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601/2 block planes.

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Matt1245

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For my next trip along the darkside i want to bag myself a 601/2 block plane. Can't justify buying a LV or LN at the moment, so my options are e-bay etc or buying new.

I've not been very impressed by the ones coming up on e-bay and don't want to buy a new stanley after hearing peoples horror stories.

Has anyone bought or used a recent Record version of this block plane? Are they any good? I am able to buy a new record 60 1/2 for about the same money that the old ones are selling for on e-bay (great staff discount again).

Any suggestions?

Cheers.

Matt.
 

Matt1245

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Thanks Mike.

How does the groz compare to the record tho quality wise? Can pick up the record for £29, so only £5 more. Or is it not worth spending the extra?

Matt.
 

MikeW

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Sorry Matt, I should have mentioned I haven't messed with the Record version.

In fact, to fully show my ignorance, I didn't think Record was even making planes anymore. Shows you what I know :oops:

And also to follow up on the old Stanley versions. I have had quite a few old Stanley, Miller Falls and Sargent block planes over the years. I have a MF still that I use a lot. But they all took a bit of work to fully seat the blade and have the blade sit square, etc. So I don't think finding an old one gets you very much closer to a decent block plane.

Which is why as regards block planes, if someone wants one for not much money, I usually point to the Groz or Anants unless they have the time to invest in finding a really inexpensive one used. All it takes is a bit of time and effort to fix one up to be a decent plane.

Mike
 

ydb1md

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**Note: comments referring to Stanley are meant to describe their recent offerings, not their older, higher quality tools.

What are you looking to use it for and how much does your time mean to you?

My wife recently gave me a LN 9-1/2 and it's awesome. It can function as anything from a mini-smoother to something for breaking the edge on a freshly cut board. I was amazed at the quality of shavings that this little plane created after five minutes at the sharpening stone. They're as good as what I get from my dedicated smoother.

I have a Stanley 60 1/2 and have probably spent a few hours fettling and tuning it over the years. I'd never call my Stanley a mini-smoother. I'd call it a glue-line clean-up tool or the plane i grab when I don't mind how the finish looks -- like building a deck. I wish that I'd never spent my time or money on it. My wife asked why there's extra space between my Stanley planes and my LV/LN planes. So, I explained it to her and she got it.

The versatility and quality of a LV or LN are amazing. You can get a Stanley or a Record for half the price of a LV or 1/3 of a LN. But, to get the Stanley to function 80% as well as the other two, you'll spend a few hours fettling -- and not woodworking. How much value do you put on your time?

I rate an hour of my time to be worth at least 20 to 30 dollars. If you tag your hours as worth $25, those hours spent messing with that Stanley/Record make it at least as expensive as the LV or LN. And, that's without having to invest the $20 to $30 for a replacement blade. The A2 blades on the LV/LN will go two or three times between sharpenings compared to the cheap Stanley blades. More time lost.

No amount of time spent on a Stanley will make it feel like a quality plane in your hands. I have a lot of LV planes and a few LN. They feel and act as a piece. I view my Stanleys as a hunk of iron with some ill-fitting chrome-plated bits thrown on for some measure of fasion.

Hand tools will last you a life time. I recommend buying the ones that you want not the ones that you think you can afford. It'll mean that you have fewer tools in your shop but the ones you do have will make you smile and want to begin that next project.
 

Philly

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MAtt
I have a record blockplane. Bought it from B+Q a few years ago (for my sins). It is a tool that will need a lot of fettling! Casting was very rough. I use mine for taking a shaving off chipboard or MDF when my back is against the wall.
Its not a useless plane and it will perform alright once tweaked but you would not believe how much better the LN and LV ones are.
Personally, I'd save up a little whilelonger and get the little apron block from either of these companies. (i really recommend the LN 102) :wink:
http://www.lie-nielsen.com/tool.html?id=102
http://www.brimarc.com/home.php3?page=p ... C_106_22_7
Hope this helps
Philly :D
 

bugbear

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I rate an hour of my time to be worth at least 20 to 30 dollars.
Heh. That only applies when you're selling your time.

When you're fetting a plane, that's a hobby. Whole different set of economic criteria.

