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Stanley #48 Tongue and Groove Plane - How old is it and is it worth $25

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Blog entry by Pimzedd posted 449 days ago 2069 reads 0 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I went to an auction West of Fort Worth, Texas last week. During the auction this plane came up.

I did not know what kind of plane it was or what it did. The bid was $15 and I was not going to let it go for that so I held up my hand. Someone else did the same thing. The auctioneer got the other guy at $20 and me at $25. I figured what the heck. No one else bid and I got it. Didn’t know what I had but thought it was neat looking.

I came home and found out it is a Stanley #48 Tonguing and Grooving plane. After going to a couple of websites, I think it is a Type 1 from the late 1880’s or 1890’s.

Why is it a Type 1? According to The Superior Works: Patrick's Blood and GoreThe early models of the plane, those that are japanned, have the characteristic bead turned at the base of the knob.

Yep, got the japanning and the bead around the base of the knob.

The website says ”the fence on the earliest model is about 2/3rd’s the thickness as that of the more common japanned models; the earliest being 7/16” and the later being 3/4”.

Got that too.

The website says ”The plane, when put in full production, was japanned, with brass lever cap screws (for the cutters).

Those are definitely brass screws.

The site states ”The original cutters of these planes do not have a circular notch cut on their right side up toward the top.” No circular notches near the top of the cutters.

Also the site says ”It’s very easy to distinguish the earlier japanned models from the later World War II japanned models – the earlier models have a vine decoration cast into their totes whereas the World War II models have the fish scale-like casting to them.


Got the right handle.

However, there is one issue. In the next sentence after the one quoted above, the site states ” Further, the World War II models don’t have any patent date information on them.” There is no patent date on the plane. Most of the early japanned models are said to have the patent date either cast below the handle or the patent date stamped on the sole in two lines. My plane has no patent date anywhere on the plane.

So all this leads to the question, how old is this plane?

The other question, what is it worth?

Finally do I recondition it if I am going to keep it or resell it or just clean it?

For now it is just cool looking at it setting on my desk.

One final note. I went to the auction because it had a number of pieces of Ridgid equipment to sell. Some of the pieces were new, never used. The others had barely been used. I was interested in the table saw, a model 3650. There were several of us woodworkers there. Only one of us bought any of the equipment. He bought the table saw without a guard for $450! The new version is $499. Everything went for near new or in some cases over new cost!!!! I guess there is a sucker born every minutes.

-- Bill - Mesquite, TX --- "Everything with a power cord eventually winds up in the trash.” John Sarge , timber framer and blacksmith instructor at Tillers International school



15 comments so far

View camps764's profile

camps764

678 posts in 865 days


#1 posted 449 days ago

actual value of $25 or not I would have jumped all over that!

That thing is sweet and worth $25 (to me anyway) all day long.

I’m willing to bet it’s worth more though…nice find.

-- Steve

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

9130 posts in 1123 days


#2 posted 449 days ago

Any markings on an iron or a thumbscrew? That may ensure it’s a Stanley, as opposed to made for some one else’s resale. Nice plane, I wouldn’t do more than clean it…

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive

View Ted's profile

Ted

1668 posts in 716 days


#3 posted 449 days ago

Bill, what an awesome find! If I had the know-how, I would restore it and keep it. Definitely worth $25.

-- I support the 28th Amendment. http://www.wolf-pac.com/28th

View Dave's profile

Dave

10941 posts in 1345 days


#4 posted 449 days ago

Drool….............
sorry

what a find!

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

9130 posts in 1123 days


#5 posted 449 days ago

Oh, and yes, it’s worth three times what you paid for it or more.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive

View Brad's profile

Brad

741 posts in 1245 days


#6 posted 449 days ago

I see that it has both of its cutters. Even rusty as it is, with both cutters, it’s definitely a good deal for $25.00. Smitty is right. Going prices are around three times that on Ebay…maybe in the $60.00 range time to time…

-- "People's lives are their own rewards or punishments."

View Don W's profile

Don W

13954 posts in 1073 days


#7 posted 449 days ago

Its certainly a nice #48 and for $25 you couldn’t go wrong. There is a type 1 on ebay now, just watch it and see what it sells for.

I agree with Smitty, just clean it up, dip it in some evapo-rust and it should be good to go.

-- There is nothing like the sound of a well tuned hand plane. - http://timetestedtools.wordpress.com (timetestedtools at hotmail dot c0m)

View Pimzedd's profile

Pimzedd

421 posts in 2309 days


#8 posted 443 days ago

Thanks all. Don, the one on the ebay link went for $42. Mine is even earlier as it has the smaller fence and the bead on the knob.

