It is not often that local garage sales or estate sales advertise hand planes in our area. But when they do, I like to look in case there is something worth buying. I bought this one for $5; it was originally marked $10:
Call me sentimental — originally made in St Louis, MO, by Child Pratt & Co:
The mouth looked fine, but the blade was very rusty. I hoped it was not badly pitted (it was not):
I was not sure if I would be able to remove the wedge, to allow access to the iron. But I succeeded — the wedge was in perfect condition, but the iron needed much help:
I spent way too much time sharpening the iron; I like the fact I can do this free-hand, as “feeling” the bevel seems to be easier than four years ago, when I first started (truly) sharpening hand plane irons:
The iron started to look like a hand plane iron, as some of the surfaces became shiny once again. The pitting I feared was not present; but it still took me a while longer to get it nice and truly sharp:
A few very light passes on the power jointer, and the bottom was flat. I tried the sharp blade on some cherry; the curlies produced made me smile:
Maybe now I can clean up the sides of this plane, to give it a semblance of a nice working tool. In the process I will try to keep its character with some judicious cleaning.
I like its looks — what do YOU think?
— Al Navas