Standard Angle vs Low Angle Frogs:
We offer our bench planes in a low angle 42° version and standard angle 47° version. Our block plane is offered in a low angle 38° version and standard angle 47° . As a general rule , the lower the angle, the easier the plane is to push and the clearer surface it will leave. The downside is that as the angle goes down, the planes tendency to tearout increases. Also, since the blade must be ground at a lower angle, the cutting edge is more fragile than a higher angle.
Traditionally, since the advent of the double iron, 45° has been a standard used by most wooden plane makers as well as by Stanley. It is seen as a good compromise between easy planing and minimizing tearout. Single iron plane makers will offer their planes with angles up to 60° or more to eliminate tearout.
Blum plane are double iron planes, even though our ‘double iron’ consists of a blade with the front of the frog becoming the chipbreaker. While the setup is different than a regular double iron plane, the effect is still the same.
Which to Choose?
Lower angles push easier. They are a little better on end grain. If you will use your chipbreaker as the tool it was intended to be, you will be able to plane any grain as well as with a higher angle plane. You will have to be a little more mindful of your chipbreaker setting when planing against the grain or planing tearout prone wood.
Standard angles work just fine. When we say a low angle is a little better on end grain, we mean a little. They will be less prone to tearout, but they will still need the chipbreaker to be set right to eliminate it.