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My first Bailey

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Forum topic by Kickback posted 875 days ago 1400 views 0 times favorited 33 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Kickback

127 posts in 1261 days


875 days ago

Well after having read many postings on hand planes and really wanting to own at least one I finally scored a Stanley Bailey #5. I found it on Craigslist and bought it for $20 + shipping. It seems to be a nice plane but I know nothing about hand planes at this point. The inner body seems to have a dark blue tint or paint. The blade needs to be worked on as the edge is not really what I would call usable. I noticed that the blade was mounted bevel down and was wondering if that is the normal way to have this plane configured? It seems like that is the only way it will work so I assume that it is correct. The bed seems in pretty good shape there is some very minor microscopic pitting but it is smooth and flat. The lateral adjustment lever seems to not be right? It hits the top of the rear handle when you move it side to side to adjust the blade in the mouth. I don’t know how to set the plane up so if anyone would be willing to give me some initial steps to get it set right i would greatly appreciate the advice. I plan to clean it up and polish it up and then use it. I have a Tormek sharpener so I will fix the blade up real nice so that it cuts like butter. I can’t wait to start using it.

-- "I work so I can fish"!


33 replies so far

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Brandon

4138 posts in 1577 days


#1 posted 875 days ago

It looks like you have a later model Bailey (post ww2) with an early 20th century lever cap (I prefer the key hole lever caps to the later kidney shaped ones). Yes, Bevel down is the way to go. I think DonW has some good posts on the clean up process. Yours doesn’t look bad at all, so it should be pretty easy to clean up. Just get that blade sharpened and you’ll see some nice shaving emerge. Best of luck with it and welcome to the slippery slope.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

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DocBailey

382 posts in 986 days


#2 posted 875 days ago

Not at all sure (due to photo angles) that you have a Stanley Bailey. The Blade marked “Made in USA” and especially the inverted “U” lateral lever both point to a lesser line (Handyman, Victor or Defiance). One other indicator is the stained hardwood (rather than rosewood) handles.
Some better shots of the frog (with blade, chipbreaker and lever cap removed) and of casting (fore and aft of front knob) would be helpful.

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Brandon

4138 posts in 1577 days


#3 posted 875 days ago

This is definitely a Bailey—1) you can see “Bailey” in the sole. 2) post ww2 models moved away from the rosewood totes and knobs. 3) the lateral adjuster style changed to what you see here. 4) the japanning changed from black to burgundy or navy.

The iron might not be original, and the lever cap isn’t original to this plane, but it’s definitely a late model Stanley Bailey.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

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DocBailey

382 posts in 986 days


#4 posted 875 days ago

Brandon
I’m afraid you’re mixing apples and oranges (and maybe lemons!)
Navy japanning dates to the late 60s, Burgundy even later.
That style lateral adjustment lever would not have been present on a WWII style Stanley/Bailey plane.

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ShaneA

5285 posts in 1224 days


#5 posted 875 days ago

I agree w/ Brandon. The lever cap and iron are just not original. it has a little frankenplane to it.

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Brandon

4138 posts in 1577 days


#6 posted 875 days ago

DB, you’re right that that style lateral adjuster wouldn’t be present on a war time plane. I said this is a post ww2 plane. I have a burgundy bailey #4 that has the same adjuster along with the same tote and knob.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

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Smitty_Cabinetshop

9762 posts in 1244 days


#7 posted 875 days ago

Second (third?) the notion of a 60s-era Bailey, paired with a mongrel cap and iron. Likely no frog adjustment screw (none on my burgundy smoother, either. :-). ), but a very workable, Made in USA plane. Lots of material out there on fettling (adjusting) planes; I might add that flatting the sole of a jack isn’t critical so you might want to bypass that part at first. Good luck!

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

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Deycart

380 posts in 884 days


#8 posted 875 days ago

I would agree with BrandonW and ShaneA. It looks to be a latter model bailey 60’s or so because of the blue japanning and some mishmash of lever cap and iron. All told looks very usable! I would also skip on the flattening on the sole as long as the toe”front” heel”back” and front of the throat “front of hole with the blade is” is co-planer. If all those spots line up on a flat edge its good to go don’t worry about the minor spots between.

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DocBailey

382 posts in 986 days


#9 posted 875 days ago

Brandon -
Yes you did indeed specify that—I had to re-read your post – makes sense to me now.
Despite having literally hundreds of planes (yeah, I have a problem) I’m so used to dealing in Type 19s (1948-61) at the latest, that I am out of my element with these “newer” planes.

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Brandon

4138 posts in 1577 days


#10 posted 875 days ago

DB, I know what you mean—it doesn’t look like the typical vintage Baileys that we’re used to seeing, and if I hadn’t owned a late model myself, I wouldn’t have recognized it.

Still, it’s a nice solid plane and my late model #4 has been tuned up nicely and will make some smooth shavings.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

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Don W

14834 posts in 1194 days


#11 posted 875 days ago

it certainly looks to be parted together. I agree several parts are not original. It will make a great user though. Sharpen it up and let’s see some shavings. Careful, the slope gets slippery from here. Planes are like potato chips, ones to many and a hundred ain’t enough.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

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bondogaposis

2480 posts in 977 days


#12 posted 875 days ago

I bet you can’t have just one.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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RGtools

3302 posts in 1281 days


#13 posted 875 days ago

As far as set up is concerned. Adjust the mouth first. Jacks usually are set up to take a heavier cut than most planes so you will want the mouth wide but not so much that the lateral adjuster is hitting the tote. When you sharpen it try to put a healthy curve in the iron…this will make the plane be able to take the meaty shaving (about the thickness of a dime) without the corners digging in.

The rest of setting up a jack is pretty simple.

Here is a good video that explains some of the user points. But there are several out there that say things differently (Including my class)

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

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Don W

14834 posts in 1194 days


#14 posted 875 days ago

I have several #5’s. The #5 is considered a jack plane, but to use it as such you want to add a camber to the blade (if it doesn’t already have one) and open the mouth like RG suggested.

It can also be tuned as a smoother. In that case you want no camber (or ever so slight of one) and a tight mouth.

And RG’s classes are top notch, so they are highly recommended if you want to learn a few things about hand tool use.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

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Kickback

127 posts in 1261 days


#15 posted 867 days ago

I went through some of RG’s class posts mainly the plane classes but still don’t find any in depth advice on how to setup the plane and adjust it. Specifically several of you have mentioned the size of the mouth how do you adjust the planes mouth size? I also read something about adjusting the the frog? I am going to sharpen the blade tomorrow and i use a Tormek Sharpener which sharpens chisels and planes square and true without any camber. I don’t really intend to use the plane for hogging huge amounts of material off anything. I mainly would want to use it for general truing and smoothing so would sharpening it straight and true be fine? And if so what I read leads me to believe that if i want to use it in this fashion then i want the mouth to be quite narrow. So we are back to the sizing of the mouth. Any advice will be very much appreciated. I will also take some pics of the disassembled plane so you can all see the parts up clse and personal. I know some of you said that it didn’t have the original parts but when I looked at closely again they all have similar numbers stamped in the individual parts. So this would lead me to believe that it “might” be all original not that it matters at all to me as it doesn’t.

-- "I work so I can fish"!

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