Our Violin Maker's Block Plane is perfect for detail-oriented jobs like instrument building or model making. Loosely based on the Stanely No. 101, it is the smallest of our hand planes to feature a captive nut blade adjuster for precisely controlled depth of cut. Body and cap are Manganese Bronze for extra weight, durability, and resistance to rust.
This pocket-sized block plane is the smallest of our hand planes to feature a captive nut blade adjuster for precisely controlled depth of cut. Loosely based on the Stanley No.101 block plane, the Lie-Nielsen Violin Maker’s Plane features several significant improvements that put it in a class of its own. The body and cap are made from Manganese Bronze for extra weight, durability, and resistance to rust. The blade is made from 1/8" thick cryogenically treated A-2 steel for chatter-free cuts and prolonged edge life. The addition of a finely controlled blade depth adjuster make this little workhorse perfect for detail-oriented jobs like instrument building or model making.
The blade comes with a 25° flat ground bevel. It is bedded in the plane at 18°, giving you a cutting angle of 43°. The mouth of the plane is made to take a maximum .008-.010" cut, which is suitable for most woodworking.
The blade comes ready to use, but honing a secondary bevel of 5° or 10° will increase performance, help achieve a razor edge quickly, and improve edge life in hardwoods. You can find sharpening instructions in a printable PDF format here: Sharpening Instructions PDF
For more information on advanced sharpening we recommend David Charlesworth’s video Plane Sharpening, available in both DVD and streaming formats.
Slightly loosen the pressure of the cap and advance or retract the blade. Tighten the spinwheel. Do not overtighten. You should be able to adjust the blade after loosening the spinwheel about a quarter turn.
We use Manganese Bronze for the body of this plane. Our castings are fully stress-relieved, a process that removes inherent stresses and ensures that the tool will remain flat and true. The cap is also Manganese Bronze; other parts are Brass and Stainless Steel.
The blade is A2 Tool Steel hardened to Rockwell 60-62, cryogenically treated and double tempered. Our heat-treating technique ensures that the blade will take and hold a very fine edge for a long time. After heat treating, the blade is fully surface ground on the top, back, and cutting edge, giving a smooth, flat surface that will take a mirror finish very quickly. The 1/8" thickness provides solid, chatter-free cutting.
The body casting is ground flat and true (to .0015"). Occasional hand lapping with fine wet/dry sandpaper (320 grit or higher) on a flat surface will help remove dings and keep it true. The cap iron can be polished with any good brass polish, or allowed to patina with age and use. Occasionally, the tool should be disassembled, cleaned, and moving parts oiled. The blade should be kept lightly oiled to prevent rust, especially when the tool is not in use. We recommend Jojoba Oil, a plant based oil product that is non-toxic, odor-free and easy to use. Also, in our shop, we use a fine abrasive handblock to remove any light surface oxide from tool bodies and blades. Jojoba Oil and abrasive handblocks are available from us.
Materials and workmanship are guaranteed for the life of your tool. Call for repairs or replacement parts. We are available for advice if you ever have a problem using your tool.
Bronze and brass alloys contain lead, a chemical known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects, or other reproductive harm. Wash hands after handling.