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Thread: Hand Planes

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    Hand Planes

    Just scored a Stanley #5 jack plane on ebay. Looked pretty good from the pics.

    I also have a Stanley low angle block plane I love and a Stanley shoulder plane I used cleaning up half lap joints on bee hives before I went to box joints.

    Looking at a #4 Stanley smoothing plane. The prices seem to be wide even with the condition being similar. What does the Type mean? Is there any Type preferable over another?

    TIA

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    Re: Hand Planes

    Quote Originally Posted by tdukes View Post
    Just scored a Stanley #5 jack plane on ebay. Looked pretty good from the pics.

    I also have a Stanley low angle block plane I love and a Stanley shoulder plane I used cleaning up half lap joints on bee hives before I went to box joints.

    Looking at a #4 Stanley smoothing plane. The prices seem to be wide even with the condition being similar. What does the Type mean? Is there any Type preferable over another?

    TIA
    Eddie,
    Congrats on your "Score Jack" or rather your Jack Score!
    A smoother is a good next step.

    The learning curve on types and castings etc... can be steep!
    Here is a good link to some more learning:
    http://www.supertool.com/StanleyBG/stan0a.html

    Lots of reading, but you should be able to wade through and get the answers you are looking for.

    Here is another one after you tire of Patrick's snarky aproach:

    http://www.hyperkitten.com/tools/stanley_bench_plane/
    People are amazed as a shaving rises from the throat of a plane as if itís a spell plucked from a sorcererís hand Ė Paul Sellers

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    Re: Hand Planes

    This site does an excellent job of listing and describing the "types" of Stanley planes. I personally don't own any Stanleys made after 1947. I own quite a few Stanleys, Sargents and Miller's Falls and I always (almost always) pass on ones made after the 1940's.

    http://www.rexmill.com/planes101/typing/typing.htm

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    Re: Hand Planes

    Got the plane today. Looks really good. I don't plan to do much to it except maybe flatten the sole. I put a straight edge on it and I could see a little daylight in some spots. It also had one small area of pitting.

    I was under the impression a #5 had the rounded iron. I saw a re-run of the Woodwright's Shop the other day and a guy from Arkansas had a jack plane but he iron had a 8" radius on the blade. He had a jig with an 8" radius to make the rounded edge which was nothing more than a piece of stock with the radius which was used to mark the iron.

    The one I bought has a straight edge. Not sure I want to attempt putting a rounded edge on the iron.

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    Re: Hand Planes

    Someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe it was modified to have the rounded edge to be a scrub plane. It isn't a necessary modification. I have an old Stanley no 5 that is my main work horse and I absolutely love it. I got it off of eBay as well.

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    Re: Hand Planes

    The #5 plane, like all of the zillions of bench planes coming from the New Britain, CT plane giant, came with a straight edged blade. A jack plane with an 8" radius on the iron is set up to take pretty thick shavings. Though you are hesitant, you can grind a radius like that if you want your plane to lay waste to a lot of wood! If you want a plane to help flatten boards, joint smaller boards, or smooth a board in a pinch, a straight edge (with maybe a slight camber) is where it's at!

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    Re: Hand Planes

    Quote Originally Posted by mbromley View Post
    Someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe it was modified to have the rounded edge to be a scrub plane. It isn't a necessary modification. I have an old Stanley no 5 that is my main work horse and I absolutely love it. I got it off of eBay as well.

    I may have re-watch that episode. Have it DVRed on Plex. I thought that was what a #5 was made for. But I'm still confused on all the #'s of various planes. Guess back in the old days they had a different planes for different tasks. Some are obvious, some seem to be the same but different lengths and widths.

    I won't modify the original iron but if I can find a newer replacement, I'll give it shot.

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    Re: Hand Planes

    Quote Originally Posted by tdukes View Post
    Guess back in the old days they had a different planes for different tasks.
    They sure did! Before WWII Stanley made planes for a very large number of specific tasks. Someday I might count how many in my reference book.

    The #40 and #40 1/2 were Stanley's dedicated scrub planes and bulldoze the thickness of a board.

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    Re: Hand Planes



    Three planes are needed to flatten a board, the jack plane is generally a #5 or #6. I prefer the #6 because I am larger than average. The blade of the fore plane is cambered or radiused to an 8 inch radius for deeper cutting with less resistance. It makes thick narrow chips which allow fast removal of the rough surface and brings the uneven or twisted face into a level plane. This work is followed by the try or jointer plane which is much longer and has a flatter cutting edge, usually a #7 or #8. The jointer makes the surface flat and straight but still a little uneven. The final work is performed with a smoother or smoothing plane, usually a #4 but for smaller folks maybe a #3. The smoothing plane has the flattest cutting edge, but still should be cambered about .003 to .005 inches from top dead center. This allows overlapping cuts without leaving a hard edge. A well sharpened smoother will leave a surface that is mirror smooth and ready for finishing.
    Attached Images Attached Images



    One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man." -Elbert Hubbard

    WWFD

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    Re: Hand Planes

    As usual, Mike is correct about using 3 planes to surface a board. My suggestion to put a slight camber on the blade was assuming that this was the only bench plane you are going to have for a while and dimensioning rough lumber wasn't its primary task - more of a jack of all trades setup.

    But buy more planes is the correct answer. I hear Stanley made a few different kinds!

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    Re: Hand Planes

    In a pinch you could have one plane with two blades set up for rough and smooth work, just swap out the blades and adjust.



    One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man." -Elbert Hubbard

    WWFD

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    Re: Hand Planes

    The terms and jargon used with bench planes continues to be an interesting learning curve for me. I have 2 bench planes that work pretty well in my hands after the usual setup and blade sharpening/honing, etc.

    1. A 21st century Stanley Bailey #4 (made in Sheffield, England) retrofitted with a Hock blade and chip breaker. Mike Davis did some keen eyed detective work for me after the Hock retrofit because the cap iron wouldn't lock down correctly with the thicker Hock components. I can't find the eagle eye pics that he sent.

    2. A Veritas Bevel-up Smoother with 3 PM-V11 blades (25, 38, and 50 degree bevels). Gotta try these combinations on a few pieces of hardwood just to learn about them.

    I haven't used them nearly enough but they work nicely when I get them adjusted.

    BTW, the Lee-Nielsen catalog can be downloaded or mailed. I have both for a handy reference guide for the jargon and which planes are used for what jobs.

    https://www.lie-nielsen.com/request-catalog

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    Re: Hand Planes

    Having someone show you how to radius a plane blade is a skill you will use forever. Get some help and you will not regret it.

    A little on what Jeff mentioned about Bevel up planes:

    (the Veritas and the LN are great. This is not a LN pitch its about bevel up). I do not use the PM-V11 blades in my tools as they came out after I was committed to the blades I have. Very easy to sharpen and they hold and edge much longer than the old Stan blades I have sitting in a bucket.









    1. Like Japanese saws.. they are not for everybody. I can not work without mine. I have a number of blades with different angle that go in very quickly and you don't have to fuss with chip breakers.

    2. The bevel up smoother and the bevel up jack have something that the old stanleys do not have and its super critical: adjustable mouth setting capability. I can get a final finish on a board faster with my BU smoother and a 50 degree blade with the mouth closed tightly and it is just a surface I can not get with my Stan 4 no matter what I have done. I have a Hock blade and chip breaker in the Stan 4 and I like the feel and I use it frequently .. but for the killer final surface its out with the LN smoother.

    Maybe in another thread we can explore "smooth" vs "flat" and hear some talk.

    later

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