When living in Oslo you´re not really swimming in woodworking stores. Talking to fellow woodworkers about tool-selection and experiences is left to internet, books and magazines in the subject. To feel and test a handle is to order and, if totally of, return. So getting back to woodworking this past year has been all reading and listening, comparing different views and hoping for the best outcome to orders made to dealers outside Norway.
The best tool shopping in Oslo is the overpriced trash-bin-flee-markets at weekends where you wish, just wish someone is selling his or hers grandfathers old tools, all neatly packed (read; thrown) in moving boxes together with porcelain dishes, glass and old computer keyboards.
This summer I went past an old Sergeant No.79 moving filletster. It didn’t have any fence or depth stop and was in general pore condition. I had newly added the filletster to the ”tool to have” list, so It was somewhat annoying to hear Ron Herman talking to me from afar, telling me how it was useless to the backdrop of Christopher Schwarz jelling out the word JUNK! over and over again. I slowly put it down and walked away knowing that it would be long before a new filletster plane would show up.
Next day I was in another part of the city at another flee market. Lying in a box with porcelain and crystal glasses was a peace of metal I knew i needed, for what, I had no idea, but it was from a tool and lose tool-parts are always good to have. At home I found it in Kerry Pierces book Hand planes in the Modern Workshop, it was attached to a Stanley No.78, it was a fence, and as fare as I knew the Sargent No.79 and the Stanley No.78 was almost built on the same drawings. It could work on a Sargent and I needed find the one I passed up yesterday, I needed to save it.
It would be some weeks till the next time I saw the same market lady. She still had the tool and I bought it for 40nok (5 dollars) Now it was my junk, It was mine to save.
Started with a rust removal and wire brushes to even out the worst of the japanning.
When reading up on lacquers to use on plane restoration all threads pointed at Dupli-Color Engine Enamel Ford semi gloss black. (DUPDE1635) as the best alternative to ”real” japanning. It is an American motor lacquer with the same gloss as the Stanley Bedrock planes. The only problem was that the American and the European Dupli-Color catalogue is different. There is no Engine Enamel series here.. I called the Norwegian office to hear about it and they didn’t now what it was or how to order it, what was the European equivalent, no clue.
Luckily fore me there is an awesome car paint and lacquer store in Oslo called Billakkspesialisten. They mixed up an two-component lacquer that is similar to and have the qualifications of the Dupli-Color motor lacquer (and I will not use the word lacquer ever again.. in this text, except when talking about the Swedish indieband popsicle and there 1992 album Lacquer which is and forever will be a bright star in Swedish indie history. If i suddenly start talking about it later on I apologize now for the use of the word Lacquer) It was fast drying, non flaky and super robust. They even tock the time to learn me some tricks about getting the right texture. All that was left that day was to build a spray booth and do some masking.
Polishing and straiten up the sole and sides took some time. Square they are!
To be continued .. !
-- R E