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Thread: If you could do just one premium plane...

  1. #1

    If you could do just one premium plane...

    If you could get just one more premium plane...by building it yourself or buying it, what would you do?

    Assuming you had the skills to build the plane, or perhaps set the cap at $1000 to keep out the exotic infills and Bridge city tool works.

    So, what hand planes do you dream about? I have really been lusting after the work of Scott Meeks.

    Chris

  2. #2
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    do you mean "one more" or only "one" ? If only one, then It would be a Lie Nielsen No.4, because it's by far my most used size of plane.

    No offense to
    Scott Meek, he does beautiful work, but anything more than 300$ for a laminated Krenov plane with is a little overboard IMO.

    If I were to spend a bunch on a wooden plane then this is what I'd spend it on:
    Smoother:
    http://www.phillyplanes.co.uk/classic.html
    Jointer: http://www.phillyplanes.co.uk/try.html

    Of Course I'd like to discuss wood choices with the maker and I would like to see if I could get a double iron plane bedded at 44 or somthin'.

  3. #3
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    Always seems to be the most recent one that got me out of a trouble spot!

    This week's winner is my LN brass #4, with HAF. Who knows what next week's plane will be!
    If the thunder don't get you, the lightning will.

  4. #4
    For that $1000 I would buy (again) one each a smoother, jack, and jointer from either Veritas or Lie Nielsen. I cannot imagine that the uber premium planes can improve on the performance and precision of any of these. Further, I have come to value the after-market support from both companies. I tend not to baby my tools and occasionally drop or lose parts. I have repeatedly been surprised (pleasantly) by their ability to subsidize my carelessness.

    Of course, I could be a fox to the uber planes' grapes. Having never tried them, and not wishing to hijack the OP, I'm curious to hear how these planes exceed the performance or experience of the two big brands above.

  5. #5
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    Easy, I'd build an infill smoother, ala Hotley. Anyone else have pinup photos of beautiful infill planes beside that old photo of Brigitte Bardot?

  6. #6
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    The English made Philly plane looks very nice. But, at a guess of $1.62 dollars per 1 English pound,that would be $486.00. Plus,I think there is a high cost now of shipping packages from England imposed by their government.

    You ought to be able to find an old one for much less than that. They still turn up in excellent shape. Gone are the days when I could pick up a jointer in excellent,or unused shape for $10.00.

  7. #7
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    I find myself returning to my LN 5 1/2 bench plane with a cambered plane again and again. It's the plane I trust for small adjustments to really dial in a piece of wood, flat and square. Great handle, nice and heavy, "tight" adjusting mechanisms, and great blades/cap iron. I really like that plane.
    clamp the work
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  8. #8
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    I am with Prashun on this one, I think the area that LN exceeds most is in their planes. I own a great deal of LN tools and the area I would definetly purchase them again is their planes.
    Bumbling forward into the unknown.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Prashun Patel View Post
    For that $1000 I would buy (again) one each a smoother, jack, and jointer from either Veritas or Lie Nielsen. I cannot imagine that the uber premium planes can improve on the performance and precision of any of these. Further, I have come to value the after-market support from both companies. I tend not to baby my tools and occasionally drop or lose parts. I have repeatedly been surprised (pleasantly) by their ability to subsidize my carelessness.

    Of course, I could be a fox to the uber planes' grapes. Having never tried them, and not wishing to hijack the OP, I'm curious to hear how these planes exceed the performance or experience of the two big brands above.

    That's just it, I really do not think they exceed the performance of the basic planes. The only time I really need more than a basic prewar Stanley is when I get into really tough grain. My ECE smoother works fine, as the blade is bedded at 50 degrees. I would have to assume a LV or LN plane with a blade bedded at 50 degrees would work just as well if not better.

    I could imagine that an English infill might work really well with something like heavily burled walnut crotch, the kind of stuff the Brits were using in fancy designs. But for gold old American hardwood, basic planes are great.

    The inner tool geek in me wants one really unique plane, though.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by jamie shard View Post
    I find myself returning to my LN 5 1/2 bench plane with a cambered plane again and again. It's the plane I trust for small adjustments to really dial in a piece of wood, flat and square. Great handle, nice and heavy, "tight" adjusting mechanisms, and great blades/cap iron. I really like that plane.
    I can see how wide, long and yet shorter than a #7 could be a workhorse.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew N. Masail View Post


    No offense to
    Scott Meek, he does beautiful work, but anything more than 300$ for a laminated Krenov plane with is a little overboard IMO.
    He (Scott) has a table for sale very basic table for like 4 grand on his website. I do not begrudge him profit, but his prices seem a little steep. However, he has a backlog of orders so more power to him.

    Nothing against woodworking celebrities, but woodworking seems to be more about selling premium webpage memberships than actually building things some days....

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Hachet View Post
    He (Scott) has a table for sale very basic table for like 4 grand on his website. I do not begrudge him profit, but his prices seem a little steep. However, he has a backlog of orders so more power to him.

    Nothing against woodworking celebrities, but woodworking seems to be more about selling premium webpage memberships than actually building things some days....
    It's not outside of the realm of studio furniture.
    Bumbling forward into the unknown.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Holcombe View Post
    It's not outside of the realm of studio furniture.
    Agreed. Remember he isn't pricing for "normal" people, but for people who would actually buy studio furniture and consequently have the budget for it.
    Your endgrain is like your bellybutton. Yes, I know you have it. No, I don't want to see it.

  14. #14
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    A couple weeks ago, I went to the LN event in San Marcos (Palomar College.) The fact that Scott Meek was going to be there was one of the prime motivators for my making the 190 mile round trip. He's got a new style with a big thumbhook that I think will be a winner for the longer planes. I've got it in my head that a long woodie would be cool to have - and it would. I guess I start to balk at that much money for a woodie. Right now, I'd rather have a pair of Ron Bontz's half back saws.

    Anyway to answer the question as posed - I'd get a pair of the new LV custom planes and some extra frogs. Then I'd look at the premium block plane. All with PM-V11 irons.

  15. #15
    Chris, I have several Bailey's which I've made work reasonably well. They've all required some fiddling/fettling, and some have required new blades. They all pass.
    But none work as well as any of my Veritas planes have out of the box. The Veritases are better in fit, finish, blade, ease of adjustment, backlash, mass, and predictability.

    I do agree that cheaper planes can be made to work very well, but I think it takes work or luck. With the LN's and V's, you pay for not having to rely on either of these.

    There is something so priceless to me in being able to pick up my Bevel up Jointer and just KNOW how it's going to perform.

    I do believe that better woodworkers than I reach a point where the saw or chisel or plane they're holding is irrelevant, and their skill is more dictated by their own body and experience, but while I'm ascending to that point, the premium planes have been worth their weight in gold - or at least bronze.

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