Some of the woods that I intend to use in the No 10. Although it doesn’t look at its best at this stage I am putting the picture up to satisfy an enquiry. There is ebony, box and rosewood.
This wood is very, very special. It is Pterocarpus santalinus. As it comes at a premium it will only be appreciated by those who are familiar with this wood.
I think I have been here before, though in a different application.
No 10 smoother/mitre
A very patient customer asked me to make a small mitre plane. He wanted a 11/4” wide blade to be bedded at 25 deg and bevel up with a short body. No adjuster was required.
I would classify this plane as a smoother/mitre. The small mitre plane has always seemed to be surprisingly scarce for its usefulness. Having got my simple sketch approved the first batch is now well on the way (the sketch can be seen on the website here http://www.holteyplanes.com/).
It is a combined stainless steel bottom with naval brass dovetailed sides and brass lever cap and thumb screw. The blade is in my A2 original specification and has a top sneck. The length of the plane is 43/4“.
Despite its apparent austerity there will be no lacking in specification and quality. The designation will be No.10. Delivery will be end of November 2011.
What better place to start than the blades. Here are the A2 blanks being drilled and shaped. These are now away being heat treated (the only work to be done out of house).
Brass sides have been cut from sheet and trued up into rectangular blanks.
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.
Adjuster components for A6
This item is most commonly known as the banjo and it is the most work intensive component in the whole plane. This picture shows that it comes out of a round bar.
There is a lot of preparation but this is not a step by step instruction manual, it is just a few snapshots. In these pictures, after lots of preparation I start to ball generate the round part of this component.
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.
The last batch of A6 planes part 1
After receiving a commission for an A6 smoother I decided to make a batch of six. The A6 is probably the most time consuming of the infill planes (well perhaps the A7 is worse!). When using the designation A6 one should realise that my A6 is not to be compared with the Norris or any other plane of this type – it is made to a higher precision and has some innovations not seen in the original. This standard is beyond the scope of those without a tool room; I am not aware of any comparison. I work from a reasonably equipped tool room; not a production line. All work is done in house with the exception of heat treatment for the blades.
Although this model has been blogged before I am running it through again as this A6 is just that little bit more special. I always try to make the current plane better than the preceding one. Also these will be the very last Holtey A6 planes. For all my innovations and upgrades my work is veiled by the Norris history and I feel it is time to move on.
The first part of starting the plane is to get the timber chosen and prepared so giving the wood some time to settle whilst making a start on the metal work.
Here is a stunning piece of Cocobolo (Dalbergia Retusa) which was cut from a very nice log that I acquired from Timber Line a couple of years ago – thanks to a friend who spotted it on a visit there. This is the basic roughing out for the infill components.
With the wood put aside to rest, a good starting point is the blades as they need to be sent away for the heat treatment. This shows the milling of the faceted end and slot.
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.
Now that the No 982 lever caps are 99% complete I shall move on.
The beginning. Cutting up bottoms and sides from hot rolled black mild steel. This is a very malleable material with no stresses.
After the completion of the No 982 smoothing planes it was not long before I was pressed into making a larger version in the form of a panel plane. Because of the enormity of work on this plane I have decided to make only 8 for this batch.
For the benefit of those who have bought this plane I would like to blog the making. Hopefully it will show up some areas I did not cover on the smoothing plane blog.
You will notice that I do change my techniques from time to time.
I will start this blog by documenting the work on the lever cap. I would like to emphasise the work that goes into this one component. Though I have used castings in the past for my lever caps I feel more in control by making them from a solid bar and I produce a far better product. I now understand why some of the Rolls Royce cameras bodies are made from solid billets.
Starting with a bar of naval brass I go round and machine all the sides true, just like you would with a piece of wood.
If this was a piece of wood the next stage would be to machine a form i.e. either with a spindle or a router. In the case of metals I have to concentrate more on work holding so this picture shows me setting up three vices in a line. The bars I am working are 18 inches long and cut 8 lever caps each.
As I am currently working on a small batch of No 982 14 1/2″ panel planes I thought I would show this picture of all the component parts of the smoother. Most of the parts are going to be the same.
This picture excludes taper pins, handle, lever cap, screw and adjuster.
There will be more pictures as I work through the project.