Planing End Grain

Planing End Grain 2015-07-15T21:04:03+00:00

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  • #2026829

    SamGordon
    Participant
    Post count: 4

    Hi Everyone.
    I thought I might ask everyone on their thoughts for planing end grain.
    More specifically a very long piece of end grain.
    I’m building a tool chest and the end grain is twenty four inches long, so I can’t use it in my shooting board.
    What I have been doing is clamping a long board to guide my plane (I don’t have a work bench) to true up the end grain.
    Does anyone know any other ways I can deal with such an expanse of end grain?

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    Replies
  • SGilchrist
    Participant
    Post count: 3

    Try mineral spirits

    I clamp these pieces in my vise (with a space to prevent racking), clamp or hot-glue a block to the edge the plane will exit on (or just cut the piece extra wide) to prevent blow-out, then dab some mineral spirits or rubbing alcohol to the end grain.  This will soften the grain without the damage water would cause, and it will not affect your finish, making the plane glide perfectly along the grain.  This method has never let me down.  Also, wax the sole of your plane if you are not already.

  • Bill
    Participant
    Post count: 72

    To ensure you plane to length and keep it square (while minimizing tear-out), you can try the following:

    With a knife, scribe your finish line around the circumference of your board – both faces, both edges – transferring the knife line from your initial reference face as you go.  You can then chamfer along the edges with a block plane – or whatever you have available – down to that line.  Then plane the middle  (the portion of end grain that remains “above” your line) until it is flat across the end grain face.  I hope that makes sense…  It’s the slickest way I’ve seen to plane a long piece of end grain without the fear of any tear-out – think I saw it on a Chris Schwartz video – maybe Paul Sellers – I can’t remember.

    The suggestion to use mineral spirits works well, too.  I prefer an oil-rag can instead of the wax on plane soles, however.  I’ll post a topic on that since I received a question via my website about it.

     

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