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Very old NO. 5 with brass sides

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Forum topic by Puke posted 02-18-2020 01:19 PM 575 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Puke

6 posts in 50 days


02-18-2020 01:19 PM

I’ve recently ended up using my hand planes a bit, and I am curious about my no.5.
It’s a very old stanley no. 5,. and has a very flat sole, appears to have been ground quite flat at some point in it’s life. I’ve had it less than 30 years. The paint (I guess that is what most of the body was coated with when it was made?) has begun to wear off on the sides,. And I can see that the sides are either brass or bronze. I have never seen an old NO 5 (or 7, or ?) like that with brass sides. Was there a purpose to that? Was there a time when brass was cheaper than steel? Anyway, if any old timer’s on this site has some input, I would appreciate it.


22 replies so far

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HokieKen

12867 posts in 1819 days


#1 posted 02-18-2020 01:28 PM

Are you sure it’s a Stanley? Brass and bronze would have been commonly used for prototypes because it’s easier to work. I don’t know of any production planes Stanley made with brass sides. Are they a cast bronze or more like a machined bar? Also, I don’t know of any point when Stanley painted the sides of the planes either. It’s usually just the “inside” of the plane that’s either japanned or enameled depending on vintage.

It would be great to see some pictures and have a little history on your plane. It may be a very valuable piece if it’s an engineering prototype or, if it’s not Stanley made, it could be a plane a pattern maker made for their work.

Please share more and welcome to LumberJocks!

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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BlasterStumps

1585 posts in 1120 days


#2 posted 02-18-2020 01:43 PM

Stanley japanned a couple scrub planes on the outside but have not seen a jack like that. Pictures, pictures!

-- "I build for function first, looks second. Most times I never get around to looks." - Mike, western Colorado

View Don W's profile

Don W

19549 posts in 3248 days


#3 posted 02-18-2020 09:43 PM

if it’s marked Stanley or Bailey and is really brass, it’s probably a pattern makers home made plane. They’re quite common. The pattern maker uses a factory made plane to make his mold, then makes a plane from it.

-- http://timetestedtools.net - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View corelz125's profile

corelz125

1117 posts in 1657 days


#4 posted 02-18-2020 11:53 PM

I have a stanley router plane made from brass. Looks just like a real Stanley but they never made one out of brass.

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SMP

1889 posts in 586 days


#5 posted 02-19-2020 12:42 AM


if it s marked Stanley or Bailey and is really brass, it s probably a pattern makers home made plane. They re quite common. The pattern maker uses a factory made plane to make his mold, then makes a plane from it.

- Don W

I’ve seen a few of these. I was wondering why a Stanley 71 was selling for so cheap by a guy that specializes in selling old tools. Then I realized they weren’t made in brass. It was like $35 vs $150

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corelz125

1117 posts in 1657 days


#6 posted 02-19-2020 02:03 AM

SMP did you buy it?

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HokieKen

12867 posts in 1819 days


#7 posted 02-19-2020 02:08 AM

OP says “sides” are made of brass. Leads me to believe the sole is steel/iron? Hopefully he’ll clarify…

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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SMP

1889 posts in 586 days


#8 posted 02-19-2020 02:37 AM



OP says “sides” are made of brass. Leads me to believe the sole is steel/iron? Hopefully he’ll clarify…

- HokieKen

I was thinking infill when i read that part, but never seen an infill 5. Only that one jack that had the steel and rosewood bottom strips, but still not brass.

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SMP

1889 posts in 586 days


#9 posted 02-19-2020 02:38 AM



SMP did you buy it?

- corelz125

I did not, already have like3 router planes lol.

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Puke

6 posts in 50 days


#10 posted 02-19-2020 02:52 AM

I think I bought it about 35+ years ago (give or take) at a garage sale or swap meet when I was in So. Cal. It says No. 5, on the front. and I burnished the lateral lever with scotch pads and it says Stanley on it with a patent date of 1876..and also a couple of tiny patent numbers by the stanley name. The blade is so worn that the center
part of the bevel has reached the hole for the retaining screw. I need a new iron for it, that’s for sure. I don’t use planes often, but there are situations where nothing else works like an old hand plane. I will try to figure out how to put a couple of photo’s on here.

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Puke

6 posts in 50 days


#11 posted 02-19-2020 03:02 AM

The brass sides are about 1/16 thick..according to my tape measure. Let me see if I can load some pictures, they won’t be very good, and I’m not too internet savvy.! hope this works https://s3.amazonaws.com/vs-lumberjocks.com/q5xho3h.jpg!

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Puke

6 posts in 50 days


#12 posted 02-19-2020 03:08 AM

Here’s the lever, says stanley..don’t know if it shows in the photo.

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Puke

6 posts in 50 days


#13 posted 02-19-2020 03:11 AM

One thing is for sure…. If somebody made this plane by hand….they had wayyyyy tooo much time on their hands.

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BlasterStumps

1585 posts in 1120 days


#14 posted 02-19-2020 03:41 AM

One possibility is that the brass is there to stabilize a crack in the casting, however, I can’t see anything from looking at the pictures. Some places to look close are the corners of the mouth, the sides of the casting directly above the mouth sides, about two thirds of the way back on the side. I see the early tote was broken a long time back, possibly indicating the plane was dropped. If a plane is dropped, several scenarios are possible for it to experience damage to the wood or casting. Hopefully though, the brass sides just might be on there as a purely decorative addition or someone needed the body of the plane wider.

-- "I build for function first, looks second. Most times I never get around to looks." - Mike, western Colorado

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SMP

1889 posts in 586 days


#15 posted 02-19-2020 04:12 AM

Maybe somebody added brass to make it easier to square up to use for shooting? Or to fix a crack repair. Yeah see all kinds of weird stuff on pre-duct tape era tools lol.

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