Over the past half century, plane manufacturers have tended to focus their design efforts on reducing manufacturing costs as opposed to making planes that work better. When designing their bench planes, Veritas chose to focus on better adjustment and feed mechanisms, blades that hold a finer edge and innovative structural improvements to eliminate blade vibration. Veritas bench planes are manufactured in Canada from full stress-relieved ductile cast iron. This is superior to earlier materials as it maintains its dimensions after machining and will take harder knocks without cracking.
All machining is done to a high level of accuracy in Veritas' own factory. This ensures a precision fit between parts for fast and accurate adjustment. The sides and soles of all planes are surface ground to a high degree of finish. The soles are flat and the sides are square to the sole. Extra large side wings make for stable shooting.
Veritas' #4, #4-1/2, #5-1/4W and #6 bench planes incorporate an entirely new concept - the frog extends all the way to the sole of the plane. This design reduces blade chatter by providing complete blade support and allows a user to quickly adjust the mouth as required. It can be closed to a narrow slit for fine shavings or opened for heavier cuts. You do all of this without having to remove the lever cap or anything else from the plane - you simply loosen a pair of screws and dial the desired opening with the thumbwheel.
The blades are made from 1/8" thick A2 tool steel that is hardened to Rc60-62. The A2 alloy takes a keen edge, is resistant to chipping and dulls less easily than other plane blades. The thick blade, combined with the full depth frog, virtually eliminates chatter. Veritas' bevel-up planes (low-angle jack, smoother and jointer) have 12° beds and have been designed to use the same 2-1/4" wide, 3/16" thick blades. Effective cut angles can be optimised by altering the bevel angle or by switching blades. The bevel angle of the blade included with each plane is the one best suited to the plane's primary function. A toothed blade for working difficult grain is also available. These three planes cover a full range of planing tasks with any type of wood.