The Scandinavian style Cheese Plane has been around since invented byThor Bjørklund in 1925 in Norway. I thought I would have a try at making my own version of it. As well as slicing cheese, It also makes an excellent spatula for frying Bacon and Eggs!
Step 1: Items Needed
1] 1 piece .05 inch thick sheet steel 6 by 12 inches. (Hardware Store)
2] 1 piece 6 inches of chromed Fawcett supply tube. (Hardware Store)
3] Propane Torch
4] Aviation Snips
5] Vice or Sheet Metal Locking Pliers
6] Lead Free Solder and Flux.
7] Metal Ruler
8] Sharpie Felt Pen
9] Small Metal File
10] Course and Fine Steel Wool
11] Hacksaw or small Tubing Cutter.
12] Drill and 1/4 inch bit
13] Lead free solder and flux
Step 2: Layout Piece of Sheet Metal With Outline Using Sharpie Pen
The shape I used is somewhat traditional for the Scandinavian style Cheese Plane. You can use any shape you want provided that you leave enough room to draw the black horizontal part which is for the blade which will be cut out later. Also allow at least 6 inches for the handle piece and make sure that it is at least 1/4 inch wide.
Step 3: Cut Out Shape Using Aviation Snips.
Cut out shape in sheet metal using Aviation Snips. At this time, also cut 6 1/2 inches of Fawcett supply tube leaving the stubby end intact. This will later slip over the long piece that you have left of the sheet metal forming the handle.
Step 4: Drill 8 Holes in the Black Part That Was Marked
Drill 8 holes from one end of the blackened in part to the other. After the holes are drilled, the running drill can be twisted back and forth and at an angle so that the metal that is left over between the holes is removed. I found that this is the easiest way as opposed to using a file.
Step 5: Use a File to Enlarge and Make a Nice Neat Rectangular Cutout.
Use a file to enlarge the cutout and make it into a nice clean rectangle. Once you have enough room, file the side opposite to the handle to make a blade. The angle can be determined by trial and error, but I found that a 45 degree angle worked for me.
Step 6: Put in Vice and Bend at a Ten Percent Angle.
Put in a Vice and bend perfectly aligned with blade at about a 10 percent angle as shown in picture.
Step 7: Use a File and Steel Wool to Dress and Finish the Cheese Plane.
Use the file to dress all the sharp edges and bevel them on both sides of the outside. Once this is done, take course steel wool and get out all the imperfections and scrapes in the surface of the metal. For a final smoothing, you can take it down to 000 steel wool and give it a nice smooth finish.
Step 8: Spread Flux on the Handle
Once you have cleaned the handle with course steel wool, put a layer of soldering flux on it before you slip the handle on it.
Step 9: Slip the Outer Part of the Handle Over the Inner One.
Slip the outer part of the handle over the inner one. Wrap the handle of the cheese plane with a piece of cloth and put it gently but securely in a vice. Take a propane torch and heat up the handle while melting about two or three inches of lead free solder into the space between the inner and outer handles. Let it set and tidy the excess solder off with a file.
Step 10: Top and Bottom Views of Finished Cheese Plane
Here are top and bottom views of the finished Cheese Plane. There are a couple of little burrs which can be smoothed off with the file and steel wool
Step 11: See How It Cuts Cheese.
The final step is to see how it actually works on cutting cheese. I tried it on a block of old cheddar and it worked very well. As I said before, it also makes a very good spatula when making bacon and eggs or pancakes.