Cap Iron for Millers Falls 85 (Will One From A Stanley 78 Work?)

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Forum topic by DylanC posted 08-06-2016 12:53 AM 1840 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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206 posts in 3312 days

08-06-2016 12:53 AM

I recently got a complete Millers Falls 85 Rabbet Plane for under $20…BUT the lever cap is cracked in two. The MF cap is a bit harder to find than a Stanley 78 cap, but I’m not sure if the dimensions are the same. The most important is probably the screw-keyhole fit. Does anyone with a Stanley 78 care to measure the diameter of the screw and/or the width of the keyhole for me? My MF is a 1/4” diameter screw with a 3/8” head.

Thanks in advance…

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

9 replies so far

View John G.'s profile

John G.

26 posts in 1844 days

#1 posted 08-12-2016 09:53 PM

On Ebay there’s a guy nhplaneparts, his store is New Hampshire Plane Parts. Very well informed, I’ve asked him questions before and bought parts from him. Good guy, delivers fast, knows a lot – even if you don’t buy his stuff.

-- The next brick house on the left. Montgomery AL

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769 posts in 1340 days

#2 posted 08-16-2016 01:31 AM

For god sakes man that’s like putting a mack bulldog on a s-10 pick up. No disrespect to the millers falls nice planes . I own two

-- "Boy you could get more work done it you quit flapping your pie hole" Grandpa

View DylanC's profile


206 posts in 3312 days

#3 posted 08-16-2016 03:07 AM

More like a Camaro grill on a Firebird, I think. Anyway, nhplaneparts have me a solid “maybe.” So I am still looking for someone who maybe has both to check it out. Or for someone with a Stanley that can take some measurements for me.

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

View Ajs73's profile


160 posts in 2155 days

#4 posted 08-16-2016 10:49 AM

The Miller falls seems to use a larger bolt than Stanley.
The Stanley would work if you don’t mind opening the hole
a bit or grind the screw. Or you can make one from a regular
lever cap as someone did on my Sargent. (See pic. Stanley
on left, MF middle, homemade on right )

-- Andy, NE Ohio

View DylanC's profile


206 posts in 3312 days

#5 posted 08-17-2016 12:41 AM

Perfect! Thanks for that picture. Hitting the flea market this weekend. I’ll keep my eyes open for a Stanley cap or a standard bench plane cap to modify.

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

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206 posts in 3312 days

#6 posted 08-21-2016 03:32 AM

Flea market was a bust…the search continues.

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

View TheFridge's profile


10859 posts in 2124 days

#7 posted 08-21-2016 03:43 AM

I have a Stanley 78 with 2 caps I believe. I’ll check it out and get back to you. I’ve had it for months and still haven’t messed with it.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View DylanC's profile


206 posts in 3312 days

#8 posted 09-15-2016 11:24 PM

I decided to make one at work using a scrap of stainless steel. Simplified steps are listed below:

1. Trace the outline of the original onto the stainless.
2. Drill three holes: one for the retaining screw, one for the tension screw, and another to shape the radius where the cap widens to the width of the iron.
3. Remove everything outside of the outline with the horizontal bandsaw and grinder. Grind the bevel at the end of the cap so shavings don’t get jammed in the mouth. Shape to taste.
4. Tap the hole for the tension screw. Turned out to be a 1/4”-20.

When I did a test fit tonight I found I still need to take a bit off the width where the cap meets the iron, but that is easy enough to do. The only other loose end is whether or not to drill another hole and finish the “keyhole” for the retaining screw. The jury is still out on if I will do that or not.

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

View GlenintheNorth's profile


244 posts in 1174 days

#9 posted 12-19-2016 12:39 AM

Hey if you haven’t found a proper cap, remember that MF also made a model of that plane for Craftsman. I have both the MF and the Cman, and they are flat-out identical. Fit, finish, same. The only thing different is the name stamp.

Make sure you can see the oval cartouche that the Millers Falls name is normally stamped in on the right side on the donor plane. If the donor has that same shape as your 85, it’s the right one and not the freakishly similar Stanley 78.

I have a replacement screw, but not an extra cap…that I am aware of, anyway.

Incidentally, that screw is the same screw in the #95 weatherstrip plane, and the 9 1/2 and 10 1/12 scrub planes. The other three are pretty rare.

-- MFia-made man. But that doesn't mean I don't dig my 45. Minneapolis/St. Paul, burbs.

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