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Thread: Handplane Restoration Stanley #5C Sweetheart -Finished-

  1. #1
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    Handplane Restoration Stanley #5C Sweetheart -Finished-

    OK, you know the lateral adjuster on the frog of a Stanley-Bailey plane, well I want to lap the frog where the blade lays against it, but the little round knob on the lateral adjuster is in the way, of course, as it fits into the hole in the blade. The lateral adjuster is held in place by a pin that is peened over on both sides. Should I just file off one side and tap it out, then replace the pin, or.....

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    The item I'm pointing to in the diagram.

    This is on the Stanley-Bailey #5C that I got a while back.

    Cheers!
    Last edited by Stuart Ablett; 11-16-2009 at 10:51 AM.
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  2. #2
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    Stu,
    You can do that, but be very careful. That part of the frog is very fragile, and can break off easily if you try to force it.

    BTW, the original pin is iron. I've used brass - actually brazing rod - as replacements on several of mine.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  3. #3
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    I figure I'd support it well over something like a small socket in the vice, and maybe file it smooth first, and then drill it...

    I can't see any other way to make sure the frog is flat, without removing it, there was a fair bit of rust on it, mainly surface, but..... enough that I think it needs to be lapped again.

    Thanks for the warning.

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  4. #4
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    Provided you do it carefully having filed it flat first, shouldn't be a problem.
    I did in one of mine without bad consecuences at all.
    Best regards,
    Toni

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _________________
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    I also dream of a shop with north light where my hands can be busy, my soul rest and my mind wander...

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Ablett View Post
    I figure I'd support it well over something like a small socket in the vice, and maybe file it smooth first, and then drill it...
    Yep! That'll work. Just be careful. If you file the mushrooming off, the drill probably won't be needed. Just use a pin punch (a small blunted nail works well, too) and gently push/drive the pin out.

    The most likely time for breakage is wne peening over the new pin. Careful and gentle are the words of the day there.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  6. #6
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    Stu, there's an easier way.

    Just cut a piece of MDF or similar into a rectangle with a slot cut out so it looks like a U, but with thick sides and a narrow center:

    xxxxx xxxxx
    xxxxx xxxxx
    xxxxx xxxxx
    xxxxx xxxxx
    xxxxxxxxxxx
    xxxxxxxxxxx
    xxxxxxxxxxx
    xxxxxxxxxxx

    [the best graphic I can do from my office.] Anyway, glue on some sandpaper and have at it. Of course you can remove and replace the pin, but this is way safer and simpler, IMO.

  7. #7
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    Stu,
    I've done this to a dozen or so planes, all without removing the pin. I start by clamping the frog face up in my wood vise. Then, with a large flat mill file, i take long smooth passes across the face working around the pin. Check for flatness regularly with a decent straight edge. If you want, dress it up with a few passes using a flat honing stone.

    I've tuned a lot of planes and have areas i'll spend a great deal of time and effort to get as close to perfect as possible (such as the lapping the frog seating to the sole casting, making sure the chip breaker seats properly, etc.). The flatness of the top of the frog isn't one of them. Close is good enough. The most important thing is that its close to flat and that you don't have any high spots anywhere along the center half of its length. If the face near the leading edge is flat to the face at the rear third, it will work fine. The reason is that the lever cap presses down at the leading edge and near the back - nowhere else. Under pressure, it slightly springs the blade/chip breaker assembly. It's not clamped evenly along the length of the frog, just near the two ends.

    With this plane in particular, anything more than a first careful pass getting things close isn't likley to yield any benefit. The blade/chip breaker assembly doesn't have much thickness to resist flexing. Also, the frog doesn't have much mass to keep it flat under stress either.

    I spent a great deal of time on two separate occassions tuning entry level planes to tight tolerances. You can do it, but don't expect much from your efforts. LEARN FROM MY MISTAKES!!!!! I wish i had those evenings back.

