Monday, 21 July 2008

Never a dull moment

When Jill and I decided that we would take the plunge and pursue this road less traveled - I was worried that full time planemaking would get boring and heaven forbid... monotonous. In the beginning, the excitement and challenge of building infill planes was incredible - the thrill of actually being able to do it was more than enough. Some of that “thrill of learning” has dissipated over the years, but I am happy to report that I still love making them. And these last two A5’s perfectly illustrate why.

The first plane is stuffed with English Boxwood. This is the second Boxwood filled plane I have made - the first was an XSNo.4. As far as I am concerned - English (or Turkish) Boxwood deserves to be placed alongside Rosewood as far as workability and joy to use. I have a deeper appreciation as to why it is so prized by turners. Working with the Boxwood was such a fun departure from all the dark woods - I felt like I was building a brand new model.

The sole and sides are 01 tool steel, the blade is 2-1/4" wide high carbon steel and the bed angle is 50 degrees.

The second plane is also special because it has specs that I have not combined before. It is a really small A5 compared to all the others I have made. It is also extremely comfortable in the hand. The infill is Rosewood, the sides and sole are 01 tool steel.

What was “new” is the 47.5 degree bed angle coupled with a 7-1/2" long sole. Until this plane, all the 47.5 degree bedded smoother had a 7-7/8" sole. I have made a lot of A5's with 7-1/2" long soles - but they have all had a york pitch. The york pitch raised the blade just enough to allow for the handle to be pushed in closer to the lever cap. This in turn allows the sole to be shortened. This may seem a bit over the top -but when you are trying to fit a handle to a persons hand size - every 1/16" matters!


Blogger Paul Kierstead said...

Wow, the boxwood one is fantastic (as is the rosewood, of course). I never it would come out so well. They look especially fantastic together; it is a shame to separate them these twins.

24 July 2008 at 16:07  
Blogger Mike R said...

Outstanding boxwood plane(s). There is such a lightness in these planes it's kind of theraputic in a way, where we get to see something bright in contrast to the somewhat depressive state that continual darkness brings about. Oh believe me when I say there is NOTHING depressive about your planes unless you count the many, many months of saving up for one, and then the purchase happens and beautiful sunshine every where. I know I need a vacation, but I just wanted to let you know that when I'm ready to order my order for the xsno4 I'm going with boxwood!!!

26 July 2008 at 17:12  
Blogger Konrad said...

Thanks Paul. I wish I could naturally treat the boxwood to give it 30 years of age - I suspect it will be even more stunning then.


27 July 2008 at 14:37  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi Mike,

Thanks. I am working on securing a decent stash of European Boxwood - for just such occasions as your future Boxwood XS :)


27 July 2008 at 14:38  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dude! you make the best looking lever caps I've seen. Keep up the great work.


29 July 2008 at 23:04  
Blogger Konrad said...

Thanks dude :)


30 July 2008 at 19:06  
Blogger tomausmichigan said...


Its inspiring to see what files and saws, rasps and chisels can do in the right hands. The photos of work in progress are extremely interesting, photos of the planes are breath-taking.


3 August 2008 at 14:26  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When are you going to get around to a tutorial? Not really on the infill shell (I can't do that anyway haha) but more and wood shaping and finishing. Lessons like that could be used in other places besides just planes. By the way, as much as I love all the rosewoods, I have to say that boxwood loks pretty amazing!!

5 August 2008 at 12:59  

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