I showed it to Lynn Dowd of Dowd’s Tools in Garland, TX today. He buys and sells old tools. His website is “dowdstools” He has a copy of Antique & Collectible Stanley Tools Guide to Identity & Value. We both believe it is a very early type 1 plane. It has all the features of such a plane. The one thing that has both of us puzzled is it had no patent date, either cast in or stamped. I am going to clean it carefully and the date may show up.

Lynn said if he was selling it, he would put a price of $75 on it. He sells at reasonable prices. He said for a collector, it could go for more. I told him if is sell it, I would let him make the first offer.

If you are in the North Texas region, keep an eye out for Lynn’s fall sale. It is a good one.

-- Bill - Mesquite, TX --- "Everything with a power cord eventually winds up in the trash.” John Sarge , timber framer and blacksmith instructor at Tillers International school

View Clementine's profile

Clementine

3 posts in 442 days


#9 posted 442 days ago

I got one of these at a yard sale a couple of days ago, but mine is missing one of the blades. At first I couldn’t see the patent date on mine either, but it’s on the painted portion below the handle – it’s really faint because the paint has worn off – so look again on the main body of the tool. It should be on the left side. It may be that the etching has worn down. Hold the plane at an angle and let the light fall on from different directions. I wouldn’t really call myself a lumber jock, but I am interested in old hand tools. If anyone ever finds an original blade for one of these, let me know! Here’s a link to a photo so you can see the location of patent date and the size of the lettering:http://www.patented-antiques.com/images/cyntools/XX-c-tools-on/c-planes-d/Stanley/TG/4849/48-49.jpg

View Clementine's profile

Clementine

3 posts in 442 days


#10 posted 442 days ago

By the way, that link to Dowd’s Tools connects you to a site that sells Viagra! No joke. I even googled their name and it led to that same wrong site. I wonder what’s up with that!

View Pimzedd's profile

Pimzedd

421 posts in 2309 days


#11 posted 441 days ago

Thanks Clementine, don’t know what has happened. When I click on the link, I get the same site. When I type it in, it goes to Lynn’s site. I will let Ms Debbie know and see if she can deactivate the link.

-- Bill - Mesquite, TX --- "Everything with a power cord eventually winds up in the trash.” John Sarge , timber framer and blacksmith instructor at Tillers International school

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

18614 posts in 2666 days


#12 posted 441 days ago

not sure why it goes to the “pharmacy site”. The link is correct.
I tried copy/pasting the site’s link here and it still comes up as the “pharmacy”.

I’ll just leave it for you to do your own search for the site.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

View Clementine's profile

Clementine

3 posts in 442 days


#13 posted 440 days ago

I finally got to their site by typing it into the browser like you said, but even their link on Google is bad, so someone may have hacked their site. I’m happy to report that I FOUND my other blade, which had just fallen off when I was cleaning the plane. Did you ever find the patent date? Mine is in about the same condition as yours, Bill, with a lot of the japanning gone, but still sound and no parts missing (now). I got the rust off and put a coat of mineral oil on it. I might have removed a little more of the laquer with cleaning it, so I’d recommend just using an old toothbrush to anyone else (rather than a wire brush). How did you clean yours? And do you think mineral oil is OK to use? I’m in Texas, so hopefully, at some point I can visit Dowd’s in person. By the way, you did a great job with photos of this plane!

View Pimzedd's profile

Pimzedd

421 posts in 2309 days


#14 posted 440 days ago

Thanks Clementine for the comments on the photos.

As to the link, MsDebbie deleted the link so others will not go there. The website is www.dowdstools.com. I get there using three different browsers. Maybe I had the link wrong in my post.

I cannot see any patent date. I have looked under all types of light and using a large hobby magnifying glass. Patrick’s Superior site states that a few of the very early planes did not have a patent date.

I have not cleaned mine as yet, hopefully this weekend. Lynn suggested using mineral spirits and a tooth brush. I am going to use that. Hopefully I won’t remove much of the japanning. Lynn and I rate the japanning at about 75% still there.

I will give it a coat of paste wax after cleaning.

Lynn’s sale is every fall. The sale last year was Nov 10-11. Get there early the first day for the good stuff. Email him at dowdstools@tx.rr.com and ask to be put on his email list.

-- Bill - Mesquite, TX --- "Everything with a power cord eventually winds up in the trash.” John Sarge , timber framer and blacksmith instructor at Tillers International school

View gawthrrw's profile

gawthrrw

187 posts in 952 days


#15 posted 440 days ago

I would have paid twice that for it!! Good find!

-- Rob, Dallas TX

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