' the devil is Stanley Sweetheart??

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Forum topic by Benvolio posted 02-11-2013 08:48 AM 2161 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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135 posts in 675 days

02-11-2013 08:48 AM

Hello, everyone

long time lurker, first time poster.

I’ve been stocking up on some vintage stanley tools lately for restoration and I’ve come acros the term Sweetheart many incongruent times.

Can anyone enlighten me to what this brand is or was??



-- Ben, England.

10 replies so far

View Richard's profile


400 posts in 1435 days

#1 posted 02-11-2013 08:58 AM

“Sweetheart” is a logo used in the past and reintroduced recently by Stanley. A heart shape with the letters “SW” inside. The “SW” stands for The Stanley Works; the heart-shape is a memorial to The Stanley Works long-time president, William Hart.


-- "It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

View Sandra's profile


4982 posts in 819 days

#2 posted 02-11-2013 11:19 AM

Thanks Richard, I learned something today already!

-- No, I don't want to buy the pink hammer.

View chrisstef's profile


11446 posts in 1750 days

#3 posted 02-11-2013 01:12 PM

I also didnt know that. Nice knowledge drop Richard.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View Benvolio's profile


135 posts in 675 days

#4 posted 02-11-2013 01:35 PM

cool. Thanks for filling us all in, Richard.


-- Ben, England.

View sikrap's profile


1062 posts in 2103 days

#5 posted 02-11-2013 01:58 PM

Richard is correct and the Sweetheart tools seem to be thought of more highly, especially planes and chisels. I’ve had several people tell me that the SW plane irons hold an edge better. Why? I don’t know. I can tell you that Sweetheart tools bring higher prices.

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

View Loren's profile


7821 posts in 2392 days

#6 posted 02-11-2013 02:05 PM

I am not sure when Stanley started using chrome vanadium
steel, but I do not think he sweetheart irons are made
of this steel. While chrome vanadium resists corrosion
and is easy to sharpen (which appeals to the occasional
and non-professional users), it doesn’t hold an edge the
way high carbon steel does.

If you find a Sweetheart era plane (they made them
for a couple of decades I think) you’ve found
a plane in the “sweet spot” of Stanley history
when the bugs had been worked out of the
designs and quality was as good as Stanley ever
had. After the Sweetheart era Stanley eventually
started cutting corners and most of the cooler
specialized planes were phased out for good.


View Benvolio's profile


135 posts in 675 days

#7 posted 02-11-2013 03:43 PM

Loren, so if I wanted to buy the current low angle jack that they’re branding as sweetheart, would I expect that sweet spot plane lovin or will be be a modern cut corner plane pretending to be better than it is??



-- Ben, England.

View LukieB's profile


942 posts in 1074 days

#8 posted 02-11-2013 04:02 PM

All sweethearts are terrible, don’t buy any of them….especially the vintage ones

Sorry my sarcasm doesn’t translate well. I love this era of Stanley tools, quality stuff.

As far as that new low angle jack 62, it’s gotten some pretty good reviews, but not nearly as cool as a vintage one…in my opinion.

-- Lucas, "Someday woodworks will be my real job, until then, there's this"

View Loren's profile


7821 posts in 2392 days

#9 posted 02-11-2013 04:50 PM

Oh – the new “sweetheart” stuff is probably pretty good. If
the irons are chrome vanadium steel they won’t be so great
but you can get carbon steel ones from other manufacturers.

The point I was trying to make is that if you’re looking at
a row of vintage bench planes and they are all the same
price, the sweethearts in there will probably be good
choices. They’re kind of fun to collect I guess… they are
pretty common so you’ll run across them often.

The original sweetheart logo in no way indicated it was
a premium plane. All the Stanley planes of that era
had the logo on the irons.


View Don W's profile

Don W

15516 posts in 1311 days

#10 posted 02-11-2013 09:34 PM

The sweetheart logo is actually in honor of a long time Stanley president William Hart.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

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