Tagged: Replacement plane handles
I have a Stanley 5 1/2 Jack plane and a 4 1/2 smoothing plane with broken handles which I would like to replace. Does anyone know if new handles are available to purchase? Or could someone offer some advice to a novice on how to make some out of wood please?
Here is one source….
Jimmy, here are some templates for making your own. I replaced the tote on my #7 last year using these. Go find some nice wood and follow the instructions. It’s a fun project!
Tote making is probably beyond the novice unless you’ve got a drill press and some experience in rigging jigs to hold the wood for drilling. The rasp work is pretty straight forward.
Two good recommendations above from Greg and Dave.
Another source I highly recommend is:
Bill Rittner makes totes and knobs that are far better (fit, finish and comfort) than any others I’ve seen.
They’re a little spendy but I think well worth it ( Think Lie-Nielsen).
Attachments:You must be logged in to view attached files.
Thank you Greg, Dave and Craig for the replies, those are certainly nice totes ( my apologies for calling them handles, lots to learn) in the links above. I am in the UK but I will inquire about overseas shipping and costs.
I have downloaded the templates and might have a bash at making one, there is a Norway Maple at work which dropped a limb about nine months ago and some Alder also, provided they are not rotten or riddled with wood boring insect holes I may be able to use the timber.
I don’t have a drill press but may be able to use the technique that Paul uses for drilling chisel handles.
There are a few places you can get rosewood ones made by crown in the uk:
The other alternative is to look on ebay, which would probably be where I would start. Those veritas plans do look interesting. If you do decide to make them, do let us know how it goes, would be interesting to hear.
Hope it goes well.
Thanks for the links Philip. I did take a look on Ebay but didn’t get many results, that could be because I searched for handles rather than totes…..ooops! I’ll have another look.
I’m taking my bow saw to work tomorrow, hopefully I’ll come home with a suitable lump of wood from those fallen limbs. I’ll post my results on this thread if I have a go (which I think I will)
Jimmy – I have one each of the replacement handle from Bill Ritter and The Best Things so I thought I’d offer an opinion. I put the Ritter is on my #5 as I thought I’d use it most, especially for heavy work like scrubbing. It is a marvelous fit on the hand, easily makes any plane feel great. If you have one plane you use a lot, it may be worth the $50 to have one (that’s for both front and rear). The Best Things tote is a nice replica of a Stanley from rosewood of some kind. Shiney varnish finish and works well for ~ $29 tote only as I recall. Put it on a #4 I re-built and am liking more. My go-to plane is still my #3 and I’d like to put another Ritter on it, but can’t justify it unless its’ stock tote breaks.
Jimmy, the hardest part of making a handle/tote is drilling the long slender hole through the block of wood. Carefully mark out the holes using the directions in the templates I linked to. If you don’t have a drill press then just eyeball it from both ends. I had to use a long thin rasp to clean out the hole because I was a bit off but it doesn’t really matter if it’s not dead on anyway. The rest is just shaping with a rasp and sandpaper.
Jimmy, No worries. I should have added that the feature that gives the Rittner tote a better feel is that Bill starts with a thicker blank (1 1/4 ” as I recall) and it has a noticeably fuller feel when it’s finished. As I have small hands, I’m sure the fuller feel is even more welcome to those with larger hands. If you’re going to make your own tote I’d recommend you start with a thicker blank. The Rittners come in cherry or walnut which looks nice and works well. No need to go to rosewood.
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.