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Asian style plane V’s A55 style plane

Posted on August 27 2018

Asian style plane V’s A55 style plane
We are regularly asked what the benefits are of our Asian inspired planes and our Western A55 planes. This is an important factor to consider when buying new planes, as you want to choose the style that is best suited to you and your personal needs. Below is a break down of what we think you should consider:

- Your body is more in balance when using the Asian style plane, as you either push directly from behind or pull directly from in front with both arms equally. This differs to the A55 style planes, which you push predominantly to one side of your body with one arm. Pushing to the side may be more comfortable for some, especially if you are familiar with using this design already.

- Being able to push or pull the Asian style plane means it is easier to plane large surfaces such as a bench top. This is because you can push the plane half way through the table, and then pull the plane from the front meaning you don't have to walk with the plane at all. This differs to the A55 style, which becomes very difficult to push the plane the entire length when you get to the middle of the bench. The A55 style plane has an advantage when planing at a bench vice doing jobs such as jointing edges.

- You can achieve very fine adjustments with the tap style wedge, however it does take practice to get used to. Some people pick it up straight away whereas others tend to enjoy the adjustable mechanism on the A55 style plane.

- The blade pitch in the Asian style plane is 60 degrees, whereas the pitch in the A55 style plane is 55 degrees. Both blade pitches are effective on reversing grain, however you may get slightly better results with the 60-degree pitch if you are working with a really difficult piece of wood. Bear in mind that you can reverse the blade to bevel up in both planes to use them as a scraper on timber too difficult to plane without tear out.

This article below written by Rodney Hayward in the Australian Wood Review issue 16 in 1997 gives some insight into the story behind why Terry Gordon started making planes and some of the reasons behind his designs.

 If you have any further questions feel free to contact us at: planemaker@hntgordon.com.au

- HNT Gordon & Co.

 

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