Reply To: Proper plane settings and technique to true a board
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” Which angle is the “best” when working with pine?” — the angle that gives you the desired result. The real key is knowing what kind of result is appropriate for the task at hand (e.g. flattening vs. smoothing for example).
But seriously, for your work with the Jack Plane, dimensioning and flattening (not smoothing), your 25 (37 included angle) should be fine. For hogging off material quickly, work across or diagonal to the grain. As to shaving thickness, whatever thickness gets the job done.
You are building sawbenches from pine, not a fine French lady’s writing desk from Cuban Mahogany so don’t fret the tearout. However this is an opportunity to learn about controlling it, just don’t obsess over it. If you want a tearout free sawbench, choose your material accordingly so that the grain is better behaved across the surfaces and edges.
The toothed blade for the LA jacks is a clever toy and they work well perpendicular to, diagonal to, with and against the grain. But you will likely want to come back with a straight blade later and knock down the tiny ridges.
As far as spending a lot of time making your stock “4-square” for the saw bench. Don’t. What you need to concentrate on is those faces/edge that are part of the joinery, not the “show side”. Those you can do at your leisure either before gluing or after. It is only the mating surfaces you need to fret over. And even then, they just have to be flat and true, not “smooth”. A small bit of tearout inside a joint on that bench design isn’t going to matter at all.