WOW, just WOW.I have been very fortunate to have a great relationship with my father-in-law. Among common interests we share is a love of woodworking.
Unfortunately his age (84) combined with his health issues has prevented him from continuing his hobby.
He knows I am meticulous about taking care of my tools as is he, which is another reason he has given me a number of his tools some of them quite old.
Among them was a Millers Falls 75 block plane. Based on my research, the one I was given was manufactured between 1956 and 1976.
Unfortunately, his shop is not climate controlled. This along with frequent use resulted in some of the Japanning coming off and a good bit of rusting of the exposed areas.
I took apart the tool and soaked everything in Evapo-Rust for 24 hours (except the front knob of course). This was followed by scrubbing with a brass wire brush, rinse and drying. Using my cast iron table top as a work surface, I sanded the bottom and sides of the sole. There were a couple of severe scratches on the side so I began with 320 and then worked up to 400 and then 600. I was not able to eliminate all the scratches with what I had on hand. I may attempt doing so at a later date.
I wiped the whole thing in lacquer thinner and then taped off all the exposed metal areas with Frog tape. The lever cap was not removable so I had to tape that off as well. I also rolled some tape to fit into the threaded areas used by the knob, lever cap and blade adjustment screws.
Using Rustoleum Industrial Black, I painted the inside of the sole and cap with 3 light coats with 30 minute dry time between coats and let it sit for 24 hours.
While they were drying, I went to work on the iron. I went over it 320 and then 400 sandpaper. Using my Veritas Sharpening system I set the angle on the blade which I kept at the original 20-degrees. (The Veritas system also allows me to change the angle for the micro-bevel without removing the blade from the holder.)
I then took it through my diamond blade sharpening plates starting at 300 and then progressing through 600 and then 1200. This was finished off by stropping on a leather pad with extra fine buffing compound.
After removing the tape, I applied a little Johnson Wax on the exposed areas and reassembled the plane.
Here is the finished product. (Unfortunately I did not do a before picture)
This is a working tool ergo it was never my intention to restore it to like-new condition.
I clamped a scrap piece of 2x6 into my woodworking vice and ran the plane over it increasing the blade depth until it started removing shavings.
I guess I did it right. I got paper thin shaving which light could pass through.
I cannot wait to show it to my father-in-law. I know he will appreciate it.
I'll get all of mine in the mail just addressed to Drachenfire, CA.
I suspect word is already out about the kind of restore work you do and the postal service will know exactly where they go.:biggrin2: