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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My grandfather was a weatherstripper, my father is a weatherstripper, I'm next in line for the age old craft of interlocking metal weatherstripping. I have a question on stanley routers, I don't have a model number but from what my father says and what I've heard from the old timers my routers were originally part of the Stanley builders kit.but I have noticed there is h13, h23, h39, and h63. My question is what router came in the builders kit with the 2 planer bodies and templates?

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Firstly the kit you are referring to, the H-63, is a builder's or carpenter's kit and includes the router motor, fixed base, planer base and door hinge templet in a steel case with an optional spiral cutter sharpener (for the planer blades). Stanley made kits like that for the #4/#8 form motors and the later (post-1957) H-264/H-267 motors - and their later derivatives. Whilst they look very similar the planer bases are subtly different to the weatherstripping bases lacking a moving front skate and with a fixed as opposed to a tiltable side fence.

The R-4B router (the earliest of the #4/#8 body diameter family) appeared during WWII and after the war developed into the Handyman H-40 (3.2A) and later still the H-45 (4A). The "H-13" (GA-13?) you are referring to is probably the model number for the base (later renumbered GA-42, I think) whilst the H-39 is the motor number (bases and motors had separate numbers which is confusing).

As to what went into which kits there were builder's and carpenter's kits sold in steel boxes as kits certainly from the late 1940s until the 1970s. What was in a kit depends on which kit you had, and when it was made. In the Handyman line there were builders kits which used the H-40 and later the H-45 motors (3.2A and 4A respectively) whilst the more industrial versions of the kits used variations on the #8 motor, starting with the 3.5A #8 in 1949, through to the late models with 6A 90-008 motors made as late as the 1970s. AFAIK that style of motor, originating with the R-4B router in the mid-1940s, was the type compatible with the majority of the weather stripping bases, although I understand that there was also a larger base weather stripping base made for the R5 router for a while

Personally I really like my old Stanley routers even though spares are non-existant and have been for years
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Firstly the kit you are referring to, the H-63, is a builder's or carpenter's kit and includes the router motor, fixed base, planer base and door hinge templet in a steel case with an optional spiral cutter sharpener (for the planer blades). Stanley made kits like that for the #4/#8 form motors and the later (post-1957) H-264/H-267 motors - and their later derivatives. Whilst they look very similar the planer bases are subtly different to the weatherstripping bases lacking a moving front skate and with a fixed as opposed to a tiltable side fence.

The R-4B router (the earliest of the #4/#8 body diameter family) appeared during WWII and after the war developed into the Handyman H-40 (3.2A) and later still the H-45 (4A). The "H-13" (GA-13?) you are referring to is probably the model number for the base (later renumbered GA-42, I think) whilst the H-39 is the motor number (bases and motors had separate numbers which is confusing).

As to what went into which kits there were builder's and carpenter's kits sold in steel boxes as kits certainly from the late 1940s until the 1970s. What was in a kit depends on which kit you had, and when it was made. In the Handyman line there were builders kits which used the H-40 and later the H-45 motors (3.2A and 4A respectively) whilst the more industrial versions of the kits used variations on the #8 motor, starting with the 3.5A #8 in 1949, through to the late models with 6A 90-008 motors made as late as the 1970s. AFAIK that style of motor, originating with the R-4B router in the mid-1940s, was the type compatible with the majority of the weather stripping bases, although I understand that there was also a larger base weather stripping base made for the R5 router for a while

Personally I really like my old Stanley routers even though spares are non-existant and have been for years
This was extremely helpful, thank you so much.

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It was late (for me) when I posted that yesterday, so in the clear light of day here's a bit more (from memory) ...

