Finding the Hole(s)

It’s pretty snowy out, all of a sudden.  And I’m using the quiet time to get some things done in the shop.  Sharpening and plane making in the early am, then onto other tasks.

On my list for a while was drilling a few more dog holes in the maple planing bench.  Not actually for bench dogs, but for aluminum planing stops.  Extremely low-profile, they come in several lengths (and can be hacksawed to exact measurements).  I’m sure I’ve talked about them before, but I could not live without them in my apartment woodworking shop.

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Not sure if others sell them, but all mine are from Lee Valley/Veritas.

The pegs (which come in 3/4″ or 20mm) slide in a track on the underside of the stop, so they fit in a variety of dog hole configurations.  And the pegs are shallow (less than 1 1/2″): perfect for a clamp-on workbench made of 8/4 maple.

In addition to their utility for surface planing (seen above), I have found these planing stops to be quite useful as bench hooks. Two more holes to the right side of the bench now make a crosscutting bench hook (see below).  And because my plywood shooting board/bench hook is too deep for this particular bench, I no longer have to unclamp the whole bench every time I want to cut a tenon shoulder.

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And it saves me from always digging out the saw benches.

There are actually three more holes to drill.  One centered in the far right for a holdfast.  And two more along the back edge on the left side of the bench to form a perpendicular for traversing and general bracing.  Everything is measured and marked; I’m just taking it slowly today.

Hope all my east coast readers are staying off the roads.  It’s not too bad out here, but pretty blustery.  I can only imagine what it’s like further north.

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