Ok, I’m excited! Nine days ago I put in the order for my new Lie-Nielsen No. 62 Low Angle Jack Plane. Lie-Nielsen is located in Warren, ME, 214 miles from where I live in Uxbridge, MA. I try very hard to buy American products when I can find them. In the case of Lie-Nielsen you’ll not find higher quality tools anywhere in the world.
Since beginning my quest for a kit of hand tools I’ve already purchased two Lie-Nielsen wood planes, a No. 102 Low Angle Bronze Block Plane and a No. 271 small Router Plane. I absolutely love both items. Having used both planes on a regular basis I was ready to move up the ladder and buy a much larger jack plane for use in my woodworking hobby. They call it a Jack Plane because it’s a “Jack of All Trades” when it comes to bench planes. It can be used in a number of applications to smooth wood, take large quantities of material off quickly and especially clean end grain off boards while squaring them to the long grain surfaces.
In preparation for the arrival of my new jack plane I’ve already built a shooting board of a size that can accommodate the 14″ long jack plane. I’ll put it through its paces immediately upon arrival on projects already in progress. For example, I’m partially through the construction of a solid oak shop mallet with a solid walnut handle. Both of these wood species are hardwoods, requiring a larger plane to smooth the two sides that have end grain as well as the long grain on the mallet’s handle. The jack plane is scheduled to arrive via UPS by 8:00 p.m. today. Have I mentioned that I’m excited? 🙂
I received word of an initial delay in shipping the No. 62 plane because they were actually in the process of making a batch of them in their small plant. Maine has also been hit by a number of huge blizzards and had to close for the safety of their small manufacturing staff. I’ve watched a number of YouTube videos of their production line and the care they give each and every tool. About half the process is still done by hand. Lie-Nielsen takes great pride in their heirloom quality tools that will last for many years. Having been raised in a family with generations of fine woodworking craftsmen I learned early in my woodworking the importance of quality tools. “You get what you pay for” was a framed mantra on my shop’s wall. There’s no “Made In China” stamped on Lie-Nielsen tools! Every bit tool is made right here in the USA.
So bring it on UPS! I’m ready for my new tool that will take an honored place in my growing collection of hand tools. I’m sure there will be more posts on my impression of the plane as I familiarize myself with its use and care. 🙂