There are 35 grooves in the HB Tansu case construction. That’s a lot of grooves to plow for one project. If you’ve used a plow plane then you know that one momentary laps of concentration can have disastrous results. If your lucky, the damage is on the inside and won’t be visible. I’m rarely lucky in these situations. Once the wall of the groove is chewed up, the options for recovery are limited. Sometimes you can dress up the damage, but more often the piece will need to be remade. The latter option is no big deal for simple pieces. However, this can be a lot of work if there is a lot of other joinery in the piece. It’s best to install the grooves in a piece as soon as possible so that, in the event of tragedy, there is far less wailing and gnashing of teeth.
I have an old Record 043 thats in really good shape. I’ve accumulated several cutters for it and fitted it with an auxiliary fence. It works well and is generally my “go-to” plow plane. This little gem will come into play when I plow the grooves for the sliding doors. For the other 31 grooves I’ll be pulling out my secret weapon. A Japanese plow plane. I bought this plane off of Ebay a few years ago and use it when it makes sense to do so. It only cuts one width, 6mm, and one depth, 9-10mm. It has an adjustable fence for positioning the blade from the edge of the work piece. The real difference is that it has 2 blades that slice the width of the groove before the main blade plows out the waste. So it will plow a groove with the grain or across the grain if need be. Of course it’s designed to be used on the pull stroke and that is easy to get used to. This thing tracks with almost no effort, every time. The resulting groove has pristine walls that drop straight down to the bottom of the groove. I can rip out a pretty hefty shaving with each stroke so the work goes quickly. I love this plane its an absolute joy to use. It does only one thing, but does it exceedingly well.