Plane Test Results ALL THE DATA and SPREADSHEETS!!!!

Plane Test Results ALL THE DATA and SPREADSHEETS!!!!

Plain Iron test data:
How the test was conducted:
Update to the test method:
Live test video:
Main Channel Short video:

Support the Test Here:

All the irons Testes
Stanley Sweetheart
Sheffield England Steel
Lie Nielsen
Wood River
DFM Tool Works
Bench Dog
Tay Tools
Hock High Carbon
Hock A2 Cryo
Veritas PMV11
Veritas O1
Veritas A2
Harbor Freight
Tsunesaburo Laminated Japanese
Ray Iles
kimmonsh O1
kimmonsh A2
Tay Tools Cryo
Narex Not On sale yet

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  1. Robert Judy on July 28, 2023 at 3:00 pm

    James, very helpful tests. Thank you.

  2. Stiegs on July 28, 2023 at 3:01 pm

    Wow. That. Was. Amazing! Unbelievable data. Great job!

  3. Joe R on July 28, 2023 at 3:01 pm

    Great to know the results, I was hoping to see a modern stanley sweetheart blade tested, maybe you can throw it & get rid of the harbor freight iron.

  4. Boris Zaprudin on July 28, 2023 at 3:01 pm

    I admire the amount of work to perform. Thank you for the job!
    One (possibly) interesting remark from me: I use a wooden jointer with an old Sheffield iron and I’ve noticed that the steel doesn’t like diamonds at all. Sharpened on softer abrasives, the lifespan of the edge increases dramatically. This phenomenon is known to some degree among the fellow sharpeners, and there are many theories why it happens. Most plausible one states that there is some sort of "work hardening" happening on the microscopic scale it the abrasive crystal lacks the sharp corners. The best results I’ve got so far were with the translucent Arkansas and no strop. Classic Japanese waterstones work also well, but not as well.

  5. Phil Frank on July 28, 2023 at 3:02 pm

    As an engineer and a woodworker, this is heavenly! We’ll done sir!

    Two comments – first, there’s a lot of labor involved here. What would you think about crowd sourcing the work? You could publish a test method and let others help you contribute data. Might be a good way to increase your sample size and get to the harder to find blades (not to mention, easier on your wallet!)

    Second comment/question – I picked up a woodcraft blade but it’s so thick I can’t get it to protrude through my older non-adjustable throat with the frog pulled all the way back. Any suggestions?

  6. trolltaker on July 28, 2023 at 3:02 pm

    I knew you were a mater woodworker but had no idea you were a master at spreadsheets, too! I am VERY impressed!

  7. psguardian on July 28, 2023 at 3:04 pm

    I just bought three Grizzlys on Black Friday sale (no.4 5 & 7). Ranking all categories as 1, other than speed to 300 & final sharpness at 10…. Wood Rivers are basically twice the blade for twice the price. For anything scoring beyond Wood River the law of diminishing returns kicks in. Doubling down again for the Veritas pre-flat might be worth, maybe.

  8. Aaron Sprague on July 28, 2023 at 3:07 pm

    Wow… wow.

  9. Jerry Stark on July 28, 2023 at 3:11 pm

    Well done!

  10. Sunny Xiong on July 28, 2023 at 3:12 pm

    This is a super informative test! Awesome work!

  11. Tobsen660 on July 28, 2023 at 3:12 pm

    Thank you so much for all your work! Really great!

  12. chuck grumble on July 28, 2023 at 3:15 pm

    only pmv11 on all my goodies

  13. Philipp Hee on July 28, 2023 at 3:15 pm

    i’d love to see how the E.A.Berg eskilstuna sweden plane irons perform

  14. Daniel Fasang on July 28, 2023 at 3:16 pm

    Great Work. thanks a lot! Keep up the great work!

  15. Scott E. on July 28, 2023 at 3:16 pm

    The numbers on the downloaded spreadsheet do not match the numbers displayed in your video. For example, for "Strokes to 300" plane irons 1-5 in your video the values are 200, 40, 360, 280, 200 and in your spreadsheet they are 160, 40, 160, 80, 120. I just purchased two Woodriver irons, but if the "Strokes to 300" is 80 per rather than 280t, I’ll probably return them. Which is correct?

  16. Benjamin Crossman on July 28, 2023 at 3:17 pm

    Thanks so much for all this data! For what it’s worth, I absolutely love my high-speed steel tipped iron the most. Mine is an old discontinued type that was made by Titan in Australia. Stanley made them in Australia too, but only Australia it seems. The HSS is brazed onto the business end of the iron with ordinary steel for the rest of the blade. It is a fair bit harder to sharpen, but lasts what feels like five times longer than my ordinary or laminated SW Stanley blades. They are still available here. I would love to see it tested using your methodology!

  17. Alva Goldbook on July 28, 2023 at 3:18 pm

    Holy moly, James. Thank you, thank you, thank you for doing this! I’ve long had issues getting my #4 to work as well as my #5. I think I’m going to pick up a new Wood River blade and see how that goes.

  18. Henry372 on July 28, 2023 at 3:19 pm

    I’ll be making my own irons out of 52100 steel. I made a prototype with only an angle grinder and a Dremel.

