Planing Long Edges
This week I’m building the sitting bench for the White Water Shaker community; the bench will be featured in the Winter 2009 issue of Woodworking Magazine. The version I’m building is a very close copy, so it will be 13′ long. The version we’ll show in the magazine will be 4′ long (who really needs a 13′-bench, after all?).
Dealing with long stuff is a challenge, so I thought I’d post a couple movies during the next week that demonstrate some of the tricks to doing it well.
In this short clip, shot and narrated by Megan Fitzpatrick, I’m planing the long edge of what will become one of the bench’s narrow aprons.
The trick, I think, is to keep the plane tucked against your body and lean forward. This allows you some forgiveness if you hesitate while you walk forward. If you do hesitate, you can push your arms forward as you recover your step to continue the smooth planing action uninterrupted.
Using this stance, I can plane any distance that I can walk.
If words don’t do it for you, check out the clip above. And do note my profound lack of a backside in the film. I’m going to have to save up for some implants or something.