433 Jack Planes “The Rough Ones”

June 9, 20103 Comments

Finally returning to our discussion on hand planes we pick back up by talking about the roughest planes on the bench. The Jack Planes!

This class of bench plane falls between the large jointers and the smaller smoothers, but they’re the perfect size for doing rough work without wearing out the user.

In the Stanley-Bailey numbering system the Jack Planes are the No.5’s, No.5, No.5-1/4, No.5-1/2. But in case there’s no number or it’s a wooden bodied or you’re just not sure, the Jack Plane is easy to identify by its size – approximately 9-12 inches in length. Again, not to long, but not to short!

The Jack isn’t a plane built for beauty, so if you’re picking one up second hand don’t be surprised if it’s really, really beaten up. But don’t worry, it’ll work amazing.

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  1. Derek Olson says:

    Great video as always Matt. I have a #5 Stanley that I keep the blade square on. a Sargent VBM version of the #5 that has a little heavier weight to it that I have the blade cambered, and a jack size woodie that really hogs the wood off. I keep all three of them busy in my shop. I would have to say the versatile Jack plane is my favorite. It was a good place for me to start when I was beginning to learn about using them.

  2. Minnesota Grant says:

    Hey Matt,
    Another nice show.

  3. Eric Wolf says:

    Hey Everyone, Matt mentioned one of the subjects near and dear to my heart: Tools too pretty to be used. If you want a no nonsense, straightforward way to refurb an old or worn plane that you can actually use without a care, check out my series on refurbishing a #4:


    That particular one is my go to plane and goes in my tool bag for finish carpentry projects as well.


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