The Sandusky No 66

The Sandusky No 66 came to me in pretty good shape. The usual rust was on the metal parts, but no major pitting. The body was very dry. There was no checking or damage which was a very good thing. It makes the restoration a lot quicker. The iron was coated in some heavier rust or gunk.

To begin this restoration I took the usual approach, tear it apart. This always seems much easier to say it in to actually do. A quick few whacks with the mallet knocked the iron out easily. I believe it was just pushed together and not set. With that out of the way and not worried about cutting my hands on the iron I moved on to the skate. This was the first tricky part. There was rust on it and it filled the slot on the screw head. I had to take a knife and scrape the slots somewhat clear to even get a screw driver in the slot. Even though I cleared the slot I had to use a lot of downward force so that the screw didn’t pop out of the slot and mess up the screw head. With 5 screws out I went to removing the skate which included using a hammer and a punch. Yep, I had to beat it out of the slot. The skate was rusted into place.

Now I could move on to the actual restoration portion. I started with using a wire brush to scrape as much rust and build up off of the metal portions. This did not get much of the job done. I could have stuck the metal into a vinegar bath, but opted to use a wire wheel. This gets the job done quickly and the wires seems to get into all the pitted areas. Whatever is left afterwards I took a scotch brite pad to it and removed the rest of the rust. To me it seems to make the metal get a uniform look. I also used to scotch brite pad to clean the screws.

After all the metal was done it was time to work on the body of the plane. I haven’t tried any real technique to really clean wooden planes yet, but I’m working on that part. Most of my cleanup for the body involves a paint brush or rags and removing all the dust/dirt from the corners. When that is done I go to my main method for giving life to planes again, the BLO. To me boiled linseed oil works great and is a fast application. I also like that it darkens the wood a bit after drying. It gives it an even more antique feel.

After the plane was dry, this one only needed 2 coats of oil, I started the reassembly. This only took a few minutes and the plane looked great. A light coat of paste wax was applied afterwards to help protect the plane from dust and dirt. With the wax on the body it is easier to clean it up as well. The plane iron took only a few minutes to set up quickly and before long I was taking shavings and getting groovy.

Woodworker and blacksmith

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