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Thread: Lee Valley spokeshave. Old style vs New style

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    Lee Valley spokeshave. Old style vs New style

    There has been Lots of discussion over the years about the Veritas spokeshaves (shown). I recently discovered that they have been redesigned, and I was wondering if anyone had an opinion about the updated design:

    1. BETTER
    The escapement has a larger opening (though the mouth opening remains unchanged). In fact, the entire body has a sightly different shape. It's clearly formed from a different pattern/casting. You wouldn't notice immediately but both the cap iron & body are slimmer and less boxy.
    The blade bed is different now. Instead of one continuous flat-milled bed, the bed's flat-milled support areas are only "where it matters" namely in the two places where the cap exerts pressure (under the tension screw, and where the cap exerts pressure on the blade across the mouth). Both of these areas have perfect, flat-milled cast iron. See Picture.

    Is the second change better, worse or the same? The folks at Veritas are not slouches. Generally, the only reason they would redesign is to make meaningful improvements. Cost-cutting is not their M.O.

    On the one hand, I think the new bed is probably every bit 'as good', but could it be better? Is it just plain worse? For example, with the old design, a piece of sawdust or imperfection on the bed would preventing your blade from 'seating' as well. The new design might reduce that possibility. On the other hand, when it comes to blade support, my gut tells me that "more" is usually more.

    Are there any opinions about the bed change? Opinions about the redesign in general?
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    Last edited by Karl Fife; 02-19-2014 at 3:43 AM.

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