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sreilly24590 -
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So I recently acquired a couple of new to me planes that need some work. Both I need to check the soles and irons for flatness and the iron needs a serious iron sharpening. I'll clean as best I can as well. Any other suggestions? Best methods for checking flatness on the sole? I do have a 3"x18"x12" very flat granite block in my shop. While I have flattened plane irons and chisels I've never done a plane sole. Some solid advice would be great. I often look to the infonet but there's as much bad advice as good so unless you know a solid site for such advice you're on your own. I created a web page for those planes here. Thanks again for any assistance.

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Steve, you can use the granite and sandpaper to flatten the sole. Cross-hatching with a Marks-a-Lot will show you how flat the sole is. The main areas to concentrate on is the toe (front), heel (back) and around the plane iron. These areas should be co-planar. Everything else in between is extraneous.

 

Although there is some controversy as to the best method to use there are two ways to go; with and without the frog, chip breaker, and iron installed. I have never found a real difference. The theory is if you flatten without and then assemble it can induce enough tension in the plane to twist the sole out of flat. I have never seen that happen with any plane that I have reworked.

 

Typically, Stanley only finished their planes to somewhere around 180. I typically, go down to 600 with wet/dry paper (personal preference).

 

Here are some PDFs that may help:tuning metal bench planes.pdfTuning a Hand Plane.pdfTuning Block PlaneS.pdfBack Bevels and Plane Geometry.pdfLapped Plane Blades.pdf

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Steve, this may help...

 

 

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Hmmm, iron body planes do not warp ( wooden ones do..) but, the older ones can show a bit of wear, after 50+ years of use....

Retract the iron enough that it doesn't stick through the sole.  

Place the plane on something flat.

Place an index fingertip on each end, and press down, to see if it rocks "forth and aft"  .....if not..

Place the fingertips at the corners, diagonally across the plane, and try again....try both diagonals...no rocking?  Sole should be fine for use..

 

IF you still feel like flattening the sole, or just want a cardio workout....take an 80 grit sanding belt, and cut out the seam, and glue or clamp it to  something flat..

 

Leave the plane set up as the first test,  handles will make things easy to hold the plane...take a black Sharpie, and make a bunch of lines across the sole...

"plane" the sanding belt, until all the lines are gone.....a little line left in the areas between the toe and the mouth, and from right behind the mouth to the heel ( right down the center line) is ok....as long as the toe, mouth, and heel are all the same.  

 

Usually, there is a slight ramp right behind the mouth opening, cast into the base....it needs to be coplannar with the face of the frog...frog too far in front of the ramp cause the un-supported edge of the iron to flex and chatter....frog too far back, causes the iron to bend ,  The ramp is to support the iron right up until it pokes through the sole to cut.

 

Note: you can get both the back of the iron and the bevel polished mirror bright....but, will cut as badly as a butter knife....the 25 degree bevel needs to meet the flat back as sharply as you can...just a single bevel.   I usually set the chipbreaker 1 mm back from the edge of the iron....and make sure there isn't any gaps between the two. 

1377345194_handplaneclass3.JPG.2647119a15c641cdef42a7211e5e1459.JPG193040766_handplaneclassfroglocation.JPG.3ceb7f6eb9698af9a361cf08e0d2cc08.JPG

947665189_handplaneclasssetting.JPG.828968f1287ddcf9b370d3ed4e26f045.JPG

Works for me...

1909837590_handplaneclass4.JPG.9c610366b807239cc7e45aa080a47ad1.JPG

 

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4 hours ago, schnewj said:

Steve, this may help...

 

 

Bill,

 

Thanks for the excellent reference material. I really want to be sure I do this right. I don't intend to become a collector but rather put these tools back into good working order for my shop use. It certainly looks like what I need is included in yours and Steven's posting. I've copied the detailed information from these posts along with comments into a pdf file for future use as well. Any objection to referring to these down the \road if someone needs this info? Thanks again.

