Review: Veritas no.1 bevel-up bench plane

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Review: Damion Fauser

Canadian toolmakers Veritas have released their latest in a long line of premium hand planes. The heritage of this tool is abundantly clear, with the Norris-style adjuster, nicely shaped and finished tote and knob, the set screws for fixing lateral settings in place, the brass lever cap knob and the swept back tapered profile of the blade.

As the no.1 nomenclature suggests, this is a diminutive tool that can be used for edge-profiling and flushing down excess material like inlays and solid edging, as well as trimming the ends of frame and panel assemblies with their combination of end and edge grain. With the sides ground square to the sole, it would also serve as a handy plane for shooting tiny components such as inlays or edge bandings for boxes.

The adjustability of this tool is impressive for its size, with an adjustable mouth, Norris-style lateral and depth adjuster and the flexibility be right at home performing any number of tasks, from smoothing and of cutting angle that is afforded by the bevel-up configuration. As with many Veritas tools, care needs to be taken to avoid over-tightening the lever cap knob so as to prevent damaging the thread on the Norris adjuster in use.

The bed angle is 15° and the blade (available as either O1 hardened to RC58–60 or PMV11 hardened to RC60–63 tool steels) comes with a 25° bevel, resulting in an effective from-the- factory cutting angle of 40°. Applying a micro bevel of your choice means easy selection and adjustment of preferred cutting angles.

Out of the box the fit and finish was extremely good as is to be expected from this maker, and the blade, as I have found with most blades from this stable, was lapped near perfect, requiring only minimal effort to fully lap the rear of the blade. A quick micro bevel and this tool was ready for premium performance.

I gave it a run in some end and edge grain cuts in both hoop pine and Vic ash and it performed flawlessly. I then presented it to my two current groups of hand tool students, many of whom had never used handplanes before. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive, with the only concern from those with larger hands who found the compact nature of the tool difficult to comfortably hold and use.

This is a fantastic little tool that with its build quality and versatility would suit many woodworkers across a wide range of tasks.

Review tool supplied by Lee Valley. Veritas tools available from
For info about the Veritas no.1 bevel-up bench plane see

Damion Fauser is a Brisbane based furniture designer/maker who also teaches woodwork classes. See

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