Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Little Orphan Annie

In the 1970's in my elementary school outside Indianapolis, we were pressed to embrace, memorize, and recite verses of Little Orphan Annie by Hoosier Poet James Whitcomb Riley. It was a rite of passage in Indiana...like learning to stall with a four corners offense (in the pre-shot clock world). I think it's interesting that the meter of those rhyming stanzas still comes back to me during milestone moments like the arrival yesterday of my Lie-Nielsen 2002 Special Edition #1 Bench Plane (#464 of 500).

The Little Number One Plane

By Jeff Skiver

A Little Number 1 Plane's come to my house to stay.
A Lie-Nielsen Special Edition that I got on Ebay
It's got the rosewood handles and the white bronze body, too
It cost a lot of money but what's a tool junkie to do?
The Cap Screw was too tight, the chipbreaker was back too far
It's blade has never cut a wisp; it's pristine without a scar
It's spent it's life as a trophy. It has sat upon a shelf.
But I buy tools to use. I buy them only for myself.

So I'll adjust the lever; position the chipbreaker right.
But first I'll address the blade; it's an unfinished fright
The grinding marks still show. There's no polish to be seen.
Where's my pond full of waterstones? They'll quick apply a sheen.
1000 on the back, soon 4000, then on to Eight.
No need to do the whole thing just an inch or so is great.
There's now some polish on the back I can see my face in there
If I use it for a mirror I can easily comb my hair.

The bevel's time has come. Time to fulfill its destiny.
Use a honing jig. Do it Right. Don't let pride defeat me.
Through the grits on the bevel side 'til I've got it good and sharp.
Two intersecting flat planes, I've heard David Charlesworth harp.
Put on a little camber; add a micro bevel, too.
Ruler trick on the back like David taught at Marc Adams' school.
Resell value's falling, but utility's on the rise.
I'm sure if I asked Thomas I'd see pleasure in his eyes.

A Little Number 1 Plane's come to my house to stay.
Special Edition Number 464...home from Ebay.
It's trophy life is over, a cutter it's now become
I'll get the improved chip breaker. Lot's of work to be done
Some day when time has got me... to my nephews it will go
I hope it will be used and not put upon the shelf for show
But there's still 60 years to use it. A bond we'll form in Time
Number 464 was an orphan. But now he is fully mine.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well I was temped by this auction as well, the only way I would buy a number 1 woudl be for the white bronze one. The BIN price of 365 was a bit steep. KUDOS to you for getting click happy.

Chris sent me, but I dont know what he is talking about with weeblos and peeign himself...