The last plane I’m ever going to buy



This is a plane that was meant to be. I first saw this wooden jack advertised on Gumtree which is like Craigslist in the US for $40. I looked it over and saw a few things I didn’t like and made him an offer of $20; he refused. One year later he lowered the price to $20. I sent him a message to pick it up. The look on his face when he saw me, no words were exchanged I simply handed him the money and took the plane.
The sole had a twist which I planed out and then flattened it. Since I’m not going to use the plane for shooting, I left the sides as is. I moved onto the iron and the back had some small pitting, but in general it was in a good state. It took me about an hour or so to get it ready for work.
I love it, it’s easy to plane with and light. I’m going to curve the iron some time in the near future so it does serve as a true jack. I have many planes but I only really need three. A  Jack, a jointer and a smoother. There’s no need for an LN 5 1/2 or 5 nor any other high priced brandname, to curve the blade on my LN 5 1/2 would be a serious waste of money.

What I don’t like about them they are heavy and the blades are thick. Since you will be using it for heavy planing, you will be sharpening often. The last thing you want to do is sharpen for long periods of time that’s just a waste of productive time. Old Stanley’s are good and so are Records because they are light and the blades are thin and easy to sharpen either by hand or with an sharpening aid.

I don’t plan on selling my 5 1/2 ever, period, as all my tools are dear to me, but I’m just saying that you don’t need an modernday expensive one full stop.


14 thoughts on “The last plane I’m ever going to buy

  1. I acquired one very similar to this, and I have done much the same to it — planed the bottom flat and sharpened the blade. I haven’t had much chance to use it yet, but this certainly encourages me to try it again. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I found out this morning that Mathieson liquidated in 1952. I always thought they continued to build into the mid sixties. I don’t know the age of my plane, but I love it. It would be nice to know how old it is though.


  2. That’s a beautiful plane. I just finished making something very similar that I’ll be blogging about soon. Can you tell me what the total length is? 16″? And I see a little gap between the iron and wedge – is there a cap-iron in that gap?

    BTW if the iron is in good shape, then the iron alone is worth more than $20!


    1. Thanks Matt, last night I came during my shift as I couldn’t resist playing with it. The is 17″ x 3″ x 3″ remember I put the measurement sin the correct order for cabinetmakers not timber yards. So, it’s length x width x thickness
      Yes, there is a cap and the iron is in really good nick.


  3. Hey Salko I love your magazine and I love your truthfulness. You never arse lick any tool maker or your readers, you’re genuine and that’s why I think you’re alright. I can see you’re doing it tough working long hours in your day job yet you still find time to write article and make projects. I wish you the best dude and thanks for all that you do for us.

    Liked by 1 person

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