Making an infill plane has been on my list for quite some time
now. Making tools to me is more of a hobby than the actual
If you are looking to build an
infill, youíre welcome to follow me along. Iíll try to keep
the blog up to date as time allows and would love
feedback from others taking the same path.
The metal work of the infill
intimidated me a bit and Iím not really sure why. I can
weld, Iíve done my share of body work, gunsmithing and tin
work, but the finish type metal work seems beyond my
capabilities, which is why my first few I made from existing
But Iíve come to the
realization that fitting the infill into an existing body is
a lot of extra work you donít have when you make your own
body. And the metal workÖ well it doesnít need to be that
Iíll work through some of my
issues, some of my mistakes, and some of the processes Iíve
dug up. I spent a lot of time researching and looking at
So first, if youíre thinking of following along, letís talk
Iím still basically (for the
hobby part of my life) a woodworker. Almost all of my tools
are woodworking tools with a few exceptions. So let talk
about the exceptions.
I have a horizontal metal
bandsaw. Iíve had it forever and just discovered I can also
use it vertically. In my defense, until now Iíve never had a
need to use it vertically, so thereís my excuse for that bit
Almost everything online tells
you you can do the cutting with a hacksaw, and I guess
theoretically itís true. Even some of the professionals who
have how-to blogs say they cut the planes out with a hack
saw. I say bull crap. I think they are telling us that so we
donít find better ways to make our own. If I had to cut them
all with a hack saw, Iíd be back using the existing blanks.
Files. Youíre going to need
files. Because of all my other hobbyís, one of which is
buying box lots of crap, Iíve got a pail full of files. Flat
ones, round ones, triangles shaped ones, some that work
well, some that should become tent stakes, but you get the
idea. If youíre new, and donít have a pail full of files,
plan to buy quit a few.
A good hack saw, sanding equipment, good epoxy,
countersinks, drill bits, drill press, and metal marking
Taps. Youíll need several sizes
for the cap, depending on how you plan to attach it.
A way to polish. Shiny is good in the infill world. This can
be done with sandpaper but for brass, youíll really need a
wheel and compound.
You can use a sharpy to color
the metal to scribe with, but layout dye is about $4 for a
bottle. And if you smart enough to not dump half the bottle
all over your bench (yes I did) it will last a very long
A metal scribe. Again, I paid
$3 something with a
McMaster-Carr order. Spend the few
bucks. Itís easier to use a metal scribe on wood, than the
other way around.
Pick your size. I recommend staring with a smoother or jack.
Something mid-size. Donít go to small or too big to start.