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Width variations between UK/USA made Stanley 5 1/2

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ZippityNZ

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Is it normal for there to be obvious width differences in the same model Stanley hand planes, made in the UK and USA?

I was just cleaning my recently acquired USA made Type 13 #5 1/2 when I placed it next to my made in England plane of the same model.

The width difference is 1/4"

Do these width differences occur with other sizes?

I haven't run any comparisons, yet :)

WidthDifferences_exposure.jpg
 

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Vann

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ZippityNZ":37okehsj said:
Is it normal for there to be obvious width differences in the same model Stanley hand planes, made in the UK and USA?

I was just cleaning my recently acquired USA made Type 13 #5 1/2 when I placed it next to my made in England plane of the same model.

The width difference is 1/4"

Do these width differences occur with other sizes?...
No.

It's almost certain that you are comparing a pre 1930s 2¼" #5½ with a post 1930s 2⅜" #5½ . The #5½ is the only one of the standard bench planes that had a width change. That would account for 1/8" difference. The rest is normal variation.

My widest #5½ is an Australian Turner at 76.3mm, while my narrowest 2⅜" #5½ is 73mm wide. My three 2¼" #5½s (actually Record #05½s) are consistent at 69.8/69.9mm wide.

English Stanleys made during WW2 often have very thick sides (and hence are wider).

Cheers, Vann.
 

MikeG.

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Vann":2pf3wieo said:
........My widest #5½ is an Australian Turner at 76.3mm, while my narrowest 2⅜" #5½ is 73mm wide. My three 2¼" #5½s (actually Record #05½s) are consistent at 69.8/69.9mm wide.........
How many planes have you got? How many of those do you need?
 

sunnybob

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Just measured my one and only 5 1/2 Stanley;
At the front its 76 mm.
2.99 decimal inch
2 15/16" fractional.
At the rear its 3" as near as makes no never mind!
Does that make it more valuable? :roll: =D>
 

ZippityNZ

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MikeG.":31w8r3bb said:
Vann":31w8r3bb said:
........My widest #5½ is an Australian Turner at 76.3mm, while my narrowest 2⅜" #5½ is 73mm wide. My three 2¼" #5½s (actually Record #05½s) are consistent at 69.8/69.9mm wide.........
How many planes have you got? How many of those do you need?
A little birdie tells me that you can never have enough :D :D
 

sunnybob

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Realised we're talking decimal mm here so went back and used the vernier, as opposed to eyeballing a tape measure.

Front and back are the same, 75.5 mm.

damn, there goes my luxury round the world cruise :roll: :roll: 8)
I'll leave it back where it lives by the back door for when the wind blows.
 

Vann

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MikeG.":3g4ih2tr said:
How many planes have you got?...
Not saying - in case my wife reads this (hammer)
MikeG.":3g4ih2tr said:
...How many of those do you need?
Why, every single one - of course. It's great here at the bottom of that particular slope :wink:

Cheers, Vann.
 

IWW

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In all the chit-chat, the implication of the original post doesn't seem to have been addressed, which is, that the earlier, narrow 5 1/2 takes a 2 1/4" blade and 2 3/8" blades simply will not fit through the throat. I discovered this many years ago when I inherited my dad's circa 1918 5 1/2, which was down to the last gasp of blade. The discovery part came when the the new blade I ordered arrived. It took me a while to grind the necessary mm off each side of a new blade to get it through (and yes 2 3/8" - 2mm is still more than 2 1/4" but that's all it required to fit :| ). This plane became my major workhorse, it gets used virtually every day & the 'new' blade is now coming to the end of its life. I would like to replace it with a PM-V11 version, but LV don't seem to offer any 2 1/4" blades any more, in any steel.

Grinding off so much metal is a major pain in the nether regions, and now that I'm much more familiar with 1mm cutoff wheels, I'm sorely tempted to fire up the angle-grinder & whack off the excess with that (with the 'good' part of the blade firmly clamped in a heat-sink, of course!). But I read somewhere recently (& can't remember where) that one should NOT try cutting PM-V11 with a cutoff wheel, it's likely to wreck it, for reasons not specified. Does anyone with any metallurgical knowledge have anything to say about that? Is this another urban myth, or is there a valid reason for the warning? I've cut several O1 and A2 blades for various projects & had no issues arising, but the slightest possibility of destroying a $100 blade through impatience gives me cause for pause....

Cheers,
 

ZippityNZ

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Thanks IWW :)

I just tried to install an old "new" unused Stanley blade into both of my two "Made in USA" 5 ½ planes (Types 11 & 13) and it will NOT fit either :(

However, there is ample side play when I install the same blade into my wider "Made in England" 5 ½ plane :)
 

D_W

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IWW":2qkkydpj said:
Grinding off so much metal is a major pain in the nether regions, and now that I'm much more familiar with 1mm cutoff wheels, I'm sorely tempted to fire up the angle-grinder & whack off the excess with that (with the 'good' part of the blade firmly clamped in a heat-sink, of course!). But I read somewhere recently (& can't remember where) that one should NOT try cutting PM-V11 with a cutoff wheel, it's likely to wreck it, for reasons not specified. Does anyone with any metallurgical knowledge have anything to say about that? Is this another urban myth, or is there a valid reason for the warning? I've cut several O1 and A2 blades for various projects & had no issues arising, but the slightest possibility of destroying a $100 blade through impatience gives me cause for pause....

