A bench plane is not powered by machine, but by force. Imagine shaping wood with a dull cutting blade, and expect a lot of negative outputs to behold. The sharper the blade is, the better the outcome.
First off, a bench plane and a hand plane function the same way. The only difference is, of course, the size and the area it covers. They are still somehow used similarly. I stated this to shake off the confusion. You can even sharpen the blade around three-five times a day, depending on your workload. Also, if you are aggressive with it, then I guess that you need to sharpen and maintain it more often.
There also might be some adjustments that you might need depending on how you will use it. Tuning up a hand plane might take a while, but it’s worth the time being.
Cut Through The Toughest Wood
There are just a few things that you need to remember on how to sharpen you Bench Plane. Before I give you tips on how to sharpen the plane, here are a few things that you need to sharpen it:
- Sandpaper 300-600, wet or dry
- Polishing Compound
- Leather Strip
Sharpening with Sand Paper
- Loosen the blade with a screwdriver, and retrieved it from the body.
- Place a sandpaper on the table (or any flat surface). Start with the 300 grit.
- Hold the bevel against the sand paper and drag the down until the end of the strip. Add an angle to make sure that you evenly sharpen the blade.
- You can repeat step number 2 and 3 with a rougher grit until you reach 600.
- Hold the bevel against the leather and slide it down to buff it.
- Add a polishing compound to the blade to regain its luster.
- Test the sharpness on any paper, and it should cut through smoothly.
Adjusting The Bench Plane
Now that you have a razor-sharp blade, it is time to set the bench plane. The setting is done so that you can do the procedure in a right way. We would want a smooth and remarkable outcome with our workpiece, so here’s a few tips on how to set is up:
- Don’t set the cutting edge more than 30 degrees on an angle. It will cut anything if it is set that way. If you set less than 30, it will only make it weaker or useless.
- Make it close to the square as possible.
- Align the frog level with force edge on the rear of the sole.
- The Cap iron is supposed to be distance 2mm away from the cutting edge.
- Make sure that it is stable and sets onto the rectangular end of the depth of the adjuster.
- Place the lever cap and pull from its opening position. Secure it down with only a first-hand pressure.
- Just adjust the lateral adjuster to the thickness of the shavings that you want. It should be maintained, and it is only a matter of preference to the depth you want it to be.
That is only a brief guide on how to setup your bench plane. It might take the time to get the settings that you want, but the tweaking process shouldn’t take long at all.
There it is! You have been provided with a few easy steps on how to sharpen and set up your bench plane. You can just go back to this page if you want to repeat the process all over again in case that you missed out on something.