Cracked Blade of My #4 1/2 While Flattening the Back

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Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 19 total)
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  • #133907
    Matt McGrane
    Participant

    I was going over the iron of my #4 1/2 and realized the back was not perfectly flat. I recently saw Paul in a video fixing this by rapping the convex side with a Nylon mallet. After a few raps with a mallet and getting no change in flatness, I thought I’d raise the two sides of the iron up on credit cards and rap again.

    BAD IDEA!! See the pictures. Got a huge crack from cutting edge to screw slot! Arrrgh! On the bright side, now I have some metal I can use to make scratch stocks. And I’ve ordered a replacement iron from Hock Tools, along with a new chip breaker since the original was badly worn and did not mate well with the iron.

    OK, so Paul didn’t raise up the sides of his iron before hitting it with a hammer. At least I learned something.

    Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016: http://tinyshopww.blogspot.com/

    #133911

    Bummer…but I have a question on the 4.5…Right now my go to plane is a number 4 but have been thinking about a 4.5 as our guild is having a Lie-Nielsen tool show end of the month.

    The difference between a 4 and 4.5 is big. Longer, wider, heavier. Just curious about your 4.5. Is it your go to plane?

    Advantages/disadvantages over the 4?

    Thanks

    Located in Honeoye Falls NY USA. The Finger Lakes region of Western NY.

    "If you give me 6 hours to fell a tree, I will take the first 4 to sharpen my axe" Abe Lincoln

    #133914
    Matt McGrane
    Participant

    @pheasantww – Brett, I just got this plane in October/November, but I have used it a lot. It was turning into my go-to plane, supplanting my #4. I really like the weight, but what I like the most is the width. I wouldn’t have thought the extra 3/8″ width would make that much of a difference, but it does.

    I got the plane from a tool dealer for $125 (plus $13 shipping) and there are a few things I’m not happy about. The blade was pitted, the chip breaker was badly worn near where it mates with the blade, so they would never be able to mate perfectly. The sole needed flattening, too.

    I tried to return it the other day, but the dealer was not going for it. If I had it to do over, I would’ve not been so damned cheap and plunked down the money for a Lie-Nielsen.

    Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016: http://tinyshopww.blogspot.com/

    #133920

    Thanks for the comments. Ive been good so far this year so I think I will go for it.

    Located in Honeoye Falls NY USA. The Finger Lakes region of Western NY.

    "If you give me 6 hours to fell a tree, I will take the first 4 to sharpen my axe" Abe Lincoln

    #133921
    Edmund
    Participant

    Sorry to hear about your blade. I suppose you could weld the crack / have it welded for very little money, but I’ll bet you’ll notice an improvement with the Hock.

    #133941
    Matt McGrane
    Participant

    I got the new Hock blade and chip breaker in the mail Wednesday evening. It took me about a half hour to flatten the back and hone the bevel. It’s not yet singing like I had hoped. I think I still need to do some work on the plane to get it working well.

    Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016: http://tinyshopww.blogspot.com/

    #133942
    Mark Armstrong
    Participant

    I would check your stones, plates, or whatever your sharpening media you use is flat.
    I have seen diamond plates not flat.

    Dagenham, Essex, England

    #133947
    spmcfa
    Participant

    Brett,
    I’d recommend you at least check out the Woodriver 4-1/2 b4 plunking down $$$ for the L-N. I own multiple planes of both brands. The L-N is a beautiful piece of craftsmanship. Technologically and metallurgically, the Woodriver is its equal at about 1/2 the cost. Totes are Bubinga instead of Cherry,and lever cap is stainless instead of bronze. Castings on both are stress relieved ductile iron. I can get the same gossamer thin shavings with either. See Rob Cosman’s comments on YouTube about the WR V3 planes. Good luck!

    To upgrade ANY iron bench plane, hard to beat Rob Cosman’s irons made by IBC.

    #133953

    Spmcfa, Thanks, I will check it out…

    Located in Honeoye Falls NY USA. The Finger Lakes region of Western NY.

    "If you give me 6 hours to fell a tree, I will take the first 4 to sharpen my axe" Abe Lincoln

    #133961
    NikonD80
    Participant

    Ouch. I can all too easily imagine the sick feeling you must have got when you heard that crack.

    Keep Calm and have a Cup of Tea

    #133964
    Ed
    Participant

    Did you run into any issues putting the Hock iron in your plane? I replaced a blade in a #8 with a Hock and it was too thick to engage the pin. After some improvisation, I made it work. Did yours work straight up?

    #133967
    Matt McGrane
    Participant

    Yes, Ed, it worked fine right off the bat. All I had to do was to adjust the lever cap screw to compensate for the extra thickness of the Hock blade/breaker.

    Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016: http://tinyshopww.blogspot.com/

    #133968
    Matt McGrane
    Participant

    @nikond80 – Yeah, I knew what happened immediately when I heard the sound. Bummer! I would have been more bummed if the blade hadn’t been so pitted, but still bummed anyway.

    Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016: http://tinyshopww.blogspot.com/

    #133971
    David Perrott
    Participant

    Interested in what you think of the blade. I bought one for my first plane since I spent too much time online and “learned” you have to replace the stock iron. I didn’t think it was better, just more difficult to sharpen. I use it in my no.5 to turn it into a smoother since its so much thicker and I don’t have it cambered. I also don’t use my no.5 as a smoother, and now prefer wooden planes, so it basically just collects dust. Maybe try to barter with it sometime at a tool meet.

    #133983
    Ed
    Participant

    The Hock blade I bought to replace the pitted blade in my old #8 cuts beautifully, although it was too thick to engage the pin, as I mentioned (but fixed). I don’t have trouble sharpening it. With more experience now, I’d look for a “regular” blade rather than a super thick or otherwise fancy blade, but I must say that so often, used tools have had useless pitted irons that, if it comes to replacing a blade, I’m not going to buy from eBay unless they show clear photos of all aspects of the blade. I’ll pay the price for a new blade just to avoid a week or two frustration. I’m certainly happy with the old Stanley blades when I get a good one without pits. My Clifton #3 (5 to 10 years old) is the best cutting plane I own, by far. I have no idea why.

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