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The responses that I’ve had to the last two posts on how to construct small planes for violin-making stimulated me to look around more widely for people who make their own planes.  The basic idea of constructing them as a ‘sandwich’ came from chapter 2 of James Krenov’s book, The Fine Art of Cabinetmaking. But there’s a much more detailed account of how to make these sorts of planes in Making and Mastering Wood Planes by David Finck (ISBN 0-8069-6163-5). As you’d guess from the title, this book also has stuff on sharpening plane irons  and using planes.

Derek Cohen, from Perth, Australia, has a website full of interesting stuff about tools and woodworking, mainly angled towards furniture makers.  Among other things, he describes how to make a large jointer and a plane to cut sliding dovetails.

Philip Edwards makes traditional wooden planes professionally in Dorset, England and very nice tools they are too. Better still, they’re very reasonably priced. I met him recently and he told me that he too, used the sandwich method of construction. You can just make this out if you look carefully the pictures at Philly Planes.

I’ve mentioned Konrad Sauer  before in this blog. He’s a Canadian planemaker who makes infill planes that are not only beautiful  but highly functional. He has re-invented the Norris adjuster and it works perfectly – which is more than can be said for the orginal version. However, it’s a website to visit for inspiration rather than instruction unless you are a highly skilled metalworker.

Bill Carter’s website falls into a similar category but it’s well worth a visit both to see his copies of rare mitre planes and the ingenious use he makes of discarded materials, especially the brass backs of worn out tenon saws.

Of course, if you want to buy a plane, there are many places to go – just search the web. But I hope these resources might be of use to people who want to make their own.


One Comment

  1. Christopher: Fantastic site. I enjoyed your post on making curved sole finger planes. For guys like me who are more familiar with furniture construction, I’m fascinated by the process and precision of making instruments. Thanks for putting together a site that explores this area. Keith (

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