Just thought I’d post pics of a couple of new acquisitions. First up, a pair of Stanley 99 and 98 side rabbet planes. Each plane is only 4″ long and 1/2″ wide, with manufacturing dates ranging from 1896-1942. I’ve been looking for a nice pair of these for a while, but the price has always put me off. Enough to make me buy more essential tools. Recently though, I had these bundled in with a job lot offered to me, which made them cheap.
The planes are great for running down the insides of rebates, dados or any other grooves. The little blades on each plane are held in place with small finger-tightened clamps, and you run the plane sole, (more like a narrow plough plane skate, really) along the face inside the rebate.
Stanley introduced the ’98’ first and followed up with the ’99’. There’s also a small depth stop at the front, which was introduced in 1930.
[warning]Tool Nerd Alert! The rosewood knobs on these planes are frequently sacrificed to replace knobs on a Stanley No.1 plane, a much more expensive tool. However, the nut that holds the knob captive on the 98 and 99 is nickel coated, not a brass nut.[/warning]
I sold this plane to a chap on eBay a while back. When I sent it off, I didn’t quite register the name I wrote on the parcel. A couple of months later, browsing the website of David Barron, I was very pleased to see the SAME PLANE! With it, David had photographed and written a lovely blog post about repairing the broken spur on the plane. Well worth checking out the post and indeed David’s whole blog. He’s a fine craftsman and furniture maker, and his enthusiasm shines through.
Funny how things go. I’m very pleased to see the plane went to such a good home, and I’ve learnt something myself, seeing how David goes about a good repair. Some good tips there.
Feels like time is fast running out to get this little cabinet up and on it’s legs, but hopefully it will be standing by next week.
I did quite a bit on the connecting rails this week, to join one side panel to the other, but spent the rest of the time smoothing the panels with a nice ‘Millers Falls No.18‘ bench plane.
This plane came in a job lot of tools I bought from a gentleman in Romford last week. A fascinating chap, who used to be a pattern maker for the Ford Motor Company in Dagenham. We spent a good couple of hours chatting and he did me a great deal on a bunch of nice tools.
I ended up selling the plane to a colleague on the course who likes Millers Falls, as I already have a large Stanley jointer, and a Stanley 4 1/2. During the course of the day, Alex sharpened up the iron on the Tormek and got the plane cleaned up. I was lucky enough to have a go with it on my cabinet, and I have to say, it was one of the nicest planes I’ve used. It had a really good heft to it, and with the razor sharp blade, was taking fantastic shavings.
Think I’ll end up looking for another one of these at some point. Millers Falls have been on my radar for a long time, but being US-made, whenever I see one for sale, I usually get put off by shipping charges. Quite how this one ended up being used by a craftsman in Romford, I don’t know. I should have asked!
More often as not, I’m contacted by people with a large lot of tools, or a tool chest full of tools that they would like to sell, rather than one or two items. After a brief telephone conversation, and/or a few emailed pictures, I’m usually happy to come and have a look first-hand and perhaps agree on a price.
Such was the case this week. I’m currently sorting through a massive haul from Suffolk, and have so far only sorted out the two top drawers of a retired cabinet makers tool chest. However, I can’t resist posting pictures of a particularly beautiful plane that was in the bottom of the box. A ‘Spiers Ayr’ 13 1/2″ panel plane. A gorgeous example from one of the best Scottish makers.
Last week I had the pleasure of going back to the Midlands, the place where I was born, to meet an excellent fellow named Robert who had some wooden planes for sale. I’ve been hunting for a nice half, or full-set of moulding planes for a while. These Routledge planes were particularly attractive to me, being born in the Midlands, and Routledge was an excellent planemaker from the area.
Robert was passing on a collection of planes from his grandfather, who had been a cabinet maker. Rob turned out to be a very good salesman. As well as agreeing a deal on an extra bunch of planes and miscellaneous tools, I went back home with a bit more weight than I anticipated!
By the time I left, the planes were joined by some lovely Thos Ibbotson ‘pig-sticker’ mortise chisels, some Sorby and Marples carving chisels, too many awls and screwdrivers to list, and one other thing. Robert made me a deal which included also taking away his grandfathers home-made tool chest. A wondrous great mahogany beast, which will take a bit of work, but will be a nice piece when I’ve finished it. The Volvo was nearly doing a wheelie all the way back to London.