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All Replies on Restored vintage Montgomery Ward Power-Kraft TPC-8937A 3-1/16" power planer

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View BreeStephany's profile

Restored vintage Montgomery Ward Power-Kraft TPC-8937A 3-1/16" power planer

by BreeStephany
posted 08-12-2016 01:53 PM


6 replies so far

View bigblockyeti's profile

bigblockyeti

5894 posts in 2200 days


#1 posted 08-12-2016 04:57 PM

Looks great! It’s neat to see all of the older, sometimes obscure brands that actually used to make pretty good quality tools. I’ve got a Rockwell porta-plane waiting for a good going through that actually works ok, but needs to be prettied up a little (it also came with a second cutterhead which I’m finding can be quite pricey) despite costing less than $30. I have my Skil blue label model 42 drill needing a little clean up and I finished a worm drive Van Dorn not too long ago. One of my two Skil 67’s is on the healing bench now as I try to source bearings and oil seals as my dwindling stash doesn’t have anything that will work. I also missed out on a Rockwell 512 GS, 12” sidewinder that is probably just as well as the seller had it priced like gold. I’m finding this can be a very addictive hobby! Pics of the porta-plane, model 42 and missed 512 GS:

-- "Lack of effort will result in failure with amazing predictability" - Me

View Woodknack's profile

Woodknack

12887 posts in 2860 days


#2 posted 08-12-2016 06:51 PM

Nice work on the plane. I love old tools and machinery. Even the lesser ones are built fairly well. Of course they built junk back then too but most of it is landfill now.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

5661 posts in 3723 days


#3 posted 08-12-2016 07:11 PM

You did a fantastic job on that planer. Just goes to show that “vintage” tools will still be around after today’s tools are in the landfill.

View BreeStephany's profile

BreeStephany

69 posts in 2665 days


#4 posted 08-13-2016 09:53 AM


Nice work on the plane. I love old tools and machinery. Even the lesser ones are built fairly well. Of course they built junk back then too but most of it is landfill now.

- Rick M.

I have restored a Skil 100, a Rockwell 653HD and now the Monkey Ward Power Kraft TPC-8937A. Though they definitely are all very powerful, and overall, very well constructed, there is a sizable difference in engineering, as well as quality of construction between the Skil 100 and the Power Kraft, as well as the Rockwell.

The Skil has a much more quality casting, is free of casting marks and casting defects. It also has a better frame size and fits your hand a lot better. The construction overall is a lot easier to work on as well. The drive pulleys are pressed on the Skil with a key, which makes removal for servicing much easier, where as the pulleys on the Rockwell and Power Kraft are screwed on and don’t have a means of removal outside of using a set of pump pliers on them, which risks damaging the pulleys. There are a lot of small details on the Rockwell and Power Kraft that I didn’t like in comparison to the Skil.

The Skil had a heavier and large frame size armature and field, despite the fact that it was 2.5A less powerful.

I do like the spiral cutterhead on the Rockwell versus the straight knives on the Skil and Power Kraft. The Rockwell out of the box has on the fly adjustment whereas the Skil has detents for height, making adjustment not as smooth in certain shaping applications, though this can be easily modified by removing the detent plate. The depth adjustment for the Power Kraft is definitely not ideal and is definitely not designed for on the fly adjustment.

Overall though, for an entry level planer, the Power Kraft definitely holds it own, and overall, with a bit of fine tuning, works very well and should last another 40 or 50 years.

Just my two cents.

-- Just a girl with way too many tools.

View BreeStephany's profile

BreeStephany

69 posts in 2665 days


#5 posted 08-13-2016 10:04 AM

The Rockwell planer should easily buff out to an almost mirror finish. You can also source a lot of the parts for the porta-plane even today through most online tool parts stores, like Toolpartsdirect. Rockwell became Porter Cable and many of the parts are still available today under Porter Cable, with the exception of the cutterhead.

For $30.00, you did very well. You could probably turn around and sell your extra cutterhead for $100+ if you really wanted to.

In regard to the 67, have you tried taking in the bearings and seals to a local bearing shop or parts house like Applied Materials? I use Applied a lot and they have been able to source me a lot of the parts that I need, though I don’t readily have the specs on the bearings and seals for the 67, however, your local bearing or parts house should be able to help you source these, or at least some portion of them.


Looks great! It s neat to see all of the older, sometimes obscure brands that actually used to make pretty good quality tools. I ve got a Rockwell porta-plane waiting for a good going through that actually works ok, but needs to be prettied up a little (it also came with a second cutterhead which I m finding can be quite pricey) despite costing less than $30. I have my Skil blue label model 42 drill needing a little clean up and I finished a worm drive Van Dorn not too long ago. One of my two Skil 67 s is on the healing bench now as I try to source bearings and oil seals as my dwindling stash doesn t have anything that will work. I also missed out on a Rockwell 512 GS, 12” sidewinder that is probably just as well as the seller had it priced like gold. I m finding this can be a very addictive hobby! Pics of the porta-plane, model 42 and missed 512 GS:

- bigblockyeti


-- Just a girl with way too many tools.

View bigblockyeti's profile

bigblockyeti

5894 posts in 2200 days


#6 posted 08-13-2016 01:00 PM

The Porta-Plane doesn’t really need anything other than cleaned up. I’m planning on keeping both cutterheads as I might need the extra one sometime even though I plan on using it very little. The only two bearings that are different than what I’m used to are the input and spindle output immediately adjacent to the oil seals. I was able to get the number off the bearing on the armature shaft, the number on the spindle isn’t legible. I’ve done what I can as far as online research, it is time to see someone in person. There are numerous bearing wholesalers around me, unfortunately retailers are fewer and farther between. I’ll be looking into that next week, whatever information I come up with, I’ll document for others who might be undertaking a similar restoration.

-- "Lack of effort will result in failure with amazing predictability" - Me

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