A straight picket rabbet airplane, a shoulder airplane and a skew rabbet airplane (aka transferring fillister). Note that the skew rabbet is most in focus – it is my favourite.

I’ve two favourite methods to make backboards: shiplap joints and tongue-and-groove joints*.

For shiplap joints – a collection of mating rabbets – there are a number of handplane choices, and college students sometimes already personal at the very least one of many three I favor: a straight rabbet, a shoulder airplane, or a skew rabbet/transferring fillister (as proven on the prime of this publish).

Skew rabbet airplane

Of those proven above, the Veritas skew rabbet plane is by far the quickest. (And as a result of it has a nicker, depth cease, and movable fence, it’s technically a transferring fillister airplane – a airplane designed for use each with and throughout the grain.) But it may be difficult for newbies to chop a 90° rabbet with this airplane; it’s all too simple to tip it off the work a little bit bit, and find yourself with a sloped rabbet. I’ve discovered that the knob on the entrance exacerbates this tendency; that’s why I confiscate them. (Someday, I’ll make a coat rack out of the numerous I’ve acquired.)

But with a little bit observe, it’s fast and simple. Set the depth cease to a hair greater than half the thickness of the workpiece, and set the fence to the width of the rabbet you need to reduce. (I often purpose for about 3/eight in. or a little bit extra on backboards, relying on the scale of the venture.) Cinch down tight on each. I take advantage of nylon-jawed pliers to tighten the knobs.

Each hand has one job: The proper hand pushes (that is for a right-handed airplane; the skew rabbet can be obtainable as a left-handed airplane, to make use of within the different path), and does so with out greedy the deal with too laborious (which might make the airplane wobble). The left hand holds the airplane firmly at 90° to the work, with fingers urgent the airplane’s fence into the work and the thumb urgent down (proper the place the knob was once).

Veristas skew rabbet plane
Note how my proper hand is pushing, not greedy, and that my left hand is pushing in and down.

Start on the close to finish of the board and pull again a couple of inches, then take a brief stroke, repeat with a barely longer stroke, and once more, working your method again till you’ve established the complete size of the rabbet. A number of quick strokes to ascertain the shoulder are simpler to get proper than one lengthy stroke. Why pull again? It’s largely behavior: When cutting throughout the grain with this airplane, drop the nicker to attain the shoulder as you pull again to impact a cleaner reduce. (Lie-Nielsen makes a skew rabbeting block airplane, the No. 140, which isn’t a transferring fillister airplane – no depth cease.)

use square to check rabbet
Use an adjustable sq. to verify that the rabbet is sq. . If it isn’t, your joints gained’t seat correctly.

Work your method right down to remaining depth and width; the fence and depth cease will let you know if you’re performed. Then verify the rabbet to ensure it’s sq., particularly if you happen to’re new to this technique. (And if you happen to’re not, a couple of strokes holding the airplane at 90° will hopefully resolve the issue – plus you’ll know the place to pay attention your consideration on the following reduce.)

Straight rabbet airplane

Another quick, and nearly at all times profitable technique for these new handy instruments, is to make use of a straight rabbet airplane towards a fence. The solely difficult factor is to keep watch over the baseline, and cease cutting if you attain it.

straight wooden rabbet plane
When you clamp the fence in place, ensure the clamps aren’t in your planing path.

Mark the depth and width of the rabbet with a marking gauge, then clamp an extended, straight piece of scrap on the marked line on the highest. Again, every hand has a selected job – a lot the identical as above (besides a straight rabbet can be utilized with both hand because the dominant hand). The dominant hand pushes, the off hand pushes in and down. Again, work your method again to ascertain the complete size of the rabbet. And once more, verify your work.

Shoulder airplane

I don’t like utilizing a shoulder airplane to chop rabbets. This airplane is designed for precision work, and as such takes solely advantageous cuts. So it takes (comparatively) endlessly to chop rabbets with it. What it has going for it, nevertheless, is its sharp arris, which might help in making this reduce.

Establish the shoulder and depth with a marking gauge, and be sure you reduce that shoulder line deep. Carefully now, put the nook of the shoulder airplane into that reduce line at an angle, then make a reduce – nonetheless at an angle – all the best way down the workpiece. Repeat a couple of instances, every time bringing the airplane nearer to degree. You are establishing a V-cut shoulder.

shoulder planed tipped
Move slowly as you identify the V-cut; it’s simple to get off your gauge line.

After the V-cut is deep sufficient to register the airplane towards it at 90°, end the reduce at 90°, urgent the airplane into the shoulder.

Yes, I may use this technique with my straight rabbet airplane, too – nevertheless it’s a little bit trickier as a result of the nook of my picket airplane isn’t as sharp as that on my steel shoulder airplane.

shoulder plane at 90 degrees
With the shoulder established, carry the airplane to 90° to complete the reduce.

What a few rabbeting block airplane or rabbeting jack airplane? Well, I don’t actually like planes that should do a number of jobs…and I at all times reduce myself when utilizing a rabbeting block airplane as a “regular” block airplane. But extra vital than my clumsiness is that it’s pretty simple to flex the only of those planes by tightening the lever cap an excessive amount of. (The similar is true on shoulder planes – however you’d need to severely over-tighten to flex the only on that airplane).

A completed shiplap joint. (I take advantage of nickels within the winter to area my backboards, and dimes in the summertime, to permit for growth and contraction.)

*I’ll cowl my favourite method of making a tongue-and-groove joint in my subsequent weblog.

Handwork: Three methods to chop a rabbet joint

The rabbet joint is a helpful joint to know. Here, hand-tool skilled Vic Tesolin reveals 3 ways to chop one by hand—with a rabbet airplane, with a shoulder airplane, and with a chisel and router airplane.

Fillister Plane Cuts Quick Rabbets and More

Learn what they will do and which of them are the perfect

Handcut Rabbets and Dovetail Fitting

In this video workshop episode, Chris matches the dovetails collectively, after utilizing a rabbet airplane and shoulder airplane to create the rabbets behind the case

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