Bailey number 5 restoration #1: The Acquisition

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Blog entry by MarkStewart posted 06-08-2016 02:49 PM 1231 reads 0 times favorited 1 comment Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Bailey number 5 restoration series Part 2: Disassembly »

Several weeks ago I was discussing my wood working habit with my wife’s uncle, and expressed my desire to obtain an antique Stanley plane. He was about to head down to Texas for a vacation to some giant garage sale, and he’d keep an eye out for me. I pulled up a picture on my phone and showed him what i was looking for, and quickly forgot all about it.

This past weekend we were helping them move and he said “hey i have a plane for you”

and pulled out THIS

After some research, I believe that this is a specimen of the “Type 9” Stanley number 5 jack plane made between 1902 and 1907.

All the parts are present, and there is minimal damage to the metal components, leading me to believe that this plane was used by someone who respected their tools.

As you can see in the toe and heel closeups above, the knob and tote have breakage. The knob has split in multiple places around its base, presumably from either over-tightening or the being too loose on its rod. meanwhile, the tote has suffered more significant damage (it’s broken in two about 1/3 of the way up) and an attempted repair with what appears to be epoxy.

My plan for restoring this tool to its former glory is as follows:
  • disassemble and evaluate the extent of rust and any hidden damage
  • remove rust and polish brass
  • construct new knob and tote (wood choice?)
  • possibly strip and repaint (paint choice?)
  • sharpen blade and chip breaker

This is my first restoration, so I would really appreciate any pointers!

1 comment so far

View stefang's profile


17034 posts in 3934 days

#1 posted 06-08-2016 04:37 PM

Great find. It sure looks to be in good condition for a plane that old. Your restoration plan looks good, but you might also want to make sure that the frog is properly bedded and file away any irregularities there if they exist.

I have been looking for used Stanley/Bailey planes for the last 20 years here in Norway and I haven’t come across a single one yet. I did find a pretty rusty Kunz plane (German made) a few days ago at our local thrift store, but one side was cracked, so I didn’t buy it, but I think I will go back and get it anyway. Kunz planes are just a Stanley copy anyway, so I think it may be worth saving.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

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