LumberJocks

Weight of premium planes

  • Advertise with us

« back to Hand Tools forum

Forum topic by CharlesA posted 08-21-2015 07:07 PM 964 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3022 posts in 1261 days


08-21-2015 07:07 PM

All of my planes are older Stanleys. When I’ve read about Lie-Neilson or Veritas or even Woodriver planes, I’ve read that they were modeled on the original Stanley designs. The other day I was killing time on vacation in VA and stopped at a Woodcraft while I waited on an airplane to arrive. I picked up the Woodriver no. 4 and was surprised how much heavier it was than my Stanley. I’m assuming this is true for the LN and Veritas planes as well since they all seemed to be aimed at the same market segment. I assume the heavier plane provides more momentum and thus cleaner planing.

I’m still pretty happy with my old Stanleys, but I see a bit more how the newer planes are improved on the originals.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson


15 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4452 posts in 3424 days


#1 posted 08-21-2015 07:15 PM

I’m stickin’ with the old Stanleys. The “designer” planes are for those with the big bucks.
If I spent that kind of money on a plane it would live in a safe deposit box. :)
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3022 posts in 1261 days


#2 posted 08-21-2015 07:18 PM

Bill, I’m not changing either. I was just surprised at how much heavier the WR planes were. The smoother was more like my big Fore Plane.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View bobasaurus's profile

bobasaurus

2670 posts in 2648 days


#3 posted 08-21-2015 07:33 PM

The LN and LV planes are pretty heavy, with thick castings. The LN bronze-bodied planes are even heavier than their cast iron counterparts. It improves momentum and reduces chatter, but they can get tiring to use.

-- Allen, Colorado

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2193 posts in 944 days


#4 posted 08-21-2015 09:44 PM

Charles,

Did you actually try planing some wood with it?

That weight translates into better performance and the superior machining comes forth, too.

Both LN and WR are modelled after the bedrock plane, which was the best thing Stanley ever came up with.
Yes, the LN is definitely a premium plane, but the WR is quite good, too for a fraction of the cost.

I own various models of each brand, and I only bought them because I got tired of trying to find an old Stanley that justified the cost. The prices on Ebay are crazy. And, I have been down the “rustoration” route and planes with missing parts and unusable blades, etc. That’s just not for everyone. I’m a regular guy who just happens to value quality tools and I don’t mind paying for them.

The weight, superior machining, and blade thickness are what you’re paying for and its up to the individual to determine whether that is worth the extra money.

The WR planes are probably hands down the best value out there today, especially wen you consider what it takes to buy a Stanley bedrock these days.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View unbob's profile

unbob

718 posts in 1367 days


#5 posted 08-22-2015 07:34 AM

The plane in the middle is a #4 1/2 that has a blade date of the first quarter of 1948, but the sole and frog are of the earlier type before the Y shape frog mount. It is one heavy chunk of metal. Compared to the type 7 #5 on the left, and the relatively heavy type 17 #4 on the right. The #4 1/2 came from a surplus sale at the Hanford nuke site, and probably ordered to certain specs.

View Billy E's profile

Billy E

162 posts in 1544 days


#6 posted 08-22-2015 01:12 PM

I have several Stanleys, of the bedrock and Bailey variety. I have one LN. The LN is certainly more solid. It has better lateral adjustment. The best thing about the LN plans is the ability to swap in a high angle frog.

-- Billy, Florence SC

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3022 posts in 1261 days


#7 posted 08-22-2015 01:15 PM

I’m not a hardcore plane guy, as evidenced by this thread. None of my planes are bedrocks, so that may the core of why I was surprised by the weight of the WR. My stanleys are all pre WWII, I believe, but none are the really expensive collector planes. I’ve paid $18-65 or so.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View Pezking7p's profile

Pezking7p

3097 posts in 1115 days


#8 posted 08-22-2015 01:25 PM

They are very heavy and can be tiring to use, but they are very nice. The thick castings are easier to machine flat and square (were the Stanley’s even machined?) and they are more stable over their lifetime.

I’m a convert. The antiques took too much to get them working and pre-tuned planes were expensive and risky. I decided I wanted to work on wood, not tools. That being said, I still use my #5 and #4 extensively.

-- -Dan

View lateralus819's profile

lateralus819

2236 posts in 1353 days


#9 posted 08-22-2015 01:56 PM

The prices aren’t terrible at all. I have a LN #8, #4-1/2, #073 large shoulder, Rabbet block, chisels and two saws.

The initial cost does seem steep. I took to restoring and selling a LOT of vintage tools to buy all mine. I didn’t spend a dime.

The worst for weight is the #8. It even tires me and I’m a big guy. It does help push through the wood better though and keep the momentum.

View Clarkie's profile

Clarkie

380 posts in 1305 days


#10 posted 08-22-2015 02:45 PM

A tool is only as good as the man behind it, or woman.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3022 posts in 1261 days


#11 posted 08-22-2015 02:47 PM



A tool is only as good as the man behind it, or woman.

- Clarkie

Now I’m in trouble.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View bearkatwood's profile

bearkatwood

1202 posts in 475 days


#12 posted 08-22-2015 03:29 PM

I have been trying to “pimp” my shop lately. I bought a new fancy scorp, I got a couple boggs shaves and I have been eyeballing a stanley 45. When I think about replacing my #5s I cringe. I also have an old garrage sale fulton that somehow I have tuned up to run like a Ferrari. The new stuff might be streamlined and pretty, but it is modeled after the old goodies. I like the old stuff, tuned up well. I think the only thing I would change on some of them would be to go with a thicker iron.

-- Brian Noel

View Billy E's profile

Billy E

162 posts in 1544 days


#13 posted 08-22-2015 03:53 PM

Charles- there’s not much if any weight difference between the Bedrocks and the Baileys. I would usually take a bedrock over a Bailey because it has been easier for me to work with the bedrock frog.

-- Billy, Florence SC

View Clarkie's profile

Clarkie

380 posts in 1305 days


#14 posted 08-22-2015 04:59 PM

Hey Charles, no, no trouble, lol. Like the old car commercials used to say, “boy it looks just like a Mercedes”...
I know most of you guys know the old tools are proven, and the nice thing is that you can tell when a man took care of his tools, almost can feel the guys hand on the plane as you use it. When was the last time one of you guys used one of these?

View JohnChung's profile

JohnChung

372 posts in 1538 days


#15 posted 08-23-2015 01:24 PM

Heavier tools generally indicate better quality but it really depends on the situation.

For pine I find the Stanley #4 weight good enough. It applied to all soft wood.
For harder wood like teak or rosewood. I will go for heavier plane. Weight here helps a lot.

For the block plane I find the ergonomics for the LV std block plane too cumbersome. I have the DX60 plane and it handles really well. It really depends on the use of the plane. For trimming I use the LN 102 and works well on hard and softwood.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com