Tacks in Wooden Hand Plane

//Tacks in Wooden Hand Plane
Tacks in Wooden Hand Plane2018-07-13T15:18:23+00:00
  • Creator
  • #2033798

    Post count: 2

    I’m new to wooden hand planes so this is a question about something I noticed with many of them. My recent acquisition of a moving fillister is a prime example. Why did the wood workers of the past drive tacks into the body of the planes? My fillister has three tack holes and three tacks still in it. They are placed at the back of the body just behind the iron, there are no cracks in it….not sure why they are in it.





  • Author
  • Mike in TN
    Post count: 284

    Hi Wes,

    Sorry but I really couldn’t find the tacks/tack holes in the photo. I have honestly never seen that but I have seen lots of strange adaptations by previous users. If the tacks are placed on the ends or on the top of the toe then it might be an attempt to prevent damage from adjusting hammers (much like strike buttons). Another possibility is that they were simply being used as a quick and simple way to indicate ownership, much like some tool owners will paint their tools a specific color or stamp/carve their initials into them. It might also be just hammer practice from a mischievous child. I could see my four year old grandson doing something like this.

    Have fun.

  • wesneveu
    Post count: 2

    Thanks Mike, I should have taken better pictures before I started but it always seem to be that way with me. Here are a couple of shots. I decided to do a brass inlay to cover them up, being unable to extract them i drove them in deeper and proceed with the inlay.

  • Mike in TN
    Post count: 284

    Looking at the photos makes me think that a previous owner attempted to nail/screw on a shop made handle of some sort. That, and your modification, are examples of the many changes that who-knows-how-many previous owners make to old tools. I normally try to keep the ones that I do to a minimum, and when I do make them, I use traditional modifications and/or corrections aimed at keeping the tools in proper performance. A good example would be patching the sole of a worn wooden plane to close up the mouth. If an old tool is a truly rare and unique example then it should be left as-is. If, however, the tool is a common one then it becomes a “canvas” for the expression of the owner/user.

    Have fun with it,

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