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Forum topic by richardwootton posted 581 days ago 1190 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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richardwootton

1156 posts in 582 days


581 days ago

Why in the world are the Stanley Bedrock planes so much more expensive than a Stanley Bailey, Millers Falls, or something of comparable quality around the same era?

-- Richard, Hot Springs, Ar -- Galoot In Training


19 replies so far

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

9770 posts in 1246 days


#1 posted 581 days ago

Collectors. No performance-driven reason at all…

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

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blackcherry

3156 posts in 2450 days


#2 posted 581 days ago

These plane have a better frog assembly and the casting were heaver than the Stanley Bailey. Also the frog had better adjustments to square up the frog from lighter to heaver shavings. The Lie Nielsen planes are model after these bedrock models….BC

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DocBailey

382 posts in 987 days


#3 posted 581 days ago

There are facts which help explain the price differential:
1) they were made in smaller numbers, priced higher, and not made for as many years;
2) the machined surface on both frog and main casting is much larger and more accurately machined than that on the standard plane. Furthermore, on the later models, the frog can be adjusted fore and aft (thereby varying the mouth opening) without removing the blade, chipbreaker and lever cap.
3) Collectors desire them, and given reason 1 (above) help drive the price up.

There is much debate on the topic of whether or not the performance differential is real. I doubt it. But, consider that the LN plane is a copy of the Bedrock pattern, not the Stanley/Bailey pattern.

edit: apologies to blackcherry as I see he has already made some of these points

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paratrooper34

760 posts in 1579 days


#4 posted 581 days ago

Bedrocks are not as plentiful as the regular models. They are “superior” to the regular models (personally, I find they work no better). Because of those two reasons, the collectors and discriminating users have driven up the values.

I own one Bedrock and have used LN models (as stated above, they are modeled after the Bedrocks). I think a properly tuned regular old Bailey style plane works just as good as a Bedrock. I’ve read in some articles in which the author claimed the same. If you are looking for a Bedrock because you want better performance, I think you will be disappointed. Of course, if you are into collecting and such, they will hold their value nicely.

Edit – Doc: seems we were posting at the same time.

-- Mike

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ShaneA

5286 posts in 1225 days


#5 posted 581 days ago

I think the high points and facts have been offered already here. I will just throw it out there…they are friggin’ cool. Plus, when I began “collecting”/amassing planes as a noobie, I found them easier to set up. The adjustment factor without removing the blade is nice. I just like them, there I said it. lol

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richardwootton

1156 posts in 582 days


#6 posted 581 days ago

Shane, the reason you just mentioned would be my main driving force behind getting a bedrock, as much as I hate to admit it. The same goes for a vintage Stanley Sweetheart. I’m a sucker for cool.

-- Richard, Hot Springs, Ar -- Galoot In Training

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ShaneA

5286 posts in 1225 days


#7 posted 581 days ago

You aren’t the only one out there. Not only do I like the Bedrocks, I am a bit of a SW fan too…we are not alone in these things, unfortunately.

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Smitty_Cabinetshop

9770 posts in 1246 days


#8 posted 581 days ago

Wow, facts that getting all bolded up there… Didn’t mean to offend anyone. It’s funny, though, that rarity was added as a fact and I didn’t take issue with rarity. I could, though, because rare doesn’t mean collectible. Collectors determine collectibility, not rarity.

I have to say there weren’t performance differences identified above, either. Bedrocks still smooth, jack, fore and joint just like plain ole Stanley Bailey tools. Frog adjustment is slick, I agree, but frogs aren’t adjusted with any frequency, as are depth or laterals. Earlier S-B planes lack lateral adjusters and are collectible nonetheless. People collect Bedrocks for perceived improvements to performance and because they’re cool! Nothing wrong with that! But it’s not a performance thing. Frog beds to plane, iron beds to frog. Iron cuts wood at the same angle of attack with either type.

This kind of debate is as old as the Bedrock style itself, though. Kind of like nibs on “premium” saws. Yeah, I went there. :-)

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

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DocBailey

382 posts in 987 days


#9 posted 581 days ago

Smitty
Why would you assume that my post was a shot at you.
It only says “facts” to distinguish this post from those where I offer my opinion.
Moreover, I listed rarity because I was responding to the OP—he asked why they were so much more expensive – and that fact is one of the reasons.

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Smitty_Cabinetshop

9770 posts in 1246 days


#10 posted 581 days ago

fair enough! No harm, no foul, thanks Doc. Glad we’re cool!

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

View DocBailey's profile

DocBailey

382 posts in 987 days


#11 posted 581 days ago

Smitty,

I too, am glad we’re cool.

Doc

View Francisco Luna's profile

Francisco Luna

936 posts in 2021 days


#12 posted 581 days ago

its all about galoots glamour. in my opinion, the most inefective blade position (45 degrees).

-- Nature is my manifestation of God. I go to nature every day for inspiration in the day's work. I follow in building the principles which nature has used in its domain" Frank Lloyd Wright

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Arminius

304 posts in 2431 days


#13 posted 581 days ago

They are easier to adjust (like the L-Ns), but I think it is really all scarcity. The ratio of standard Bailey #4s made versus Bedrock #4’s must be pretty high. But as pure users, I think the difference is marginal enough that good tuning makes a big difference. Personally, I like the Type 11s.

View Don W's profile

Don W

14845 posts in 1195 days


#14 posted 581 days ago

Although I agree a Stanley can perform just as well, I disagree with this or something of comparable quality around the same era?

Go ahead and find a Sargent #14, or a Sargent #710, or even a Keen Kutter bedrock style for a lot less than a bedrock.

The question can then go on to why the flat sides are so much more than the round sides, even though the round sided bedrocks are older and even more rare.

Its a little about supply and demand and a lot about perception. I use my flat side bedrocks more. Not because they are better, I just think they look cool.

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

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DocBailey

382 posts in 987 days


#15 posted 580 days ago

Don,
I’m partial to the older round-sided Bedrocks—in part because of the lever cap logos.
I suspect the answer to the question of why the later models fetch a premium over the earlier models is due to the presence of the external adjustablility feature introduced at the time the shoulders are flattened.

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