We know by the amount of finely made Scottish style castings
that show up, that someone, likely several people, were casting
these plane bodies in Scottish foundries.
Many of the largest makers of the time, Slater, Marples,
Preston, Norris, Mathieson, and Spiers advertised castings
available for purchase, but none that Iíve seen recorded are in
the Scottish style as this plane is. So who made them and why
are they never marked? I suppose it remains a bit of a mystery.
I have always preferred the heavier smoothing plane like the
Stanley # 4 Ĺ size, over a # 4 or # 3 sized smoother. I like the
weight and the ease in which such a plane will push through the
more difficult wood grain. This plane takes everything to the
Itís massive and finely honed, 3/16Ē thick, parallel Marples iron
allows me to tackle even the most gnarly of wood grains with
ease. There is no chatter or skipping with this plane. I have it
set to take a very fine smoothing cut, and it does so with ease.
Here I am planing some Lyptus wood (a plantation grown
Eucalyptus species.) Itís not a particularly difficult wood but
just what I was working on at this time. This Scottish plane
takes beautiful shavings and leaves a fine surface, ready for a
This planes rear handle fits my hand wonderfully. There is a
reassurance felt when the top horn wraps over the hand between
the thumb and back of the hand. A sure grip is giving confidence
when wielding this heavy plane.
This plane holds a special spot in my till of infills. I
purchased it several years ago from renowned tool dealer Jim
Bode and had appreciated the purchase ever since.
Scottish made planes are some of the finest, and this plane has
to be among the finest Scottish planes I own. It is cherished
and appreciated every time I pick it up and make shavings with
it. It truly belongs on my bench.
Ryan Sparreboom is a 39 year old hobbyist woodworker and tool
collector living in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
He enjoys building fine furniture and small wood crafts of
all types. He began woodworking about 14 years ago with some
simple projects for his home. Since then, his woodworking skills
have improved and his work has been featured twice in Canadian
Ryan has expanded his woodworking to
include turning fine bowls, vases and other turned wood items.
His craft has expanded in recent years to collecting
woodworking tools, primarily hand planes, focusing on British
and Scottish made infill and wood planes. He finds great joy in
the history of the tools and in honoring their heritage by
continuing to restore and use them in his own work.