades for new generation planes
Our blade changing mechanism, similar to our chisels, makes your experience easier and saves you valuable time. Our reversible, easy-to-change blades mean you don't have to sharpen your used blades and you always have a sharp plane blade when you need it. Our blade designs are sharp to the edge, exist in a variety of sizes, and give you the choice to match the type of wood you are working with and the planes you are using.