Tuesday, February 7, 2017

simplest 45-degree planing cradle

I have seen a lot of devices for holding boards at a 45-degree angle from laying flat on the bench, but all required a tablesaw to build quickly. Here is what I came up with when I was planing tapered octagons for stool legs recently. It's easy to make with just a handsaw.

Planing cradle shown in lower right hand corner (the thing with the v-notch)
All I did was cut a 90-degree "V" out of a strip of wood, which holds the board at an angle. This took about 2 minutes to lay out and cut. It maintains the angle securely and nothing more. I drilled a hole in it and hung it on a peg near the bench for re-use.

I still needed more conventional workholding to maintain the board's position. This could be dogs, a planing stop, battens, etc, but in this case I used a handscrew clamp and another board to shim it up, because I was working on the bottom face of my bench-in-progress, and I don't have much workholding.

Why do any of this?

To turn these:

Three square-stock leg-blanks. Also shown: the rest of the adjustable stool in the background, and my note reminding myself of what the shoulder lines are so I could resume later. 

...into these:

Three tapered legs, made only by layout and planing. Oh, and a carcass saw if you count the fact that the tenon shoulders have been cut already.
Making tapered legs is the kind of work that a jack plane makes easy. I would not want to try to get this to work on a tablesaw or bandsaw.

That's all for now. If you missed the summary of this stool, check it out here, or see all my completed projects.

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