The array of toothing planes in the collection.
The toothing plane is one of those planes that reminds me of the fashion industry. First it appeared around the 18th century, fell out of fashion in the mid 20th century, and now its back. I am shocked that this plane once lost its popularity. In my world this plane serves as the "when all else fails" plane. The plane itself works with and across the grain, and there isn't the need to be concerned of grain direction. The teeth won't dig into the grain and tear out isn't of concern. In my opinion nothing can challenge a sharp toothing plane
|Range of blade angle.|
An example of a fine toothed blade.
|An example of coarse toothed blade.|
Lie-Nielsen #212 with toothing iron.
As a maker and restorer of furniture I thoroughly enjoy working with all hand tools. The toothing plane is one of my favorite to use and to collect. I collect them simply because I work so often with veneer. Yet that isn't an excuse to have as many as I do. Maybe I can still use the excuse that I need them for the "students" in the classes I teach.
The result of a using a toothing plane on pine.
A common question I often get asked is how to sharpen the serrated edge? Some will say file the bevel first and than sharpen in the usual way. I would say the first step is to grind the bevel on a slow speed grinder. Since the iron isn't harden to high degree you must pay attention not to over heat the iron. Also the craftsperson needs to remember the golden rule when grinding, the length of the bevel should not exceed more than two times the thickness of the blade at the point of grinding. Otherwise, the blade will dull quickly and the edge could crumple like tin foil.
Grinding the bevel, being careful not over heat the iron.
Once I'm done grinding the blade, I then hone the bevel only on 1000, 5000, 8000, & 12000 grit water stone. Please note that any type of sharpening stone will work and you don't need to sharpen to 12000 grit.
Honing the bevel on a water stone.
After going through the series of grits I remove the burr by hitting the iron into the end grain of a piece of Hard Maple. Never hone the back of the iron to remove the burr, for the teeth are only so deep and any honing can remove the the saw like grooves.
Striking the non-bevel end of the plane iron into the end grain Maple.
After striking the plane iron, the only remaining step is to set the plane for a light cut and tooth away.