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Alfie

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  1. Thanks Ben, there aren't any commercial plans for these immediately. I would like to get a short run cast at some point, I'll let you know through the appropriate channels if I do. I'm not sure with regards to price, so much is still up in the air: I would certainly do my best to keep it reasonable. Here is a glamour shot of the most recent prototype, I'm pleased with how its coming together. I'll share some more detailed shots soon, but for the moment:
  2. Is there any jumping the queue with regards to posting restrictions? I'd love to keep sharing images of the development and it's a real pain hosting externally and waiting for moderation.
  3. I've been using CAD a little to juggle around the insides, and I've managed to really reduce the bulk. I think the prototypes were just getting too massive: this model now has only 1.8mm of brass either side of the throat. I'v also dropped the bed angle to 40 degrees, I played around with some wooden planes and that seemed to be the sweet spot in terms of ease, although of course there is a hair more tearout. Substantially less effort to push though, so I think worth it: thanks for bringing that up. Here is a print next to the earlier prototype. Both have a 12mm iron. The toe is extended here, there's enough room to leave a finger on it without blocking the throat. This version has parallel sides, which in the hand I think is a mistake: the bulge in the middle was a good stop for the fingers. However, the slightly flatter indent does allow different grips, which I think is important. I scaled up the 12mm model to 18mm, just to see how it worked at that scale. I think proportionally it needs some tweaking, the toe seems overly thick. I also knocked up a little bevel-up block plane with the same DNA, to see if it translated ok. I'm really pleased with this one, do you think it would be a useful part of the range? I would use something like this a lot working on a mandolin, for jobs like planing the landing for the fingerboard on the top and fitting blocks, but those don't translate to violins. Fingerboards? This was a bit much for my little MAPP torch, the joints aren't fantastic! The hypothetical family: Any and all criticism gratefully received, especially negative!
  4. The CAG website is quite odd, it seems half-finished. I like their video, interesting to see how they invest the 'trees' of planes when they're casting. The tools don't seem unusual at all, material aside? Thanks for all the feedback, it's invaluable. Interesting talk about bed angles, I think I may have been guilty of blindly believing that 50 degrees is optimum for tough wood. A little playing around does suggest that something closer to 40 is a bit easier going, and doesn't seem to tear out figure badly. Here is a rough CAD model of a version that has the blade bedded at 40 degrees, and the mouth pushed back a little for more 'toe' in front of the blade. I think it fits together well like this, it's a lower slung but not unreasonably. Any thoughts?
  5. Oh, and I hate asking people to do this but if anyone has 2 minutes to spare (9 questions) could they fill out this survey? I need a bit of quantative data. https://surveyplanet.com/570233fcc05c3c071b3c544a I'll buy you a pint if I get the chance!
  6. Clearsky - thanks for bringing my attention to those two planes, I hadn't come across them. The tapered sides of the Schnieder plane are very similar to how I have ended up laying out the version I'm working on now, I think it's definitely more useful than the rebating blade. The rebating plane also has the potential to catch an edge and gouge a top, and I suppose is then not much safer than a gouge. The one-sided rebate plane is really interesting, do you find much use for it? It does seem to solve all the clogging issues that plague finger planes. Do you find your hand obscuring the work as you pull it? It sounds rather clumsy, but like you say it's hard to know without it in your hand. The blades are all set to around 50 degrees (obviously the curved sole means there's no concrete reference), which is the pitch I prefer for working tough woods: I figured spruce would be fine either way. Any strong opinions on the pitch? I think the first one looks steep because of the ugly-duckling cap...
  7. Hello all, I'm working up some designs for finger planes and I'd love to hear what you all think of what I have so far. A key element I'm trying to work in is some way of applying force with the palm while retaining the control in the fingertips. I'm not alone in suffering from really sore fingers when using finger planes, I'm sure, but I find fixed palm rests unbearable. The seems to give far too much leverage to allow any positional feedback on how the plane is sitting on the work, so I find the blade skips in and out as it is cammed off the wood. Does this tally with your experiences? I'm also trying to build in some really simple adjustment to the larger planes, which should make it a bit easier to tweak them on the fly rather than sharpening, fitting and forgetting. Is this just unnecessary complexity? I've been sharing some progress on this thread over on mandolincafe, if anyone's interested: http://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/showthread.php?122495-Finger-plane-designs-prototypes-etc Here is a selection of rough prototypes, in vaguely chronological order: This was the first in brass. you can see it has a dovetailed in boxwood sole. It's nice to use, but not enough to justify the extra wear and bulk. This is the adjustment mechanism I've worked out, it's pretty self explanatory. I was just trying to make one simple enough to work on a really small scale. The rather ungainly ball on the cap pops into the socket in this palm handle. The idea is that you can use your palm to put pressure on the plane, but steer it in three dimensions with your fingertips. Power-steering! It seems effective, although it's sitting too high on this prototype I think. The next thing I worked on was just an ergonomic study, really. I was trying to reduce the amount of 'squeeze' needed to keep hold of it as you're working. This one also has a 'rabbet plane' type iron, which is super handy for carving bass bars and just giving a bit more working area at the same size. That is, until you take one stroke across the grain, and the shavings immediately jam in the mouth. I tried giving the 'arms' a knife edge, but I think this kind of iron just doesn't work at all on this scale. Bringing back the elements I'd worked out, but going back to a normal iron. Please excuse the 'knurling', I was in a hurry! The handle now snaps into the back of the adjuster, and fall under the fingers nicely. The handle just pops out if it's not in use. I'm mostly concentrating on working up the 10/12mm size planes, as these seem to be the workhorses. However, I did have a go at translating this design to a tiny 5mm plane. Again, prototype quality so excuse the wobbles. Any thoughts on where these are going? Suggestions for improvements? I'd love to hear any and all opinions, as blunt as possible please. Alf.
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