User’s Guide to Block Planes
Furniture maker Chris Gochnour presents the five common tasks he tackles with the handiest plane in the shop.
Synopsis: A finely tuned block plane is a pleasure to use, according to furniture maker and woodworking instructor Chris Gochnour. Quiet, efficient, and precise, it leaves a crisp, clean surface that no other method can rival. This article discusses many uses, including eliminating mill marks from edges and ends, shaping radii or chamfers, fitting doors, and fine-tuning and cleaning up joinery. It explains the differences between low-angle and standard block planes. Gochnour also offers a three-step process for tuning up an old block plane so it works better than new.
One of the tools I reach for most often is a block plane. With its compact size and comfortable palm grip, it is an extension of my hand. I almost always have a block plane within reach as I navigate through the diverse tasks of custom-furniture building.
A finely tuned block plane is a pleasure to use. Quiet, efficient and…