Restoring Stanley 45's & 55's

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Forum topic by Clement posted 08-09-2009 03:31 AM 1617 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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21 posts in 2644 days

08-09-2009 03:31 AM

I was just gathering all of my Stanley planes and parts for cleanup. Some are completely coated with Dirt, corrosion, and rust. I have just turned all of the bars in my drill press chuck. and with sand paper, emery paper, and Scotch bright, have them looking almost new. There are about a dozen bodies, both right sides and left sides, that needs a good wire brushing. I still have quite of bit japanning left, so I am reluctant of going after them with a wire wheel. Any ideas out there in Stanley land?

Thanks A lot,


-- Clement, from Longview in East Texas

2 replies so far

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5300 posts in 3133 days

#1 posted 05-06-2010 07:03 AM

There are a number of posts here about restoring hand planes, check out the search tool in the top right corner.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View rwyoung's profile


385 posts in 2893 days

#2 posted 05-06-2010 05:43 PM

Lots of restoration posts at Sawmill Creek and Woodnet.

If the japanning is sound (I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a Japan Black ‘45 or ‘55, most were nickel plated?) or the plating is sound then electrolysis is a good option. Baring that a soak in citric acid or good ole’ vinegar and a vigorous brush with a stiff nylon brush if a wire brush makes you too nervous will get lots of the gunk off. Likewise, Evaporust is widely recommended.

Remove the knob before soaking and if you can remove the pads on the handle, do so before soaking. Otherwise suspend it so they are out of the solution. The rosewood can be cleaned up with some lacquer thinner and a light sanding. Oil and wax makes for a more comfortable handle finish in my opinion. Otherwise re-lacquer (but I think it feels to plastic).

Edit: Just noticed the thread origin was nearly a year old. I’m assuming he has addressed the problem by now.

-- Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things.

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