Metric Plough Plane Blades

This is a set of blades (aka cutters aka irons) for my combination plough planes. They're designed to fit in either the Stanley #45 or the Stanley 55, both of which take the same design of blade. My Stanley #45 came with a full set of the original blades, but they're all in imperial sizes and I wanted the convenience of a metric set to save me having to do a lot of maths!

I started by making a couple of the smaller sizes that I thought would be most useful (4 mm, 5 mm and 6 mm), but since they were quite easy and quick to make I decided to complete the set and put them in a simple box. I now have every integer size from 3 mm to 10 mm and also 12 mm, 15 mm, 16 mm, 18 mm, 20 mm, 25 mm & 30 mm.

They're made out of 3 mm thick gauge plate (O1 tool steel), cut and milled to size, slotted (for the pin that pushes the blade in and out) and then hardened and tempered before being sharpened.

All of the cutters are essentially the same with the exception of the 3 mm one (of which I made two so I had a spare). The 3 mm cutter is 4 mm wide and only reduced to 3 mm near the tip. The advantage of that is there's a lot more material at the back for the pin slot.

The cutter box is made out of a piece of ash that was resawn into two pieces. After resawing, the inside faces were planed flat and then a large opening was hollowed out in one piece with a router plane. Once that was done, a pair of 3D-printed inserts were glued into the hollow (leaving a space between them) and the two ash pieces were glued back together. The resulting piece was then cut into two pieces to separate the lid and then the cut edge was planed to be fractionally above the 3D-printed inserts.

Threaded inserts (designed for heat-setting into plastic) were glued into the body and some cap screws are used to hold the lid in place. Some short brass knurled pieces are glued onto the head of the cap screws to make it easy to open and close the lid.

This website is free, but costs me money to run. If you'd like to support this site, please consider making a small donation or sending me a message to let me know what you liked or found useful.