Saturday, May 30, 2015


Yesterday's barbecuing experiment seems to have been a success.  At least, the iron is shiny and it has an edge that will draw blood.

Don't ask me how I know this.

The big question now is if it will hold that edge.  To find out, I have a little more woodworking to do to finish up the planes.  The round needs the mouth opened, they both need the wedges trimmed and shaped, I have to clean up the bodies of the planes, cut them to length and put whatever edge treatments I decide on to them.

Then, they get a workout.

Here are some pics of the round iron.  This only took about ten minutes for me to sharpen up freehand.  I suspect the hollow will take a little longer when I get around to it.
Here's the round that is now sharp. 
It looks like it perhaps it needs a bit more polishing in this close-up.
Only the very edge is polished.  I don't think there is a benefit to polishing the whole thing.

Another glamour shot of the whole thing.

I tried punching my last name in these irons when they were still soft.  It looks like I need a bit more practice to do that.

It looks nice, but will it cut?  That is the question.


  1. Looks great, Brian. I can't wait to see what the planes do in action.

  2. Have you tested hardness? Could do quick check with good file ---- if the file really "bites" the steel, then it may be a bit soft (but could be OK) - if the file skids, then it could be somewhat hard (risking brittleness) - somewhere in between is best for your use.
    good luck
    danny sheffield uk

    1. Hi Danny,

      No I haven't tried that after tempering them. However, I did try it before tempering them, and the file skidded off of the hardened steel just like it was supposed to.

      I think the only thing that could have messed them up is if the thermometer on the oven was way off. I don't have an oven thermometer, so I had to rely on the temperature that the dial on the oven for tempering. Hopefully they didn't get too hot.

      When all is said and done, if they work, then they work.

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks, Aymeric! I'm hoping the hollow isn't too much more difficult to sharpen than the round.

  4. You are getting their, Just think how nice its going to be to use you own hand tools you made. Man I'm getting the ready to make a set of hollow and rounds ....

    1. Thanks for the nice comment, Robert. Indeed I am getting there. Wait until you see my plan for the next pair of H&Rs I make, they should be even easier.

      Good luck on your set. I'd love to see how they turn out.