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Help with Identification and Dating of a Hand Plane - Powr-Kraft?

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Forum topic by OleAdam posted 12-01-2021 11:45 PM 411 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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OleAdam

4 posts in 52 days


12-01-2021 11:45 PM

Topic tags/keywords: hand plane defiance identify powr-kraft montgomery ward

Hi All!

I recently got a hand plane from my dad that used to belong to my great-grandfather. I wouldn’t consider myself an expert wood worker by any stretch of the term, but it’s something that I’ve been slowly working towards over time and I was happy to get a free plane that had some family history attached to it – even if it’s nothing special.

I had a compulsion to figure out what brand this plane was and approximately the date it was made. As you can see from the picture album in the link below, there are NO identifying marks on any of the parts. The only text is “MADE IN USA” stamped on the front. I actually dug around on the internet for probably close to 8 hours, at some points just looking through random pictures. Finally, after a long time, I think I’ve narrowed it down to 2 or 3 options. Based on the lack of branding, I figured this was made for dept. stores to sell. After digging around, I think it’s a Montgomery Ward / Powr-Kraft Jack Plane. It could be a Handyman, but I didn’t see any Handyman lever caps without branding on them (while there were many Montgomery Ward / Powr-Kraft that were blank). From there, I found some resources that mentioned that MG/Powr-Kraft Hand Planes were typically from the Stanley Defiance line. After doing some comparisons there, I can definitely see the striking similarities of my plane to the 1205. From there, the trail ran cold…. I’m hoping you folks can help me find some closure :) I’ve trolled through the usual suspects (Time Tested Tools, Blood & Gore, etc.).

Pictures Here: https://imgur.com/a/GI9vL80

The main variations I saw in the Powr-Kraft/MG stuff I found was using 1 line of text for “MADE IN USA” instead of 2 like mine, and the lever cap sometimes having branding.

1. Does anyone think this is something OTHER THAN a MG/Powr-Kraft Plane? I’m pretty confident it’s one of the two, but really haven’t been able to truly confirm it.

2. Assuming this is from the Stanley Defiance line, any idea of what date this would be?

It seems like a good user, you can see the condition it was in before I cleaned it up. Debating going at it a bit more to knock some more rust off, check for flatness etc. I really do appreciate any and all help that you can offer to get me a bit closer. I’m looking forward to knowing more about its history and starting to use it.


9 replies so far

View corelz125's profile

corelz125

4074 posts in 2311 days


#1 posted 12-02-2021 02:33 AM

Need more pics to tell. The frog or lack of frog will offer more info.

View SMP's profile

SMP

5068 posts in 1240 days


#2 posted 12-02-2021 02:36 AM

If you know the year it was made, will that make it sharper?

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

30438 posts in 4018 days


#3 posted 12-02-2021 02:45 AM

Has a PEXTO/ Worth look to it…...maybe in the 1930s…after Stanley switched over to the kidney shaped hole in the lever cap (1933)

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View OleAdam's profile

OleAdam

4 posts in 52 days


#4 posted 12-02-2021 03:51 AM



Need more pics to tell. The frog or lack of frog will offer more info.

- corelz125

If you scroll down a bit on the imgur album, you can see a picture of the frog on the 3rd picture I believe. Here is what the back of the frog looks like: https://imgur.com/a/peGWCyM

It might be tough to tell from the pictures, but the hole on the lever cap is straight, not kidney shaped.

I did find another example, I think this might be the exact one, and mine either has a different lever cap or it was swapped out at some point: https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/vintage-powr-kraft-hand-plane-stanley-1892771227

I wish there was a date associated, but not much as far as online sales listed for these.

View PCDub's profile

PCDub

347 posts in 1579 days


#5 posted 12-04-2021 04:31 PM

(I don’t click on links from new members—just a caution of mine.)
You can add photos directly into your posts by clicking on the “img” button in the reply box.

View OleAdam's profile

OleAdam

4 posts in 52 days


#6 posted 12-04-2021 05:59 PM


(I don t click on links from new members—just a caution of mine.)
You can add photos directly into your posts by clicking on the “img” button in the reply box.

- PCDub

Totally fair! I didn’t upload photos originally because I couldn’t find any information on if LumberJocks strips out exif data from uploaded photos. Imgur is a safe spot to store images – I just redownloaded them from Imgur now to get rid of any exif data:



View RClark's profile

RClark

240 posts in 3520 days


#7 posted 12-04-2021 10:42 PM

Wards Powr Kraft.

Pow’r Kraft was to Montgomery Wards as Craftsman was to Sears.

I have one. #5 Jack. Mine has plastic tote and knob.

Edited to add: My dad bought this plane from Montgomery Wards, probably around 1970, give or take a few years. Given that yours appears to have wooden tote and knob, I’m guessing it would be older. There’s not much info that I’ve found about these planes, though I’ve only made a half-heated attempt to find out more about it.

Some pics:

-- Ray

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

30438 posts in 4018 days


#8 posted 12-04-2021 11:34 PM

That would be by Great Neck Tool Co…..I remember that knob very well….and the “Finger-grip” rear handle.

Seem to recall the underside of that lever cap….had a cross-hatch pattern….

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View OleAdam's profile

OleAdam

4 posts in 52 days


#9 posted 12-06-2021 01:40 AM



Wards Powr Kraft.

Pow r Kraft was to Montgomery Wards as Craftsman was to Sears.

I have one. #5 Jack. Mine has plastic tote and knob.

Edited to add: My dad bought this plane from Montgomery Wards, probably around 1970, give or take a few years. Given that yours appears to have wooden tote and knob, I m guessing it would be older. There s not much info that I ve found about these planes, though I ve only made a half-heated attempt to find out more about it.

Some pics:

- RClark

Hey Ray, thanks for the info and sharing some of the pics that you had. Definitely look to be from the same family, maybe not even that far apart. After seeing the info folks have posted here, feeling like mine is probably from sometime in the late 50’s/early 60’s.

As a follow up, I cleaned mine up a bunch. Stain didn’t quite take like I was hoping, but I still like the 2 tone look for a user like this one:

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