Certainly power thicknessers are truly wonderful for all manner of tasks, but only the biggest industrial models can handle smoothing wide glued-up panels like table tops. If you want to save money by gluing up narrow sections and then smoothing -rather than buying expensive wide boards -or you simplv want to master an age-old technique, then the following project will show you how.

I Spend time tuning and setting up the plane. Make sure that the cutting edge of the blade is parallel to the mouth.

2 With the workpicce well secured, start at the end farthest away from you and make a series of slightly skewed shearing strokes.

3 Use a square to check that the face and the edge arc true and square to each other.

4 If you arc after a super smooth finish, and if the length of wood allows, then avoid running the plane off the end of the wood. The best procedure when you come to the end of the stroke is to case off the pressure on the front knob, so that the plane ceases to cut. In this way, you will avoid rounding the wood over and/or marking the wood with the back end of the plane.


Though a modern power planer is great for achieving a quick finish, the design of these machines is such that the blades soon become nicked. When thi> happens, the resultant boards show thin ridges that run in the direction of the grain. So what to do? The answer is to take out the ridges with a smoothing plane!

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