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How to Identify a Stanley Plane

    • 1). Disassemble the wood hand plane using the screwdriver.

    • 2). Clean all metal parts with a few drops of machine oil on the clean rag. Remove built-up dirt and wood resin from the parts. This will make reading the parts easier.

    • 3). Inspect the brass adjustment knob for the blade. In some cases, the brass knob is in two pieces. Printed on the side of the knob is the word "Woods." The top iron and cap iron may have "L.Baileys" stamped on the surface. This may be a very early Stanley plane.

    • 4). Read the cap iron for other clues to the plane's origin. The iron or cap iron may have "Stanley Rule and Level Co." printed in an arc. This is a later manufactured plane. There may also be a logo stamped on the same surface; it will read "Type 1."

    • 5). Examine the plane's parts for other stampings. These include the single word "Stanley." Other words and phrases will be stamped in various locations to identify the plane as a Stanley. These phrases include, "Rule & Level Co.," "New Britain Conn.," "Made in USA" and "USA." Some of the phrases may be in all capital letters. All Stanley planes will have one or more of the above phrases or words stamped on the metal parts to authenticate the manufacturer.

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