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Aug 03

Good Times

I had the pleasure of meeting a gentleman yesterday who was selling some tools left by his father. Judging by the excellent quality of the tools and the outstanding condition his father had kept them in, he was a man who respected the tools and appreciated their quality.

We were able to agree a deal which we both felt was fair and I came home with some very good items.

If anyone has info on ‘S.Willson’, (the skewed rebate plane), please let me know. This was my favourite find of the day. With a perfect skew blade, (and another used one), a nice boxed edge, depth stop and lovely overall patination, it’s a pleasure to behold.

With that, a nice E.C Atkins ‘Stanley’ mitre-box saw is stunning condition and plenty of fine carving chisels. The roll of the smaller chisels feels like a surgeons kit, such are the fineness of the blades. I also found a great toothing plane by Moseley with a body and blade in a condition that made it look hardly used.
A great day with a lovely chap and some great knowledge learned along the way.

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The maker of the skewed Badger plane is actually Arnold, as ‘HandMadeInWood’┬ámakes clear in his post below. If anyone has more details than he has kindly supplied, I would love to know more about this maker.

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8 comments

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  1. handmadeinwood

    That’s a nice boxed Badger.

    They always wear badly on the right hand side at the tip of the blade and frequently split here because this side is inherently weak due to the angle of the blade.

    I’ve got a couple of those that I have repaired in the same way, but with a brass strip, so I expect that the boxing was done by the user.

    I’ve never seen one like that with a depth stop (something else I’ve contemplated if I could find a suitable spare brass stop) which is a useful addition, so it’s interesting to speculate if the same user did that as well.

    All best

  2. AndyT

    What a wonderful collection!
    To answer your question about the plane maker, although Willson is in a zigzag border it’s an owner’s mark. There are two generations shown, which is nice.
    The plane maker John Arnold is listed in BPM III as being at 3 High St from 1831 to 1846. They also made ‘mother’ planes with a reverse profile for making moulding planes. Some of theirs were still in use at Marples when wooden plane production ceased in the 1960s.

  3. Gary

    Thanks for the info. I’m looking forward to using this one. I enjoyed your excellent post about plough planes. A great, in-depth report.

  4. Gary

    Thanks Andy! I always assumed a zigzag border denoted maker, not owner. Good info to have! How does one ‘start’ a plane like this though. It has no fence, obviously, so working a rebate depth would be easy with depth stop, but setting the width and holding the line for the first few passes?

  5. handmadeinwood

    Thanks, Gary.

    I run a retirement home here in Wales for old ploughs and combination planes…………. Can’t resist ’em.

  6. Richard

    Hi – what a lovely box of old tools! Just to add to AndyT’s comment – High St, Bloomsbury has over the years become St Giles High St & High Holborn (just in case you were searching for it on modern maps of London).

  7. AndyT

    Re starting a rebate – this can be done by first marking the width with a marking gauge, tilting the corner of the plane and running it along the gauge line and progressively tilting down to the horizontal. (This is what you would do with a plain rebate plane.)
    Alternatively you would hog out most of the wood with a chisel then clean up with the plane. (Richard Maguire has a good video on this.)

  8. Gary

    Any idea where that video is please, Andy? I’ve looked on The English Woodworker and can’t find it. Would like to give it a mention in the post. Thanks

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