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The Hunt for My First Spokeshave

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Forum topic by DylanC posted 01-06-2016 01:42 AM 1159 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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DylanC

196 posts in 2134 days


01-06-2016 01:42 AM

Topic tags/keywords: spokeshave 151

So, a new Stanley 12-951 can be had for under $20, a US made 151 runs $30-$50 on ebay, and a Veritas kit for a wooden shave is $42.

Recommendations, anyone? And BTW, it’s winter here in the great white north, so any yard sale finds are 4-5 months away.

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...


18 replies so far

View paratrooper34's profile

paratrooper34

891 posts in 2411 days


#1 posted 01-06-2016 01:46 AM

Dylan, I have a Stanley 151, nice tool (with a Hock blade in it). I also made the Veritas spoke shave kit (I showed the build in my projects). They both work equally well and I don’t really favor one over the other. I recommend the Veritas kit because it is always cool to build your tool and then put it to work.

-- Mike

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DylanC

196 posts in 2134 days


#2 posted 01-06-2016 02:12 AM

Mike: Was there anything about the build that was particularly challenging? I’m a bit concerned that I’ll have trouble getting the shape right on my first try. If so, can the “hardware” be removed and put on a different body in the future?

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

View bearkatwood's profile

bearkatwood

1194 posts in 471 days


#3 posted 01-06-2016 02:43 AM

So you had me at spokeshave!

My favorite of mine is the fifth one down, a civil war era shave with adjustable throat.

Here are my recommendations;
The first one is missing the japanning, but a good rattle-can with some auto body spray would work to bring it back to life. Good price, the flat arms can be annoying.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Stanley-Tools-No-54-Spokeshave-Woodworking-Tool-/351621191533?hash=item51de41976d:g:gs4AAOSwYIhWi~FQ
The second looks decent, I would offer $35, little oil and some wax.. good as new.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Stanley-53-Sweetheart-Spokeshave-/291652260563?hash=item43e7d452d3:g:4B4AAOSwHaBWiYDh

I have given you a few that are all adjustable throat models as I find them to be the easiest to use and the ones I reach for first. I would recommend throwing the old blade in the drawer and going straight to a new hock blade.
http://www.hocktools.com/products/sp.html
Boggs shaves are wonderful, but pricey and if you are just starting out or not going to use a shave every day then I would go with one of the two I recommended.
Hope this helps.

-- Brian Noel

View TheBronzeoakleaf's profile

TheBronzeoakleaf

34 posts in 1422 days


#4 posted 01-06-2016 02:54 AM

Dylan, the 151 is an excellent shave. I built my first chair with it as a novice and it treated me very well. Easy to use. I also have the Veritas low angle shave for $79, but am not used to it yet. Tune up a 151 and you can’t go wrong.

-- Sam, http://www.bronzeoakleaf.wordpress.com

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DylanC

196 posts in 2134 days


#5 posted 01-06-2016 03:20 AM

3 replies and 3 different recommendations. I should’ve expected that, I guess.

Brian: What is it about the adjustable throat that you like? I was looking exclusively at 151-style shaves because of the “easy” depth adjustment. I guess that could be a “crutch” that trades skill for simplicity. Looking at your collection, I certainly see there is a lot of variety in the older style. Does that variety translate into more capabilities? Also, thanks for the recommendations. Once you get beyond the 151s the prices get pretty reasonable. May add a standard No. 51 to the hunt.

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2187 posts in 940 days


#6 posted 01-06-2016 12:21 PM

The veritas spokeshaves are excellent.

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

View jdh122's profile

jdh122

879 posts in 2277 days


#7 posted 01-06-2016 01:14 PM

I have a set of the Veritas spokeshaves and really like them, although the throats are too close to use easily with green wood. I think Brian gave you excellent advice, although I have no experience with the adjustable throat style (though I wonder if it would be useful for working green wood). Personally I’d stay clear of the new Stanley or any other of the bargain ones (Kunz for example), since in my experience the new less expensive spokeshaves need a lot of work to make them usable (the japanning behind the blade makes them chatter, for example, so you have to file it all off to get a flat bed for the iron). Maybe putting a Hock blade in one would make it usable, but with that extra expense the price climbs up to closer to the price of the Lie-Nielsen or Veritas shaves (though still admitedly cheaper).

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

View paratrooper34's profile

paratrooper34

891 posts in 2411 days


#8 posted 01-06-2016 01:25 PM

Dylan, it was a pretty easy build. Really. And yes, you can reuse the hardware on a different shave if you desire.

