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Thread: tool question

  1. #1
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    First of all, here's the mandolin content.
    I had three or four plates that I had to rip the center joint out of because I wasn't happy with the glue joint. I decided it was time to resurrect an old #7 plane that I bought a long time ago in a junk shop.

    The blade was in bad shape, so I started re-grinding it to get it ready to sharpen. I noticed that it is tapered, thicker metal toward the cutting edge, and is laminated with a layer of harder steel at the cutting edge, sort of like a Japanese chissel. I thought it probably wasn't a Stanley blade, so I looked for a name in the rust. I found - BUHL .
    Google brings up pages of references to Buhl airplanes and propeller blades.

    Does anybody know anything about Buhl tools?

  2. #2
    Registered User PaulD's Avatar
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    John, sounds like a sweet plane! Here is an excerpt from a 1997 post to the OldTools list:
    Quote Originally Posted by
    While all the rest of you were pillaging Hancock
    (OK, not ALL of you--just seems that way), I wandered
    into a rural estate auction and wound up in a "shoot-out"
    over a #2 Buhl smooth plane. Now I've never heard of
    Buhl (groans from the cognoscenti), but it's one very
    well-made Stanley knock-off. This example had no chips,
    no cracks, no pits, and virtually all its japanning. One of
    the nicest features is the iron, which tapers from 2mm at
    the top to 4.5mm at the business end. Overall, I'd say it
    most closely resembles the type 7 and is a truly beautiful
    plane.
    And the reply goes something like this:

    Quote Originally Posted by
    According to the list of brands on planes found near the back of
    "Patented Transistional & Metallic Planes in America", Vol 1 (pg 292),
    Buhl planes were wood bottomed, sold about 1915-ish, were made for them
    by Stanley and sold by "Buhl, Sons, & Co., Detroit, MI".

    That's the summary of what's listed and doesn't explain your #2 (which
    isn't wood bottomed) but then again, this book was first printed in 1981
    and a lot has been learned since then.
    If the iron doesn't adjust properly it's possible that the it is from a transitional (iron adjuster, wood bottom) plane. Does yours have the Stanley castings for the body? There was another discussion that a plane with a similar iron may be a Seigly (sp?). That's a great iron if the plane is set up to use it.

    I've got a Stanley #3 that someone put an Ohio Tools tapered iron in. They widened the mouth for the thicker iron, but I would still need to do some tweaking on the depth adjuster to make it work unless I want to plane about 3/16" shavings at a time!

    Those irons were typical in wooden smoothers, but I've got an Ohio Tools #05 (same size as Stanley #5) that has the tapered iron in an iron body... it did come that way from the factory. It's an old plane, though. I think I dated it to the late 1800s, maybe early 1900s.

    Paul Doubek
    "... beauty is not found in the excessive but what is lean and spare and subtle" - Terry Tempest Williams

  3. #3
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    Thanks Paul.
    I got the iron (and cap iron) sharp, it took a good edge easily, I gave it a slight back bevel, and after several minutes of set-up work (moving the frog a few times for a little slot in the throat) I was able to joint three tops, and then this back.
    It shaved those shavings off of that curly maple.

    I don't remember what I paid for the plane, but I think I got a deal!



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  4. #4

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    If I ever get rich I'll get one of those spiral head power jointers, until then there is nothing better than the stanley #7 with a good blade.

  5. #5
    Registered User PaulD's Avatar
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    I like my Stanley #7 the way it is, but a Ron Hock iron & breaker for it would be nice.

    John, it does sound like you got a deal. I'd like to see some better pics of the plane... maybe off the forum unless others are interested. I'm a bit of a tool junkie!

    Paul Doubek
    "... beauty is not found in the excessive but what is lean and spare and subtle" - Terry Tempest Williams

  6. #6
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    I'll try to get some pics to send, Paul.
    It's a utility piece, still needs some cleaning, that little point thing is broken off the top of the handle, the usual old plane that thumped around in a tool box.
    No name except on the iron. Guess that's why it was in my price range.

  7. #7

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    I use a #7 with a ron hock blade and clifton sheffield (from woodworkers supply) capiron, took from 1990 till 1993 to get it sharp. With no run-out engelmann the main problem is actually finding the center joint after gluing up with the hide glue from JR music!

  8. #8

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    I've been "flattening" my #7 sole for a couple years now. Anyone ever notice that the ideal sole isn't actually flat? I've found it easiest to get a good joint with a slightly convex sole.

  9. #9
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    Yes, I've noticed that. Actually, it was pointed out to me many years ago by the boss at the cabinet shop where I worked.
    I've noticed, however, that a very flat sole is a little over rated. A good set-up with a slightly un-flat sole works fine.
    In theory, the two "tables" would have to be at different levels, like a jointer, in order to get a straight cut, but, obviously, you can cut straight without that.

  10. #10
    Registered User John Bertotti's Avatar
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    sunburst, is the back in the clamp actually glued that way? No clamps? I read that someone does it that way in another thread. John
    My avatar is of my OldWave Oval A

    Creativity is just doing something wierd and finding out others like it.

  11. #11
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    Yep, rubbed joint with hide glue.

  12. #12
    Registered User John Bertotti's Avatar
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    Thanks sunburst, must be a hide glue technique. I'm trying it next. John
    My avatar is of my OldWave Oval A

    Creativity is just doing something wierd and finding out others like it.

  13. #13
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    It's gotta fit!
    When you hold the two pieces together in front of a strong light, you should see no light through between the pieces.
    When they fit that well, you can feel a vacuum form between them if you hold them together and try to slide them.
    Put one half in the vice, I use a level to make sure it's close to level, heat the parts, brush the glue on the half in the vice, use plenty, it's cheap, and then place the other half on top. Rub it back and forth a couple of times pressing down fairly hard, and you'll feel that vacuum start to form as the glue is squeezed out down to a thin glue line. As it starts to tack, get the halves in the alignment position you want, let go and walk away.
    As the glue dries, it shrinks and pulls the joint tighter.

    By the way, even if you are going to clamp the joint it should fit as well. Any glue joint that has to be forced with clamps is not a great glue joint.
    I started learning to do rubbed joints because I was having too much trouble getting good clamped joints with wedge shaped pieces of wood.

  14. #14
    Registered User John Bertotti's Avatar
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    I have always gotten good fitting joints. Although earlier projects wound up having half the wood planed away. Thanks John
    My avatar is of my OldWave Oval A

    Creativity is just doing something wierd and finding out others like it.

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