Prototyping and more Router Plane storage work

I’ve been continuing to work on the router plane storage but moving a little slower than I had been previously. Since I completed what I believe is the hardest part, the bit holder piece, Im starting to look into what else needs to be prototyped and designed before I can start thinking about layout. I have two full size router planes as well as the Veritas medium router plane so I want to make sure I have storage for each of them included. I like the idea of the large router planes being stored up on their end. I’ll just make slots that they can slide into I think. The medium could be stored the same way but since I also want a shelf for storing other pieces I started thinking of making a place for the medium router plane on the shelf. I wanted to play around with doing curved inlays so I figured this might be a good place to start. I found a piece of scrap maple and decided to give it a try…

The first thing I did was put some double sided tape on the router plane and stick it to the wood. Then I knifed and marked a line all the way around the plane…

I tried my best to make it a heavy knife line, but I was careful not to push so hard as to possibly come off the side of the plane. Then I removed the plane and started to bust out the inlay section…

I started with a chisel thinking that it would be easy to do with this top layer but the reality was I could have started with just the router plane. So I’d take a layer down, then redo the knife line, and then take another layer down, rinse and repeat…

Progress was slow, but I found the work fun to do. I was initially taking off more than I wanted in the earlier passes so it took some getting used to when adjusting for the next height. I stopped after 5 or 6 layers and ended up with this…

If you look closely, you can see some areas where I busted out the edge. I think those were the layers that I tried to take too much off. All in all though I found the process rather straightforward and fun to do. I think I’ll use this method for sure when I make the shelf for the storage so that the medium router plane has a sturdy place to sit.

Once that was done I started working on the actual storage board. I bought a 8 foot hard maple board that had been rough sawn and was only about 7 inches wide. I took two sections about 20 inches long and jointed the edges…

I have to say that the new sharpening model I adapted is for sure making a difference. The plane and chisel irons are razor sharp and are doing a wonderful job in the hard maple. Then I glued the panel up and left it to dry overnight….

The next day I squared one of the long sides with a #6 and then started flattening the board. Unfortunately, I found that it had quite the twist in it. It took me awhile with a #4 to get it generally flat, awhile longer to get it flat across with a #6, and then final smoothing with the #4.5. After that was done on both sides I looked to square the short ends. Since there was such a variation between the two panels I glued up (I wasn’t paying as much attention as I should have) I had to saw them pretty close to straight and then work on smoothing them…

After I had the saw line done, I sharpened up my low angle jack plane and hit the end grain with that. And wow, check this out…

The above picture doesn’t do it justice – after planing the end grain was glass smooth. Take a look at the shavings the plane was taking off…

I was more than pleased. Im not going to mess with the other short side until I sort out how I want the tool holders aligned on the board. So more progress – getting close to figuring out layout etc. Hoping to find more time this week to design and build the tool holders for the large router planes.

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