Online Plane Making Classes with Scott Meek

Fall and Winter class schedule is now live, including my new Advanced Plane Making Class


The internet has obviously changed the world in dramatic ways in the last decade. It has become so much easier to seek out knowledge on a seemingly endless range of topics. One of the most fascinating things to emerge in all this is the ability to take classes online, and this has not been lost in the world of woodworking. I believe the internet has helped to further this craft tremendously with the wealth of information available online. I’ve seen fellow woodworkers start to teach others using the power of the internet. Shannon Rogers has The Hand Tool School. Chuck Bender has  No BS Woodworking. Also, there are numerous sources of woodworking knowledge available for free through videos, blog posts, and more. Now, I’ve decided to throw my hat in the ring and offer classes of my own. I want to use the knowledge I’ve gleaned in the past three years to teach others how to make wood body hand planes.

I will also, at times, have some copies of my recently released DVD, Make A Wooden Smoothing Plane with Scott Meek, available below. The DVD covers the same topics as my online classes, but you don’t get the 1 on 1 interaction and real time questions and support as you craft your plane. The DVD was produced by Popular Woodworking Magazine. If I don’t have the DVD available right now, or you would like the digital download version, buy it directly from Popular Woodworking.

Advanced Plane Making Class

I have had quite a few requests for an advanced plane making class, and I’m pleased to announce that it is now available. This advanced class is much more in depth than my regular class and it is highly recommended that students will have taken my other class or watched my DVD before taking this one. 
In this class, I will guide students through making two planes: A jack plane with an applied sole and a jointer, shaped just like my uniquely gripped jointers that I sell. 
This class will cover: 

  • Applying an exotic wood sole – Why and how
  • Choosing a bed angle
  • Choosing material for a longer plane
  • Inserting a patch in front of the blade for better wear properties
  • An in depth exploration of shaping a plane, as we make a long jointer become the most comfortable plane you own.
  • Access to my templates for my unique jointer design. I’ve spent the last 2 years perfecting the shape of my jointer planes. With my full size templates, you will be able to make your jointer as close as possible to how I would myself.

The tool list is very similar to the regular class, will be held online using Google Hangouts, and will require 4 sessions. Taking my basic plane making class or watching my DVD previously is required.

Learn How To Make A Wood Body Plane

Click on a question to see the answer

What tools do I need to have to take the class?

Please use this list as a general guideline, not as set in stone requirement. If you have a different option you feel does the same thing as another tool listed, by all means ask me about it. If you have any questions regarding the list or a lack of some of the tools, again, ask me about it. There are usually ways around a missing tool. If you would like a printable version of this list, click here.

Online Plane Making Class - Smoother

  • Band saw, table saw, or hand saw
  • Drill (drill press preferable)
  • Crosscut Saw (hand, chop saw, etc.)
  • Router (For routing a notch for the cap iron on the blade. Can be done with mortice chisels also, if need be)
  • Block plane
  • Hammer/mallet
  • Bastard mill file
  • Clamps
  • Square
  • Straight edge
  • Protractor
  • Screwdriver
  • Chisels (1/2", 1 1/4" is helpful also if you have it)
  • A way to sharpen the blade
  • Sandpaper
  • ⅜ Drill bit
  • A way to mill stock (hand planes or planer and jointer)
  • A coarse rasp (Or other way to fine tune the shape of your plane)
These tools are helpful, but not required:
  • ⅜” Plug cutter
  • Spindle sander
  • Spokeshaves
  • Fine cut rasp
  • Card scraper
  • Winding sticks
  • Plane makers floats
  • Marking gauge

Advanced Plane Making Class - Jointer and Jack

Tool list
  • This advanced class will have much more to do with shaping planes then the first class you took. Because of this, I HIGHLY recommend having 3 rasps. One coarse (6 or 7 grain cabinet makers, 10” or 12”), one medium (9 or 10 grain, 10”), one fine (13-15 grain, 6” or 7”). A shinto rasp can do a lot in place of the coarse and medium. However, it will be very tough to shape inside curves that the jointer grip will require.
  • Sharp card scraper
  • Spokeshave
  • Band saw, table saw, or hand saw
  • Drill (drill press preferable)
  • Crosscut Saw (hand, chop saw, etc.)
  • Router (chisels can replace the router, mortise chisels preferably)
  • Block plane
  • Hammer/mallet
  • Bastard  Mill file
  • Clamps
  • Square
  • Straight edge
  • Protractor
  • Screwdriver
  • Chisels (1/2", 1 1/4" is helpful also if you have it)
  • A way to sharpen the blade
  • Sandpaper
  • ⅜ Drill bit
  • A way to square and plane stock (hand planes or planer and jointer)
Not necessary, but useful, especially if you choose to make more than a couple planes
  • ⅜” Plug cutter
  • Spindle sander
  • Winding sticks
  • Plane makers floats
  • Marking gauge


What is the difference between the regular Online Plane Making Class and the Advanced Plane Making Class?

