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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I recently acquired a couple of new to me planes that need some work. Both I need to check the soles and irons for flatness and the iron needs a serious iron sharpening. I'll clean as best I can as well. Any other suggestions? Best methods for checking flatness on the sole? I do have a 3"x18"x12" very flat granite block in my shop. While I have flattened plane irons and chisels I've never done a plane sole. Some solid advice would be great. I often look to the infonet but there's as much bad advice as good so unless you know a solid site for such advice you're on your own. I created a web page for those planes here. Thanks again for any assistance.
 

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Steve...I would mark the soles with magic marker...diagonal lines from front to back...then put it on some very fine paper, take a couple of swipes and see if the marks wear even or not. Just a couple of swipes, enough to disturb the marks of the marker.

This will tell you if they are "out of flat"...

You could also lay them sole down on your flat granite and see if they rock at all...

For sanding after checking, I start with the finest paper that still marks the sole and then go finer. You will need to judge if you need to go to coarser paper. I like wet paper better. Make sure there are no "specks" on the granite under the paper...

When flattening, make sure you apply even pressure so as not to create a "low" spot in the front or rear. In other words, don't press down on the front when sanding forward and pull down on the rear when sanding backwards...

I'm sure others will chime in with more info...good luck...NICE SCORE, BTW...
 

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Steve - Nick's suggestion on using a marker on the sole is a good one. You should take the plane apart - clean the area where the frog seats, check the mouth to make sure there are no burrs. You could also check the bottom of the lever cap where it makes contact with the iron (blade) to make sure there's even pressure on the iron.
 

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Steve - sorry for the double post - just had a look at your pictures - that #4 Bailey is a sweet plane.

I have two Bailey #4 planes (pictures below) - cost me a total of $30.

Not sure if you've checked this out but the first website is a great resource for Stanley hand planes:

The Superior Works - Patrick's Blood & Gore: Preface

You can also attempt to "date" your planes (I've got a #5 with the 3 Patent #s on it.) - there's a few websites you can check out - here's one of them:

https://woodandshop.com/identify-stanley-hand-plane-age-type-study/
 

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scribe lines diagonally across the bottom of the sole with a Sharpie marker to give a good indication of how true and flat it was... you'll catch on quick to the why for how come...
attach your sand paper (120/150 to start) to an old thick piece of copier glass or a granite slab that is super flat with a small homogeneous amount of spray on adhesive....
do this till the sole becomes flat...
From here on out step the grits down to sand out the scratches from the flattening....
keep going and going w/ finer and finer paper till you have a mirror finish... I like silicon carbide wet/dry for this operation....
got 1,000 or 1,500 paper??? - now we're talkin'...
got finer... why not???
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the suggestions Nick. Vince and Nick, thanks for the reference links I think I've visited one recently trying to make some sense of the different frogs. Of course I knew Stick would have a recipe for this. Sounds like I need to get some wet sandpaper. Maybe they'll have some at the Woodworking show this weekend. Tim I've seen Paul's work on those planes and he always has some good info. That's where I saw his cure for the loose handle. I downloaded that video along with a few more. The granite is nice to have but I got it too soon after the shoulder replacement surgery. Carrying that rock to the basement shop was a bear but putting it up on the counter was , well something I wasn't really ready for. The report that came with it is attached just for giggles.
 

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Thanks for the suggestions Nick. Vince and Nick, thanks for the reference links I think I've visited one recently trying to make some sense of the different frogs. Of course I knew Stick would have a recipe for this. Sounds like I need to get some wet sandpaper. Maybe they'll have some at the Woodworking show this weekend. Tim I've seen Paul's work on those planes and he always has some good info. That's where I saw his cure for the loose handle. I downloaded that video along with a few more. The granite is nice to have but I got it too soon after the shoulder replacement surgery. Carrying that rock to the basement shop was a bear but putting it up on the counter was , well something I wasn't really ready for. The report that came with it is attached just for giggles.
You should be able to find wet sand paper at any automotive supply store. NAPA is where I get mine. They usually have all of the grits 220 up to 1500 or over.
 

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Tim - looks like a beauty. In the first picture (laying on its side) not sure if it's the lighting but the sole looks darker at the toe and heel then in the center. Give it some light markings and a quick lap to ensure it's flat.
 

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Just wait til you get that battleship dialed in..... Start pulling those longgggggggggggg whisper thin shavings.... You're gonna have a grin on your face, the wife is gonna just what it is your doing in the shop all by your widdle self!!
 
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...just get your upper body strengthened before you start pushing that baby around...the back stroke is just as much a killer... :grin:
 
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