I'm pretty sure that the H-23 is the weatherstripping base, sometimes numbered GA-23 or GA-H23 ("H" was used on items sold under the Stanley "Handyman" banner from the late 1940s to the early 1960s 0n power tools, they often had orange ratings/model plates as opposed to the blue and later black plates of the industrial lines - but were otherwise identical). It was designed to be used with the router motor installed and a narrow grooving cutter fitted to produce the weather stripping groove near the edge of a board. The Stanley side fence is actually quite small and I've seen them with the original fence replaced with a much larger aluminium plate a few times. Unlike the planer base the front skate is non-adjustable and the cutter housing is much bigger (to accommodate the grooving cutter). They still have their uses, but because the motor hangs below the sole of the body that unfortunately cannot be used for routing grooves or beads across wide boards, which is a pity. The planer (possibly GA-H257 the longer model, or GA-H142 the shorter one) has a far more versatile fence which tilts up to 45 degrees and has, as already mentioned, an adjustable front skate. They were generally sold with a spiral steel cutter which has a 5/16in bore to fit onto a special shaft (also supplied in the kits), but those cutters haven't been available for many years and the AFAIK only spiral cutters you can still get, and then only rarely (for the Rockwell/Porter-Cable 126/226 Porta-plane), are unfortunately far too large in diameter to use in the Stanley planer bodies. Owning both a Rockwell Porta-plane and the Stanley planers I have tried.... and I'm still searching for a suitable replacement. TBH planers don't work at all badly and produce a really good finish because of the spiral cutter, well up to the standards of my modern Festool spiral cutter planer, but the depth of cut they can handle is tiny because with (in the case of your H-39) only a 4A (450 watt) motor they don't have a huge amount of power to play with. The cutters are also impossible to resharpen without Stanley's sharpening attachment.

I actually have an H-63 builder's kit in storage which I could look out if you're interested, but perhaps more importantly I still have some of the original early 1960s manuals if you need copies making (but as I'm currently working away from home it may be a week or three before I can access that stuff)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It was late (for me) when I posted that yesterday, so in the clear light of day here's a bit more (from memory) ...

I'm pretty sure that the H-23 is the weatherstripping base, sometimes numbered GA-23 or GA-H23 ("H" was used on items sold under the Stanley "Handyman" banner from the late 1940s to the early 1960s 0n power tools, they often had orange ratings/model plates as opposed to the blue and later black plates of the industrial lines - but were otherwise identical). It was designed to be used with the router motor installed and a narrow grooving cutter fitted to produce the weather stripping groove near the edge of a board. The Stanley side fence is actually quite small and I've seen them with the original fence replaced with a much larger aluminium plate a few times. Unlike the planer base the front skate is non-adjustable and the cutter housing is much bigger (to accommodate the grooving cutter). They still have their uses, but because the motor hangs below the sole of the body that unfortunately cannot be used for routing grooves or beads across wide boards, which is a pity. The planer (possibly GA-H257 the longer model, or GA-H142 the shorter one) has a far more versatile fence which tilts up to 45 degrees and has, as already mentioned, an adjustable front skate. They were generally sold with a spiral steel cutter which has a 5/16in bore to fit onto a special shaft (also supplied in the kits), but those cutters haven't been available for many years and the AFAIK only spiral cutters you can still get, and then only rarely (for the Rockwell/Porter-Cable 126/226 Porta-plane), are unfortunately far too large in diameter to use in the Stanley planer bodies. Owning both a Rockwell Porta-plane and the Stanley planers I have tried.... and I'm still searching for a suitable replacement. TBH planers don't work at all badly and produce a really good finish because of the spiral cutter, well up to the standards of my modern Festool spiral cutter planer, but the depth of cut they can handle is tiny because with (in the case of your H-39) only a 4A (450 watt) motor they don't have a huge amount of power to play with. The cutters are also impossible to resharpen without Stanley's sharpening attachment.

I actually have an H-63 builder's kit in storage which I could look out if you're interested, but perhaps more importantly I still have some of the original early 1960s manuals if you need copies making (but as I'm currently working away from home it may be a week or three before I can access that stuff)
Damn man, you're a wealth of router knowledge. The manuals I found in pdf but a greatly appreciate the offer. And thank you again!

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I have a bit of a soft spot for the old Stanley routers - my first laminate trimmer was a Stanley and I used Stanley routers way back in the 1970s before switching to Elus. That soft spot is probably why I have a dozen or so of them - that and a liking for R2D2
 
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