  19. LitoGeorge on July 28, 2023 at 3:19 pm

    I’m no fundi, but AI113 cell in your spreadsheet seems to be incorrect in the spreadsheet version downloaded March 18 2023. Other than that, this is incredible, and thanks to it, I went and resharpened all my irons (ok, I have only 7) to 35deg. And I’ll be passing this along. Many thanks for the excellence.

  20. Christopher Harrison on July 28, 2023 at 3:24 pm

    Can you put a new iron & chip breaker in an old plane?

  21. Allan MacMillan on July 28, 2023 at 3:24 pm

    Thanks for doing this! Nothing beats quantifiable data for evaluating performance. Especially when there are so many variable aspects to consider. I have an anecdotal comparison to add though, for a couple of irons not on your extensive list. One was a Footprint iron, I bought new this year from Home Hardware (in Canada). And the other was a Stanley which had come with a type 20 #5, made in Canada also, best guess circa 1950. That iron was nicked badly so I had acquired the footprint to get the plane usable quickly. Recently I finished restoring the original Stanley iron, and swapped it back into the #5. Both irons were comparable in hardness, and neither were particularly quick or easy to sharpen. The Stanley took a finer edge – shaving sharp all hairs severed vs. the Footprint which would shave some hairs, but that’s all. This was with the same methods and jigs – 1000 grit diamond plate, 3000 grit sandpaper on glass, green compound on a strop. Even though the keenness was less, the edge retention of the footprint was quite decent. On the same plane, with the same setup the Footprint could get ~.001" shavings, and the Stanley will take .0005".
    The Footprint did not come flat it was bad enough and I ended up putting a back bevel on rather than spend the many hours it would take to get it flat. All that said it only cost ~$12 Canadian so the value wasn’t too bad, probably not that different from the results obtained with the Caliastro.

  22. TheEnderFace on July 28, 2023 at 3:24 pm

    Old steel isn’t better by any stretch of the imagination but lately I’ve been seeing people replacing near full length vintage irons with new steel for no real reason. I have a Stanley Type 14 No. 7 with the original iron in it with plenty of length and it works perfectly well. If I ever use up the blade, then I’ll replace it but if not, not a chance. Why spend the money when you already have a solid iron?

    That being said, I have purchased new irons for alternate uses to just swap out the iron to give me a different cut because I don’t have a stock of old irons laying around to pilfer.

  23. solidstatejake on July 28, 2023 at 3:25 pm

    I’m shocked at the IBC results. I have a PMV-11 and an IBC blade in a No. 6, and I think I prefer the IBC! The sharpness might even exceed my Richter chisels, which get seriously sharp. Maybe I got a lucky iron.

  24. Lauren Sturdevant on July 28, 2023 at 3:27 pm

    You are the Project Farm of woodworking. Thank you for all of the time, effort, and money you put into these videos. You save me a lot of the same!

  25. Daniel Y. on July 28, 2023 at 3:27 pm

    Great job! Very good video. Data beats marketing hype any day of the week!

  26. tom trinneer on July 28, 2023 at 3:28 pm

    Seriously awesome. So glad my little bit of patron bucks are going to you!

  27. Thomas Russell on July 28, 2023 at 3:28 pm

    Thanks for doing the work for us. And, thanks for saving me the little bit of cash on buying the HF plane. The Calistro looks like a decent budget replacement iron choice for those of us on a tight fixed budget, or those of us making our own planes as a hobby. Kuddos, James.

  28. Jim Bryant on July 28, 2023 at 3:30 pm

    Your work answers EVERY question I had (or had not yet even thought of) on plane blades. Thanks for the diligence and the free sharing of the information (which is supposed to be the whole idea of YouTube and the internet….).

  29. Kevin G on July 28, 2023 at 3:31 pm

    James – once again thank you for all your hard work on this. This is very informative. My first chisels are Narex Richter thanks to your previous test. Thank you also for the PayPal tip link on your website. I don’t need a jar of shavings but wanted to contribute to your efforts on this project so that was the perfect way to do so! Rob Cosman will be very happy with your findings!

  30. Thomas Gronek on July 28, 2023 at 3:32 pm

    Have you ever crossed paths with a laminated Stanley blade. I have a transitional #26, not type I, or 2, no frog adjustment, it has a laminated blade. Any Ideas ? Thanks for your video.

  31. 909sickle on July 28, 2023 at 3:34 pm

    A couple questions:
    1) After 1000 hours of shaving, do you see wood shavings when you close your eyes?
    2) How can hardness not correlate to edge retention? Assuming all the blades are at the same angle, what property of the metal could make a softer blade stay sharper longer than a harder one?

  32. MakerMark on July 28, 2023 at 3:37 pm

    Amazing data, unbelievable amount of work. Most appreciative for this, James!!

  33. Leroy Poole on July 28, 2023 at 3:38 pm

    Found your channel from Rex’s videos. Both of you are awesome!
    You guys should do some videos together, I think with both of you guys working together, I think you guys could create some really amazing stuff for the craft.

