Stanley Bailey planes: How to remove the "Y" adjusting lever and the lateral adjusting lever?

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Forum topic by Brett posted 04-12-2011 09:27 PM 5388 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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660 posts in 2106 days

04-12-2011 09:27 PM

I’m trying to rehab a couple Stanley Bailey planes and I’d like to lap the surface of the frog. How can I remove the “Y” adjusting lever and the lateral adjusting lever? Thanks.

-- More tools, fewer machines.

7 replies so far

View Bertha's profile


12989 posts in 2117 days

#1 posted 04-12-2011 09:29 PM

You’ll need a punch for the depth “Y” and I’ve never removed a lateral adjuster. I imagine that you’ll have to re-rivet it once you remove it but I’m not positive.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View zfrme66's profile


22 posts in 2035 days

#2 posted 04-12-2011 10:10 PM

Yep, Bertha is right. Use a small punch and it should come out. The lateral adjustment lever? Why does that have to come off? I know it can be done,but it’s VERY hard to get it back on without cracking the top of the frog. If the adjuster is loose you’ll need to get a ballpene hammer, and bracing the frog underneath the rivet,tap firm(not hard) to “seat” the rivet tighter so the lever is not loose anymore. Be careful.I’ve cracked a few frogs doing this.
Good Luck,

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


13575 posts in 2042 days

#3 posted 04-12-2011 10:39 PM

I’m with Bob and recommend that you not remove the lateral adjuster just to lap a frog. It really is something that can be worked around. I’ve seen folks use divided strips of fine sandpaper on either side of a dado-type recess in a piece of scrap stock that allows the adjuster wheel to float in between. I just go at angels on either side, with equal strokes and pressure, and it works out fine. Good luck either way you choose!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View cabmaker's profile


1473 posts in 2232 days

#4 posted 04-12-2011 10:45 PM

Also note: once you have removed the wishbone do not attempt to straighten it if it appears bent (many do). It is cast and will not bend. It will snap like a twig very easily. Enjoy

View Dan's profile


3630 posts in 2304 days

#5 posted 04-12-2011 10:46 PM

I too agree with the other posters about removing the lateral adjuster. Rob Cosman suggest doing this on his hand plane revival dvd so I did it for a couple of my planes. Its a pain to get them off and an even bigger pain to get them back on. I also snapped the top off of one of my frogs trying to hammer one of them out… I now just lap around it… Its not so important that every bit of the frog is flat so just do your best on the top part.

-- Dan - "Collector of Hand Planes"

View Bertha's profile


12989 posts in 2117 days

#6 posted 04-12-2011 10:58 PM

I’ve definitely broken wishbones in my early days. Also, don’t go crazy lapping a frog. Unlike a plane back, it doesn’t have to be mirror finished. If you lap it skewed, you’ll wish you left it alone. Pick a way to ruin a plane and I’ve probably done it.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View xraydav's profile


217 posts in 1394 days

#7 posted 04-30-2013 12:13 PM

Funny how the more you know about planes, the harder it is to keep us happy. Then the more work it becomes to sharpen and tune and keep them sharp and tuned. Then you reach a stage where ascetics become important.. so you strip and re-coat totes and handles… Then a paint burn or small scratch in the iron starts to annoy you and before you know it, a plane is a project. My grandfather was a wheel wright in Milano Italy for Fiat before moving to the US and becoming a home builder. (He made wooden wheels for Fiat carriages) I worked with him for many years and never saw him do more than sharpen a blade on a wet stone and wipe the tool with an oil rag. I have a set of Baileys and a set of Bedrocks. I have the Bedrocks all bottom lapped, frog lapped, chipper lapped, and tuned. I have bought all of them used and never cease to be amazed at how sharp an angle many old timers have ground their blades to over the years.. So when i get a plane I figure an hour to redo the blade, by the time its ground to 35-40 degrees and straight, honed on my DMTs down to very fine, and lapped on strop. Then its an hour to clean out the gunk, wire wheel the screws and hardware, lap the sole, lap the sides, clean and re-coat the Japanning. Another hour to oil it, re-assemble it and play with it for a while. So now I look at my 8 Baileys as a weeks work when they have been been working fine for years! We tend to get a little fanatic about our planes.. leave the Lateral adjuster alone. Take your next piece of hardwood scrap that has been planed flatt 8-10”x3”-4” is fine. Cut a 1/2 dado into the center from one end to within 3-4” inches from the other end depending on the size of your planes. Spray glue a piece of 150 to it and cut out the dado and it will last you for several frog honing sessions. As you slide your frog into and out, move from side to side as you go to lap the entire surface and your frog will be ready for action in no time. Oh and please make sure you have a good blade. Hock reminds us that a plane is just a holder for a blade… You do not need a Hock blade ($45) for a scrub plane or if your thinning off the bottoms of doors.. but if you do any jointer planing or smoothing on hardwood consider spending the bucks. Your favorite block plane the one you use for final fit is a candidate too. Wood River is a cheaper alternative and very good quality as well. I recently re-surfaced a maple cutting table top with my 606 Bedrock which has a Stanley New Britain CT blade and when I was done I was thinking how well it cut.. don’t under estimate an older Stanley blade either if its sharp.
———Furniture builder and lover of planes——-

-- David, Norwood Mass,

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