LumberJocks

The Tool Gathering Odessy #9: Yet Another Plane

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Blog entry by Tomcat1066 posted 01-31-2008 12:25 AM 2592 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 8: I'm cleaning up! Part 9 of The Tool Gathering Odessy series Part 10: Been a While...but worth the wait »

Upon returning home, I was surprised to find a package waiting for me on the bed. Since I’m only waiting for one tool, I knew what it had to be…my Norvell Shapleigh’s 60 1/2 type block plane. For those who don’t know what a 60 1/2 block plane is, it’s a low angle, adjustable throat block plane. Now that we’ve got that covered, on to the details.

This is yet another eBay find, and I was thrilled to find it. I’m fascinated with the Diamond Edge stuff for some odd reason. My jointer plane and one of my panel saws are Diamond Edge, and Diamond Edge is the brand name for Shapleigh’s Hardware. The Norvell Shapleigh’s stuff is really interesting to be, because it’s easier to date the tools. They are no older than 1912, since the name was dropped after that point. It appears to be no earlier than 1901, so there’s a pretty narrow window this tool would have come from, and that’s just cool to me.

So here I am with an almost 100 year old (or over 100 year old) block plane. Obviously, I’ve got work to do. So, here are the details:

First, the sole. I needed to…wait, that’s not right…the sole was pretty flat already.

Oh yeah…the blade. It was a mes…err, wait, that’s not right either. The blade needs to be sharpened, sure, but it’s actually in really good shape.

The japanning! Oh crap…that was in pretty good shape too.

OK, so I didn’t have to do anything to it. Now, that’s not to say it’s perfect. There’s some slight pitting in a couple of places, but not nearly as much on the jointer plane I posted the other day. Some of the nickle on the cap has chipped off, but not nearly enough to cause concern. All in all, this plane is in fantastic shape.

Well, since it looked ready to go, I decided to give it a try on this unknown board I have sitting here in the office. Well, it did need a bit of adjustment to cut. The blade was set a bit far back, and there’s a bit of a trick to adjust how far the blade protrudes from the mouth. Once I figured that out, I decided to round the edge of the board just for kicks. Well, it shaved wood like a dream. I then flipped the board over and played with a cheap block plane I got from Tractor Supply Co. before I knew any better (it’s actually not that bad a plane). I rounded the edges with the cheap plane, then brought in the Shapleigh’s plane to flatten it back.

Oh man! I wish I could have gotten the pics to turn out from the shavings. Really nice ones! They were fairly thick, but that’s OK. I shaved them nicely and that’s with a less than ideal blade! I am stoked about this bad boy!

So, without further carrying on, here is the newest member of the family:

block plane

Don’t hate me ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!



7 comments so far

View Shopsmithtom's profile

Shopsmithtom

788 posts in 3657 days


#1 posted 01-31-2008 12:35 AM

I have really gotten to love planes lately. That looks like a beauty. Who knows, maybe I even bid against you for it? Hope not, wouldn’t have wanted to drive the price up for a fellow lumberjock. Have you decided how many planes you need, or are you just going to let the collecting disease overtake you? It will, you know. -SST

-- Accuracy is not in your power tool, it's in you

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 3259 days


#2 posted 01-31-2008 01:03 AM

Well, I don’t know if it was you, but someone drove the price straight to my upper level the day after I bid, but didn’t go any higher. This plane was destined for me :D

As for a particular number of planes, I don’t think I have a limit set. However, I’m not a collector either. I plan on getting planes for a particular use rather than “just because”. I’ve been buying my “basic set” and have just about finished that up, so next it will be just buying planes because it fits a need…

...for now ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View Paul's profile

Paul

660 posts in 3555 days


#3 posted 01-31-2008 01:53 AM

Too bad our paths didn’t cross earlier than Lumberjocks. I once had a collection of Norvell-Shapleigh planes. I was facinated with them for the same reason – the narrow window of manufacture. I put together No. 3 through No. 7 bench planes with the rubber “unbreakable” totes.

I sold them on ebay as a set probably four years ago to help finance a trip to woodworking school.

-- Paul, Texas

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 3259 days


#4 posted 01-31-2008 03:03 AM

Do you hear that Paul? That’s the sound of ultimate suffering!! ;)

Seriously, that sounds like a very cool collection. I’m trying to snag as many Norvell Shapleigh tools as I can, so who knows what I’ll end up with ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4012 posts in 3526 days


#5 posted 01-31-2008 06:02 AM

Tom why would I hate you? You like bringing old tools back from the rust bucket, and you can quote “The Princess Bride”. Sounds pretty likable to me!

Photobucket

stolen from a T-shirt.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View Dorje's profile

Dorje

1763 posts in 3459 days


#6 posted 01-31-2008 10:02 AM

Great little plane – a user to be certain.

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 3259 days


#7 posted 01-31-2008 12:09 PM

Thanks Doug! I was hoping someone would catch the reference :D

Dorje,

You’re absolutely right. This little puppy is definitely a user, but the awesome thing is that it wouldn’t look out of place on display somewhere either!

MAN! I love old tools!

EDIT: I just measured the plane and found that it’s more consistent with a 65 1/2 type plane, rather than the 60 1/2. Still, I’m OK with that ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

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