Posts Tagged With: Tool Restoration

Disston D8 Do-Over

I picked up a D8 rip saw recently.  Like my Stanley #5 that I’m reworking, this isn’t old enough to be collectable, and isn’t ready for immediate use either.  I suspect that it’s never been re-sharpened, and luckily it’s nice and straight.  Not pretty, not sharp, but straight without any kinks or broken teeth.

The finish on the handle is flaking off, and the fasteners are all crusty.  The blade has some minor pitting, but not too bad.  I was expecting/hoping that the handle bolts were brass, but they are just chromed.  Or were chromed.

I striped the finish off by soaking it in lacquer thinner for a few minutes and scrubbing it with a coarse steel wool pad.  Someone stamped their name into the handle, I’ll sand it off but I expect it will show up when I finish it.  The wood looks like cherry!

Also, the horns are too blunt, no style.  I’ll sand more curve into them so they come to a crisp point.

After sanding out the name, shaping the horns and sanding everything to 220 grit I sank the handle into a bag of danish oil (linseed oil plus varnish) and let it soak for an hour.

Meanwhile I cleaned up the saw plate.  I went over it with “Navel Jelly”, which cleaned up some of the rust, but it’s pretty weak results.  I knew that from past experience, but it was the only rust remover they had at the local hardware store.  I went at it twice with the rust remover, lightly scrubbing it with a brass brush and letting it sit for 20 minutes between applications.

After I washed off the second application I dried the saw plate and got out the “wet-or-dry” sandpaper.  I sanded both faces starting with 220, then 320 then 400 then 600 grits, using WD-40 to “wet sand” it.

Then I needed to clean up the saw nuts.  I chucked each one up in my electric hand drill (one at a time) and spun it into a piece of 600 grit sandpaper that I held in the heel of my other hand.  Then I spun each one into a rag that had a spot of liquid white rouge on it.  They cleaned up reasonable well.

Then I re-assembled everything.  The handle will need several more coats of oil to finish it off nicely.  Overall it looks nice I think.  The saw plate is nice and bright and the handle looks much better.  Of course it’s still as dull as a grade school drop out, but I’m going to pack it up and ship it to Bad Axe Tool Works to be jointed, set and sharpened.  I read about how to sharpen a saw, and while it seems easy enough I want to get a feel for a properly sharpened saw before I try my hand.

I can’t wait to get it back, sharpened!  Check out the “improved” horns, that makes me happy.

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Restoring a Stanley #5

Well, actually “restoring” is the wrong verb.  This plane isn’t particularly collectible, and collectors might not approve of my approach.  Whatever.  My goal is to make it work right and look sharp.  No pun intended.

All of the parts were dirty and rusty.  Luckily I know how to fix that.  A few minutes in the bead blast cabinet and everything was clean and rust-free.  I started with the clamp-thingie, most of the chrome was rusted off, and I tried to make sure I blasted off any remaining flecks.

First, with the, ahhh, patina…

Then bead blasted.  I use 220 grit beads at about 120psi.  Better.  You can see where the rust has eaten away the surface.

Then I sanded it with 220 and 320 grit.  I am shooting for a satin or brushed finish.  On the lever cap. My hands are OK as-is.  I’ll probably work this a bit more and see if I can get rid of more pits.  Then I’d like to have it nickel plated, there is a shop near work that does electroless nickel plating.  Maybe paint in the background around the lettering?

I also blasted the plane body, frog, blade and chip breaker.  Clean is good.  The “japaning”, which apparently is an asphalt derivative, took a little extra work to remove.  It stuck in a few recessed spots, so I scraped it with a screwdriver and blasted it again.  Now I can start improving things.