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Steven, I don't know about a workout just yet. The new shoulder isn't quite done yet and I just got back from my hand surgeon where I hopefully licked the carpal tunnel in the bud with an injection as much as I dislike needles. I've got maybe 4 more weeks of PT on the shoulder so I'm not pushing anything too hard just yet. One of the things I had thought of before, like a week or two ago was using my flat edge and seeing what gaps might exist using the feeler gauges. That's essentially how I checked the beds on my 8" jointer. Will this tell me anything useful as a preliminary test?

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I meant to attach the Plate Flatness report I got with the granite block so here it is.

granite001.pdf

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Some good advise here. As Steve said the wisdom from people who wrote the book such as Hock now say flattening the sole is not a necessity unless you just need the exercise. It may possibly make pushing the plane easier (old knowledge) by getting it mirror smooth but we are not talking jet air resiatance

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Hmm! Not bad. Certainly good enough to do what needs to be done. Can't get much better than a Class 00, unless you go to a calibrated table for stupid money.

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Sweet finds Steve especially the No 4 Stanley. Me being me, I'd spend some time "flattening" (more of a clean up of the rust & pitting) on both once your shoulder is up to it.

 

My first approach of late to removing the rust is spritzing the sole with WD-40, then scraping as much as possible using an old box cutter blade, then scrubbed with green Scotch-briteTM or  equivalent. For the nasty ones, I'll soak in Evap-O-Rust...removes the rust but will not harm the paint or japanning. However, if there are any decals, it will remove them. VOE. 

 

Like Steven, I'll use an old belt sander belt  to begin with...even as low as #36 or #50 grit to start then, like Bill gradually moving up changing over to Wet/Dry #100-#120, #220, #320, #400,  then finally sometimes #600. I use either a 50/50 mix of Simple Green/water or straight up LA's Amazing Cleaner for the lapping/cutting fluid. Once done, I use a flat file to slightly relieve the perimeter of the sole removing a little extra on the toe & heel. I agree with Bill...I've yet to see any difference have the plane fully assembled versus body only when re-furbing the sole.

 

While looking at the plane pictures, I took your full blown shop tour...hope you don't mind? NICE, VERY NICE! I couldn't help but notice this little beauty in your "collection" too.

 

Certainly looks to be a Stanley 101 block (model makers) plane although Millers-Falls had a very similar model.

I've only seen two of these in the wild...I own one of those now...still kicking myself for not buying the other.

Cleaning the top of the blade (iron) should reveal which yours is.

image.png.ab029ed85b4cb795fd9a553580af82d2.png

 

BTW...take care of that shoulder and hand first & foremost...those planes will be there when you're ready.

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You hit the nail on the head, Gramps. They are in really good shape as is. The soles need a little attention is all. A good cleaning, sharpen the iron and tweak the chip breaker if needed. The soles just need to be cleaned up. The pitting my be problematic, but a good deep cleaning and some paste wax should do.

 

That #4 Stanley is one of my favorites to use. What a great plane when it is fetted correctly. That Sargent is just a good when tuned up. Great finds, Steve.

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1 hour ago, Grandpadave52 said:

Sweet finds Steve especially the No 4 Stanley. Me being me, I'd spend some time "flattening" (more of a clean up of the rust & pitting) on both once your shoulder is up to it.

 

My first approach of late to removing the rust is spritzing the sole with WD-40, then scraping as much as possible using an old box cutter blade, then scrubbed with green Scotch-briteTM or  equivalent. For the nasty ones, I'll soak in Evap-O-Rust...removes the rust but will not harm the paint or japanning. However, if there are any decals, it will remove them. VOE. 

