Sunday 9 October 2011

The Top of a Slippery Slope...

I did something rather rash this morning - I brought a wooden moulding plane.

Up until now I've never know enough about these planes to buy one or even give them a second look at the car book sales, but with what I've been reading lately I decided to look out for one and maybe try it out if I found a good one.

Rummaging around in boxes of old tools this morning I found one that looked quite good. The blade was in good condition, the wedge fitted tightly and the whole thing looked well made, the sole for the moulding even having a different timber fitted nicely in the sole of the plane.

It was £2 so I decided to risk it. It looked nice even if it didn't work very well!

Its stamped with the Hibernia Marple's & Sons Sheffield shamrock logo, I'm not great at dating tools but I guess that puts it somewhere from the 1937 (when they started using the shamrock) to when they stopped making wooden planes (anyone know more?)

When I got back from the car boot the first thing I did was to go down to the shed and take the plane apart to look at the blade, it was quite sharp and pretty much ready to go.

So I put the plane back together and adjusted it with a few taps to take a small cut. Pushing it along, two handed, felt great and with two strokes I had created some fine shavings and this lovely little bead.

The trouble is now I want to buy some more moulding planes, I think it will be nicer than using a router on a small project. Just need to do a little more research so I know what to look out for (recommendations of books will be appreciated).

Watch this space!


  1. Oh no! You've taken your first hit! You're now a wooden plane junkie and you don't even know it yet. It always starts out innocently enough, usually because the first one is so reasonably priced, but others WILL follow. Then you'll begin craving things like sash planes, adjustable filisters with ebony and holly accents and other hardcore items. Your former life is over; from now on, your stash of lucre will shrink and your pile of planes will grow. On your tombstone they engrave, "He was a normal guy until he got hooked." ;-)

  2. I love the comment Gorges! It was just chisels and gouges I was hooked on buying, but now... I think the bug has bitten! How good will they look on the workshop wall and when compared to the cost of a router cutter they're not too badly priced! I knew it would happen one day! Right I'm off to ebay to buy a book on wooden planes....

  3. Oh, dear...You're Dooooomed.....:-( Couldn't have put it better than Gorges though. Me?@ I like to buy carving tools, there aren't that many around in car boot sales though, which is probably just as well!There is nothing quite as good as the sound of a nicely sharpened plane gliding on wood is there?

  4. Buy them up before anyone else and enjoy them .

  5. Brian - once I figure out the ones I will use I've every intention of buying them all! (wife sobs in the background)

    Joel - I've also been buying carving tools at car boots for the last ten years and I've managed to get a fair collection of 50 or so gouges, chisels and v tools. The weekend before last I brought 10 really nice ones for a pound each off an old carpenter. Once I've restored them all I'll do a post and show them off trouble is these are so fine they can't be ground on the grinder so I'll have to file them into shape!


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