Wooden Toothing Planes

wooden toothing plane
Our Rating


Review By: I.Ball

Manufacturer: Various

Tool Type: Wooden Planes

Plane Type: Toothing


A wooden toothing plane is similar in design to a wooden smoothing plane with the difference being the special blade (and wedge) are set vertically or almost vertically on the toothing plane.

The plane iron in a toothing plane is a specialist plane blade with a serrated cutting edge.

When looking at a toothing plane blade, the blade has a series of fine 'V' shaped grooves running partially up the blade from the cutting edge.

The blade is held firmly in place with the use of a wooden wedge.

The toothing plane works by scratching the surface of the work to leave a series of grooves in the workpiece.

old wooden toothing plane

The toothing plane is particularly useful for creating a surface which gives a better bond when the surface is glued with another surface which usually is veneer. The reason being the glue is bedded into the grooves which creates a much stronger grip.

The planing action of the toothing plane produces a series of strings of shavings being taken due to the serrated edge.

The toothing plane is a versatile tool which can be used on really tough grain, with the grain, against the grain and across the grain.

Old Toothing Plane Manufacturers

Wooden toothing planes were produced by many British plane makers in the 18th, 19th and first part of the 20th century. These old toothing planes are still popular today and feature quite often in woodworkers workshops.

toothing plane blades

Below is a list of some of the old toothing plane manufacturers:

- Fairclough & Co
- Nelson
- Stothert
- William Marples

From my observations, many of the toothing planes which surface today don't have a manufacturer's mark.

This could indicate either the manufacturer's name has been removed by an owner of the plane or the plane could have been made by an individual rather than a manufacturer (with the toothing iron being purchased separately).

New Toothing Plane Manufacturers

I am currently unaware of any new makers of toothing planes, there are a few companies which make toothing plane blades to fit in certain iron planes, these toothing blade manufacturers include:

- Kunz
- Lie Nielsen
- Ray Iles
- Veritas

Finding The Manufacturer

The makers mark is usually found on the front nose (though sometimes they have been removed and not to be mistaken with previous owners name stamps). If the plane is quite mucky or you hadn't realised, this is the place to look to try and identify who made it and if you wish to delve deeper there are a few books out there to help identify the age / date of the plane.

The authority of these books (at the time of writing this) has to be Jane Rees 'British Planemakers - 4th Edition'. The 'British Planemakers fom 1700 - Third Edition' is also good if you come across a secondhand copy.

Manufactured Dates

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(i) This review/article may give warning(s) / advisory notes / cautions / guidelines given in good faith, any such information should not be solely relied upon and seen as the exhaustive list of warnings / advisory notes / cautions / guidelines. Refer to good safety practices for the safety of you and others. Refer to good practices for the good health of your tool and property.
(ii) The details here are given in good faith, the details are constantly growing and evolving including corrections, there is scope for error and shouldn't be fully relied upon, please confirm any details for yourself by performing additional research from reliable sources.

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