Tool Talk – Block Planes

Tool Talk – Block Planes

I discuss the block planes I use while strip building boats.

Little Stanley Trimming Plane:
Stanley Apron Plane (like I modified):
Stanley Low Angle Block Plane:
Stanley High Angle Block Plane:
Lie-Nielsen Convex Sole Block Plane (Squirrel Tale):
Veritas Apron Plane:,41182,41189,46791
Lie-Nielsen Low Angle Block Plane:
Lie-Nielsen Rabbet Block Plane:


  1. steven on February 26, 2022 at 11:30 pm

    Life’s too short to have a ugly block plane😊

  2. Trucker Matt on February 26, 2022 at 11:30 pm

    I was never in one of your classes but if no one has claimed that Stanley I would love to tune it up and give it a home😉

  3. Knight Rider on February 26, 2022 at 11:32 pm

    What’s your opinion on the A2 steel in Lie Nielsen vs Pmv-11 in Veritas? I currently own the Lie Nielsen block plane, and very much like it. I read a lot of reviews where people complain about sharpining A2 steel, but I can sharpen my steel in 2 minutes with my honing guide. Thanks-

  4. Barry Blalock on February 26, 2022 at 11:33 pm

    Well, it’s evident that this guy does not favor his Lie-Nielsen plane.

  5. qaannat on February 26, 2022 at 11:49 pm

    How tight are you supposed to crank that big flat brass round over the blade? I loosen mine to adjust the in or out, but then crank back down on it, just until my fingers almost bleed. Does it just need to be taut?

  6. Bill Downey on February 26, 2022 at 11:51 pm

    Great talk Nick. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and viewpoints as always.

  7. WillN2Go1 on February 26, 2022 at 11:52 pm

    On PBS’s site the Woodwright’s Workshop has some terrific videos on planes. I’ve watched them a couple of times.
    What I noticed when I started sharpening my plane blades and chisels using the Scary Sharp method while building your Great Auk kayak design 13 years ago: If I sharpened the plane blade in the morning and, then shaved down a bunch of western red cedar, the blade wouldn’t feel duller, but if I touched it up at the higher grits it was noticeably sharper.

  8. Tony Minehan on February 26, 2022 at 11:54 pm

    Agreed, price and name is not everything. I needed a number 4 plane and tired of looking on eBay for a Stanley I could afford, settled for a "Marksman" probably made in India or China, £8-69 delivered. It took a lot of setting up, the most work going into flattening the sole and reworking the chip breaker but I now have a plane (with wooden handles, not plastic) that will make shavings you can read a newspaper through and I’m seriously thinking of making a video to back my words up.

  9. Joe Langford on February 26, 2022 at 11:58 pm

    I like the tool talk videos. I believe you touched on some other tools – I think it’s called the robobevel and a few scrapers. This information might be trivial to someone that has built a kayak before but for someone like myself who has never built a kayak before information like this is very helpful. I would like for you to touch on how to build a wooden strong back table. Thanks, Joe

  10. Luciano Allegretti on February 27, 2022 at 12:02 am

    Hello, have vou ever tried the japaneese wooden planes. There are some with a nice convex ágape.

  11. Dane J on February 27, 2022 at 12:04 am

    Great discussion!  I have the Lie-Nielsen bronze block plane(#102), as well as a bunch of other block planes, but rarely use the others. The Lie-Nielsen fits in my hand and pocket very well. IMO the extra $$s spent on the LN has been returned many times over. I have old Stanleys and Records that have been tuned-up and have Hock replacement blades. The amount of time and effort to tune them up was significant when compared with the out-of-the-box performance of the LN. Suggestion/request: when you do a tool-talk on scrapers, it would be helpful to include cabinet scrapers and card scrapers. When I say cabinet scraper I am referring to the handled ones(similar in shape to a spokeshave) not the bodied ones that look like planes.

  12. Building Sailboats on February 27, 2022 at 12:06 am

    Thank you for this interesting video and all the links that you provided in the description. I am going to order and add the rabbet block plane to my collection. 🙂

  13. Bob the builder on February 27, 2022 at 12:09 am

    Low angle block plain’s are primarily for cutting end grain & light plaining on edge work.

  14. Clayton Firth on February 27, 2022 at 12:13 am

    Thanks Nick. Could you do a tool talk about your hand saws please.

  15. John on February 27, 2022 at 12:16 am

    Why did he pick those up so fast?? 6:52

  16. Andrew Moizer on February 27, 2022 at 12:20 am

    Have to agree on plane choices. Dad bought me a low angle Stanley as a Christmas present must be close to 40 years ago now, and it makes me smile every time I use it (perhaps even more now that Dad’s gone). Maybe 20 years ago I bought the LVT Apron plane when I built my Wee Lassie, and it’s a joy to use and brings satisfaction every time I use it. On the rabbet plane side, I was thinking of trying this modification, seeing as how I do have one of these cheap planes too and it never gets used (especially after I was recently given a good ‘made in Canada’ Stanley regular block plane that belonged to a friend’s father).

    As an aside, I was flipping through your first kayak building book this morning Nick, and it’s interesting to see how your techniques have evolved over time, (and how much is exactly the same). Really appreciate how you’re sharing.

  17. adam toth on February 27, 2022 at 12:21 am

    I’m gonna get a block plane and don’t have any others… would you suggest a 1-3/8 wide blade or 1-5/8?

  18. Александр Ваулин on February 27, 2022 at 12:21 am

    Interesting review. Thank you. 🙂