Brian Eve of Toolerable is no different. He recently reconditioned an old rabbet plane and took a video of his first attempt. Check it out! I doubt he'll ever crave a fence for this task again.
If you don't get it right on the first attempt, you will be fully confident that you'll get it on the second.
On a side note, I'll take this opportunity to reiterate a point about antique planes: they can (usually) be made to perform as well as the planes I sell. Please do not think that you need my planes or those from Old Street Tool to get in this game.
Start with antiques. We all did.
If you feel like you're blindly fighting these tools I'll recommend that you make just one pair from scratch. The first time you have to fit YOUR wedge, bed YOUR iron or make your iron match YOUR sole you will work to a whole new level of tolerances. You will quickly learn about the significant amount of technology that is present in two pieces of wood and steel.
Get in this game. Take control.
(the first planes I made)