I thought it about time I wrote some more in my blog. Looking back on my past entries I notice that there are some gaps which I intend filling here.
At the beginning of any project the metal is a good place to start (after design and drawings are done of course). In all my classic designs I use mild steel – I have tried it in several different forms; hot rolled (which is very good and has little stress in but comes with a lot of scale to deal with), BMS (which is nice and clean but has a lot of stress in it), sheet metal (which still has a difficult scale to deal with and some stress). Stainless steel would be my favourite choice, but not on the classic type of planes. I therefore choose mild steel as this is a nice ductile material once the stress problems have been dealt with. To relief the stress I have to cut it to manageable sizes and send it off for heat treatment. This picture shows the material in two stages – after heat treatment and some after surface grinding.
As you can see from the picture my grinding machine is a Jones and Shipman 1430. It was made in the ‘60s and it has been reconditioned by Andmar who are more ‘Jones and Shipman’ than the company themselves. It has been the main stay of my workshop since I purchased it 10 years ago as all my work including tool making passes through here. That is every jig and every piece of work holding (as well as plane components). It sets the standard for all my work.
This surface grinder uses a 24” x 12” Eclipse magnetic chuck which needs re-surfacing every 12 months. This can take up the best part of a day. The nice true surface is so good I just had to photograph it (sad isn’t it!).
My current project is A1 14 ½” Panel planes. I have documented this before (use this link http://www.toolworkshop.co.uk/blogarchive/) so I am just putting a few pictures to look at.
These are the front bun chairs and once the blanks have been cut and trimmed up true to uniformed size the central fixing hole is drilled whilst still in the lathe. They are then tapped with an 8 x 1.25mm thread; this is for the bun screw.
The 3 x 6mm fixings are drilled on a manual milling machine using an indexing head as shown.
With the three index holes now drilled I only need a tool change to tap these three holes whilst still in the chuck.
Now that all my fixing holes are complete it is back to the lathe to form a small spigot where the bun in engaged.
The last job on the chairs now is to finish the bottoms to the 15 deg offset to the front buns. A small fixture has been made for this purpose. The chairs are mounted with the three bolts.
The chair is held in its fixture and secured on the saw for cutting
Whilst the chair is still attached to the fixture it is clamped onto the tilting milling vice for surfacing to the desired dimension.
The final part of the A6 construction.
Drilling and countersinking frogs for the rivets.
The bottom has been slotted out for mouth and drilling for the corresponding frog rivets.
A6 Part 2
All of the woodworking has its edges squared up on the milling machine as I have a bit more confidence in this machine than I do a planer.
A pair of infill sides being drilled for riveting spacers. At this stage all edges are trued up
This is the infill side with the spacers pressed through the handle testing for fit. The two sides have yet to be separated.
Some pictures of the completed No 982 panel planes (14 1/2″). I made a limited edition of 8 of these planes, a few were made with the brass cones.