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Thread: English Bailey..?

  1. #1
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    Default English Bailey..?

    I'm doing my best in trying not to gain any moss while slowly rolling down the handplane slope, but my lack of knowledge has me at a snail's pace. I haven't had much luck searching for older planes, so I've decided to pop my Vertias cherry on their apron plane. From what I've read here on CWW, it's the perfect starter block plane, that won't collect dust when my abilities mature. However, no matter how a spin my budget, I can't seem to work my way into a new full sized jointer. Which brings me to my point....

    I found a #7 Bailey made in England.
    100_5801.jpg100_5800.jpg100_5803.jpg$(KGrHqR,!gwE91q!oP(gBPvoSNDqhg~~48_20.jpg

    So my questions are...

    1) Are all Baileys created equal...? From what little I know. The bailey versions of the stanley planes are supposedly the good ones, but I didn't realize they were made in England as well.

    2) Does the sole look salvageable...? I have the means to precision grind the sole if the need be, but if it's a lost cause, why bother right...

    3) ..and finally the big one. What's a English made Bailey worth...?

    Any help will be very appreciated guys. ...And if you think it's worth picking up at the right price, please don't be shy with your opinion and the value you think it has. I plan on being in Lee Valley tomorrow morning, and if the above Bailey desn't get any positive responses by then. You never know what i may come home with...lol

    Thanks in advance

    Jarrett

  2. #2
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    I have an English 4 1/2, a later model and it is nice. I think you can give it a try. Frankly I haven't noticed many differences between the English 4 1/2 and other old Baileys I have (US & Canadian).

  3. #3

    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    The English-made ones were as good or better for much of their production, Baileys appear to have been made in England a little bit longer than in the US.

    It is hard to judge how bad the sole is from one partial picture, but it looks quite salvageable to me. That pitting does not even look that deep. Take the top layer off with some sandpaper. As long as the plane sits flat at the heel, both sides of the mouth, and the toe, the rust damage is just cosmetic. In general, unless you are really good, precision grinding is likely to take too much material. Simple lapping is usually more than adequate.

    Baileys of that era are not generally worth that much, and the English-made ones in general are worth less because the collector market is dominated by interest in the US made ones. As a user it should be an attractive option.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Clean it up and use it and maybe buy a #4 size smoother from Lee Valley. You will use it 10x as often as the jointer and you can upgrade later. Remember you can never have too many tools.
    Larry

  5. #5
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    I say don't waste your time and buy a 5 1/2 from Lie Nielsen. You can use this as your jointer and your smoother and you'll love it out of the box.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Many thanks for the feedback guys... I'll make an offer and see if the seller bites.

    Quote Originally Posted by RPLeon View Post
    I say don't waste your time and buy a 5 1/2 from Lie Nielsen. You can use this as your jointer and your smoother and you'll love it out of the box.
    Quote Originally Posted by J. Vibert View Post
    However, no matter how a spin my budget, I can't seem to work my way into a new full sized jointer.
    You could call and/or size the plane any thing/way you want, but you're suggestion is about $250 more then I'd be willing to spend. If new were an option, I'd buy Veritas anyway and save $100.
    Last edited by J. Vibert; 07-04-2012 at 03:44 AM.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Just a brief addition: Last summer I purchased a really nice, clean, sweethart era #7 made in the US. The seller asked $70 (in New York state), so I think you should not be paying more than $40-50 for the one you want to get, given its cosmetic condition.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Thanks for adding that Kris... The seller accepted my offer, which was within the range you suggested. Looks like I need to stop collecting, and start learning how to fettle these things...lol

  9. #9
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Quote Originally Posted by J. Vibert View Post
    Thanks for adding that Kris... The seller accepted my offer, which was within the range you suggested. Looks like I need to stop collecting, and start learning how to fettle these things...lol
    Jarrett,

    Congratulations and the price was fair..... I generally don't recommending going thru the time and risk of grinding the sole (flatter) but I recall you have access to machine grinding tools; grinding will open up the throat a bit but I don't think that's big downside on a number 7.

    I recommend a buying strategy looking at buy new one or two bevel up planes and most of the specialty planes such as shoulder, etc. but for bevel down bench planes there are still plenty of classic solid used such planes available at a fifth or quarter of the cost of new LV or LN ones..... remember the Pickering (Ontario) sale by the Tools of the Trade group is on Sunday, September 30th.

    good luck

    michael

  10. #10
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Thanks Micheal,

    I just received a text from my sister, and she has the #7 in hand. I won't have it till the end of the week, but that will give me time to enjoy my brand spank'n new veritas LA block. My first in store experience with Lee Valley was an exceptional one, but I'll save my glowing review for another thread.

