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Thread: Handplanes - Record #4 vs Bailey #4

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Question Handplanes - Record #4 vs Bailey #4

    Hi everyone! For those of you in the know....which of these two #4's is a better tool? I think the Bailey is older and has a Sweetheart blade. Not sure how old the Record is but it's in newer shape.

    Got Wood?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Bucks County PA

    hard call

    I have an older Stanley Bailey No4 with a SH blade and really love using it. I was about to sell it but made the mistake of trying it out after I sharpened and tuned it up! Come to think of it, I was just using it to smooth out some drawer sides.

    Mine looks to be a newer vintage than the one you have pictures of (I think mine was a type 15). If I was to hazard a guess I'd say the one you have is an early Pre WWII one. Notice the keyhole shaped hole? And it looks like it has patent dates behind the frog. In addition the knob is low. All these facts, plus the SH blade indicate a fairly old vintage Stanley Plane. It might even be a type 11, which is somewhat collectible.

    Personally, I'm from the "older is better school" when it comes to Stanley handplanes. So I'm voting for the older Stanley over the "newer" Record.

    NOW, that being said....if you happen to NOT get the Stanley I think you might not be too dissatisfied with the Record. Record made good tools. And while this seems to be a newer vintage, it looks like it has a beefier casting.

    If I was considering this plane I'd prefer to take a look at the frog and see how rough the casting is. Especially where it meets the body. Also, I take a look at the yoke and see if it is two piece bent metal fabrication or cast (which I prefer). If the yoke is two piece, I'd pass. This makes for backlash in the adjustment mechanism. It makes fine tuning your plane a real pain.

    EDIT: I just took a much closer look at the photo of the Record. It appears that the yoke is a 2 piece fabricated version. Well, that makes my recommendation easy. Go for the Stanley!
    See ya around,

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