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Making and Mastering Wood Planes Paperback – January 1, 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Hickory Ridge Press; Revised Edition edition (2009)
  • ISBN-10: 061527353X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615273532
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #288,662 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

David Finck was born in Pittsburgh, PA in 1961. His father's efforts at instrument making piqued David's interest, and so, he built his first guitar while still in college. This turned out to be a transforming experience, sparking a passion for wood and craftsmanship. Subsequently, after graduating from Berkeley, that ember truly caught fire with two years of instruction under reknowned craftsman, author, and teacher, James Krenov. Since 1986, David has been designing and building guitars, fine furniture, and lighting fixtures. He has maintained a commitment for passing along his woodworking knowledge through teaching and writing, and lately, videography.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Charles Beadnall on March 3, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've read a lot of woodworking books, but next to Tage Frid Teaches Woodworking, this is the most practical primer for furniture building. The author covers almost every necessary skill from rip sawing to making router templates. His coverage of grinding, honing, planing and shaping may be more thoroughly covered in other books, but this is a welcome addition to a book about the oft-overlooked wood plane.

Of course, what this book excels at is describing how to build a Krenov-style wooden plane which may be nearer a tool used by Romans 2000 years ago than our modern electric planes, but it finishes wood with unsurpassed efficiency and exactitude.

The only two minor omissions are a Janka hardness listing of appropriate plane-making woods and a mention of Hock Tools as a plane iron option, in addition to the author's own firm. In fact, Hock sells a Krenov-style plane kit for those who are too busy or lazy to complete a first one unassisted.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By SJV on February 10, 2010
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book directly from the Author, so my copy came signed.

I am really amazed by this clearly written book. In less than 200 pages, with a modest list of tools, Finck details the process of wooden plane design and construction. He also covers the use and care of all the associated tools that go into the building, sharpening, and use of the planes. So many woodworking techniques and topics are covered that the text would make a great introduction and reference to wood working, while encouraging readers to make their own tools.

Topics included are: Selecting, preparing, and properly marking stock, tuning up a bandsaw, grinding/sharpening of irons and chisels, making your own marking knives and plane hammers, clamping and glue-ups, workbench use, pinch dogs and shooting boards, scraper sharpening and use, and planing techniques for stock preparation and edge joining. The list goes on and on.

I couldn't recommend it more.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dave on November 29, 2012
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I really enjoyed the book.
I bought it so I could learn how to make krenov style planes.
Lots of good information
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This is a well written and detailed book on making hand planes. Not only does the author explain the process of making a wooden plane, but he also explains how to get standard shop tools to perform their best so each plane comes out the best that it can possibly be. It is important to know things like setting up tools because if the tool does not make an accurate cut, the resulting plane will not be accurate either. The author assumes you know nothing, and guides you through each and every step in the process leaving nothing out. An excellent book, and it will surely make a plane lover out of anyone.

I had avoided hand planes for many years, and unfortunately it was in error. After having made a few wooden planes, and learning how to adjust them and use them, my opinion on the use of hand planes has completely reversed. Not only are hand planes easy to learn and use, many times they are faster and more efficient at removing a little material here and there than hauling out a power tool or sanding forever to accomplish the same thing. I think I really had to make one myself in order to get myself to use it, and now that I have, the experience has been well worth the small effort up front. My new wooden planes work better than the several old metal planes that have been sitting around the shop forever, and this is primarily because after making the wooden planes I tuned them to work the best that they could. The author explains all of these steps, and there is nothing better than a handmade plane that is perfectly tuned to remove material so thin you can read through it.
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By C. Blust on January 6, 2014
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I have been a wood worker / carpenter for many years, building boats, furniture, cabinetry and homes. I purchased Making and mastering wood planes to do just that but this book is so much more. This hands down the best woodworking book I own and I own a lot of book like this one. Finck covers not just making wood planes but how to tune spoke shaves and sharpen cabinet scrapers.

If you have no interest in planes and just would like to know how to learn such things as using a band saw, jointer and planer. How to tune your Combination Square, straightedge, block plane and spokeshave. Preparing a grinder, honing stone and workstation. Making a tool rest and truing jig for your grinder just to mention a few of the many useful techniques that any woodworker could use. This book is a gem.
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By Timothy M. Oneil on July 6, 2013
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Great for anyone looking work with hand planes. Everything from sharpening plane irons, tuning block planes, and building wood planes
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