 

Like Steven, I'll use an old belt sander belt  to begin with...even as low as #36 or #50 grit to start then, like Bill gradually moving up changing over to Wet/Dry #100-#120, #220, #320, #400,  then finally sometimes #600. I use either a 50/50 mix of Simple Green/water or straight up LA's Amazing Cleaner for the lapping/cutting fluid. Once done, I use a flat file to slightly relieve the perimeter of the sole removing a little extra on the toe & heel. I agree with Bill...I've yet to see any difference have the plane fully assembled versus body only when re-furbing the sole.

 

While looking at the plane pictures, I took your full blown shop tour...hope you don't mind? NICE, VERY NICE! I couldn't help but notice this little beauty in your "collection" too.

 

Certainly looks to be a Stanley 101 block (model makers) plane although Millers-Falls had a very similar model.

 I've only seen two of these in the wild...I own one of those now...still kicking myself for not buying the other.

Cleaning the top of the blade (iron) should reveal which yours is.

image.png.ab029ed85b4cb795fd9a553580af82d2.png

 

BTW...take care of that shoulder and hand first & foremost...those planes will be there when you're ready.

Dave, interesting post as these all have been. I swear this old dog may be learning some new tricks after all. I took that "finger plane" as I've called it apart and really couldn't see much. Took some WD40 and sprayed it down and used a small wire brush (like a toothbrush) and gently cleaned stuff away. Still could tell much but looked like something might be there so I got the old man magnifying specs out and saw something. So I took an old fine sanding sponge and with two finger and light pressure slide it across the full length, you know all what 1-1/4" and lo and behold "Stanley New Britain Conn US" shows up. So maybe there are a few left yet? 

 

New pictures are here at the bottom. Thanks for the education guys.

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53 minutes ago, sreilly24590 said:

and lo and behold "Stanley New Britain Conn US" shows up. So maybe there are a few left yet? 

I see them listed on the "bay" periodically. 101's were manufactured 1877-1962. Yours is pre-War (pre 1940) since the "lever cap" is black. After 1940 it as red. I'd have to do more in-depth research, but based on the marking on the blade, I'm guessing yours is early 1900's to mid 1920's. Sweet find.

 

The other block plane appears to be a Stanley #61 assuming it's ~6" long x 1-3/8" wide. from the mouth opening as well as when assembled, it's obvious a low angle plane. Your's does not appear to have an adjustable mouth (portion in front of mouth opening movable) along with the metal knob indicates it's likely a #61. Actually quite rare plane due to low production numbers versus those with an adjustable mouth (much more preferred) #61's were manufactured 1914-35. Based on the adjusting knob, I'd guess early to mid 20's which may then better date your 101. If from the same owner, likely purchased at the same time or fairly close time frame. Ya' did good finding and preserving these.

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2 hours ago, Grandpadave52 said:

I see them listed on the "bay" periodically. 101's were manufactured 1877-1962. Yours is pre-War (pre 1940) since the "lever cap" is black. After 1940 it as red. I'd have to do more in-depth research, but based on the marking on the blade, I'm guessing yours is early 1900's to mid 1920's. Sweet find.

 

The other block plane appears to be a Stanley #61 assuming it's ~6" long x 1-3/8" wide. from the mouth opening as well as when assembled, it's obvious a low angle plane. Your's does not appear to have an adjustable mouth (portion in front of mouth opening movable) along with the metal knob indicates it's likely a #61. Actually quite rare plane due to low production numbers versus those with an adjustable mouth (much more preferred) #61's were manufactured 1914-35. Based on the adjusting knob, I'd guess early to mid 20's which may then better date your 101. If from the same owner, likely purchased at the same time or fairly close time frame. Ya' did good finding and preserving these.

1-5/16x5-15/16 with adjustable mouth fully forward on the toe. Finally got that soaked loose. The pictures are uploaded.

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I have no idea how this was intended to work but it seems to slide back and forth after loosening the brass knob. There is a slight, maybe 3/16", oblong rise in the cast for it to slide back and forth. I know my #62 has this mouth adjustment you're referring to so I know what that look likes. You're suggestion something similar should be on this one? Is this possible or should I be looking for a replacement part? BTW, I forgot to mention that these were left to me by my father-in -law who passed away in 2001 just 3 months shy of 100. He was an avid woodworker who was self taught.

