Thanks to the person who suggested Highland Woodworking. The kit of
screws arrived today; it's Stanley's Bailey screw & nut kit, all for $10
(including the big brass nut which some other places charge $15 for
*alone*). Everything fits my Millers Falls plane very nicely, which is
obviously a Bailey clone.
One question: one thing that bothers me is the fact that the screw that
secures the blade and cap iron is loose at the depth it needs to be in
order to secure the blade cap. What do people do to keep it in place?
I'll admit I don't want to use Loctite or equivalent here; my guide is
What Would Grandpa Do? So how about slightly staking the screw into its
hole? Or just leave it loose?
The other thing is that the new screw has a slightly beveled shoulder
underneath the head, where the old screw was just flat. I guess that's OK.
I recently reworked a Capewell smoothing plane, that had the same problem,
I tried a new fine thread 1/4" bolt for fit and it was much tighter.
rounded the head up and cut a screwdriver slot with a hacksaw, good as new,
or maybe better. Capewell must have been the Harbor Freight of years past,
there was nothing right about this plane when I started.
I've bought that kit too (quite a few years ago) and was similarly
impressed. Highland is a great company to work with.
By "loose" do you mean "easily turned", or is it so loose that it flops
around in the frog casting? If it's just "easily turned", I don't think
I'd worry about it; once you put the cap in place and lock the lever
it's not likely to turn any more, is it? Standard situation with most
any Bailey style plane.
If it's so loose it flops around in the casting after being threaded in
to the correct depth (and that's reasonably far in, correct?), I'd be
worried that the screw isn't a good match and that the threads might get
buggered over time.
That's a Bailey-ism that's probably nothing to be concerned about. My
assumption as to why it's designed that way has to do with the "old
style" lever caps which had a simple keyhole opening (as opposed to the
kidney-shaped opening on newer planes). The narrow portion of the
opening tends to have a corresponding "receiving" bevel (whether
manufactured that way or just worn into shape after years of use, I
don't know) which helps keep the cap from wandering when tightened in
place. I have one old Millers Falls jack plane, and the screw also has
this bevel, but I'm not sure if this screw is original or "borrowed"
from a Bailey plane.
See Nad. See Nad go. Go Nad!
To reply, eat the taco.
The lever cap on my Millers Falls plane has the keyhole-shaped opening
with no bevel. I'm not gonna sweat it (the old screw is still usable, if
a little chewed up and not too pretty).
Time to regrind that blade ...
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