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The Stanley "Two-Tone" Line, Planes and Other Tools

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Forum topic by poopiekat posted 02-02-2015 04:17 PM 3404 views 1 time favorited 31 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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poopiekat

4224 posts in 3194 days


02-02-2015 04:17 PM

Topic tags/keywords: stanley two tone planes tools resource

Lest we forget, in our research in all the different ‘Types’ of handplanes, and the as-yet to be agreed upon Type 21 and Type 22 planes, there’s more work to do.

The Stanley “Two Tone” line was a series that ran concurrent with other types from the ‘50s to 60’s and possibly as late as the 1970s. They were somewhat similar to the standard Stanley planes, but with cheaper features and marketed in department stores and other non-traditional retailers.

I don’t know a lot about this line of planes, and indeed there are other Stanley tools manufactured with the “Two Tone” name, such as bit braces, chisels and screwdrivers. Did the bizarre color schemes make them more attractive to John Q Homeowner? I’ve noticed that none have any logo cast into the lever cap, but all of them have “TWO TONE” ‘by Stanley’ ..stamped on the cutter. Discuss!

I’d like for this thread to be a place to post your own pics of Stanley Two-Tone tools literature and other information.

I’ll see what, if any Two Tone planes reside in my collection. With apologies to the eBay vendors who have a current listing for Two-Tone tools, I’ve borrowed some photos.

Here’s the one-and-only Two-Tone from my collection, an all USA #4 with gray sole and royal blue chipper:

All relevant comments are welcome!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!


31 replies so far

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poopiekat

4224 posts in 3194 days


#1 posted 02-02-2015 05:04 PM

some more images of Two Tone planes. Looks like Google already scraped the images I borrowed from eBay above, so I don’t feel guilty now.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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Loren

8295 posts in 3108 days


#2 posted 02-02-2015 05:17 PM

What words are on the sole casting?

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poopiekat

4224 posts in 3194 days


#3 posted 02-02-2015 05:44 PM

Loren, Thanks for asking!
On my #4-sized Two Tone: The sole has only the words “Made In USA” raised, behind the front knob.
The back of the lever cap has “C 116” incised into the casting.
Also, the frog is cast iron. So is the yoke, a one piece casting. The cutter, in addition to the ‘Two Tone’ by Stanley, it also says ‘Made in USA’ Single 90-degree twist on the lat lever, with an applied washer that engages the cutter.
Otherwise, a pretty generic example of a late-model Stanley plane.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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Smitty_Cabinetshop

13712 posts in 2078 days


#4 posted 02-02-2015 06:55 PM

Never seen these before!

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

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bandit571

14536 posts in 2143 days


#5 posted 02-02-2015 07:08 PM

Bertha HATES a Tu-Tone plane…..

Had one go through the shop awhile back…..meh. Along with a couple Victors. Trying to stay clear of them Handyman thingys, too.

After all, I do have a “style” to collect right now

Says the guy with a West German Dunlap ( York pitch), a Corsair C-5 Scrubber Jack, and a Parplus 13” long Jack plane.

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

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poopiekat

4224 posts in 3194 days


#6 posted 02-02-2015 07:15 PM

@Smitty: Kinda makes one wonder how Roger K Smith managed to bring PTAMPIA to its final conclusion!!!

those Two-Tones walk among us, sir!

Bandit: Ya gotta admit, the Two Tones are definitely a step above the Handymans…’cept for the scraper-thin cutters!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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Smitty_Cabinetshop

13712 posts in 2078 days


#7 posted 02-02-2015 07:50 PM

Poor ole’ Handymans get no respect at all. The Rodney Dangerfield of hand tools…

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

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Don W

17955 posts in 2027 days


#8 posted 02-02-2015 11:43 PM

I think I have a t tone block hanging in the shop.

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

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upchuck

540 posts in 1125 days


#9 posted 02-03-2015 04:04 AM

poopiekat-

Got any comments about the blade quality of the Two-Tone compared to a Stanley/Bailey?

chuck

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poopiekat

4224 posts in 3194 days


#10 posted 02-03-2015 05:44 AM

I’m no authority, but I think we can conclude that Stanley resorted to the ‘shotgun’ approach, to make a plane for every price point, and target every customer. Marketing being what it is, Stanley flooded every strata of retail so that every potential buyer, from the seasoned woodworker to Aunt Tillie buying a gewgah for Grampa’s birthday.

How else can we explain cheep planes at S.S. Kresge’s, and S&H redemption centers as well? What other way could Stanley exert its dominance in the ever-broadening sector of plane buyers? The do-it-yourself craze among homeowners post-WWII? This has to account for the “Handyman line, The Two-tones, Victors, Four-Squares as well as those Heinz 57 blue-gray mutant mongrels. Stanley had a better strategy, which is why they survived when everybody else threw in the towel.

Now, it’s up to us to reverse-engineer the sequence of all these various iterations. If only somebody had an inside track, with production figures and model history, wowww that would be cool!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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CFrye

8732 posts in 1300 days


#11 posted 02-03-2015 03:20 PM

I have a few of these. Following along, PK.

-- God bless, Candy

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poopiekat

4224 posts in 3194 days


#12 posted 02-03-2015 06:01 PM

Thanks for responding, Candy! Any insights you can provide will be of great value. I am certain that nobody is trying to pull “Two-Tone” info together into a coherent chronological study, and it’s high time somebody undertook the task.

I regret now, passing over so many Two-Tones at yard sales and flea markets, just mentally lumping them together with the infamous Handymans. I’m really intrigued now, and covet all Two-Tones, Cordovans and other late model planes, er at least the types I don’t already have a boatload of. For no worthwhile reason, I now want a mint set of both the Two Tones AND Cordovans.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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MikeUT

123 posts in 819 days


#13 posted 02-03-2015 07:22 PM

Do these Two-Tone planes follow some sort of numbering system? I have a clunky little block plane that was included in a lot of nicer planes in an auction a few months ago. I haven’t done anything with it, I haven’t even taken a photo which is usually the first thing I do when I get a new old tool. It looks like a No 102 clone but the only markings it has are ‘C2’ and ‘Made in the USA.’ It is painted gray with a little black wood knob. I guess that doesn’t really count as two-tone but your response to Loren above with the ‘Made in the USA’ and Cxxx reminded me about this little guy. Do you think it is in the same series or would you consider it separate?

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ksSlim

1204 posts in 2350 days


#14 posted 02-03-2015 07:52 PM

These planes were produced as an advertising gimmick for the National Hardware Conventions in 1940/41 and again in 1950/51.
They are basic bench and block planes with a bright colour finish. Many different colour combinations are recorded. Cutters are marked Stanley Two-Tone. I guess somebody collects them but none of the OH collectors seem to be on my customer list! These planes are hard to sell, even pristine examples will hardly bring as much as a normal plane – maybe because they look like somebody randomly painted an otherwise perfectly good plane! Model numbers with pre-fix OH were 4, 5 and 20

Hans Brunner tools

-- Sawdust and shavings are therapeutic

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Don W

17955 posts in 2027 days


#15 posted 02-03-2015 09:03 PM

Two-tone, the 1940/41 have Stanley “Two Tone – Made in USA” on the cutter, The 1950-51 planes have “Two Tone by Stanley” in script.

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

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