I bought Hock blade and cap irons for the Stanley 7C I just got off Ebay.
I'm having the hardest time getting everything adjusted right though. Is
there anything special you have to do to use the Hock irons? It's proving
to be a pain to get the frog set right since I have to move it back some to
allow for the thicker iron. I know zero about Stanley planes but it sure
seems like everything is awfully loose in there. I'm holding the plane on
end trying to see whether the blade is lined up with the throat and trying
to put a little bit of pressure on the lever to keep things from sliding
around. I'm also having trouble with the blade sliding backwards just a bit
when I snap the lever down. I think I'm missing something fundamental here
with setting up a plane. It can't be this hard. Or have the nice Veritas
planes just spoiled me already?
That'll be Stanley's wobbly manufacturing tolerances. It's
particularly fun if you're trying to fit US irons in UK bodies, or vv.
My trick is to set the lever cap lever to "slightly draggy" and then
carefully adjust the screw that holds the irons down. This needs to be
left slightly unscrewed (or you'll never get the irons in), but tight
enough that it's all held up nice and tight when you put the lever cap
down fully. This is a very awkward adjustment, as you have little to
Check also that you don't have the frog too far back. "Too far" is
when the sole projects beyond the frog and the iron starts to be
supported by a narrow strip of the _sole_, not the large area of the
frog. This also causes the iron to be bent between two points, rather
than supported over its whole length, so things get very springy and
Putting a Hock into a Stanley shouldn't be too bad, but putting a
Clifton into an old US body is aways a mouth-filing exercise.
I fitted a Clifton blade to an old Stanley 7C a while back and had to
file the mouth wider to get it to work. Got some good advice from other
wreckers, so if that turns out to be necessary in your case, email me
and I'll pass it along.
To answer my own question, I went back and read the chapter on tuning in the
handplane book again. It seems much of what I'm having trouble with is
exactly what the Bedrock planes addressed. I finally got it set pretty well
last night after a lot of fiddling around but the mouth is open just a tiny
bit more than I would like. I was getting thin shavings and even thickness
from one side to the other but a little bit of tearout on some wavy grain in
the Mahogany I was working on. It actually took me a few passes to realize
what I was seeing was tearout and to stop trying to plane it down. I went
over it with my Veritas Junior Jack set very fine and smoothed it out pretty
nice. I have a huge pile of shavings on my bench that I'm very proud of
now. I don't want to throw them away. I also have a lot more respect for
anyone who used to spend all day using handplanes. It gives you a workout.
I guess I'll go back and readjust the frog on the #7 to try and close it up
a bit but I dread fooling with it. The back of my throat is fairly uneven
so there isn't a good reference point for setting the frog and there is
quite a bit of play in it as well. Any tips for getting it right?
The cutting edge's relationship with the front of the mouth determines
where the frog must be. If the frog is backed up all the way and the
blade still won't exit the mouth, you need to file the front edge of the
mouth. This is not such a bad thing and is, in fact, part of routine
plane maintenance (the long-term kind, like changing a timing belt.)
That leading mouth edge wears by the abrasive action of the shavings as
they are forced past it, up and out along the blade and breaker. This
constant erosion eventually rounds over that edge, allowing the shaving
to lever-up and tear-out. So, when too round, that edge must be filed
straight and sharp so that it holds the shaving down while the blade
shears the fibers before they can lift. This will minimize tear-out and
maximize your surface finish.
With the leading edge of the mouth is straight, square and sharp, and
with the blade in place, adjust the frog to the desired mouth aperture.
Tighten it all down and test it out. You'll probably need to repeat the
procedure a few times and, no, it's not easy but you shouldn't have to
do it again until you've eroded that leading mouth edge (which should
take years of happy planing.)
(give a call if you need more help.)
HOCK TOOLS -- http://www.hocktools.com
Thanks Ron! I get the feeling most of my problem is inexperience and lack
of patience. Your blade and chipbreaker are very nice by the way. I'm
thinking seriously about picking up a few more used planes so I can set them
up for different types of work and not have to mess with getting everything
set right too often. I have a feeling your blades will find homes in them.
I want to find a Bedrock to play with though and see how much the
modifications to the frog help.
Oh, I do have a question for you. With the thickness of your chipbreaker,
do you recommend a longer screw be used for the lever cap or should the
stock screw engage enough for there to be no problems?
: I bought Hock blade and cap irons for the Stanley 7C I just got off Ebay.
: I'm having the hardest time getting everything adjusted right though. Is
: there anything special you have to do to use the Hock irons? It's proving
: to be a pain to get the frog set right since I have to move it back some
: allow for the thicker iron. I know zero about Stanley planes but it sure
: seems like everything is awfully loose in there. I'm holding the plane on
: end trying to see whether the blade is lined up with the throat and trying
: to put a little bit of pressure on the lever to keep things from sliding
: around. I'm also having trouble with the blade sliding backwards just a
: when I snap the lever down. I think I'm missing something fundamental
: with setting up a plane.
Stanley pattern planes are intended to be set with the lever cap cam snapped
tight. Unlike Norris types whose adjuster is so ill-designed that it lacks
the power to move the blade when the lever cap screw is fully tightened.
More on plane setting on my web site. Please look at Planing Notes -
Adjusting a Metal Plane.
Jeff Gorman, West Yorkshire, UK
Email address is username@ISP
username is amgron
ISP is clara.co.uk
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