    Thanks again everyone... I'd be completely lost in the realm of hand tools if it weren't for this forum.

  11. #11

    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Post some more pictures when you get it - collectively there is a lot of experience with restoring old planes on this forum.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    =J. Vibert;415518] but that will give me time to enjoy my brand spank'n new veritas LA block. My first in store experience with Lee Valley was an exceptional one, but I'll save my glowing review for another thread.
    I can see you sliding down that slippery slope from here. And you know no pictures yada yada yada........
    Last edited by Kris in Toronto; 07-05-2012 at 12:50 AM. Reason: html tags
    Mike @ Buck Lake

  13. #13
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeddd View Post
    I can see you sliding down that slippery slope from here. And you know no pictures yada yada yada........
    IMAG1193.jpg

    does that one suffice...?

  14. #14
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    I'm a bit late on this one, but English bailey pattern planes, whether Stanley or Record are generally thought over here to have taken a significant dive in quality from the 1960's on. Pre WW2 examples are the best to go for. The decline is generally considered to date from the time the makers started to seriously chase the DIY market (where price was the omly thing that mattered) as trade users started to move more into electric tools. Was the same trend apparent on the other side of the Atlantic?

    Jim

  15. #15

    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fetcham View Post
    I'm a bit late on this one, but English bailey pattern planes, whether Stanley or Record are generally thought over here to have taken a significant dive in quality from the 1960's on. Pre WW2 examples are the best to go for. The decline is generally considered to date from the time the makers started to seriously chase the DIY market (where price was the omly thing that mattered) as trade users started to move more into electric tools. Was the same trend apparent on the other side of the Atlantic?

    Jim
    Exactly the same trend, with the differences being that the decline was even more dramatic, a bit earlier, and Stanley dropped the Bailey name at almost the outset of the process. So an English Bailey from circa 1950 is still a pretty good tool, whereas a Stanley Type 19 is already fairly mediocre. The Type 20 from 1961 onward are not serious tools, so the end point sounds like it was about the same time. But even the English Baileys from the 60's on compare somewhat favourably to their North American counterparts.

    It is hard to guess with limited info, plus the differences with English manufacture, but J.V's is either just pre-WW2, or just after.
    Last edited by Arminius; 07-05-2012 at 06:56 PM.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Well, I'll be sure to post whatever pics are necessary to help date the plane. I won't have it in hand till sunday though.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Quote Originally Posted by J. Vibert View Post
    IMAG1193.jpg

    does that one suffice...?
    Thats more like it, you know we all like pictures. Your going to like the Lee Valley block plane, I've got one in my arsenal and it gets alot of use.
    Have fun with your new tools, but be careful they are addictive.
    Mike @ Buck Lake

  18. #18

    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Quote Originally Posted by J. Vibert View Post
    Well, I'll be sure to post whatever pics are necessary to help date the plane. I won't have it in hand till sunday though.
    It is actually quite difficult with the ones that are made outside the US. Probably the key thing to take a look at to get the basic era right is what the blade surface of the frog looks like.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    No Raised lip on the heel and toe of casting, but a raised ring and a tall front knob.
    Rosewood Knob and tote, no patent dates, horizontal knurling on the brass adjustment wheel,
    Kidney bean lever cap, my guess is a Type 16 (1933-1941)
    If the casting under the frog is a "T" shape I think I'm right,
    If its a "Y" shape than it's a Type 17/18/19, but a really weird one as they all have a raised lip at the toe and heel.
    Have a great weekend.

  20. #20

    Default Re: English Bailey..?

    Quote Originally Posted by Maxwell View Post
    No Raised lip on the heel and toe of casting, but a raised ring and a tall front knob.
    Rosewood Knob and tote, no patent dates, horizontal knurling on the brass adjustment wheel,
    Kidney bean lever cap, my guess is a Type 16 (1933-1941)
    If the casting under the frog is a "T" shape I think I'm right,
    If its a "Y" shape than it's a Type 17/18/19, but a really weird one as they all have a raised lip at the toe and heel.
    Have a great weekend.
    That would be my guess too, but the non-US ones very frequently break the 'type' rules.

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