The regular Online Plane Making Class teaches you to make a Smoothing Plane and is a perquisite for the Advanced Class. The Advanced Plane Making Class teaches you how to make a 12" Jack Plane with an exotic sole and 22" or 28" Jointer in the same style that I make mine. You will receive full scale drawings and patterns of my jointers. Students taking my advanced class must have taken my Smoother class previously, either through my online class, an in person class, or watched my DVD.

What are past students saying about the class?

Justin Leib, aka The Half-Blind Woodworker, wrote this fine review of the class here on his website!
  Al Flinck wrote this review of the class on his blog here.
 
Before taking Scott’s regular Online Plane Making Class I believed I neither had the skill nor the patience it took for tool making nor where even to begin.  Having Scott share his knowledge, expertise, and experiences in plane tool making relieved these anxieties My experience taking his class was so rewarding and enjoyable I immediately enrolled in the  Advanced Plane Making Class when Scott announced the new offering.  The class picks up from what was learned in the beginners class with new techniques taught and Scott sharing his intellectual property in his plane design providing detailed layout drawings to shape your planes. I am proud to say I own three Scott Meek inspired planes, a 12 in. smoother, 14 in. jack and a 28 in. jointer and that I made them.  Having now used them, I too can testify the feel of using these planes is a wonderful experience.  Thanks to Scott teaching abilities, I plan to add a few more to my collection.  Thank you Scott! -Gerry D.
Scott’s on-line plane making classes are full-on awesome in a bunch of ways.  The smoother, jack, and jointer I made under Scott’s skillful instruction do excellent work, are a joy to use, and are each beautiful and unique works of craft.  But there’s much more to it than that.  The classes - the advanced class especially - offer lots of advice and wisdom about precision hand tool skills, shaping, wood dynamics, glue-up, the tools and machines in your shop, hand plane use, and so much more.  The value is obvious considering you take away three amazing tools, hugely enhanced skills and knowledge, and the experience of hanging out for a while with one of the craft’s most extreme wooden hand plane experts.
Bob G.
I had the pleasure of taking the Advanced Plane Making class this year. As usual, Scott was a tremendous teacher that clearly walked though all the critical aspects of building the Jack and Jointer planes. Learning the applied sole technique and the shaping of the jointer handle make this class a great opportunity to build some great planes.
The online method is my favorite way to learn the skills since Scott shows you the work as he teaches the class as well as answering all questions. Then you have time to do the homework at your pace with the detailed plans and videos guiding your way. I find this method is a great way to really learn the craft as well as enjoy it at your pace.
I highly recommend this class as an add on to the smoother class. You learn a great deal new to add to your plane making skills as well as learn from a great teacher. The plans alone are worth the price of the class.
-Josh L.
As an avid woodworker I have admired the wood body planes made by Scott Meek for some time. Recently I had the opportunity to take a class in their making, led by Scott, and I jumped at the chance. What a treat. Scott shares his experiences freely, guiding you through the process and options, and away from the things that you otherwise only learn when it goes wrong. While new to me, the online format gave me access to a top toolmaker and instructor without the cost and inconvenience of travel. In the end I had a nice smoothing plane, the knowledge and confidence to make others, and a tremendous sense of satisfaction that comes from making my own fine tools. And I also have a few new friends who share my passion for woodworking. -Barry C. Scott has clearly built many fine hand planes and access to that experience through live instruction is worth the price of admission. It's really inspiring to arrive at the end of the class with a fine hand plane of your own and enough knowledge to build many more. -Trevor A. I would highly recommend Scott's Online Classes. Not only do you get access to Scott's accumulated experience and wisdom, but you get it in the comfort of your own shop! -James F. Highly recommend this class.  This is a class that will teach you not just how to make a wooden hand plane, but how to make the first of many wooden planes.  Scott gives the students the tools to learn the craft, then demonstrates the methods in an interactive video class in a way that makes the instructions come alive in a series of "Ah HA!" moments.  If you've ever wanted to make your own wooden plane but don't know where to start, this is the class for you. -Josh O.  

What kind of plane will I make in the class?

Online Plane Making Class - Smoother

I will walk you through making a smoothing plane, 8-11" long, approximately 3" wide, and with a 2" wide blade. It will have a bed angle of 50°. The plane will be made using a laminated method popularized by James Krenov. You will be able to take the lessons learned in this class and make many different planes to meet your needs.

Advanced Plane Making Class - Jointer and Jack

In this advanced class, I will show you how to make a 12" Jack with an applied exotic sole and a 22" or 28" Jointer plane with the unique grip style I developed. With the advanced class you will receive full scale drawings and patterns to make your jointer the same way I make them.  

How will the class take place online?

These classes will be live, using the Hangout feature of Google+. The live portion of the class will consist of approximately half observation/demonstration and half following along working on your plane. Because of this, you will need to have a way to watch the live session in your shop. A laptop or tablet are your best options. Between each session (of which there are four), there will be homework to accomplish. Any documents, images, or diagrams relative to the class are shared via a Google Drive folder that you will have access to when signed up for the class.

