This particular series of plane, the Stanley No. 45 – 55, was developed at the peak of the metal hand plane design era ( late 1800’s). Stanley # 55 Special Cutters This is a near full set of 40 of the super hard to find Stanley Combination Plane Special Cutters. The plow has very substantial 1/4 inch thick cutters which is a design feature that was probably inherited from wooden plow planes which had thick, tapered blades. I love it for its gizmosity – the Stanley engineers threw in every little trick they could think of – but the 45 is easier to set up. I can take a couple pics and photoshop some arrows and circles and such for comparison, if anyone is interested, but it would be a few days til I get to it. It is just slightly later than the other example of a #42 plane that I have listed above.
Stanley #42 Millers Patent Gunmetal Plow Plane w/ Fillister & Cutters This is a very nice example of the Stanley Millers Patent #42 gunmetal plow plane. Sheffield Tony – Most of the blades I have appear to have never been used same with my Stanley ones (some of them still had the factory coating on the bevel). While there’s no debating that a dedicated plow will run circles around a combo set up to plow I do think you would be better served by a 55. I say 55 as opposed to a 45 as it has a broader range of iron profiles and handles the wider irons better. Stanley # 45 Combination Plane in Original Box The plane itself is NDM or Near Dead Mint.
The Stanley Millers Patent line of Combination Plow and Fillister planes is one of the most graphic, good looking, and sought after of all patented manufactured woodworking planes. Seems like some profiles really need for your lumber to be stepped down first with a rabbet plane in order to work right. On some variations, the slit is accompanied by a circular bevel, cut in the side of the plane which causes the shaving to eject to the side through the open body of the plane. Handplane Central Information for all types of hand planes, including wooden planes, infill planes and Stanley type planes.
This is a different situation and few # 45’s combination planes are known in their original boxes from this early or this period. For skew cuts, the LV Skew Rabbet Plane is great, and will do a far better job on rabbets than a Stanley 45. They also come in LH as well as RH to follow the grain. The difference is the cost of a 45 keeps going up and up. I’m a fan of my 45, but a lot of people just need an inexpensive plow plane that won’t cost over $100 on Ebay to get a complete kit with cutters, or more than that for a brand new Veritas.
Stanley Hollow & Round Auxiliary Bottoms & #5 Nosing Tool for Stanley # 45 Multi Plane This is a very nice and hard to find set of Hollow & Round Bottoms Stanley offered for use with the #45 plane. The 55 was designed for architectural work in softwoods like pine, but hardwoods can be worked with it as well. The 55 has two fences – one on each side so if you’re working an edge you can snug them both up and get very stable. All wood components are original rosewood, the plane body itself is nickel-plated.
The cutters of the 55 are literally suspended in midair—without benefit of a wooden molding plane’s shaped sole to support the cut. There’s quite a few videos on You-Tube, just do a search in You-tube for Stanley 45 plane” and you’ll see perhaps 20 videos, relevant to the care and use of the #45. Stanley # 55 Combination Plane w/ Cutters in Box This plane is in Good+ condition. Since the fence is supported by curved arms, this feature allows the plane to be worked farther from the edge than it normally would be.
The right fence also has a rosewood face that can be titled up to 45 degrees, but it uses conventional wood screws to do that. If it isn’t, the plane will bind – the cutter will tend to draw the fence tighter and tighter to the edge, the deeper it cuts – or the plane will ride off the board – the cutter pushes the fence away from the board’s edge, the deeper it cuts.
A jack plane is around 14 inches (360 mm) long, continues the job of roughing out, but with more accuracy and flattening capability than the scrub. I should learn how to balance a wide plane on a 3/4 or 1/2 inch side of a panel instead of grabbing a block plane, put a knuckle under the edge and guide it just like a fence to get a straight 90º edge. Stanley # A45 Aluminum Multi Plane This is by far the rarest of all Stanley combination planes. It has both fences and both sets of rods and the rare aluminum cam that came with the second generation model of this plane.
