New: ‘Making & Mastering Wood Planes’


Editor’s note: This book is available for immediate shipment and is $29. You can place an order through our store.

No matter what sort of handplane you use, “Making & Mastering Wood Planes” is perhaps the best guide available to understanding, tuning and using these tools at a high level.

Written by a graduate of the College of the Redwoods (now The Krenov School), “Making & Mastering Wood Planes” is ostensibly about the laminated handplanes that James Krenov made famous in the 20th century. But author David Finck decided to probe far deeper into the topic – so much so that this book is actually an excellent primer on handwork itself.


It begins with a discussion of wood as a material – both for making a plane and for working it with a plane. Then he delves into the basic tools and techniques one needs to begin making a plane and making furniture. And the reader is instructed on how to tune up a metal plane, plus how to grind and sharpen its iron before building a laminated wooden plane.

The building of planes is, of course, covered in immense detail. Even though laminated planes are simpler than traditional wooden planes, there are many fine points to understand and master. Most helpful is the section on troubleshooting a wooden plane and the steps required to get it back in perfect tune.

Finck then proceeds to discuss how to use planes to dress the edges, faces and ends of boards, plus he addresses a variety of specialty techniques – planing thin stock, shooting ends, planing large surfaces and curved edges.

Finally, Finck covers scraping, both with a cabinet scraper and scraper planes.


Making & Mastering Wood Planes” is in its fifth printing and has sold thousands of copies worldwide. When the author considered letting it go out of print, we offered to keep it available. We also sought to upgrade the book’s mechanical characteristics. The book’s pages are sewn for durability. The paper is slightly thicker and whiter. We upgraded the binding to a hardback. And we moved production from overseas to the United States.

This book has been in our personal library for almost 20 years – we wore out our first copy. And now we are pleased to offer it to you under the Lost Art Press imprint.

— Christopher Schwarz

About Lost Art Press

Publisher of woodworking books and videos specializing in hand tool techniques.
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10 Responses to New: ‘Making & Mastering Wood Planes’

  1. I owned that book years ago. It’s worth it.


  2. hgordon4 says:

    No PDF available, correct? This book is akin to “Sloyd” or “Welsh Stick Chairs” — not LAP’s IP, so no PDF? Thanks for keeping the book in print!


  3. Jeff says:

    I think this the best book for woodworking beginners, period. The title is almost misleading, because there is so much more information than just making wooden planes. It is by far the best book I have seen in the actual use and technique of using hand planes.

    On a side note, I actually pawned all my LN hand planes because I just didn’t like them as much as my krenov style ones. Every time I needed a plane, that is what I reached for. I think even if you are a traditionalist, you should own at least one krenov type smoother. It’s so versatile and can be used in ways other planes cannot. Highly recommend this book. 🙂


    • aaronkessman says:

      Just wondering how it’s more versatile than a metal body? I’d like to learn more/better ways to use mine!


      • Jeff says:

        You can hold it several different ways. You can push or pull it, use it one-handed or two. David’s book describes the different grips they can be used with in detail.

        Personally, I never liked the knob on front of metal planes. For me, there just isn’t a comfortable way to hold it.


  4. tsstahl says:

    Dammit! Keep your paws out of my wallet!

    Is any of the text revised as well?


  5. Tal Deus says:

    Great book, I will give my old copy away and keep this one!


  6. Ken says:

    At first I thought-“Do I really need another book I don’t have time to read?” I bought it anyway. The book quality and print is superb. Which is nice. Then I started reading it and discovered it covers so much more the hand planes. What a delight!


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