Full Chisel Blog

September 9, 2009

Strike Block Plane

Or is it a miter plane?  It is a 30 degree, bevel down wooden plane.  It is not particularly a copy of anything, but took me to another level of plane making.  Now as I have said before I am not a plane maker, although I do make planes, and of course that doesn’t make any sense.

I will be teaching a plane making class for the Nevada WoodChucks in Reno in November and we will be making the coffin smoother/Moxon smoother with a small blade.  This plane is a bit different the blade is much wider, 2″ and is a laid steel blade from Chris Sholtz at Galoot Tools.  It is a wonderful blade and I have wanted an opportunity to build a plane, a metal miter is not in the near future.

Made of maple with a brass rod to hold the maple wedge the plane is 11 inches long and not quite 3 inches wide and a little over two inches thick.  I did pre drill some of the throat then used a firmer chisel to get the proper shape.  The 30 degree triangles I made came in handy to layout the bed of the plane.

I also used a float to help form the bed.  I made inquiries over at WoodCentral to get an idea where to place the wedge bar and it is in the middle of the throat.

I spent 6 hours on the plane and it looks like I spent 6 hours on the plane.  Another hour of tweaking the edges and applying Boiled Linseed Oil and I am done.  Nothing fancy but it does cut nice both with the grain and end-grain.  I tried a piece of poplar and a piece of pine which had a knot and the end-grain was smack smooth.



  1. Fantastic looking plane Stephen. How have you found that it works on the end grain? I’ve had clearance angle issues with mine because it’s bedded at 35 degrees. This would seem even more of an issue to require attention in yours being bedded at 30 degrees. I found that when I lowered the bevel angle enough for good clearance, the edge failed when planing end grain but if I increased the bevel angle I was back to the clearance angle problems. Mine doesn’t have an original iron in it so this is part of the problem I’m sure.

    What made you decide to go with the cross pin instead of traditional wedge abutments?

    Comment by Bob Rozaieski — September 10, 2009 @ 5:43 am

  2. Bob,

    It works great on end-grain, here are a couple of pieces I tested it on, one is pine the other poplar.

    I chose cross pin as it is similar to how clad planes captured their wedge. I am not sure it is any easier (I originally thought it might be), the placement of the cross pin took some input from others. I haven’t had a lot of opportunity to use the plane and won’t get my hands on it again until next week.


    Comment by Stephen Shepherd — September 10, 2009 @ 6:19 am

  3. Very nice! Looks like much more than a six hour plane from here.

    How wide is the throat? Does it work as well on hardwoods?

    Comment by Jerome Weijers — September 10, 2009 @ 11:29 am

  4. Jerome,

    Thanks, it is not a fine finished plane, it is quite rough, but it is a user. If I were going to sell it I would have taken more time and done a nicer job.

    The throat is 2 inches wide and 4 1/2″ in overall length. I have just planed some end-grain poplar, really haven’t had much of a chance to use the plane except testing on some pine. I will get an opportunity next week to work with it more and will report.


    Comment by Stephen Shepherd — September 10, 2009 @ 5:56 pm

  5. Oh sorry, Stephen, what I should have asked is, what is how fine is the gap in the mouth of the plane?

    Where do you buy your floats, btw, or do you make them yourself?

    Thanks again! Jerome

    Comment by Jerome Weijers — September 10, 2009 @ 10:42 pm

  6. Jerome,

    It has a big gap, I would have to measure it but I am sure Mr. Williams would not approve.

    As for floats I have a couple I use, but they are babbitt floats or the kind used for auto body work. I have sharpened one in acid, the other was sharp when I got it.


    Comment by Stephen Shepherd — September 11, 2009 @ 5:25 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment

Powered by WordPress