We may plane across the grain of hard mahogany and boxwood with comparative facility, as the fibres are packed so closely, like the loose leaves of a book when squeezed in a press, that they may be cut in all directions of the grain with nearly equal facility, both with the flat and moulding planes. But the weaker and more open fibres of deal and other soft woods, cannot withstand a cutting edge applied to then parallel with the twelves, or laterally, as they are torn up, and leave a rough unfinished surface. The joiner uses therefore, for deal and soft woods, a very keen plane of low pitch, and slides it across obliquely, so as to attack the fibre from the one end, and virtually to remove it in the direction of its length; so that the force is divided and applied to each part of the fibre in succession.


The moulding planes cannot be thus used, and all mouldings made in deal, and woods of similar open soft grain, are consequently always planed lengthways of the grain, and added as separate pieces. As however many cases occur in carpetry in which rebates and grooves are required directly across the grain of deal, the obliquity is then given to the iron, which is inserted at an angle, as in the skew-rebate and fillister, and the stock of the plane is used in various ways to guide its transit.

Many of these planes present much ingenuity and adaptation to their particular cases: for example fig. 332 is the side view, and fig. 833 the back of the side-fillister, which is intended to plane both with and across the grain, as in planing a rebate around the margin of a panel. The loose slip, or the fence f, is adjusted to expose so much of the oblique iron as the width of the rebate; the screw-stop s, at the side, is raised as much above the sole of the plane as the depth of the rebate, and the little tooth t, or scoring point (shown detached, in two views a, b), precedes the bevelled iron, so as to shear or divide the fibres as with the point of a penknife, to make the perpendicular edge keen and square. This plane is therefore a four-fold combina-tion of two measures and two cutters. The oblique iron, and the tooth or cutter, are pretty constantly net with in the planes used across the grain.

Side Fillister 20017

Others of these planes have less power of adjustment; for instance the grooving-plane fig. 334, for planing across the grain, has two separate teeth, or else a single tooth with two points c, in addition to the cutting-iron which is commonly placed square across the face of the plane; the groove is only used for the reception of a shelf, its sides are therefore the more important parts, and the obliquity of the iron may be safely omitted. The fence can no longer be a part of the instrument, as it is often used in the middle of a long piece, a wooden straight-edge s, is therefore temporarily nailed down to guide the plane; and the stop is sometimes a piece of boxwood fitted stiffly in a mortise through the stock, at other times it is adjusted by a thumb-screw, as in the figure 334.

The plough, fig. 335, is a grooving-plane, to work with the grain; it has similar powers to the fillister, but with a greater horizontal range. The width of the groove is determined by that of the blade, of which each plough has several; they are retained in the perpendicular position by a thin iron plate, which enters a central angular groove in the back of the blade. The teeth or scoring points are now uncalled for, as the iron works perfectly well the lengthway of the fibre. The screw-stop is the same as before; but the fence f, is built upon two transverse stems s s, one only seen, passing through mortises in the body of the plane, and fixed by wedges. In the German plough the position of the fence f, is determined and maintained by two wooden screws, instead of the stems s s, and there are two wooden nuts to each screw, one on each side of the stock of the plough.

Side Fillister 20018

Other grooving-planes for working with the grain are also made without teeth, examples of which may be seen in the drawer-bottom plane 33G, and the slit deal planes, of which 887 makes the groovy and 338 the tongue, used for connecting boards for partitions and other purposes, with the groove and tongue-joint 389. The planes of this class being generally used for one specific purpose and measure, are unprovided with loose parts, as they are worked until the sole of the plane, or some of its edges come in contact with the wood, and stop the further progress.of the cutter.

Fig. 340, the reglet plane, is of this kind, it derives its name from being employed in making the parallel slips of wood, or reglet, used by the printer for the wide separation of the lines of metal type , the adjustable fences are screwed fast, as much in advance of the sole of the plane as the required thickness of the reglets or rules, which are then planed away until, from the slips resting on the bench, the tool will cut no longer.

Side Fillister 20019

Fig. 341 is a router plane; it has a broad surface carrying in its centre one of the cutters belonging to the plough, it is used for levelling the bottoms of cavities, the stock must be more than twice the width of the recess, and the projection of the iron determines the depth, the sides of the cavities are prepared before-hand with the chisel and mallet. The ordinary name for this plane is not remarkable for its propriety or elegance, it is generally called the "old woman's tooth." See Appendix, Note A I . page 979.

The carpenters' gages, for setting out lines and grooves parallel with the margin of the work, are closely associated with the system of fences or rails. The stem of the gage, fig. retained in the head, or stock, by means of a small wedge, and the cutter is fixed in a hole at right angles to the face of the stem, by another wedge. The marking-gage, for setting out lines, has a simple conical point; the cutting-gage, for cutting veneers and thin wood, has a lancet -shaped knife, and very effective tool; the router-gage, for inlaying small lines of wood and brass, has a tooth like a narrow chisel.

There are other forms of gages, some of these have screw adjustments; in the most simple, the stem is a wooden screw, flattened on one side, and the head of the gage consists of two wooden nuts, which become fixed when screwed fast against each other. The mortise-gage, which is much used, has two points that may be adjusted to scribe the widths of mortises and tenons. In the bisecting gage there are two sliding pieces or heads, which are made to embrace the object to be bisected, and the scribing point is in the center of two equal arms jointed respectively to the two sliding heads.*

The cooper's croze is used for making the grooves for the heading of casks, after the ends of the staves have been levelled by a tool called a sun plane, like a jack-plane, but of a circular plan. The croze is similar to the gages, except that it is very much larger; the head is now nearly semicircular, and terminates in two handles; the stem, which is proportionally large, is also secured by a wedge, but the cutter is composed of three or four saw-teeth, closely followed by a hooked router, which sweeps out the bottom of the groove.

The banding-plane † is allied to the gages, and is intended for cutting out grooves, and inlaying strings and bands in straight and circular works, as in the rounded corners of piano-fortes and similar objects. It bears a general resemblance to the plough, fig. 335, but it is furnished in addition with the double tooth c, of the grooving plane, fig. 33k In the banding plane, the central plate of the plough is retained as a guide for the central positions of the router and cutter, which are inserted, so as to meet in an angle of about 80 degrees, between two short projections of the central plate; the whole of the parts entering the groove are compressed within the length of one inch, to pass through curvatures of small radius; there are various cutters and fences, both straight and circular, according to the nature of the work. See Appendix, Note A.J., page 979.

Fig. 343 is a plane which is the link betwixt carpentry and turning; the conical hole in the plane is furnished with a cutter placed as a tangent to the circle, so that the wood enters in rough octagonal form, and leaves it rounded, fit for a broom, an umbrella handle, or an office ruler; sometimes either the work or plane is driven by machinery, with the addition of one or two preparatory gouges, for removing the rougher parts.

* See H. R. Palmer's gage for marking center lines. - Trans. Soc. of Arts, 1813, vol. xxxi. p. 248.

† Mr. R. Onwin's banding plane. - Trans. Soc. of Arts, 1817, vol. xxxv. p. 122.