Powermatic PM1900 3 HP 1 Micron Canister Dust CollectorThere have been a few recent additions to my shop. My old dust collector was a 3 HP Reliant which I had for about eight years. It was the bag type, both top and bottom. I wanted a 1 micron filter canister. Since Reliant is out of business I tried retrofitting a Delta canister. The diameters were slightly different so I used single sided tape foam and a spring clamp steel belt to mate them. It worked for a few years, but then the canister began blowing off when the bags were nearly full. After filling my shop with saw dust on several occasions I decided it was time to buy a new Powermatic PM1900 3 HP unit. Now I suppose I can’t stall any longer. It’s time to finally pipe my shop for dust collection.

Note the nice Powermatic sign that came “free” with the unit. That alone made the purchase worth it.

Peachtree Supreme Drill Press TableI was at a Woodworking Show in Marlboro MA this past winter and saw a drill press table that impressed me. I don’t think there was anything I couldn’t do on my drill press before purchasing a table, but it sure seemed like it would make things easier and quicker. So I purchased a Peachtree Supreme table. This table is thick and sturdy. It came with the T-tracks installed and very little in the way of assembly required. I have already found applications that are much easier and more accurate than my old methods. I think I am really going to like this addition.

Trying Out The Veritas Bevel Up Smooth PlaneI have a nice collection of Lie-Nielsen planes. Though I am not a collector, I am a user. I don’t buy a plane unless I intend to use it. Recently I was scheduled to take a woodworking course. The school sent me a list of tools required for the course, most of which I have. I have Lie-Nielsen No. 4 and 4 1/2 smooth planes with 50 & 55 degree high angle frogs. But the school was quite insistent that the smooth plane be Veritas Bevel Up.

So, while at the same show in Marlboro I visited the Lee Valley booth and asked for a demonstration. I was escorted to a bench where a visitor was already trying the bevel up smooth plane and having difficulty using it. I mentally noted that I though he didn’t know how to use a plane. When it came my turn I had the same difficulty and felt somewhat embarrassed. I asked the Lee Valley sales guy to demonstrate the plane. He had the same problem and spent twenty minutes trying to adjust the plane but to no avail. I walked away wondering if I should buy this plane and decided to think on it long and hard.

Veritas Bevel Up Smooth Plane Produces Thin Wide ShavingsBack home I read a number of reviews and articles on the Veritas plane in question. They were quite glowing. A few months later I purchased one. I must admit, I felt like I was cheating on my wife adding a Veritas to my Lie-Nielsen harem.

When the Veritas came I was anxious to try it out. My first impressions of the packaging and fit-and-finish are that this plane is not the same quality level as the Lie-Nielsen. I plugged on. The set up was quite different. It took me some time to complete. The depth adjustment screw struck me as a little flimsy and depth adjustment too course. After completing the setup I gave it a try with no honing of the blade. I was surprised at the smoothness of use, the wide thin shavings I was able to cut, and this with no honing. The more I used this plane the more I liked it. But it still didn’t feel as comfortable in my hands as the Lie-Nielsen smoothers; nor as sturdy and as well finished.I Need To Know - Veritas Or Lie-Nielsen For Smoothing Figured Woods

My curiosity has been piqued. I intend to buy a Lie-Nielsen low angle smoother to give these two manufacturers an apples-to-apples test. I need to know which of these babies will produce the best finish on figured woods. I’ll try them both, straight out of the package with no honing. Then I will hone them and work them some more. Tiger maple should expose a winner. Does that sound like reason enough to buy another plane? I hope so.

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