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Rob Young

A key difference that has not been brought up between the Veritas design and the LN is the attachment of the blades to the plane body. The Veritas design works very much like the Stanley/Record 71 & 71-1/2 (in fact the Veritas large blades will fit the Stanley design if you flip the adjuster nut over to put the rim at the top of the post) while the LN uses a broached hole through the body of the plane and a square posted cutter.

The caveat to using the Veritas blades on vintage Stanleys is that on some of the earliest 71-1/2 models, the threaded rod may not be long enough. And for the Type I 71-1/2 which does NOT have the threaded adjuster, it is a non-issue as you simply clamp down with the collar and tap things into place. Same goes for the model 71 but the dates shift about a bit as it is an older design than the 71-1/2. Also, prior to 1892, the model #71 was a closed throat design, only later did it become an open-throat design.

Frankly, the business about removing the heads to sharpen being easier I find to be a bit silly as it is little to no trouble to sharpen the traditional “L” shape on a couple of stones with the leg hanging off the stone. No messing about with allen keys and small screws.

I also don’t find the fence to be all that useful except maybe for curved edges. For a straight edge, I’ll probably just use a plow plane for the bulk of the work and the router w/ fence only if I have stopped grooves. A bit more difficult to groove around a curve with a #45…

I’ve used both, both work well, both are VERY nice. The depth stop works fine on both (the old vs. new design on the Veritas is not a big deal). Frankly, I don’t bother much with the depth stop because I’ll either be working to a line which may be a tad different from piece to piece or I wait until all the related joints need trimming and do them as a group. In that situation, you just keep adjusting down the blade in small steps, hitting each piece in turn at each setting until done. It is very simple and easy to just adjust the cutter down or up until it registers in a knife line.

It has been my experience that the LN design with the broached hole holds the blade more solidly during heavy cutting. However, you aren’t generally going to be taking heavy cuts with a router plane.

On the whole, my preference has been for the closed throat design, I can see perfectly well what I’m doing given the port in the base and having that extra material across the front is just a little more bearing surface. Or if needed, I make an offset sub-base and have plenty of support on my workpiece. YMMV.

Full disclosure : at home I have a Stanley 71-1/2 type 5 ( is a nice type study if you go looking for vintage tools) with two original blades (narrow and standard width chisel fronts) and I did purchase a set of the Veritas blades to try out. I do like the spear point but more frequently I use the vintage ones. My experiences with the Veritas was using a borrowed one for maybe a week and the LN model we have at the KCWG shop for use by our members along with a vintage 71 (I don’t remember the type).