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Stanley Block plane

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Forum topic by planeBill posted 800 days ago 4435 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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planeBill

467 posts in 1006 days


800 days ago

Concerning only Stanley block planes, either standard or low angle, what are your choices and why? Lets exclude collectors value and rarity and concentrate soley on quality of materials, ergonomics, durability, user friendliness, availability and reasons like those. If you were going shopping for a few good, working stanley block planes, which ones would you specifically seek out?

-- I was born at a very young age, as I grew up, I got older.


22 replies so far

View KenBry's profile

KenBry

449 posts in 1044 days


#1 posted 800 days ago

None, i would avoid,stanley. Veratis or lie nielsen is where i would spend.

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

View TrBlu's profile

TrBlu

358 posts in 1222 days


#2 posted 800 days ago

I love vintage Stanley planes. But, I would not have anything they are making today.

If buying new planes, I agree with Ken. Veratas or Lie Nielsen is the way to go.

If you don’t mind a little work to rehab, watch for some older Stanley/Bailey planes. My suggestions for a good start are: #7 or #8 joiner, #5 jack, #202 or #220 block plane

-- The more I work with wood the more I recognize only God can make something as beautiful as a tree. I hope my humble attempts at this craft do justice by His masterpiece. -- Tim

View Don W's profile

Don W

14606 posts in 1164 days


#3 posted 800 days ago

My favorite block plane is a Sargent 5206. Next in line would be a Stanley 60 1/2 for a low angle. For a regular block, I like the #18.

I don’t know for sure why I like the Sargent best, Maybe subliminally because it looks different. I want a Stanley (or better yet an Ohio Tools) #65 but won’t pay the prices I’ve seen so far.

As for low angle versus normal, I think you should have both. A low angle works end grain better and does a good job on edges, but the #18 excels on the edge work. Even a well tuned #110 or 220 is a good plane and can be had for under $20.

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

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

9574 posts in 1215 days


#4 posted 800 days ago

I second Don’s reco of the Stanley #18 block – it fits the hand, is nice and heavy, and has the depth as well as lateral adjusters needed to make it a good plane. Lots to be had, too, and anything through the 1950s in vintage will be fine. It’ll last several lifetimes.

If there’s any way possible for you to get your hands on the Stanley blocks to test drive, do it. There are (were) dozens in the Stanley line at one time, each slightly wider or longer then the others. And that makes choosing one a very personal thing. The knuckle caps are what I like best, you may like something else entirely. And if you’ve got the time, you can learn about what’s out there via Patrick Leach’s Blood and Gore site.

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

View dhazelton's profile

dhazelton

1155 posts in 893 days


#5 posted 800 days ago

I have a little Stanley block plane from the 80s (paper label). It cuts end grain fine and joints very smoothly. Good for softening over edges as well. You won’t be planing a door down with it though…. I’d look for one at a yard sale for five bucks or so.

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

6640 posts in 1280 days


#6 posted 800 days ago

i still have my first block plane, a Stanley #110

and just recently got a Stanley 9-1/2 block plane….

I have used the little 110 for just about everything, for a long time, it WAS my only “real” plane. I still reach for it, from time to time.

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

9574 posts in 1215 days


#7 posted 800 days ago

That #9 1/2 is a nice little plane, Bandit. Decent length, adjustable mouth, lateral, etc. Nice pickup, indeed.

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

View planeBill's profile

planeBill

467 posts in 1006 days


#8 posted 800 days ago

Thanks for the replies fellers. Yes, I would/will/do avoid the NEW stanley planes too. But, and I should have made this implicitly clear, I was referencing the older Stanley block planes. I have a 60 1/2 SW that I love but the mouth has developed a crack. I still use her though. I am looking to get another user and was wondering which were peoples favorites and why. I like the 9 1/2.
Any others?

-- I was born at a very young age, as I grew up, I got older.

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1290 days


#9 posted 800 days ago

Planebill, if you like the 60 1/2, you’ll probably like the 65 or 65 1/2. You’ve probably developed a liking for the low angles and the 60 1/2 is a very desirable one. For the standard angle ones, my favorite is probably the knuckle 18 or even the lowly 220. The 9 1/2 is a nice choice, too. Heck, they’re all nice!

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

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

6640 posts in 1280 days


#10 posted 800 days ago

For a totally weird, screamer of a block plane, with a long name, and a different sized iron:

The Death Star plane!

Made by Miller Falls, under the Mohawk-Shelburne brand name…..

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

2439 posts in 948 days


#11 posted 800 days ago

I love my 60 1/2 that I bought new in the early 70’s and still use on nearly every project. I decided it was such a faithful and useful plane I treated it to a Hock iron last year.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View dhazelton's profile

dhazelton

1155 posts in 893 days


#12 posted 800 days ago

I have a Millers Falls, as well. It has that funny lever under the front knob, and a long arm in the rear. I can’t understand what either is for, other than a different sort of selling point. Can someone clue me in?

View planeBill's profile

planeBill

467 posts in 1006 days


#13 posted 800 days ago

Don. that Sargent is indeed a nice looking plane, great save on that thing. It looks great and looks like it performs the same.
Al, you’re the second to give a nod to the 18 so I’ll check around for one. I do like the 60 series planes though, and the 220. The 9 1/2 is a nice looking one too…..damn, here I go again.
Uh, dhazelton, are you talking about the adjustment knob and lever for the throat??
And, I know about the quality and everything of the Veritas and LN planes (well, I’ve heard about the LN stuff, I’ll never be able to afford one) but you know, I don’t know why everyone HAS to have them for them to think they have a good block plane. I mean, our fathers and grandfathers made all kinds of nice stuff with stanley and millers falls and whatever else was out there before the LV and LN’s came along didn’t they? Some of them may indeed be junk, especially the newer stuff but for an everyday beater I think they work just fine. At least that has been my experience.
I am going to buy a low angle veritas for school but thats because that is what is on the tool list (also because I always want some new “good” tools but you can bet I am taking my stanleys too because I am real comfortable using them.

-- I was born at a very young age, as I grew up, I got older.

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

6640 posts in 1280 days


#14 posted 800 days ago

If you loosen that brass knob in front, the lever underneath it will open, or close up the mouth. The long arm on the rear is the Lateral adjustor.

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View dhazelton's profile

dhazelton

1155 posts in 893 days


#15 posted 799 days ago

Thx bandit.

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