Nik Kyklo

Easy DIY bow scrapping plane

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Hello. There are many posts on bow making planes in this forum but I would like to know especially from scraping planes. Since Veritas and Nielsen choices of planes are too expensive for (my) current situation, what would you consider as good wooden scraping plane for bow making? Easy wooden made, plans or blade recommendation would be very helpful. Thank you very much

 

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Here's a bow making plane that Condit (now out of business) used to make.  The body is made from a single piece of aluminum, but it would probably be pretty easy to duplicate it in wood.  The approximate maximum dimensions are 55 mm long by 30 mm high by 15 mm wide, and the blade is about 13 mm wide.  It has two set screws:  one to advance the blade and the other to lock it in place.  Condit made this type of plane in different lengths.  Some had flat bottoms like this one, and some had curved bottoms.

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Here’s the spoon bottom version of the Condit plane. I inserted a hex wrench in the last photo so you could see that there’s a set screw there to lock the blade. But of course mine and Brad’s are planes and not scrapers. Condit did make scraper versions of these same planes with the cutters positioned vertically in the body, and someone could make one out of a hard wood like rosewood. I don’t have one to show you, so unless someone else does, you’ll have to use your imagination and creativity.

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I made one of my small bow scraping planes out of laminated rosewood.  It has a copper wedge for weight and a stainless steel feeler gauge glued on the bottom for a sole.  The scraping angle is controlled by the bevel on the blade, which is set bevel up at a very low angle.  This arrangement is nice for the control it affords but puts a lot of force on the blade which requires the wedge to work really well.

I made another bow scraping plane from a mid-size flat bottom violin maker's plane.  I shortened the nose and use the blade bevel up.

Blades need to be very hard to hold up long in this configuration, and sharpening them is marginally more fussy than regular blades.

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3 hours ago, Brad Dorsey said:

Here's a bow making plane that Condit

 

16 minutes ago, Andres Sender said:

I made another bow scraping plane from a mid-size flat bottom violin maker's plane.  I shortened the nose and use the blade bevel up.

Thank you very much for your suggestions. I was looking more for ~90 degrees blade:

http://www.cag-tools.com/block-bow.html

https://www.lie-nielsen.com/products/small-scraping-planes

Prices are high so wooden diy would be better choice for me. I was thinking also if making something like Taiwanese plane - but push action, would be fine. 

https://www.dictum.com/en/traditional-taiwanese-planes-baep/taiwanese-scraping-plane-703292

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https://www.google.com/search?q=lynn+bowmaker.&oq=lynn&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j35i39l2j46l3j69i60l2.4873j0j7&client=ubuntu&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Lynn Hannings, bowmaker, sells copies of the Condit planes.  They are about $100 and are made of aluminum with a steel blade.  I have the flat one--it works so-so.

I have made my own from wood with a brass bottom plate.  I am still not certain what the best angle of the blade should be or whether the edge should be turned.  Any advice on this?  I have small planes with angles going from 30 degrees to slightly over 90 degrees (measured from flat surface that the blade sits against relative to the bottom).  The approximately 90 degree scraper is a cheap Harbor Freight plane which works better than the Condit plane.   

One of the planes I depend upon for the early stages is a low angle Stanley block plane because it removes a lot of wood without a lot pull-out..

Mike D

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I humbly suggest Harbor Freight(that little known mecca for luthier's tools). HF sells a 3 combo pack of lovely little brass planes that resemble the Condit planes. These planes are Indian made and will require some fettling,but for around $12 for the 3 of them,what have you got to lose?

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4 hours ago, violguy said:

I humbly suggest Harbor Freight(that little known mecca for luthier's tools). HF sells a 3 combo pack of lovely little brass planes that resemble the Condit planes. These planes are Indian made and will require some fettling,but for around $12 for the 3 of them,what have you got to lose?

These?

https://www.harborfreight.com/3-piece-micro-brass-plane-set-97545.html

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5 hours ago, violguy said:

I humbly suggest Harbor Freight(that little known mecca for luthier's tools). HF sells a 3 combo pack of lovely little brass planes that resemble the Condit planes. These planes are Indian made and will require some fettling,but for around $12 for the 3 of them,what have you got to lose?

Thank you for the information. I know these planes. I had some of these but are not suitable for hardwood (blade quality) and width is small. 

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If you can, see if you can borrow a plane from someone that does good work.  The most discouraging thing I have run into while teaching is people struggling to make bad tools work well and not knowing they are really bad tools.  Some of the commercial tools out there are pretty horrible, and using inappropriate tools like Xacto knives or other such things will destine you for mediocrity if they don’t discourage you completely.  Cut back on other things now and buy good tools....other than education they are the best investment you could make.

from someone who has been there....

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43 minutes ago, FiddleDoug said:

You might be able to DIY one for yourself using this as a guide

Very good option. Thank you. 

 

35 minutes ago, Jerry Pasewicz said:

Cut back on other things now and buy good tools....other than education they are the best investment you could make.

I understand what you mean and you are telling the truth. 

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This subject has come up before, and I learned some useful things when reviewing it.  For instance, those low angle French bow planes work because the blade is ground at a high angle of 40-45 degrees----this must make the total angle at around 70 degrees.

Traditional bow making planes are going to be hard to find, and expensive, but you can find DIY articles on making them.  A way of making it easier to construct is to make the plane of wood and then use a brass wear plate on the bottom (epoxied into place).  St James Bay used to make these french planes, but I can't find them any longer.  Pasewitz recenty  made a small production run.

Bow makers must have a room-full of planes, and when one does not work, they reach for another and another until they find one that works.  

My scraper plane from Harbor Freight required a new O1 steel blade which I fabricated in order for it to work.  When the wood bottom shows wear, I will install a brass wear plate.

Mike D

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5 hours ago, Jerry Pasewicz said:

If you can, see if you can borrow a plane from someone that does good work.  The most discouraging thing I have run into while teaching is people struggling to make bad tools work well and not knowing they are really bad tools.  Some of the commercial tools out there are pretty horrible, and using inappropriate tools like Xacto knives or other such things will destine you for mediocrity if they don’t discourage you completely.  Cut back on other things now and buy good tools....other than education they are the best investment you could make.

from someone who has been there....

Agreed

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12 hours ago, Jerry Pasewicz said:

If you can, see if you can borrow a plane from someone that does good work.  The most discouraging thing I have run into while teaching is people struggling to make bad tools work well and not knowing they are really bad tools.  Some of the commercial tools out there are pretty horrible, and using inappropriate tools like Xacto knives or other such things will destine you for mediocrity if they don’t discourage you completely.  Cut back on other things now and buy good tools....other than education they are the best investment you could make.

from someone who has been there....

Amen, Jerry. Good tools ain't cheap, but buy once - cry once, and get back to the bench.

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15 hours ago, Jerry Pasewicz said:

If you can, see if you can borrow a plane from someone that does good work.  The most discouraging thing I have run into while teaching is people struggling to make bad tools work well and not knowing they are really bad tools.  Some of the commercial tools out there are pretty horrible, and using inappropriate tools like Xacto knives or other such things will destine you for mediocrity if they don’t discourage you completely.  Cut back on other things now and buy good tools....other than education they are the best investment you could make.

from someone who has been there....

By chance are you planning to make another batch of your planes in the future?

 

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4 hours ago, JPherson said:

By chance are you planning to make another batch of your planes in the future?

 

Probably not, it is a lot of work and there are many other things I need to accomplish.  Thank you for asking.

 

JP

 

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