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    Avatar Of IvandIvanD
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    Post count: 4

    Hi,

    I am new to woodworking, and I have a few questions. Are there and brands for hand planes I should stay away from? I know Stanley’s are top of the line, but what are some good mid range or even entry level brands.

    Thanks,
    Ivan

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    • Avatar Of Red5HftRed5hft
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      Post count: 27

      Hand Plane Brands

      First off, are you talking about vintage hand planes or new hand planes. Makes a BIG difference.

      “Whether you think you can, or you can’t, you’re right.”
      -Henry Ford.

    • Avatar Of Red5HftRed5hft
      Participant
      Post count: 27

      Hand Plane Brands

      Ivan,

      The name on the iron (blade) or bed of the plane is not as important as the construction of the plane. Most vintage planes constructed along the classic Bailey patent can be tuned to run just fine. Most modern plane manufacturers follow that pattern and are acceptable. If you are looking at new planes, quality runs pretty parallel to price. The more you pay for a new plane, the closer it will be ready to run out of the box. Lie Nielsen planes arrive ready to go, but you pay a premium for these heirloom quality tools. Veritas planes are pretty much ready to run out of the box. Bench Dog is close, maybe hone the blade a bit. There are more…

      If you want to save money and invest in an experienced tool (vintage) Stanley, Sargent, Millers Falls, Fulton, Merit, Union, Keen Kutter, Winchester are fairly common and all made planes that fit the “standard Bailey mold” and can be easily tuned to serve you well. Several makers made stamped frogs planes at some point and should be avoided. Not that they cannot be made to function well, just that it us usually more difficult. Look at remaining iron (blade) length and knob/tote condition before purchasing a vintage plane from these makers. If possible, you want an iron that extends the full length of the lateral adjustment lever. Avoid deep, pitting rust. Surface rust can be easily dealt with. If you are completely unfamiliar with hand planes, watch a few YouTube hand plane restoration videos and you will quickly see what you are facing.

      There are so many choices in both new and vintage hand planes, it comes down to budget, time, talent, and your goals.

      “Whether you think you can, or you can’t, you’re right.”
      -Henry Ford.

    • Avatar Of IvandIvanD
      Participant
      Post count: 4

      Red – thanks. I’m looking for a vintage one. My plan is to restore it to where I can use it.

    • Avatar Of Red5HftRed5hft
      Participant
      Post count: 27

      Vintage Hand Plane Values

      Ivan,

      I guess to start, I have to define a “good deal” for a user plane. With eBay as a reference point, my opinion of a good deal for a restoration plane for a new woodworker would be something less than $35 (shipping will add another $12).

      You can find good deals on Stanley Bailey vintage planes at tool swap meets, antique shops and occasionally eBay (you are competing with more buyers on eBay) if you are looking for something to restore. Factor in restoration supplies like metal cutting sandpaper, rust remover, and quality sharpening system (you need the last one regardless to maintain any plane). Stanley produced some less desirable planes so to keep it simple, stick with Stanley “Bailey”. Avoid broken totes unless you want a challenge. Vintage Craftsman planes from the 1920s to 1950s are a bargain. Most were made by Sargent, a worthy Stanley competitor and are undervalued by collectors. There are many available that only need sharpening. Fulton planes were made by Sargent and Millers Falls, and with the exception of one stamped frog model are also a good value. (The back, outside edge of the frog should curve not have a sharp angle, as the stamped one does) The Fulton planes were offered from 1904-1944 so if you want an older plane than Craftsman, but want to avoid the collector prices of Bailey, they are a good choice. All these brand planes are based in the Bailey patent design and function the same.

      Really depends on the budget. There are professionally restored vintage Stanley user planes out there for under $100 as well, but you miss out on the joy (and occasional heartbreak) of restoring your own.

      “Whether you think you can, or you can’t, you’re right.”
      -Henry Ford.

    • Avatar Of IvandIvanD
      Participant
      Post count: 4

      I was able to win a bid on TWO No 5 planes for $37. One is a Stanley and the other is a Craftsman. I think I’ll turn one into a scrub plane. RED – Thanks again for your help.

      • Avatar Of Red5HftRed5hft
        Participant
        Post count: 27

        New Plane Acquisitions

        Please post some photos of your new planes! Would love to see them before you start the restoration and then, again, after.

        I also just purchased a Craftsman No. 4 size plane. It is one of the brass badges planes. I am a lifelong Craftsman hand tool user and it will be neat to have this plane to admire.

        “Whether you think you can, or you can’t, you’re right.”
        -Henry Ford.

    • Avatar Of IvandIvanD
      Participant
      Post count: 4

      Here’s one of the pics from the eBay seller. I should receive them next week, and schedule permitting, I’ll start the restore the following weekend. But, yes, I’ll definitely take before and after pics.