Edited by sreilly24590

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So after working on both of these irons today, I don't think either had ever been flattened, I came to a conclusion. 1st, those small irons are a bear to hold and flatten. Neither of my Veritas MKII jigs will hold the 101 iron and I'm not entirely sure what bevel is on it but I think between 20-25 degrees. For that matter I'm not sure what bevel is supposed to be on it but I should be able to look that up but that also doesn't mean it's what the bevel is now. On the 61 I discovered the sole just behind the mouth had a cracked piece of cast which came off. I can probably epoxy it back on but I think it's usefulness is likely ended. It may end up as a display piece as a reminder of my favorite father-in-law. And after I did a great job in flattening the iron and sharpening it. But I also noted as, Steven suspected,  that their is likely a missing part  for the 101 as I did notice a hole behind the front brass knob and that is likely where the adjuster would have pivoted to adjust the mouth. That piece I have never seen and may have been lost long ago. That iron I was able to determine the bevel as 25 degrees and the MKII jig held it just fine as the rion was long enough for substantial grip. What I used to hold this iron was I ave a piece of wood with 2 rare earth magnets flush with the wood to assist in holding the iron. For the tip that stuck out about 1 to 1.5" I used a small cut off of a slightly thicker wood so I could use my palm to push down on the iron and keep flat against the diamond stones (DMT). Otherwise I could see no way to protect my fingers from the stones. I had this issue the first time and made a mess of my hands before I even knew it. Lesson learned. Admittedly the magnets can cause a bit more work as the DMTs have metal in them but the extra work is easier for me than the very sore fingers and palms. Any suggestions on getting a good solid grip that helps the process along? Granted flattening the irons is a one time deal but it still has to be done and the old planes may or may not have been done already. I figure a quick run on the stone will tell you quickly if it's needed. And my 1st time into this I had both a set of new bench chisels, new set of mortise chisels, and several old bench planes that I had no idea about. That was a ton of sharpening for a 1st timer. Actually I think the mortise chisels aren't done yet. You know that shoulder thingy still.......and then there's my turning tools but I do have a Wolverine jig and 2 CNB wheels on my low speed grinder. One is a Megasquare 180 and and the other is a 600 4-in-1 from https://woodturnerswonders.com/products/mega-square-radius-edge-pair-cbn-wheels

Edited by sreilly24590

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So the transitional hand plane has been identified as a Union #35 and is missing the plane iron, the chip breaker, and the cap. Anyone know of a good source for these parts? I'd jut really like to get it back to working order as it belonged to my Father in law and I suspect my wife would be thrilled to know his tools live on. I didn't realize the name was on the front and when the tech was working on my bandsaw noticed the old hand planes told me where to look and sure enough if you hold it just right it jumps out at you. I had assumed it was an old Stanley because it has a Stanley iron.

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My Sister cursed, er, gifted me with an old plane.  I never intended to get trapped in this whole restoration thing.  But, sigh, I fell for it.  Ok, yes, I'd do it again.  Being simple minded, I stuck to simple things:  sandpaper on glass:  worked ok.  Knobs/handles (hobbs?) were junky plastic, didn't fit my hands; the machine screws were #12, and no longer made.  I gingerly re-tapped the two holes to 1/4" (turns out making holes bigger is a lot easier than smaller....who knew?).  I don't have a lathe, so I tried something I always sort of scorned: turning with a drill press.  Dang, it worked.  (I considered all sorts of turning tools/cutters; turns out that a simple rasp did a really good job.)  I put quite a few hours into it, learned a lot, and am happy to let it sit on the shelf forevermore.0324190940.jpg.38a0459ebea136c27e92b955a4ca41ae.jpg

 

IMG_1404.JPG.5318201634167362cfa88519be4dafd7.JPG

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