Cheers,
So, I've made a bunch of bailey style irons with annealed V11 (or the actual metal that it seems to have been formulated to copy). The steel has a rate of cooling of 50 degrees F per minute to harden (think about that one). If you can get it really hot, you can cut through it. As soon as it cools a little, it's hard again. Working with it annealed, the only way to deal with this is to not get it hot in the first place as there's no practical open atmosphere (cheap) way to anneal it again. It's less trouble to hand hacksaw irons out than it is to try to power bandsaw it with a portable bandsaw - you have to rush to keep the cut line moving ahead of where it's cooled.

(I'm assuming you mean that it'll wreck the wheel. The iron itself will be about 62 hardness at 350F and still 59 or 58 at 800F. IT has a lot of chromium in it and you don't want any part of it to stay above about 800 degreesF and under 1400F for long, as the chromium will move to the edges of the grains and aggregate and the steel won't be particularly good.
 

Inspector

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Hock make 2 1/4" blades in O1 and A2 if one of those will do it for you.

http://www.hocktools.com/products/bp.html

If you are set on PM-V11 blade I suggest taking it to a small machine shop to have the edges trimmed with a surface grinder. It is likely the way LV work the blades since the grinding wheel and work are flooded with coolant. It could be done in a milling machine and the carbide tooling flooded too.

Pete
 

IWW

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D_W":1ojcfu6c said:
.....I'm assuming you mean that it'll wreck the wheel. The iron itself will be about 62 hardness at 350F and still 59 or 58 at 800F. IT has a lot of chromium in it and you don't want any part of it to stay above about 800 degreesF and under 1400F for long, as the chromium will move to the edges of the grains and aggregate and the steel won't be particularly good.
No, what I read implied it could wreck the steel. In my ignorance of things metallurgical, I couldn't see why that should be, but if alloying components start migrating at various temps, it starts to make some sense. I can see how you could alter things drastically either side of the cut. Using a 1mm cutoff wheel to cut unsupported 1/8" thick steel can get it too hot to touch, but I doubt it would get to 426C (800F) anywhere other than a fraction of a mm either side of the cut if the object is firmly clamped in an adequate heat-sink. Grinding off a few thou after cutting should bring me back to "good" metal?

Dunno - I'm tempted to give it a bash, but not with a brand-new, very expensive blade!

Inspector, thanks, yes, I did know Hock does 2 1/4" blades, but I have my heart set on a PM-V11 for this plane. I used to be a Hock loyalist, they were always my first choice for replacement blades until a couple of years ago 'til I tried my first PM-V11. At first I was disappointed with it, I just could not get the edge my oilstones (various grades of Arkansas stones) gave me on the Hocks. A change in my sharpening routine, including a switch to a very fine water-stone made all the difference, & suddenly, I had good edges that stay that way on our nasty woods at least twice as long as the Hocks ever did. So I've switched loyalties....
:)
Cheers,
Ian
 

ED65

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IWW":3ewayt32 said:
...suddenly, I had good edges that stay that way on our nasty woods at least twice as long as the Hocks ever did. So I've switched loyalties....
That'll do it!
 

Inspector

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Well in that case take your old blade to a machinist so he can visualize what you need, tell him about the PM-V11 that you want to use and see what they think it would cost. Shouldn't be all that much unless they don't want the business and charge you a discouragement fee. If you aren't in a hurry it is the kind of work they can fit in between jobs or when they have the right setup for another job. That way you can decide if you want to take it yourself.

Some metals when cut improperly work harden making it hard to continue or creating a very hard spot. Titanium does that. If it isn't cut properly carbide cutters will disintegrate so fast you can't get to the off button before the cutter is destroyed and the part with it. PM-V11 may behave in a similar manor. It wasn't an alloy we made aircraft parts from so I don't know.

Pete
 

IWW

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Well, just for interest, I contacted Lee Valley & asked them if there was any reason I couldn't grind a bit off a PM-V11 blade. Their reply was to the effect that there is no problem at all as long as I observe sensible practice & don't cook it.

Unfortunately, they didn't directly address the cutoff wheel part of my question, but D_W's post re the migrating chromium has convinced me it may be a good idea to stick with the more tedious but safe method of grinding away the excess. I could get away with just grinding the bottom 10mm to get the blade through the mouth, there's enough room between the sides to take a 2 3/8" blade & allow a bit of wriggle for lateral adjustment. In fact, I replaced the original lever-cap (which had a huge chunk broken off one side) with a modern LC for the 4 1/2 - 7 series and it fits fine without modification. Looks out of place, though, some day I'll have a serious hunt for an oldie from the right era. Then again, the replacement is 20 years old already & part of the plane's rich history. :wink:

I have a year or more heavy use left in teh current blade, so I'm in no hurry - I'll get it sorted eventually.....
Cheers,
 
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