Wooden moulding planes are relatively easy and quick to use. The modern electric router is capable of making the same shapes, however a well tuned wooden moulder can complete the work in the same time as it takes to set the electric router up (and with 1/100th of mess to clean up).
You can pick up good moulding planes cheaply at flea markets, usually singly or by the box.
Originally they were sold in sets of 8 or 16. If you can find a complete set today they’ll be worth quite a lot as tbey are quite rare now.
They come in a wide range of sizes and shapes as shown below.
These planes have been around for a few hundred years (the one at the top of the page is from between 1680-1700) and they are still made today in small numbers.
I need some moulding like the example shown below to finish a project so here is the process I used.
Here is what you’ll need
- A flat and square piece of stock
- A moulding plane of your choice
- A small mallet to adjust the plane
- A suitable method to hold the stock
Lets start with holding the work piece
I use round wooden bench dogs set in holes in the bench to hold my work. (there is a long running argument over round or square bench dogs, I don’t have strong opinions on either, but feel free to join the debate online!).
The rear bench dog sits in a movable vice to provide clamping force. This type is called a wagon vice, I built it a few years ago.
(Another work holding method is a Sticking Board. These are long planks with a thin shoulder added to the length and some screws, with the heads proud of the face at one end. Tbe sticking board is clamped to the bench and the work piece placed against the shoulder and tight up to the screws. This is often used for repetitive work and thin stock).
Clamped in place below you can see the shape I want to cut demonstrated and the angle the plane is held at to achieve the cut.
Some planes have a set up line marked on the toe to show the angle of the cut.
You can see two lines at 90 degrees highlighted in chalk above.
Cut in one direction in full sweeps along the work. Initially the shape won’t appear completely. Keep the plane at the correct angle throughout. Don’t be tempted to cant it to vertical to speed up the appearance of the moulding!
When you get full width shavings from the full length of the work you are done!
And here is the finished moulding. No sanding required either!
Full video here?rel=0