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^! This is a great post Greg and he covered all the bases! Really sage advise and word from the wise. With the blades on planes and chisels- the tool is worthless if you do not know how to properly sharpen it for optimal use. Yes, you do have to invest descent money just for this process or find out a way to do it that is more cost effective. I would like to add is to keep your planes cleaned and maintained- oiled and wax.There is nothing wrong with used, you can find good badly planes that can be tuned up for reasonable money. Tuning a plane is very important to learning how they work and maintaining them. Sharpening is an important skill to learn as well. New planes? I haven't a clue, lol. Last new plane I purchased was in the late 70s from sears lol. I still have them and use them.
Agree again. The Lie-Nielsen even used will fetch about the same price as new one! You will break even if you purchase one of these. The Veritas not so much, but it is a descent brand and more affordable. Like he said they need to be tuned up and likewise if you go the Japanese hand plane route. The lower tier Stanley like Greg mentioned is fine too, so as Keen Kutter, Sargent, Union to name a few. Don’t let the word “use” or “vintage” scare you because that is where you will find better “value” compare to newer ones.I also add, even if you buy a new plane unless it's a lie Nielson or Veritas it's still going to need to be tuned up. I have looked at the wood river planes at wood craft. They don't look bad for a mid priced plane, and they will need to be tuned up. Stanley handyman get a bad rap but once tuned up they are decent users as well. But I would still rather find an old Bailey plane, that's what all the others try and copy.
Look on ebay too, sometimes you can find a good buy.
How can I forget that brand! Record, Vaughan & Bushnell, Falcon Pope, Early Defiance brand as well as Hercules (Early Sargent). You could go the “decadent” route which is another “rabbit hole” in itself like “infills” planes that mixes rosewood and Iron (Spiers, Mathieson, Holland, Norris, E. Preston & Sons, J. Buck, T. Gardner, etc.) those to me are in a “league of their own”, functional art, but damn they are pricey, but if you were do replicate those vintage ones now, the cost would be astronomical! There are guys doing it or use to do it.And let's not forget miller's falls, lol. Some of those are decent too and can be had for reasonable cost..