    After you've given it a good once over, if you're still not happy with it's performance, I'd stick with the scrub plane conversion. If you want to tune it for smoothing plane duty, i'd recommend an afermarket replacement blade that's .090" thick (anything thicker might not allow the depth adjustment finger to engage properly with the chip breaker) and an aftermarket chip breaker. Hock, LN, and LV make great blades. I like A2 steel the best, though am very pleased with my Hock high carbon blade. Thicker cap irons are availble from Hock, LN, LV and Cliffton. The first three are all thick, single piece models. The Cliffton is a two piece version that distributes the lever cap pressure more evenly across the leading edge of the cutting iron. Personally, the Cliffton is my favorite - it's based on an old Record design, though i'm sure the single piece versions work fine. Replacing the stock cutter,chip breaker assembly with thicker aftermarket parts is probably the single most effective way to improve a plane's performance. The thicker mass resists flexing, significantly reducing the chance of chatter during use. The higher quality steel on the cutting iron holds an edge much longer than what you're currently working with.

    The other bit of tuning you might do is snugging up the depth and lateral adjustment. chances are, you've got a lot of backlash slop in the depth adjustment wheel. I always like it better when i don't have to twist the wheel 3 turns before it actually grabs. The best way to fix this is to tweak how the yoke fork engages the slot in the depth adjustment wheel, and how the finger of the yoke engages the hole in the chip breaker. If your yoke is cast iron, it's probably very brittle, so be careful. If it's bent steel, it will be much easier to work with.

    When adjusting the yoke fork, sometimes the tines of the fork are spread apart too much. Closing the gap between them might eliminate a lot of the slop. If they're pressed steel, just bend them together until they fit better. If they're iron, this might be a bit risky, so adding heat will help. Otherwise, build up some thickness another way. I've had good luck adding metal with a torch and a brazing rod. Once i've got a good bead of molten brass on the tine, i simply let it cool and file it down to the proper thickness. Touch up the paint, and you're good to go. If the tines aren't wide enough to fill the slot in the depth adjustment wheel, You can build up mass using the brazing rod. If the yoke is steel, You can peen the tine wider with a hammer.

    Adjusting the yoke finger that engages the chip breaker works the same way - peening the steel wider, or building up mass with brazing rod and filing it back down.

    These adjustments may sound like a lot of hassle - they're really not. I'd give it an hour to fully adjust both the tines and the finger of the yoke IF you're brazing. If you're peening and bending steel, cut that time in half.

    I hope some of this helps. Have fun with it.
    Paul Hubbman

  8. #8
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    Ken, great idea!

    Paul, thanks for the tips, I really appreciate it!

    I can see myself buying a new iron or two at some point for sure.

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  9. #9
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    I had a go at the frog, and Paul you are right, I could easily file around the knob on the lateral adjuster and make a good flat bed for the plane blade.

    I then moved onto the frog, and how it mates to the plane body.

    Boy what a mess, sure there is some rust, but man it the machining poor......

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    I just "touched" the top mating surface, and boy was it NOT flat as you can see

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    On the right, you can see that I cleaned that up a bit more, ready to start lapping.

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    Here is the bottom mating surface of on the plane body for the frog, boy is is also NOT flat.

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    I did both of the mating surfaces of the frog nice and flat, but now on to some lapping.

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    I did not have any lapping compound, so I made some of my own, I just rubbed my basic waterstone on my flat piece of granite to make a slurry.

    The thing is, this is a very slow process, the grit in that slurry is not coarse enough, so, I liberated some grit from some #80 wet/dry sandpaper, that worked a lot better. Now I need to figure out some bluing, I don't have any of that

    Any suggestions on some sort of substitute for bluing to check how the surfaces are mating?

    I think this will work out well.

    Next up will be to tank it, and get rid of the rust, and then I'll repaint it.

    As this Stanley Sweetheart was made in Canada, I want it to be rather nice when done.

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Ablett View Post
    Any suggestions on some sort of substitute for bluing to check how the surfaces are mating?
    Felt marker will do in a pinch.

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