G Davies Infill Plane

Some time ago I got and infill from an LJ friend Jamie asking me if I wanted an infill plane that needed some love. Of course I couldn’t resist and a short time later I received the package in the mail.

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Now it is true he told me it needed some love, and he made it a special note to add a lot of love, but I didn’t think he meant this:





But OK, challenge excepted.




It turned out the infill was held in with ground off screws. A bit of a challenge to remove.



The infill seems to be English Beech covered with some kind of plastic. A quick interent search on the G. Davies stamped on it brought me to a plane maker in Birmingham England some were around 1821-1876. I also read he sold out to Marples.




W. Marples marked on the chip breaker.


Thankfully my son-in-law is a welder, and with some prodding, I convinced him he could weld cast. He did a little research, learned to pre-heat and slow down the cooling, and what a great job he did.


I replaced the screws with some brass pins. And here is the results on some Ash.


So I ordered up some epoxy and put the pins in permanent. 


If I find more information on the maker (G. Davies) I will post it here. Also Any information on what the plastic like substance might be would be much appreciated.



9 Responses to G Davies Infill Plane

  1. Frenchie French says:

    Very nice post Don.
    This is what I love to do , to repair old tool.
    Thank you

  2. TobyC says:

    Shouldn’t there be a screw in the back end where it was broken?

  3. It depends on your perception. I didn’t have the guts to drill a hole in the new weld. I don’t believe it’s needed to hold the infill in place.

  4. Mark Kornell says:

    Nice save!

    The Wiki entry on plastic (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plastic#History) says that the first man-made plastic was parkesine (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parkesine), patented in Birmingham in 1856. Might be a good candidate for what is on that beech.

  5. Thanks Mark. That’s good info.

  6. Tim says:

    I looked at the Parkesine article too. If it’s that it’s basically celluloid which is extremely flammable. That would be one way to check! That same Wikipedia article mentioned various hard vulcanized rubber concoctions as a precursor to plastic, but didn’t say much more about it and a bit of searching didn’t come up with much.

  7. Andy Lovelock says:

    No that’s what I call a restoration and now your son-in-law has a new skill too. Nice work Don!

  8. Mike Wasson says:

    Just for future reference , if you will fill a bucket with sand and bury the welded part in the sand while it is still hot, it slows the cooling and prevents future cracks. Regular play sand from Lowes or whoever will work. Good looking job by the way.

  9. Thanks. We knew about the sand trick. We used an old counter top oven. Its easier to control and we just happen to have one handy.

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