Subscribe now and save up to 56%
Lie-Nielsen recently introduced two styles of floats: joinery and plane-making. Joinery floats are made for fitting joints (photo above); plane-making floats are designed for making wood planes.
Floats are essentially single-cut files with coarse teeth. As you might expect, the coarse teeth remove material quickly, much like a rasp. But unlike rasps, floats produce a surprisingly smooth surface.
Both float styles come in several shapes and sizes and you can choose either a push or pull design. All have 8 teeth per inch, with 80° rake angles, and are fitted with comfortable maple handles. They come from the factory sharp enough to use, but I found they worked even better after filing each tooth with a triangular saw file. The filing process is easy, and depending on the size and shape of the float, takes between 15 minutes and 45 minutes.
Lie-Nielsen makes its floats from S-7 steel, hardened and tempered to a Rockwell hardness of 50–52. As a result, the floats hold a keen edge.
I put the joinery floats to work on a range of joints. They removed wood quickly, leaving a pile of fine shavings rather than dust. What’s more, they left a smooth finish in their wake.
Floats aren’t likely to replace my chisels or shoulder planes, but I can see where having a few around will open up new possibilities when facing challenging joinery tasks.
The floats sell for $40 to $60. Go to www.lienielsen.com for a closer look.
Get woodworking tips, expert advice and special offers in your inbox
Become a member today
Get instant access to all FineWoodworking.com content.
Subscribe to Fine Woodworking
Save up to 56%
The low-down on prefinishing parts, and the perfect finish for tools and drawer runners.
Shaker-inspired design is comfortable and practical
A strong joint that’s widely used in door and face frames, the bridle joint is simple in its anatomy and execution. A tenon on the rail fits an open-ended mortise…
Cut nails and a clever lid clinch a traditional Japanese toolbox
These tiny tools will have a big impact on your furniture
A bit of chisel work adds sophistication to an old-time joint
Become a member today and get instant access to all FineWoodworking.com content!
Plus tips, advice, and special offers from Fine Woodworking.
In-depth online classes from the experts at Fine Woodworking.
Enter now for your chance to win this Titebond glues assorted pack; plus, Kreg K5 Master system Jig and system organizer.
© 2016 The Taunton Press, Inc. All rights reserved.
Become a member and get instant access to thousands of videos, how-tos, tool reviews, and design features.
Start your subscription today and save up to 56%