1. Mark out the rabbet on both edges with the cutting gauge. The gauge is prone to wander as it encounters different densities of tissue. The solution is to push the fence quite hard into the workpiece and to move the gauge more slowly. This step is critical — if an error occurs at this point in the process, it is difficult to correct. Take the time required to mark out the rabbets properly.
2. Plane with the grain and make the first few passes with the blade set fine. The grip is the same when cutting with the grain or across it.
3. Once you have established a wall that acts as a fence, you can increase the depth of cut and, in relative terms, “hog it off.”
4. As with other wood-shaping tasks, cutting with the grain is much easier than cutting across the grain. But don’t lose concentration; full control is still required.
5. You will have a basic long-grain rabbet — clean and accurate.