|Not the blade in question...just there for a picture.|
Ok...if you know how to use a hand plane, why can't you sharpen it yourself?
If you had used the plane before...why are the factory grind marks on the blade?
The plane is 15-20 years old, hasn't been all that well cared for...and you're blaming it on the guy you lent it to? I know what patina is. I can tell a paint stain from last month from one that's 10 years old.
Anywho, I take the plane apart, give it a once over. Checked for flat...not flat...flattened it. Then I took the blade and sharpened it. I could tell that this was the first time the blade had ever been sharpened. The patina is a dead giveaway that this is the original blade.
I only took the blade up to a 4000 grit edge. I could have gone to 8000, but I knew that the user would never appreciate the difference. Reassemble the plane, test shaving, cuts nice.
Here's the best part. I give the plane back to the owner. I removed the blade and showed him the edge. He looks at it disapprovingly, runs it up his arm and shaves a few hairs...frowns...and says, "I guess that'll do."
YOU GUESS??? WTF? Someone who wouldn't know a sharpening stone from a rock on the beach wants to criticize the edge I just handed him?
Needless to say, the blade nearly became a piece of evidence at the police station, but I held my temper.
The moral of the story? Admit when you don't know about something. It's ok. People won't look down on you. I have a hell of a lot more respect for someone who admits ignorance on a topic than someone who tries to fake knowing everything.
(also, if I've seen the butcher job on a knife you've sharpened, telling me you know about sharp plane irons won't work)
I just had to let that rant out.