      Attachments:
    • Avatar Of Mike In TnMike in TN
      Participant
      Post count: 301

      Hi Ivan,

      Beginners really do have problems because they have no reference experience from which to judge a plane nor the skills or experience to do good restoration of old tools. Many of the tool restoration videos are good but they can vary in quality and not all planes require the same level of restoration detail. Scrub planes and jack planes simply don’t have to be finished to the same level as smooth planes. I recommend you find a woodworking club or mentor in your area who can take you into the shop and let you try out some properly set up tools and can offer you guidance. You can’t go by brand unless you are willing to pay for new premium tools. You will still need to be able to sharpen them and set them up properly to get them to perform well. I have about 200 planes and have restored all of them except for some of the newer ones. Nearly all planes can be fettled to work but some just aren’t worth the trouble or are best left to collectors. Keen Kutter, Winchester, and some of the other brands can be tolerable tools but will cost you more due to collector demand and really don’t work as well as most Stanley planes in my opinion. I have even fettled a Harbor Freight plane to do decent smoothing work (just for fun) but I wouldn’t recommend it. You really do get more “bang-for-the-buck” from Stanley planes in general and since there are so many of those on the market they tend to be more reasonable at the yard sales and flea markets. If you don’t want to spend your time on restoring tools then just buy new higher end tools but if you don’t mind learning the skills and spending the time to do the restorations you can save a lot of money and have some fun along the way. I am not a dealer but have sold a few items to fellow woodworkers who I have met that indicated a desire. I normally request that they come to the shop and spend some time with me learning about them, how to adjust and sharpen, and how to keep them working. They get to try out several examples of the type they want at the bench so they can pick out the one that suits them best. They get this for a lower price than what they would normally pay for a raw one on eBay. I really don’t make any money at it but have made some great friends and repeat “customers” They also normally leave the shop with an additional free tool (chisels, scraper, etc.), strop, or book related to their interests, just as my way of promoting interest in the activity.

      I know that many woodworkers have trouble finding tools in their areas but do try to find your tools at the local flea markets, yard sales, and especially estate sales. You can do a first hand examination of any potential purchases and will probably get a better bargain compared to eBay. I would reserve eBay purchases for those items that you feel you must have but can’t locate locally. Have fun and remember that acquisition of quality tools takes time unless you have deep pockets..

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • Anonymous
      Inactive
      Post count: 2

      Hi,

      I am new to woodworking, and I have a few questions. Are there and brands for hand planes I should stay away from? I know Stanley’s are top of the line, but what are some good mid range or even entry level brands.

      Thanks,
      Ivan

      Do you find your answer? If Yes, please share it with me. I am a newbie in woodworking projects. It would be great help for me. Thanks in advance.

      • Avatar Of Red5HftRed5hft
        Participant
        Post count: 27

        Vintage Hand Planes

        Hello Brown. E,

        The site key master, and all around wood working hand tool guru, Joshua Farnsworth, has good information on buying your first hand plane available at:

        Are you planning to purchase a new plane or vintage plane?

        “Whether you think you can, or you can’t, you’re right.”
        -Henry Ford.

    • Avatar Of Joshua FarnsworthJoshua Farnsworth
      Keymaster
      Post count: 100

      Hi Ivan, welcome to Wood and Shop! You can check out our hand plane buyer’s guide here for an answer to your question: https://woodandshop.com/woodworking-hand-tool-buying-guide-handplanes/

      Some other readers may be able to give you more brand names. But generally hand planes made prior to World War 2 were of higher quality. Many manufactures dropped the quality of their planes after the war (including Stanley).

    • Anonymous
      Inactive
      Post count: 1

      This is something off topic but i need your help in buying some power tools for repairing my chainsaw, can anyone suggest me some power tools from which i can repair my chainsaw.I have gone through this guide https://www.consumersbase.com/different-power-tools-list/ but couldn’t able to find anything specific related to chainsaw. I want something similar to this like a proper tools list required for repairing a chainsaw.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • Anonymous
      Inactive
      Post count: 2

      Do you know any jigsaw power tool and metersaw to experience good woodworking?
      routertable is one of the best tool for woodworking.
      http://routertable.me

    • Avatar Of Saket52saket52
      Participant
      Post count: 1

      Regarding router table

      Hi. Do you know any good wood router which is a perfect fit for Kreg router table? Many of my users are asking me this question. So, I am taking recommendation from woodworkers in the forums.

    • Avatar Of Mike In TnMike in TN
      Participant
      Post count: 301

      One To Stay Away From

      On the subject of the original post: I just bought a relatively new English made Stanley #4 at a yard sale and thought I could tune it to be a cheap user or a scrub. First let me say that I have tuned a LOT of planes including some very cheap ones and have always been able to work through most of the faults in order to end up with a useable tool. I was under extreme time constraints so I had to make a quick decision and the price seemed right for a newer brand name plane. Within a minute of starting the clean up/tune process pieces of the depth adjustment yoke were hitting the bench top. The cheap pot metal yoke literally fell apart under light finger pressure. The base casting and frog had numerous burrs from the casting/machining and the parts were very sloppy in fit and finish. I did have the plane making shavings but I now need to find a yoke or declare the plane a “parts plane”. This is easily the worst plane I have ever owned including Harbor Freight planes.

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