It has a plastic tote and is clearly not as well made as the older Stanley combo planes but looks perfectly serviceable and has a complete selection of unused blades. I’d no sooner sharpen my 55 cutters on their backs than I would my bench- plane blades and chisels. The iron is held into the plane with a wooden wedge, and is adjusted by striking the plane with a hammer. Stanley used a nomenclature for their profiles that differed from the standard names used by most of the wooden planemakers. I do love my 45 even though it’s an old more ornery version that the newer one, dead give away is older ones don’t have the rosewood fence.
Some planes, such as the Stanley Bedrock line and the bench planes made by Lie-Nielsen and WoodRiver/ Woodcraft have a screw mechanism that allows the frog to be adjusted without removing the blade. The plane can also be equipped with extra bottoms, that were originally purchased as options. When you could find one brand new, the plane and both sets of irons could be bought for about half the price of a Clifton. The plane is complete with cam, slitter, instructions, and several sets of extra long rods that the owner also custom made.
In a wooden plane, the taper on the blade helps to keep the iron tight against the wedge – backwards force on the iron serves to tighten it. The Stanley 41 uses screw pressure to hold the blade in place, so the only advantage to a thick cutter would be in reducing chatter. Unlike wooden molding planes, which are often sprung”—made to be used while tilted to counteract the tendency to wander—the 55 must be held vertically. At those prices, I could get a Stanley 45 (or near equivalent) with a respectable set of blades.
Apparently Stanley made a plane of some description that used similar disposable blades and the blade are still a available from Stanley. Stanley #42 Millers Patent Plow Plane This Stanley #42 Combination Plow and Fillister plane needs some attention and a few parts to make it complete. The next variant ( post- 1910) of this Stanley No. 45 had an fence adjustable with a fence adjusting screw setup which makes it easier to tweak the fence. Stanley # 55 Multi Plane in Tall Orange Box This Stanley # 55 is in the tall Sweetheart era box. Granted this is hearsay as I don’t own a 55 but that’s been the consistent story I’ve seen.
Find a 45 with all of the bits and pieces (it will help you sell it later when you find out how much nicer a wooden plow is to use). I would expect that the evolution of the 55 likely followed the 45 since the two planes are pretty closely related but I have no certain knowledge of this. Stanley #42 Millers Patent Gunmetal / Bronze Plow Plane w/ Fillister Bed & Wrap Around Fence This #42 gunmetal plow plane comes with its proper fillister bed, and wrap around bronze fence.
And while I was able to make some of the simple profile blades cut well, I had very little luck with the complex ones. The only thing I really know is how to identify a type 1 55 and that is because Dave told me how to. Has to do with the adjusting knob. Eventually, Stanley settled upon a stiff pasteboard box, with the earlier ones being tall and slender, and the later ones being more like a common shoebox. Up for sale is antique stanley combination plane #45 : -type 7 b, 1901-1906 Some rusty and dirty, need clean, plane in working condition.
Planes manufactured during the sweetheart era (1920’s and early 1930’s) can be found with this kind of depth stop, but most examples of the plane have a ‘solid’ depth stop. Stanley Millers Patent #41 Plow Plane w/ Fillister Bed Stanley’s Millers Patent line of Combination Plow and Fillister planes is one of the most graphic, good looking, and sought after of all patented manufactured woodworking planes.
A single knurled thumb screw can tweak the rosewood strip to set how far from the board’s edge the plane works, which is a real benefit when trying to cut a groove, a bead, or whatever at a precise location. The shoulder plane , is characterized by a cutter that is flush with the edges of the plane, allowing trimming right up to the edge of a workpiece.
If you know anything about a Stanley 55, you know that one of the reasons that most examples that are found out in the wild are in pristine condition is because they were hardly ever used. Planing wood along its side grain should result in thin shavings rising above the surface of the wood as the edge of the plane iron is pushed forward, leaving a smooth surface, but sometimes splintering occurs. A type 4 and dates from the period from 1890-1892 when Stanley first began to nickel plate this line of planes. Here’s a nice Stanley combination plane with the box and a complete set of blades, only two have ever been used as far as I can see.