So again I find myself engrossed in the type information found in Dave Heckel’s guide, and HMike's Blog.
I bought this because real early corrugated planes are not as common place as some others. And as usually dating them can be a bit of a challenge.
The lever cap has the number and the cap, which means it could be a type 1, 2 or 3.
The frog puts it around a type 3, assuming all type 2’s had the horseshoe lateral.
The base also put it at a type 3. The thin casting and squared post seem to correspond to type 3 as well.
The adjuster however puts it at a type 2, with the steel insert. The steel insert however is on ALL 5400 series.
The iron is also a clear type 2 iron with the oval logo and USA in the center. For some reason though, Heckel did a separate study on the irons, so you’ll need to match date, not types, so you have a type 1 iron, that’s typically on a type 1 and type 2 plane.
So here it is in all its glory.
My guess at this point is I found one of the Sargent enthusiast well sought after 5409, but a least a very early 409c, with Sargent using up some of the parts. Of course there is also the possibility that its a very late 5409, with sargent using some of the new 409C inventory on the plane. Further investigation may be needed.
Here is another which is pretty much identical.
I now believe the first is a 5409, the second a #409, here is why.
Working through the criteria for a 5400 series.
Here is what they both have.
- a blank cap
- Cutter marked with Oval Trademark with U.S.A. in center
- Two-piece cutter adjusting nut, brass with a steel insert for the threads
- PAT. FEB. 3 -91 on lateral lever (this is for both type 2 and type 3 laterals. They were issued the same day)
- They can have either the horseshoe or 2nd pivot lateral style to be a 5400 series. These both have the second.
- # 400 series plane number might or might not be on plane body. usually not, neither of these have it
- Rosewood knob and tote
Here is where they are different.
To be a 5400 series it must have the thin casting. So determining the thin casting isn’t as straight forward. Here are my 2.
So look not only at the side walls, but the back of the mouth. The difference in the casting is evident. I believe the one on the right is the thick casting, and the one on the left is thin.
So I weighed them as well. The one on the right was 25.6 oz, where the one on the left was 21.6 oz.
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