I watched Rob Cosman’s “Great Handplane Revival” and picked up a couple of tricks.  First I wanted to make sure the face of the frog that supports the blade was absolutely flat.  In the DVD Rob removed the lateral and depth adjusters.  I don’t think that’s necessary.  I put some sandpaper on a piece of marble, right at the edge.  By sliding it side-to-side while rotating it I was able to sand the entire surface.  Just hang the protuberances from the adjusters over the edge.  You don’t have to do a lot, just sand it enough to get an even scratch pattern on the surface.

Here I’m flattening the surface for the blade.  The two red arrows show the surfaces that will need to be lapped in the next step.  I’m using 80 grit for this step.

Next lap the two frog attachment surfaces.  Again, don’t go crazy, just get to an even scratch pattern. Just slide it side-to-side with moderate pressure.

Finally, attach some sandpaper to the frog attachment points. Then seat the frog into the plane body and rub it back and forth.  This ensures that the attachment points in the plane bed are a mate to the frog.

After three sets of sandpaper (I used 180 for this step) I was satisfied with the seating area in the plane bed.  I’m ready to lap the sole and sides next, but that is for another day.

I also striped the paint off the knob and tote.  As expected, the wood is nothing special.  I’ll sand them, stain them and see how they look.  I expect I’ll be scrounging some nicer bits to replace these.




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Christmas Chisel

I’d mentioned earlier that I bought the “Exercises in Wood-Working” book+DVD set for my brother-in-law for christmas.  It came is just under the $50 gift limit, on special and with free shipping.

This morning I decided I’d add a chisel and a block of practice wood to the package.  The first few exercises in the book require a chisel.  I stopped by “Drew’s Used Tools” to see if I could pick up a decent used chisel.  Sadly, every time I go there I’m disappointed.  Rusty, abused, broken low quality tools.  There was one chisel that had potential, the rest were junk.

For the princely sum of $1.99 I was the proud (if temporary) owner of a beat up chisel.

The blade is actually nicely made, it has a large shoulder and tang so it should be pretty stout.  The handle, not so much.

I stoned all of the faces to get most of the rust off.  The back I worked until it was flat and free of pits.  I worked the back up to 1,000 grit sandpaper, ground a new bevel and sharpened it.  Sanded the handle, stained and oiled it.  If I had a little more time I’d think about making a better handle, but this will suffice.

It’s very sharp.  Sharp enough to pare across end grain on this really soft western red cedar that I have.

I also did a lot of work on the Stanley #5 restore today, but that will have to wait until tomorrow.

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Preview of Coming Distractions

I have a new-ish Stanley #5.  Yep, plastic tote, plastic front knob, plastic depth adjuster.  No adjuster on the frog, just loosen the screws and slide it around.  The blade vibrates like a tuning fork, and it doesn’t even begin to hold an adjustment.  But it looks like a plane.

So I decided to upgrade. Seriously.  $14.50 on ebay.  With shipping.

I don’t know the vintage on this plane, but it’s certainly not a “collectable” vintage.  The knob and tote are painted black over wood, and I believe that is the original finish.  I removed some of the finish from the knob, and it’s certainly not rosewood hiding under there.  But it has a metal blade adjuster and a frog adjuster.  I think it will make a fine upgrade, especially after some clean up, a fresh Ron Hock blade and perhaps a little hot rodding.

I pulled most of it apart, which took perhaps 45 seconds.  The last thing I disassembled with an eye toward improving was an Ironhead Sportster.  That took longer.

So, what do we have?  A lot of dirt and rust.  But at this point all the parts are accounted for and nothing seem broken.  The lateral adjuster is tight.  The wood is solid — if nothing else I can refinish that.

The blade might need to be resharpened…

But I have a replacement Hock iron already, so I’m good there.

I checked the sole with a straightedge and it needs a little flattening, but it’s straighter then the new #5 was out of the box.  If anyone is just starting out and wants the late model #5 I’ll make you a, uhm, a Sweethart deal.

Next steps are to clean up the parts, re-assemble it and lap in the sole and sides.  Then I’ll pull it apart for detailing and try to avoid getting carried away.

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