When it comes to hand planes people have lots of ideas about whose is the best. There are several premium hand planes; Lie Nielsen, Veritas, Bridge city, Wood River and The granddad of the bunch Stanley along with many others. These planes all claim to be the best or the innovator with new frog designs, re-worked Bedrock designs, bronze bodies and ductile steel. There are those who prefer a 125 year old bailey or bedrock but these old planes simply can't hold a candle to the modern marvels of today.
What if i told you it's all crap and the brand of plane doesn't matter, you would say I am crazy right I was asked a couple of weeks ago to try out a blade and chip-breaker and if I put them in one of my old Stanley planes it would challenge my new $300 Lie Nelson Plane. I was floored by the claim and said because my mom is from Missouri Show Me. So they sent me several sets of these Rob Cosman Matched sets when they arrived I grabbed the box and ripped it open like a kid at Christmas I looked at the blades and thought I have seen tons of blades but i have not in 43 Years of woodworking seen a blade and chip breaker that came close to this quality and craftsmanship. The machining is beyond good it's great.
I was reading how to fit them into one of my antique planes and it said something about having to file the mouth open on the leading edge of the throat.
I figured that Rob Cosman Himself was putting his whole reputation on the line so I could put a Bedrock on the line. I had just finished restoring a #603 for my personal collection so I grabbed it and followed the instructions very carefully and five minutes later I had the throat opened to allow the blade to fit through.
I literally did nothing to this Iron and I went to work on a piece of figured walnut, the first shaving came out a little too thin and strong on the right. I adjusted the lateral lever on the plane and gave her a little more blade. The second pass was whisper thin, full thickness shavings three feet long and just like a ribbon.I was in awe of my own plane after the upgrade. I was pleased because this addition made the bedrock preform as well as my Lie Nielson smoother. At this point I honed the irons on the M-Power Pss1 because they only needed a slight honing and the back of the irons were already flat how refreshing. I then gave the plane a workout for about 30 minutes cut after cut. It was a showing fit for television simply unreal. Next I grabbed a bigger blade that fits a 4 .5, 5.5, 6 and 7. I grabbed my new late model 5.5 and was bummed to find the plane was a tiny bit too small so I grabbed the 607.
Baileys 5.5 and a 7 are the same size but this is not the case in the bedrocks.
So i started filing again for about 10 minutes and made it look so good you couldn't tell it was altered. Then I fit the iron, adjusted it and went at some pine boards, some walnut, alder and poplar. I was planning just for the fun of seeing these whisper thin shavings.
The IBC Pinnacle Rob Cosman Blade sets are made of cryogenically treated high vanadium A2 steel 0.140”thick and 60-62 HRc. The chip breaker are a
unique high carbon 0-1 steel 0.125” thick and 30-32 HRc these are manufactured to such high standards that they are serialized and should only be used with their matched parts. This cryogenically treated A2 tool steel holds its edge up to 10 times longer than older tool steel. There is simply no finer blade made today.
Imagine you can get the results of a premium high end plane with granddad’s old plane at a fraction of the cost of a premium plane.
In conclusion the blades performed as advertised maybe even better. If there is a down side to making granddads plane cut like a new elite plane, it would be that they currently only make the Iron in 3 sizes. The price is good at a hundred dollars but i have seen them at 69.99 on sale.
I proudly recommend the Rob Cosman Iron chip breaker sets