What materials do I need for my plane?

I've listed multiple options for the wood size choice in order to make it easy to find something that will work. You only need one of the listed sizes, not all of them. As always, if you have any questions about the materials, please contact me.

Online Plane Making Class - Smoother

  • Quarter sawn hardwood (Beech, White Oak, Maple, Red Oak, Birch, or similar) in one of the following dimensions:
    • 4/4 nominal (minimum ¾” finished thicknes) 3 ½” x 66”
    • 6/4 nominal (minimum 1 ⅛” finished thickness) 3 ½” x 42”
    • 10/4 nominal (minimum 2 ¼” finished thickness) 3 ½” x 24”
    • 16/4 nominal (minimum 3 ¼” finished thickness) 3 ½” x 12”
  • 2" plane blade with chipbreaker. (Hock Krenov blade preferred) http://hocktools.com/PI.htm I recommend the 2" x 4½ #PLI200 I do sell these blades as a package with the class with free shipping!
  • PVA Glue (Titebond 1, 2, or 3)

Advanced Plane Making Class - Jointer and Jack

Materials:
  • Quarter sawn hardwood (White Oak, Maple, Red Oak, Birch, or similar) in one of the following dimensions (dimensions are minimum sizes needed). Remember that the wood for each plane should be from the same log if at all possible. This is harder to do on the jointers sometimes. If it isn’t an option, at least try to make sure they are of similar age and density:
    • 12” Jack Plane
      • 8/4 x 2 ¾” x 30”
      • or 16/4 x 2 ¾” x 15
      • and a harder wood for the sole, crosspin, and wedge. You will need a piece at least ⅜” thick by 3 ½” x 15” and enough for the crosspin and wedge.
    • 22” Jointer
      • 5/4 x 4 ½” x 72” (or 3 pieces at 24” long if one board isn’t possible)
      • harder or exotic piece for mouth insert (approx. ⅜” x 2 ½” x 4”), crosspin, and wedge.
    • 28” Jointer
      • 5/4 x 4 ½” x 90” (or 3 pieces at 30” long if one board isn’t possible)
      • harder or exotic piece for mouth insert (approx. ⅜” x 2 ½” x 4”), crosspin, and wedge.
  • 2- 2" plane blades with chipbreaker. (Hock Krenov blade preferred) http://hocktools.com/PI.htm I recommend the 2" x 4½ #PLI200
  • PVA Glue (Titebond 1, 2, or 3)
  • Dowel if you aren’t planning the ½” x ½” crosspins

How long is the class?

Both the regular Online Plane Making and Advanced Plane Making classes consist of four sessions that last between 1 1/2 to 3 hours. In between the classes there is homework to accomplish which will be between 1 and 4 hours (approximately).

How many people will be taking the class at a time?

I've limited the classes to four people.

What is the benefit of taking a class like this online?

Taking this class online has a few benefits.
  • You won't have to travel anywhere to take it (saving money on the associated costs that travel would entail)
  • You get to use your own shop and tools that you are already familiar with
  • It keeps the class cost down. Because so much of the work on your plane happens during homework, it cuts down the time that you are paying me to stand there and watch. It also means I'm not charging extra for the travel time I had to get to wherever the class is happening.

When are the classes offered?

The current schedule is below and is also available in a calender form here.
  • October 2014 Online Plane Making Class #18
    • Session 1: Oct 6 @ 8pm EST
    • Session 2: Oct 13 @ 8pm EST
    • Session 3: Oct 20 @ 8pm EST
    • Session 4: Oct 27 @8pm EST
  • November 2014 Advanced Plane Making Class #2
    • Session 1: Nov 15 @ 11am EST
    • Session 2: Nov 22 @ 11am EST
    • Session 3: Nov 29 @ 11am EST
    • Session 4: Dec 6 @ 11am EST
  • December 2014 to January 2015 Online Plane Making Class #19
    • Session 1: Dec 27 @ 11am EST
    • Session 2: Jan 3 @ 11am EST
    • Session 3: Jan 10 @ 11am EST
    • Session 4: Jan 17 @ 11am EST
  • January 2015 Advanced Plane Making Class #3
    • Session 1: Jan 5 @ 8:30pm EST
    • Session 2: Jan 12 @ 8:30pm EST
    • Session 3: Jan 19 @ 8:30pm EST
    • Session 4: Jan 26 @ 8:30pm EST
  • February 2015 Online Plane Making Class #20
    • Session 1: Feb 10 @ 10:30am EST
    • Session 2: Feb 17 @ 10:30am EST
    • Session 3: Feb 24 @ 10:30am EST
    • Session 4: Mar 3 @ 10:30am EST
   

How much does the class cost?

The Online Plane Making Class is $145.00. The Advanced Plane Making Class is $325.00. The blade from Hock Tools that I recommend is $59. (If you order the blade from me when you order the class, you will get free shipping). Wood prices and options vary with what is available to you.