Oh yeah, any time you ask a question which will require an opinionated answer be prepared for many, many different opinions.

-- Mike

View bearkatwood's profile

bearkatwood

1194 posts in 471 days


#9 posted 01-06-2016 11:30 PM

DylanC,
The 151 is a fine shave, the reason I like the adjustable throat over the two lateral screw kind is that you don’t actually change the blade depth and it works a bit more like a travisher in that you just engage more of the blade to cut. When I work on my headrest for instance I will have sections where I want to remove a large amount and then I work down to a finer cut by simply twisting the thumb screw on the face. It is a quick and easy change, it only takes a split second for me to take a bigger bite and then back to a finesse cut. With the 151 there are more screws to loosen and tighten to get where you want, so if ease of adjustment is what you are after, the adjustable throat style is where it is at. I have been working on a prototype of my own design and hope to have it in production by the end of the year, though it will be just small runs at first.
Hope that helped.

-- Brian Noel

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Andre

1016 posts in 1265 days


#10 posted 01-06-2016 11:42 PM

Small Bottom Bronze Spokeshave From Lie Nielsen get both!
You can get a Hock blade, little better than stock iron.

https://www.lie-nielsen.com/product/spokeshaves/spokeshaves-small-bronze-spokeshave-?node=4091

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View DylanC's profile

DylanC

196 posts in 2134 days


#11 posted 01-13-2016 03:25 AM

Brian: I read the following over at sawdustandshavings.com

Using this plane is not quite as easy as most fixed mouth spokeshaves. When the mouth is adjusted, the adjustment moves the front of the mouth closer to the blade but it also adjusts the angle of the mouth. Consequently, the front of the mouth is never in the same plane as the rest of the sole of the spokeshave. As a result, when using the plane you must be careful to keep the weight on the forward part of the spokeshave. Maybe there is some trick I’m missing. These old Stanley shaves don’t exactly come with directions so I just have to assume I’m doing it right.

Does this agree with your technique?

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

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DylanC

196 posts in 2134 days


#12 posted 01-17-2016 03:10 AM

I took Brian’s advise and bought a Stanley No. 53. Two, actually. The first is a “pre-sweetheart” era that a previous owner modified by rounding off the rear of the sole. It was very nicely done, and should be able to get into some fairly tight inside curves. The second one is still on its way, but looks to be in good condition except for the iron, which is a bit pitted. I know replacement slotted irons are available, but does anyone know if a 151-type iron will fit in a 53? The selection is a lot better if it would work. If not, can anyone verify that a Kunz iron will fit?

Also, when I got the first shave in the mail, I was surprised that the extent of the throat adjustment was only about 1/16”. Does that sound right to any of you other 53 owners? I would also also think that a thicker iron, like a Hock, would limit this even more.

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

View sikrap's profile

sikrap

1121 posts in 2818 days


#13 posted 01-18-2016 05:22 PM

Personally, I would avoid the Kunz irons because I’m not at all impressed with the quality of their tools. Post a WTB (Want to Buy) in the trade and swap forum or check with Lee Valley, Hock Tools, etc. for a replacement iron.

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

View bigblockyeti's profile

bigblockyeti

3663 posts in 1180 days


#14 posted 01-18-2016 09:41 PM

I bought a new 12-951 last November and the blade required quite a bit of sharpening and the sharp edges had to be knocked off the body, after that it performs acceptably well. The price can’t be beat for a new one, I think I paid less than $18.

View Tim's profile (online now)

Tim

3109 posts in 1421 days


#15 posted 01-19-2016 02:05 AM



Personally, I would avoid the Kunz irons because I m not at all impressed with the quality of their tools. Post a WTB (Want to Buy) in the trade and swap forum or check with Lee Valley, Hock Tools, etc. for a replacement iron.

- sikrap

I bought the Kunz version of the Stanley 53 before I knew about Kunz’s reputation. It’s not as bad as people made it out to be, but it’s not good either. It cuts really well, but the slot on the blade is so far off, that the blade sits too far to one side, pushing against the side of the opening. It makes it so the depth of cut is a little too much on one side and it can’t be adjusted properly until I grind the slot wider.

Truth is spokeshaves work really well, but there are a number of different kinds that work a little differently. So I’m sure Dylan you’ll be happy with your 53 and if you use it enough you may want one or more of the other types.

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