Stanley No. 5 Jack Plane

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Blog entry by CedarFreakCarl posted 12-04-2007 03:53 AM 13387 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I had some time to kill last Saturday and was close to a flea market so I stopped and checked it out to see what was there in the way of tools. Generally there wasn’t much there, but after trudging through much of it I found a vendor with a few planes. Most of them looked like junk, but this one stood out. The guy wanted $42.50, but after watching me pick it up and put it back down about 10 times told me he’d sell it for $35.00.
So I bought it. Now what I know about planes could fill half a thimble but it looked like it was in really good shape. The japanning is about 80% intact and the adjustment knob works great. The cutter is in fair shape and the sole looks ok too. The only knock on it is that the bottom mounting screw on the tote looks like a replacement as it is galvanized. After googling it, it appears that it was made between 1910 and 1918 which really surprised me. Anyhow, I was wondering what some of you “plane gurus” thought of my purchase. I guess I really just need to know if I need to restore it and use it or just put it on the mantle piece and look at it?

-- Carl Rast, Pelion, SC

8 comments so far

View mot's profile


4928 posts in 5375 days

#1 posted 12-04-2007 04:01 AM

Carl, that looks like it will be a good bench plane. Be sure to check out David's Blog on restoring planes, as well as WayneC's series. They should get you started on the path…or vortex, depending on who you talk to.


-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View Paul's profile


660 posts in 5431 days

#2 posted 12-04-2007 04:16 AM

You could probably lap and sharpen the blade and put it to work.

Not too bad a price for a low knob (referring to height of front knob which indicates that it’s older) – can’t tell for sure but the tote may be a replacement. The tote appears painted? it should show nice rosewood grain like the front knob.

It’s the most common size plane (No. 5) so, IMO $42.50 was too high

$35.00 not outragious but borderline IMO

With patience, may have found it for $20-$25 – even less, if it needed more work

-- Paul, Kentucky

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 5301 days

#3 posted 12-04-2007 04:54 AM

A good one to learn on. Study the blogs, tune it up, sharpen it up and go to learning to use it. By the time you get that done you will know all you want to know about planes or you will be just starting on the slippery slope. The feel of planing wood is seriously addictive.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View speakerscott's profile


48 posts in 5177 days

#4 posted 12-04-2007 06:29 AM

Careful, read my blog. You’ll be building a wall of planes soon!

-- Scott, Austin-Texas...

View Ethan Sincox's profile

Ethan Sincox

767 posts in 5513 days

#5 posted 12-04-2007 06:34 AM

Nyah, it’s not painted; that’s just the finish chipping off.

In general, Carl, I’d say there are a ton more planes out there that are meant to be used and not set on a shelf and looked at. Please do clean it up and put that wonderful thing to good use!

Let us know the first time you hear that sweet “schhhhhhhhtick!” sound of a fine, thin curl of wood.

-- Ethan,

View cajunpen's profile


14578 posts in 5405 days

#6 posted 12-04-2007 11:55 AM

Sounds like you have a little work to do, but if you are like the rest of us – and get that plane to cutting thin curls of wood, you’ll be hooked.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

View CedarFreakCarl's profile


594 posts in 5392 days

#7 posted 12-05-2007 02:05 AM

Thanks for the input guys! I’d say I’m already hooked and haven’t even started yet. Incidently, upon closer observation, I’d put the remaining japanning at about 50% not 80%. I’ll let ya’ll know how it turns out. Thanks again!

-- Carl Rast, Pelion, SC

View Alin Dobra's profile

Alin Dobra

351 posts in 5227 days

#8 posted 12-05-2007 02:55 AM

I have the same opinion as Paul with respect to the price you payed. I got a #5 in significantly better condition than your in the flea market for 20$. The problem, which I pointed out in another post, is that these planes are considered collectables and every flea market seller thinks they are worth a lot.


-- -- Alin Dobra, Gainesville, Florida

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