Another question about block planes
  Re: (...)
I am looking at a Stanley Model # 12-960 plane.
I need a small plane for various projects.
Do I need to sharpen it out of the box?

Anyone who owns this plane have any advice for me?
Thanks for reading.
  Re: Another question about block planes by Herb G (I am looking at a St...)
Had to look up the plane and yes you most likely will have to sharpen the blade to start with.
Jim home of the Chain Leg Vise.
  Re: Re: Another question about block planes by Boatman53 (Had to look up the p...)
There is a super nice block plane in s& s from Lee Valley.
"Life is too short for bad tools.".-- Pedder 7/22/11
  Re: Re: Another question about block planes by Scott W (There is a super nic...)
That would be nice to have, but way out of my price zone by a factor of 4. The plane I'm looking at is only $30.
  Re: Another question about block planes by Herb G (I am looking at a St...)
Herb: buying new Stanley "contractor" production can be hit or miss, in the sense that it needs a bit of tuning right out of the box; that being said, these can be ok planes, its pretty hard to screw up making a block plane, but its also hard to make one that works well right out of the box.

First, pay attention to the iron. Flatten the back down to the finest grit stone you have, then sharpen it properly.

Next, take the lever cap and at the end where the cap makes contact with the iron, take it to the stones and flatten that surface at the contact point on the bottom of the cap, as these new planes tend to have the paint get bumpy, such that you don't have full, and firm, contact between the lever cap and the iron, this can produce chatter.

Third, check the mating between the adjustable mouth plate and the sole to make sure it is coplanar. if not, lap the sole on some sandpaper on a flat reference surface. It may be a good idea to make lateral lines on the sole with a sharpie and lap it on some fine sandpaper on a reference surface until the lines are gone, but this is getting pretty anal retentive about the sole, and it will likely be ok out of the box.

Fourth, check the surface where the iron beds to the sole, I haven't seen one of these in a while and can't remember how it is bedded, but the issue again is paint on the mating surfaces don't let the iron sit flat, absolutely flat. This affects performance. File or stone (if you have small honing stones) it flat such that the iron is firmly seated.

If all this is done, or already correct on the plane as delivered, then it will likely give you yeoman's service. Think about a replacement iron of better steel to further improve it as the iron is clearly not vintage with a laminated iron. Not for nothing, but this is 25 years of experience in tuning planes, I've giving you pearls here!

Good luck.

However, if you want something that works with only some light honing out of the box, buy a LV or LN, and you won't be sorry, and will only cry once.
Credo Elvem ipsum etiam vivere
Non impediti ratione cogitationis
  Re: Another question about block planes by Herb G (I am looking at a St...)
I have one modern Stanley block plane. It's larger than the one you listed. I don't care for the lateral adjust mechanism. If you're a hammer tap guy like me, you will find it hard to adjust because the lever cap completely covers the blade. I use a hammer that has a taper on it (I forget what that's called). The blade doesn't last very long before it needs rehoning too.

Mine weighs a ton.

  Re: Another question about block planes by Herb G (I am looking at a St...)
I bought a new Stanley block plane a couple years ago. I opened the box and then put the plane back in the box and sent it to my son with explicit instructions that this plane probably would never function and that he should consider it a learning experience if he wanted to mess with it. I consider modern Stanley anything to be a waste of time and money.

Listen to Rich {Admiral}. He truly knows whereof he speaks.
Thanks,  Curt
"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards."
      -- Soren Kierkegaard
  Re: Another question about block planes by Herb G (I am looking at a St...)
Personally I wouldn't buy new, get with Admiral, Steve F., Dave Parkis to name a few people who sell good used tools.

  Re: Another question about block planes by Herb G (I am looking at a St...)
Buying a modern plane has some advantages: the Woodriver has better metallurgy and is a copy of the best traditional design, the LN has superior production values and improved design, the Veritas has design and quality improvements as well as PM V11 blades. If you value your time the only way to buy a modern stanley is to find a dealer who has around 10 and will let you open the boxes and check the planes with a machinest's square. One of the 10 will probably be OK. Planes are a precision tool and buying a crappy one is OK if you want to learn to fix broken tools.
homo homini lupus
"The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity." Yeats
Si vis pacem, para bellum
Quodcumque potest manus tua facere instaner opere Ecclesiastes

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