I happen to enjoy fettling tools. Therefore time spent fettling doesn't cost money, or even go towards the negative side of the balance sheet.

If you want to do woodwork, you might price various activities differently.

Personally, as long as I feel I'm achieving something in my workshop, I'm happy with almost any creative activity.

BugBear
 

Alf

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As far as modern "Irwin" Record planes go, I gather they're now made in China and are, well, poor (John Horobin knows more than is healthy about Record Tools old and new). Just not worth the extra any more, I'm afraid. You could have an look/ask round the old tool dealers, but block planes are seldom to be had cheaply in this country. :(

Cheers, Alf
 
A

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Matt1245":1afmqe1j said:
Thanks Mike.

How does the groz compare to the record tho quality wise? Can pick up the record for £29, so only £5 more. Or is it not worth spending the extra?

Matt.
Matt

The record is the best quality of the cheaper (new) block planes around these days. I used one for years before going LN and it is still occasionally used now. Good buy and little fettling required on mine (sole was dead flat).
 

edmund

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I still use a newish Record for some jobs. I did, however, replace the blade with one from Ron Hock and did lots of fettling on the plane. With the added cost of the decent blade it's probably worth just getting a LN to start with.
 

Pete W

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I have one of these:
http://www.diytools.co.uk/diy/Main/prod ... ctID=21572

received as a gift from family when I first expressed an interest in woodworking. Turned out pretty well with minimal fettling.

I suspect the issue with modern low-cost tools is that they're very 'hit and miss' - you could get a good 'un, or you could get a dog! I guess I was lucky, but if you can get a couple in your hands (whether Record, Faithfull or whoever) before you buy you might be able to spot one that looks worthwhile (quality of castings etc).

I seem to remember a mag group test of planes in the last year where they recommended Footprint as the best low-cost option. That was for smoothers, but might be worth a look.
 

MikeW

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Well, there you go Matt.

You've got enough info make make the same kind of choice we all face.

You know, print out pics of the choices and place them in a circle, place an old milk bottle in the middle and give it a spin. Then purchase which ever you want!

The one you end up choosing will need X amount of playing with, which like BB, I enjoy.

Probably the best one for you is the one you can hold in your hand before purchase and look to see how the casting is under the blade. You may want to pick one that looks like it will takes the less work. And the Hock blade will make a difference, if you end up getting one for it down the road.

Mike
 

bugbear

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The Hock blade will run you 27 quid from Tony Murland. APTC want 44 quid for a Stanley #60 1/2, which makes 71 quid for a Hock equipped Stanley.

Brimarc want around 80 quid for a Veritas Low Angle block.

BugBear
 

Matt1245

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Thanks for all your info, very helpfull, will take time to think about what would be best.

Not sure about the 102, saw a dodgy geezer on the front of this months good woodworking using one. Plus like the idea of all the adjustability.

APTC want 44 quid for a Stanley #60 1/2,
I can get the record for £29, the stanley for £24 and the faithfull for £12.....wish we were dealers for LV and LN tho. :lol:

Christmas will soon be here tho.

Matt.
 

Philly

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Matt
You got me! :roll: :lol:
You won't miss the adjustable mouth-the 102 is a dream!
Pathetically, I do have the adjustable LN too-that is also a fantastic plane.
Choice is up to you :wink:
CoverBoy 8)
 

Matt1245

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Amazing how 2 planes of same simple design can be so far apart quality wise. Thinking of the stanley 102 and LN.

Matt.
 

MikeW

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Hi Matt,

The brass LN 102, which is the one I have, is a wonderful tool. I would imagine the iron one is also nice, and is less. But the brass one is truly nice.

What? What was that sound? More slippage?

Mike
 

SlimShavings

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You could try the Miller Falls 16. they go off reasonable and have pretty good blades. I thinke there is a 59 and 75 also. Maybe a little bigger
 

Matt1245

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Got myself the faithfull 60 1/2 plane today for £12.99, to use whilst i decide which real block plane to buy. Decided (while trying to plane end grain sapele with my No4) that any block plane is better than none :lol:

After a quick play, i'm pretty happy with the faithfull for the momey, mind you i did order 10 and then picked the best one :p

Matt
 
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