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Cute as a bug’s ear , though far more useful than any insect’s tympanal organ , are the new detail rabbet planes from Veritas (the high-end, made-in-Canada house brand of Lee Valley Tools). These wee planes are machined so the sole is square to the sides, and they’re very narrow, so they’re good for laying flat on a tenon cheek to trim small tenon shoulders in lieu of a shoulder plane, or where I might usually turn to a router plane, such as in cleaning up the floor of small dados. And because the planes fit easily into the palm of even my very small hand, and with a smooth finish both on the front and back edges, they’re easy and comfortable for me to control with either a push or pull stroke. (I tried to take a picture of the 1/4″ plane in use , but with a 3″-long body, it’s so small that my hand covers it up.)

Available in five sizes (6 mm, 1/4″, 5/16″, 3/8″ and 10 mm), the planes have a ductile cast iron body with a fixed mouth and a forged brass handle. The blade is O1 steel with a standard 45Ã?° cutting angle (15Ã?° bed and 30Ã?° bevel-up blade angle). Adjustments are made with a gentle nudge , at the blade’s heel to adjust skew, at the front to adjust lateral projection, and with a small screwdriver between the blade and body to increase the depth of cut. It takes a bit of fussing to get everything just right, but once you do, the screw holds everything firmly in place.

This plane (or planes, if you want more than one) could take the place of a small shoulder plane and a small router plane (though you’ll need a bit more practice and skill to achieve the same cuts as with the dedicated tools) and save you some cash. Each plane is U.S. $65; replacement blades are U.S. $9.75. Or you can get a set of three (either metric or imperial) for $149 through March 25 (after which the three-set price is $169).

– Megan Fitzpatrick

p.s. If you’re not familiar with the Daily Squee, check it out (unless you don’t like cute animals).

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Showing 13 comments
  • Robert Slack

    Hey Meagan. I am a freak and jump into things. I just bought an imperial set five minutes ago. The purpose is to clean the "V" groove that I will cut on a panel using my Festool TS75 with the guide rail. I will follow the cut with one of these planes. Hopefully when I clean them up, these panels will look fantastic. Thank you for this post …

  • Robert Slack

    It almost looks like these detail rabbet planes overlap with router planes. Why would you use
    a) What are the unique applications for the 1/4" Rabbet Plane?
    b) What are the unique applications for a 1/4" Router plane?
    c) Where do the applications for both of these planes overlap?
    Thank you.
    Robert Slack

  • John Verreault

    I saw (and held I might add) the prototypes of these when the new Lee Valley store opened in Victoria, BC Canada. Robin Lee was doing a presentation to my local woodworkers’ guild (Vancouver Island Woodworkers’ Guild) and he was showing these and other prototypes. The looked great then and the "real" ones are even better. The Canadian nickel is a nice touch…



  • Michael

    $65!!!! 30 minutes at the CNC terminal and I could have the machine spiting them out. One change I’d make is the location of the iron hook and the brass knurled knob. I think it would be nice to let the web of the hand fit it to the hook.

  • Jeremy Pringle

    Terry: I have in fact seen a loonie (and toonie), I use them every day, that would be becasue I too live in the GREATEST HOCKEY NATION IN THE WORLD!!! WOOOO CROSBY!!!! (and because I live in Calgary) WOOOO IGGY!!!

    Little known fact, US quarters are not magnetic, CDN quarters are. Not only is our coin $ funny, but our paper bills are all different colours as well, and notice that I put a U in colour? No, thats not a spelling error up here 😉

    Megan, is Lee Valley offering these planes at par exg rate?

  • Terry

    I’m not surprised you haven’t seen a twoonie. It seems only our American friends close to the border have a regular opportunity to laugh at, and refuse, our money. 🙂

    Funny, our vending machines won’t take US coins…

  • megan

    I _haven’t_ seen a twoonie, though I have seen a loonie. But I had the Canadian nickel handy…it kept getting rejected by our soda machine 😉

  • Terry

    Oops! I meant to say Twoonie, not loonie. Doh!

  • Terry

    I was going to comment on the Canadian nickle but Jeremy beat me to it. However, a Canadian loonie would have been a better prop as it is so much more colour coordinated with the new planes than a nickle. You’ve probably never seen a loonie, though… 😉

    I picked up the set of 3 planes last week and had an opportunity to play with them a bit on the weekend. They are such sweet little planes and a great value. Even better considering that the Canadian price (in CAD) is the same as the US price (in USD).

  • Jeremy Pringle

    Nice use of the Canadian nickle!

  • megan

    Manakins are, indeed, squee-worthy! But they don’t do as good a job as removing shavings…

  • Steve

    <sigh> The devolution of the Art of Woodworking into the Daily Squee. I knew it was bound to happen someday…

    Now, manakins, on the other hand, they’re something to squee over:

  • the Village Carpenter

    Here’s another squeee-able site for you, Megan:

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