Saturday, July 9, 2011

New Gets

Things have been pretty slow around here for the last few weeks. I've decided to go on paternity leave, I'm off work for the last four months of my daughters first year. That way I can help out around the house, bond with the kids, enjoy the summer, and actually take a "holiday", my first in almost six years.

I still sneak into the shop for some me time, I've been making an entertainment centre as a gift for my folks. They've been using the gutted shell of their old console TV for years now, and deserve better. It's been a long time coming, and it's almost done.

I picked up a Veritas Skew Rabbet Plane a while back.

This plane is for cutting rabbets, both with the grain and across it with its scoring cutter. Attaching a beveled guide to the fence allows for panel raising.

It is made to the Veritas standard of quality. Everything is well thought out in its design.

The depth stop is robust, and the sliding, ribbed mount is a much better design than the rod style found on their plough plane.

The scoring spur is adjustable. It can be slid and locked into alignment with the iron, and lifted out of the way when it's unneccessary. The adjusting screws are accessed in the fence post mounting hole.

It does an excellent job, cleanly severing the wood fibers just ahead of the cut and leaving a nice sharp corner.

It's even more fun with the grain, making nice thick curls and accomplishing the job quickly.

The fence is locked into position using the same collet arrangement found on the plough. It works very well, easy, fast, and ensuring the fence is parallel to the sole. The mounting rods can be swapped for a long version, 2 1/2" longer than standard, to accomodate thick secondary fences.

This plane is difficult to set up. I completely dissassembled it for the photo above, loosing any starting point for reference. I spent a long time getting it to work correctly after that. I don't see how Veritas could improve on it though, it is just a complicated plane. They do have the body tapped for two blade-guiding set screws that help.

The only real complaint I have about this plane is pretty minor. I dislike the tote. It's shape is ugly and uninspired. I was also unimpressed with the amount of cross grain scratches under the finish.

I do like this plane. It is a lot of fun to use and works very well, once set up. Move over, tablesaw and router, I have a new favourite way to cut rabbets!

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I'm a woodworker on the Canadian prairie.