Odd holes in base of Stanley No. 3 plane?

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Forum topic by Brett posted 03-02-2012 07:49 PM 1873 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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660 posts in 2707 days

03-02-2012 07:49 PM

There is a Stanley No. 3 plane being sold on eBay (not by me) that appears to have two small, rectangular holes in the base, right behind the throat:$(KGrHqF,!hsE8T5+cqr(BPS5,6,L-!~~60_57.JPG

Anybody have any idea why? Was the sold just worn (or ground) down so much that the holes were exposed?

-- More tools, fewer machines.

12 replies so far

View willie's profile


534 posts in 2479 days

#1 posted 03-02-2012 07:58 PM

It looks like that may have had a corrugated sole originally and has just been worn or ground down to expose those slots. I have never seen one worn so bad and can’t imagine how it got that way!

-- Every day above ground is a good day!!!

View chrisstef's profile


17424 posts in 3031 days

#2 posted 03-02-2012 08:01 PM

it almost looks like the “teeth” of the frog are poking through the sole. Someone might have ground down the sole b/c it sure looks like it was at one time corrugated.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View Loren's profile


10476 posts in 3672 days

#3 posted 03-02-2012 08:20 PM

Some loon ground the sole.

View Brandon's profile


4152 posts in 2976 days

#4 posted 03-02-2012 08:20 PM

Yup, stay away from that one!

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3140 days

#5 posted 03-02-2012 08:33 PM

and the seller call it a stanley plane in good condition ….. ha ha so sad it has to be loughed at


View David Kirtley's profile

David Kirtley

1286 posts in 3023 days

#6 posted 03-02-2012 10:56 PM

That is an interesting plane. I believe that is an early Type 1 Frankenplane. The repair (actually pretty well done) on the cheek where the plane was broken and welded together is interesting. Looks like it was totally broken off. It doesn’t look like any part is original except for the ground down sole. I wonder if you can read through the sole with all that metal taken off? I guess someone had an inferiority complex for having a corrugated sole?

The knob is way too big, the tote apparently has been chopped down to fit, I don’t know how they got that much “patina” on a modern replacement iron.

If this was done by the user, they were really desperate to have a plane. I suspect it is more the creation of someone trying to use up their spare parts.

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune:

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4948 posts in 3985 days

#7 posted 03-02-2012 10:58 PM



View rkober's profile


137 posts in 2317 days

#8 posted 03-02-2012 11:05 PM

Type 1 Frankenplane – that’s good David. That does look like a mess.

-- Ray - Spokane, WA - “Most people don’t recognize opportunity because it’s usually disguised as hard work.” - Unknown

View drfunk's profile


223 posts in 2701 days

#9 posted 03-02-2012 11:14 PM

I don’t know guys. If the sole was ground down that much, the bolt holes for the frog are the most likely to show up first. Also, wouldn’t the mouth be a heck of a lot bigger? It’s almost inconcieveable someone could lap a sole that much. You’d have to use a mill – and you’d think even just by removing the corrugations it still wouldn’t leave the casting that thin. Something very strange is going on here – my guess is somebody welded together at least two different planes.

View David Kirtley's profile

David Kirtley

1286 posts in 3023 days

#10 posted 03-02-2012 11:20 PM


Well, maybe with all these people promoting lapping plane soles, someone really took it to heart ;)

That is the two little wells where the tips of the frog drop down by the mouth. A bit deeper and the screw holes would have come out too.

After thinking about it a bit, I bet what happened was that they welded it back together and it warped. It was then ground back down to take the warp out of it. (And there wasn’t quite enough metal to support that happening)

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune:

View Kenny 's profile


260 posts in 2473 days

#11 posted 03-02-2012 11:20 PM

That must have taken some serious time and effort to lap those corrugations out! Good grief.

For the seller to state that this piece of absolute crap is in “good shape” is just totally disgusting. If we take anything from this, let it be a lesson to never trust a seller on ebay to be educated of or accurately describe what they are listing, especially if it is a seller who you have not dealt with or is listing few tools and a bunch of other antiques. (likely an antique dealer with zero tool knowledge)

Just another reminder for “Buyer Beware”!

-- Kenny

View lwllms's profile


555 posts in 3306 days

#12 posted 03-03-2012 12:47 AM

It’s been broken and brazed, you can see it at each side around the mouth area. Who ever did it didn’t get it aligned properly and tried to fix it by grinding. I might consider buying it for the value of the lever cap and wooden parts, if I needed them, but it’d have to be real low priced.

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