I have a Miller's Falls No. 900B bench plane with two very small
hairline cracks near the throat on the bottom. They
are on opposite sides (left and right) and are opposing (front
I got it at a flea market for about $10 or so and have used it as
a "curio" item on my bookshelf. Thinking about using it
and wondering if I should get them spot welded before use,
or just use until it breaks clean and then either weld them
or again return as a "curio" item.
Thu, Feb 1, 2007, 6:32pm (EST-3) From: firstname.lastname@example.org doth
<snip> Thinking about using it and wondering if I should get them spot
welded before use, or just use until it breaks clean and then either
weld them or again return as a "curio" item.
Yeeh. Why even ask? t's your plane, do whatever you want to with
However, on the off chance you're wanting to know what I would do
with a plane in that conditiom, then I have to say that I don't know -
because I don't have a plane like that. You could give it to me, then
we could both find out.
Only those who have the patience to do simple things perfectly will
acquire the skill to do difficult things easily.
- Johann Von Schiller
brazing of cast iron is within the grasp of a reasonably capable home
craftsman. I'd use your best judgment as to whether the plane is in
danger of breaking further. if it is, I think I'd take a try at
My first plane was a Stanley #3 that I bought at a garage sale. It
had been broken completely in half and repaired with heavy brazing.
It is still one of my favorite planes, albeit with little collector
I say fix that puppy!
I'll also second epoxy as a fix. I've used a product called Marine-
Tex for motorcycle repairs and it has worked great for years.
As others have noted, cast iron can be brazed and planes that
have been repaired well are quite useable. If I understand the
Millers Falls numbering system a '900' plane is 9 inches long.
If the front breaks off entirely what is left might be useful as
a bull-nose or chisel plane...
It is possible to braze, silver-braze, or nickel-braze cast iron
with good results, BUT you have to get the entire plane
up to heat as you do it (or the cast iron is likely to crack).
Silver-braze is best for penetrating a small crack,
nickel-braze is best for strength or making a fillet.
I did it once, with nickel rod and oxyacetylene, and the results
were good. If I had to do it at home, a bed of charcoal will keep
the plane body at working temperature, but you still want oxyacetylene
to melt the nickel (actually nickel-copper) fill rod.
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