Removing the Rust Preventative & Sharpening the Blade
Thank you for purchasing a Veritas block plane. We’ve put together some information to help you get the most out of it. Although this will be of particular benefit to beginning woodworkers, we hope those with more experience will find something of value here too.
What Should I Do First?
The plane should be completely disassembled. Clean the adjuster and all machined surfaces (don’t forget the area under the toe piece) with a rag dampened in solvent/degreaser. Old toothbrushes are also handy for this work.
To help protect against rust, apply a silicone-free surface treatment such as Boeshield T-9 or Veritas Tool Wax. Use a light machine oil on the adjuster. The plane can now be reassembled; be sure not to overtighten any screws by torquing them down too hard.
How Do I Sharpen The Blade?
First, polish the back of the blade, working your way up to the finest grit of your sharpening medium. The back has been lapped flat, so you are simply polishing this surface to the same degree that you will be honing the bevel.
The next step is to hone the bevel. We recommend using a honing guide because it quickly provides accurate, repeatable results. If you’ll be using your plane exclusively on stock narrower than the blade, you can proceed to sharpening the bevel.
With the low-angle block plane, the 25° bevel blade coupled with the 12° bed angle provides a 37° cutting angle. This is ideal for end-grain work in soft- to medium hard woods. For harder material, you may want to add a 5° micro-bevel for better edge retention.
The standard-angle block plane comes with the same 25° blade but is bedded at 20°. This produces a 45° effective cutting angle suitable for general-purpose work on face or edge grain. For difficult grain, you may wish to increase the micro-bevel accordingly.
If your plane will be used on surfaces wider than the blade, you’ll need to round the blade’s corners or add a slight curvature across the cutting edge to prevent the blade from digging in at the edges. Some woodworkers do both.
Cambering The Blade
Camber the blade on a medium-grit stone by applying pressure first to the outside corners of the blade, then to positions either side of center, and finally to the center of the blade itself. The numbers in the photo indicate the locations of these points.
Use about 15 strokes at positions one and two, 10 at three and four, and five strokes at position five. Repeat this process when using your polishing stone.
How To Round The Corner Of The Blade
Round the corners before honing, using a diamond or oil stone. A water stone is too soft and will score. Start with the side of the blade resting on the stone, and draw the blade towards yourself in a sweeping motion. Repeat for the other corner.
Once the blade is sharp, it’s time to put your new plane to work.
Discover More About Block Planes
Veritas Low-Angle Block Plane
Veritas Standard Block Plane
Veritas DX60 Block Plane
Veritas Chamfer Guide
Veritas Mk.II Standard Honing Guide
Norton Water Stones
Veritas Large Router Plane
Veritas Low-Angle Jack Plane
The Stone Pond by Veritas