A few hand planes found at the antique shop

Darren Wright

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My wife and I stopped in at one of the local antique shops this afternoon. Down in the basement they usually have a good selection of old tools. I dropped down there and pulled these out of the back corner. The wood base ones tag read Union, not sure of the #, The longer one is a Stanley/Bailey #5, and the last one is a Millers Falls No.9.

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So on the Union one, how does one flatten it's sole. I'd assume one could plane it flat again and even laminate a new sole to it to freshen it up?

Edit: Found the Millers Falls Model, it's stamped outside on the left cheek as a NO. 9
 
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Bill Arnold

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Nice catch, Darren!

I'm not a hand plane guy, but can appreciate a good tool of any type. We visit an indoor flea market twice a year when we drive over to see LOML's folks near Birmingham. One booth has a lot of old tools, but all seem really over-priced.
 

Jim DeLaney

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The Union 'transitional' plane is the equivalent of a Stanley #35. Cleaned and tuned, it's a great smoother.

You can flatten the sole using sandpaper on a flat surface - just like you'd do with a metal plane, only much easier to do. You can also add a new sole, if necessary, by gluing on a new slab of hardwood. Beech, bloodwood, ebony, even hard maple will do well. My favorite (if you can find it) is Lignum Vitae. Never tried it, but Osage Orange ought to work well, too.

Have fun!
 

Darren Wright

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Thanks guys.

Jim, Thanks for the info. The wood was a bit rough on the bottom side with a couple of splits and some wear or rot around the throat. I dont' know how that affects the shavings, but assume it will.
 

Ryan Mooney

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The wear around the throat could be a problem if it keeps the blade from bedding well. Another solution there if the rot extends to into the body is to stabilize with thin epoxy and then fill with thickened (coat the blade in Vaseline and bed it right into the epoxy).

If it's just some wear, lapping the sole will open the mouth a little but that shouldn't matter to much if you set the chip breaker for fine. It's when the blade lacks support behind it were you end up with something that doesn't work as well.

I suspect the splits won't matter to much but keep an eye on the and make sure they won't catch on anything in use.

I'd gently lap it flat, make sure the blade sits well and use it some before doing much more.
 
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Rob Keeble

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Different approach why not make a real project of it.

Get hold of a piece of European Beach and redo the entire wood structure part.

Up to now it sounds a bit like an old sailing boat project from a time benefit perspective and don't forget what boat stands for in the context of old wooden boats. ;)
"Break out another thousand"

That could be time based in respect of this old plane.

But with a cnc you could Mill a nice new body.
 
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