Stanley No. 5 Hand Plane

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Blog entry by Rahm_of_the_Woods posted 10-09-2010 06:21 AM 2612 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have recently acquired a Stanley No. 5 Hand Plane. The guy who sold it to me thought it was from the 1950’s and said it belong to his father. I was suspicious of this so I read a type study on Stanley tools. From the specific stamping and style of manufacturing of this specific plane, I believe it to be one of the models produced from 1876-1880. It looks like this plane probably came from my friends great-grandfather, not his father!!!

Any idea what this tool might be worth? I know these planes were quite common… I bought the plane for $20 dollars, so I am positive I got a deal! Any feedback would be appreciated!

Take care,


-- Imagination opens the gates of the universe. –William Patten

9 comments so far

View Jim's profile


253 posts in 3614 days

#1 posted 10-09-2010 06:42 AM

I’m not sure the value but it sounds like a great old plane to restore and put back to work. Post a photo, I’d love to see it.

-- Jim in Langley BC Canada ---

View dbhost's profile


5705 posts in 3201 days

#2 posted 10-09-2010 06:58 AM

Not sure what a collector would value a fairly common old hand plane at, but that is a nice addition to any wood shop for sure.

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View ars's profile


30 posts in 2874 days

#3 posted 10-09-2010 07:02 AM

I second Jim, let’s see a picture. I’m by no means an expert, but the value’s gonna depend on the condition, ie: can it be made usable again? and if so, how much work is it gonna be? $20 sounds about right for a #5.

View Rahm_of_the_Woods's profile


37 posts in 2757 days

#4 posted 10-09-2010 07:50 AM

-- Imagination opens the gates of the universe. –William Patten

View Rahm_of_the_Woods's profile


37 posts in 2757 days

#5 posted 10-09-2010 07:54 AM

Here are a few pictures of my find. It was covered in a thick coat of oil and dust, thus it was fairly well preserved. There is a bit of surface rust, but it looks like it could be polished up with little trouble. I took it for a test spin, and it was making shavings like it was three days old! I am thrilled to have a tool like this in my shop, but I wanted to find out how much it was worth before I did something that would devalue the antiquity.

-- Imagination opens the gates of the universe. –William Patten

View BigTiny's profile


1676 posts in 2857 days

#6 posted 10-09-2010 09:06 AM

Any usable plane is worth more than that. You got a good deal. As for the antiquity factor, I have no idea. If it were mine, the rust would go and the blade would be sharpened and lapped. Looking nice makes it work better believe it or not. You tend to respect a good looking tool more and thus pay more attention when applying it to the wood.

-- The nicer the nice, the higher the price!

View swirt's profile


2659 posts in 2941 days

#7 posted 10-09-2010 03:00 PM

A broken tote but that’s no big deal. It may have been his dad’s and some other family’s before that. These things change hands fairly often in their long lives.

It is a good plane that could sell for ~$60 on ebay as it is. Provided that all the other stuff is in good working order, it can be an excellent plane. If you are into woodworking, tune it up and put it to work. You will enjoy it.

-- Galootish log blog,

View Richard Dunlap's profile

Richard Dunlap

65 posts in 2834 days

#8 posted 10-10-2010 03:18 AM

It has no collector value, but will make an exellent user. Ones like it generally go for around $40 on e-bay plus around $15 shipping. You got a great deal on a very good plane. To buy a new one of equal quality would cost $100 +.

View 8iowa's profile


1580 posts in 3730 days

#9 posted 10-10-2010 03:44 AM

At the WIA Conference last week-end, handplane guru Chris Schwarz said that the rarest planes are rare because they wern’t very useful, thus not many people purchased them, and not many were produced.

Stanley’s #5 was/is probably the most useful hand plane ever offered to the public. Thus, they can be found in great numbers. While your #5 is old, it is not going to be anywhere near as valuable, as some of the limited use planes that no one wanted to buy back when.

Therefore clean up and tune up your #5 and enjoy using it.

-- "Heaven is North of the Bridge"

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