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Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

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  • Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

    I needed “something” to finish the final thickness of a tenon on mortise and tenon joints. This is what I came up with. Very simple. A block of scrap wood, and a replacement router blade and knob from Lee Valley. Works well to get an even tenon, centered and consistent thickness across the face. Sure beats laying out $200+ for a router plane.
    KenL, Les Groeller and 2 others like this.
    Measure twice, cut once ... and if that doesn't work try again
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  • #2

    Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

    That's a neat solution for a router plane.

    On a side note, why is everyone so concerned about having tenons centered when working by hand? I've never made centered tenons since I started working with hand tools about 30 years ago. I understand that for power tool processes and operations that centered joinery is usually the most efficient way, but not with hand tools. You mark and cut the joinery based on your reference surfaces. The stock often doesn't need to be accurately thicknessed, you just need your reference face to be flat.
    WCraig and KenL like this.
    Wood Hoarder, Blade Sharpener, and Occasional Tool User

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    • #3

      Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

      Originally posted by Darrell View Post
      On a side note, why is everyone so concerned about having tenons centered when working by hand?
      These particular tenons will be through tenons, so the end of the tenon will show and looks better when its centered. Otherwise I agree with you about the flexibility of laying out tenons.
      KenL and Darrell like this.
      Measure twice, cut once ... and if that doesn't work try again

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      • #4

        Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

        Neat idea but then you don't have an excuse to own the router plane! I use my Veritas router plane a lot and cannot imagine my shop without it. In fact, I NEED to get the medium router plane too for some of my smaller box work.

        Lee Valley has spoiled me rotten but I love seeing such creative work-arounds.

        Ken

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        • #5

          Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

          Originally posted by KenL View Post
          Neat idea but then you don't have an excuse to own the router plane! I use my Veritas router plane a lot and cannot imagine my shop without it. In fact, I NEED to get the medium router plane too for some of my smaller box work.

          Lee Valley has spoiled me rotten but I love seeing such creative work-arounds.

          Ken
          More like a good excuse to build his own router plane. Like something from this plan.

          https://www.popularwoodworking.com/t...-router-plane/

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          • #6

            Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

            That is very retro and a pretty cool project. Cannot compete with a Veritas router plane in my book but cool nonetheless. Thanks for pointing out the article; it was interesting to look at.

            Ken

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            • #7

              Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

              I'm surprised this elongated router hasn't been commercialized more ... or even an accessory for existing routers. Was using a router to trim tenons not a thing until recently? i would think that hard to believe. Maybe snug fitting tenons weren't necessary or ideal?

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              • #8

                Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

                I remember Gramp talking about the PITA that my Great Uncle was and how critical he could be of his apprentices' efforts in the furniture and building furnishings aspect of his business because everything had to be fit just so since it was all custom work; no mass production there. Unfortunately, I never knew him (he died when I was only 4) but I have seen many examples of work from his shop. Tenons in mortices that fit so well that there is just a line where the grain changes direction. Exactly how they were cut is a mystery, but they still fit to a gnat's eyelash nearly a century later. I suspect that there was a great deal of very painstaking work involved but I have no knowledge of precisely what that entailed,. I know that his personal tool kit was impressive and filled several chests (too bad that I don't have any of his tools or pieces). He opened his business in 1907 which tells us that most of the work was done with hand tools but not much else about it.

                They likely had many specialized tools that have dropped out of sight with the passage of time maybe even a long-bedded router plane. Lee Valley sells a Veritas hinge mortice plane that is sort of what an elongated router plane might look like. Perhaps some of the tool historians know if such a thing ever was sold commercially?

                Ken

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                • #9

                  Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

                  Originally posted by Allegrus View Post
                  I'm surprised this elongated router hasn't been commercialized more ... or even an accessory for existing routers.
                  My make shift tool is not a new idea and has been commercialized. Preston manufactured one long ago, and has been revitalized by another tool maker. The cutter can be positioned in 4 different locations (the handle and cutter are interchangeable). http://www.walkemooretools.com/shop/...ne-model-2500/
                  Measure twice, cut once ... and if that doesn't work try again

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                  • #10

                    Re: Poor man’s, ( sort of ) router plane

                    So not out of sight after all. Good to see and I learned something old again, thanks.

                    Ken

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