Interesting Woodworking Link

Friday, November 2, 2007

Episode #15 - Stanley Bench Plane Restoration Part III

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I have been a bit frustrated, as I can’t use my shop until the outside portion of our
house reconstruction is complete which should be very soon. I have been using the down time to restore my Stanley bench plane. As soon as I get back in the shop, I have plans to make a video tool review so I am quite anxious to get going!

My Stanley Bench Plane restoration project is near completion. As a reminder, this is NOT a plane with intrinsic collector value. I am restoring this “user plane” to be used on my bench. Before using any of these processes make sure you do not de-value your plane if it has value as a “collector plane”.

All parts were cleaned of rust using the electrolytic rust removal process described in the prior blog entry. The plastic front knob and tote were polished with white Tripoli and carnauba wax. Rather than re-apply blue japanning to the plane body I kept the utilitarian look of raw cast iron by using a modified “Parkerizing” process followed by several coats of wax.

To "Parkerize" the plane body, I soaked it in "KleanStrip Phosphoric" which turned the cast iron an even mild gray color. Immediately after the acid bath, the plane body was doused liberally with WD40 to displace the acid and water. The plane body was then dried and gently heated to 150° in an oven followed by two coats of carnauba wax and buffing.

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For comparison, this is how the plane body used to look

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This is how the plane body looks after de-rusting,
modified parkerizing and hot wax treatment

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Next step is lapping the sole and sides. I am still deciding if I will spend the extra money on this humble plane to replace the plane iron and chipper with a heavier set from Hock Tools.

Reminder: Always use common sense and don’t do anything that feels unsafe. Wear gloves and safety goggles. Always add acid to water! (I did not mix any acid solutions during this process – just trying to be complete).

MSDS for KleanStrip Phosphoric


Mark Mazzo said...

Hey David,

The plane is looking nice. Great job on the restoration efforts. Makes me contemplate getting an old smoother off of E-bay and going this route.

By the way, I was looking at your blog and I don't see an RSS feed to subscribe. Go ahead an put one on so we can get notices of all of your updates!


usframe said...

That is an impressive turn around for the plane.
I will be looking into this procedure for bringing planes I have and use to a more optimal standard.
I feel it goes beyond the appearance. When doing fine work, getting rust particles and debris left behind on the wood is not good for subsequent blades that pass through.

David Pruett said...

Jerry -

You are absolutely correct!