A superb hammer for adjusting plane blades.
If you use wooden hand planes then you likely use some kind of plane iron adjustment hammer. Over the years I’ve tried several. Some worked well, others were too unwieldy. A well balanced, light weight hammer makes all the difference. I think you’ll find that the Wile plane hammer is eminently practical, a pleasure to use, and a handsome addition to your woodworking kit.
Like most plane adjusting hammers the Wile has two faces for use. The brass face is 5/8″ in diameter and is used to adjust plane blades. As brass is softer than steel it won’t damage the blade.
The opposite end of the head has a 13/16″ face made of Delrin, an engineering thermoplastic. Delrin is widely used in CNC machining because of its high strength and stiffness, and excellent dimensional stability. Think of it as ABS plastic on steroids. The Delrin face is used to set the wooden wedge in the plane. It’s also used to back out the plane and wedge. While the Delrin face should last years, it is replaceable in the event you inadvertently damage it. You could also replace the Delrin with a wooden face of your own making.
I’ve tried heavier hammers (in the 8 to 10 ounce range), some with shorter handles (around 8″ long), but much prefer this longer, lighter Wile. At just under 5 ounces in weight and with a narrow Ash handle (about 7/8″ at the pommel end and tapering to about 7/16″ near the head), the Wile feels deceptively light yet provides excellent feedback. You don’t need to whack this like you would a framing hammer – light easy taps are what’s called for. Occasionally you might need to rap the heel of a plane fairly hard to remove to remove the blade and wedge and the Wile is up to the task.
Like all Veritas products the Wile is superbly machined. It’s a treat to use and with care can become a heirloom tool. You can use this hammer as a small “persuader” for things like tapping wooden plugs and moving small parts into position where only a gentle tap is required.
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