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How to Make a Rabbet Plane

A homemade rabbet plane

We love these ancient ideas! This one is a century old, but still a fun and interesting craft project for making your own tool.

Here is how the reader of a very old magazine presented it: “A rabbet plane is very little used, but, when it is wanted for a piece of work, it is wanted badly.”

While doing an unusual piece of work I needed a rabbet plane, and, having none, I made a plane as shown in less time than it would have taken to go out and buy one.

The body of the plane is made from a piece of 2-by-4-inch pine, 1 foot long. A 1-inch chisel was used for the bit. A place was marked on one side of the wood to be cut out for the chisel, and a 1-inch hole bored through, the narrow way, so that one edge of the bit cut through the bottom, forming a slit for the edge of the chisel. After cutting a groove for the chisel blade and turning in a long wood screw to hold the chisel in place, as shown, you’ll have a functional rabbet plane.

About Don Vandervort
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Don Vandervort developed his expertise more than 30 years ago as Building Editor for both Sunset Books and Home Magazine. He has written more than 30 home improvement books and countless magazine articles. He appeared regularly on HGTV’s “The Fix,” and served as MSN’s home expert. Don founded HomeTips in 1996.

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