I started going transversely with the grain with a flat iron and things were going well, that was until I reached the far left hand side of the bench, which has been used as the sharpening station for quite a while. All that oil, metal particles, sandpaper grit, rust, and god knows what else really sunk into the wood because after five strokes my iron was dull as a doorknob.
Switching to a heavily chambered iron sped things up considerably, and even when the iron dulled, the heavy chamber helped to muscle through with the initial planing. After one pass I switched to 45 degrees with the grain, pushing the plane body at a skewed angle helped slice through some of the rough grain and knots.
|Getting a bit closer, you can see the scalloped track marks from the last flattening.|
I finished up going with the grain (as best I could) and planing the front of the bench to be square with the top. Overall it was an exhausting project...most people aren't stupid enough to flatten a knotty, old, 16 FOOT!!! workbench their first time around the block, but I am just the right kind of stupid.
So if you are ever looking for a new workout routine, I would recommend going into the massive workbench flattening business.
|My workhorse plane, I might follow up with a longer jointer in the future, but I am not sure it is necessary.|