Shooting Board Plane Type Study
Right Handed Planes
The following applies to the right handed shooting board
planes. ('Right handed' in the sense that you would most naturally
hold the tote with your right hand when using the plane.)
- Type 1
Where it all began... Here is what I wrote about the plane
on 7/23/97. I was going to post it to the oldtools list but
This just in:
Batavia, IL. Mike Lindgren discovers three castings and a strange
pattern at a local foundry. Lindgren says they are marked "None
Such Tool Werks No 151" (where the 'e' of Werks is lying
on its back) They are said to resemble a Stanley No. 51 shooting board
plane. Lindgren says he will bring these artifacts to
Gatootapalooza II- a gathering of his woodworking friends.
Salaman's "Dictionary of Woodworking Tools" contain no
mention of this manufacturer. This discovery is sure to rock
the tool collecting world.
In making the pattern, I followed some advise I found
on the net. I used plastic letters that I got from an
office supply store. They are supposed to be used on
a bulletin board. They aren't drafted (tapered) as the
"No 5" or other lettering you would see on a
Stanley plane etc. As such they got clogged with the molding
sand at the foundry. The impressions they leave in the sand
are not sharp.
Three type 1's were cast. The easiest
way to tell a type 1 is to read the "No 151" when
the plane is in the using position. If it reads from bottom
to top, you have a type one! < picture to follow>
- Type 2
When we did a "production run" for porch members,
I sent the pattern to Rob Kempinski then in Houston. That's
where he was having the boards, quadrants and hold downs cast.
It seemed to make sense to have the planes cast there as well.
Rob removed the plastic lettering. Letterless planes are
- Type 3
After the "production run" the pattern was
returned to me. Rob had told me about removing the
letters. While the pattern was away I found a pattern making
supply outfit. I ordered drafted letters. I unintentionally
lettered the "No 151" in the opposite direction
as type 1's
(it reads from top to bottom with the plane in the using
position). I also added the letter 'B' - like some of the
Stanley plane castings have as a foundry marking. (The
planes are now cast in Batavia, IL.)
- Type 3B
I recently had one plane cast in manganese bronze. With the execption of this one
type 3B plane, all of the planes have been cast in iron, either at a foundry in
Houston, Texas or Batavia, Illinois. This plane was made from the original pattern-
same as a type 3. This is not a recast as the occassionally seen Stanley router
A sad update, the iron foundry in Batavia will be closing its doors
- Type 2X?
Things get a little fuzzy here- as is the case with any
good type study. It seems that while my pattern was away
a copy of it was made. The copy is made of plastic and
was made while the plane was letterless. I am not sure
if any of these planes were cast or sold- all I know is
that a copy was made and I did not receive the agreed upon
casting "royalty" if any were produced.
I would hope that this type is even more rare that the
- Type 4?
There are plans for a type 4. The goal is to provide more
room for a Bedrock style frog system- where the frog's position
could be changed without removing the blade.
Left Handed Planes
For left handed planes the type study is simple. Both
(cast iron) planes in existence are letterless type 1's! The plane
is a mirror image of the right handed plane. I wanted
to get mirror image drafted letters for this plane but
they don't exist. I may carve some so there can be a
type 2 of this plane.
It turns out that reverse pattern letters are available! They
are used on cores so the lettering will be positive. (The core
forms a void in the pattern.) I may add some reverse letterning
if I cast more of these.