  34. James Smith on July 28, 2023 at 3:40 pm

    Lol #NOTALLHEROESWEARCAPES TKS! Been looking forward to this!

  35. Douglas Connett on July 28, 2023 at 3:40 pm

    I looked through all of the comments before writing this one in case someone else had already asked the same question. My apologies if I missed it. Because of this test, i purchased 3 Woodriver blades of various sizes. Basically, ones that fit the 3, 4 and 6. Because the blades are thicker than the Stanley’s, I am finding the screw that attaches the chip breaker to be a little short. I can get it to work if I am very careful. Are there longer chip breaker screws available?

  36. John Kalish on July 28, 2023 at 3:41 pm

    Do you have any impression of the flatness of the backs of these blades? I know LN’s and Veritas (maybe Hocks?) are supposed to be real flat, but how cheap can I go before I start to have to spend hours flattening the leading inch of the back?

  37. Ivan Nair on July 28, 2023 at 3:42 pm

    First off, incredible work! I’m a data guy so this really speaks to me! Amazing, amazing work! If you want to look into reporting tools, try Tableau, its a phenomenal tool for displaying graphs and charts that work well with spreadsheets, tables etc as your data sources
    One minor point – You may want to check the spelling of "tests" in your description.

    Question, it seems thickness is important for wood bodied planes, however based on your new steel vs old steel comment, what do you think would be the best irons and important categories for a wood bodied plane? (I’m hoping to build my first wood bodied plane soon)

  38. Jean-Paul Baudet on July 28, 2023 at 3:43 pm

    Legend! Thanks!. I think America made tools are they only way to go.

  39. Alex Sidorov on July 28, 2023 at 3:43 pm

    next might be a test of different diamond stones – how fast they wear out after N strokes of plane blade sharpening.

  40. robohippy on July 28, 2023 at 3:45 pm

    I am guessing that the PMV 11would mean powder metal 11% vanadium. That would be very similar to the Doug Thompson wood lathe tools. One unmentioned thing about that metal is that you can not get it hot enough when grinding for them to lose the temper. I still wonder why no one has used M42 high speed steel. Another popular wood lathe metal. Again, as with the vanadium tools, you can not get them hot enough on the grinder for them to lose their temper.

  41. trolltaker on July 28, 2023 at 3:46 pm

    Jim, did Hock ever contact you about your less-than-stellar results? Everywhere (else) that I look, I see Hock recommended and can’t understand why they rated so low in your tests. I’m at the point of replacing the original blade in my old Stanley #3. I called the local Wood Craft and while they have Wood River blade in stock for me, they also are trying to steer me toward Hock, saying that several of the store employees prefer them over Wood River.

  42. Mikael Norlén on July 28, 2023 at 3:47 pm

    Amazing work! <3 What’s your opinion on thickness? Why are so many new blades so thick? Is it significantly heavier? More metal to remove but is it significantly slower to sharpen? The only thing I’ve read that could related to performance is that it could maintain lower temperature for longer.. so smoothing-plane sharpness for longer? 😛

  43. Jeremy McClanahan on July 28, 2023 at 3:48 pm

    sub earned….THANK YOU FOR THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  44. KansasCraftsman on July 28, 2023 at 3:49 pm

    Wow. Just wow. You are now the Project Farm for woodworkers. Very well done.

  45. Jesse Nunes on July 28, 2023 at 3:51 pm

    Very odd I replaced my woodriver blade with a IBC matched chipbreaker and could immediately tell the difference in performance and sound plus the IBC stayed sharp a lot longer in my experience but great video either way very interesting results.

  46. Sean Foushee on July 28, 2023 at 3:52 pm

    Unbelievable test James. I know everyone in the community really appreciates all of your hard work on this. I’m really surprised by the Wood River results and will be buying one of their replacement blades for my #3 Stanley this week. Cheers!

  47. Hank Merkle on July 28, 2023 at 3:53 pm

    Thank you for doing this – I need to dive into it more, but the most shocking result is "Edge retention versus hardness" My new question for our metallurgy friends out there is then what is the "Factor" or a test to determine edge retention if we negate hardness based on these data?!

  48. Mikael Norlén on July 28, 2023 at 3:54 pm

    How did you get the number for strokes to 300? It seems the data does not correspond to this number very well? You’re not using the average but the best round?

    Even so data is not consistent, wood river should be 200, not 280?
    DMF 120 not 200?
    Hock 160? etc

    Also what is final dullness if not sharpness after 400?

    Sorry if i missed something, thanks again!

  49. EG Bluesuede on July 28, 2023 at 3:55 pm

    I’m looking to replace a blade for my Stanley #112, and realize I have just as many options. But, would testing scraper blades (#80, #12, #112….etc) be totally different, since you are working off a burr rather than the bevel? Without 600 hours of testing, what do you think the most important characteristics for the iron be? I would venture to guess this would also be important for steel used for card scrapers as well. I was geeking on this test thinking about my favorite smoothing plane, but honestly….I love my scrapers for glassy smooth surfaces.

  50. Tsz2g4f on July 28, 2023 at 3:56 pm

    In the video description it says “all the iron testes” hahahah nice.

    Someone has some balls of steel