Stanley Cabinet Makers Edge Plane - No. 97

stanley 97 plane
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Stanley 97 Review By: I.Ball

Manufacturer: Stanley

Plane Type: Cabinet Makers Edge

Model No: 97


The Stanley cabinet makers edge plane number 97 is also known as the 'Stanley piano makers plane'.

The 97 plane was made from cast iron with a front knob made from Rosewood, a black lever cap and a depth adjuster mechanism. The upper surface of the plane was finished with a black japanning.

The plane has a distinctive shape and design with the walls of either side slanting down to the surface. At the centre of the wall on each side there is a semi-circle removed.

There is an open mouth at the front which in effect makes this plane like a large chisel; this plane is therefore sometimes referred to as a chisel plane.

stanley 97 plane piano makers

At the time of production in the early 1900's, this plane was advertised saying there is no other plane which can work into small spaces or so close to corners.

The Stanley 97 plane blade rests on a solid bed for nearly the entirity of the blade.

The 97 has a blade fine adjustment mechanism to allow the user to simply and easily make small adjustments to the depth of cut. The blade can be adjusted by using the blade fine adjustment wheel, to use this the first thing to do is loosen the lever cap slightly (turn the lever cap screw anti-clockwise) so the blade is not locked firmly in place.

stanley 97 cabinet makers edge plane

Next locate the depth adjuster knurled wheel which can be found under the top-end of the blade. Turn the depth adjuster clockwise to move the blade forward for a deeper cut or turn the adjuster anti-clockwise to move the blade backwards for a finer cut.

Once the blade is in the desired position, secure the blade by tightening the lever screw (turn the lever cap screw clockwise) ensuring not to knock the blade.

Sometimes the front corners of this plane are very slightly rounded off in a similar way that the corners of side rebate plane blade are.

At the time of writing this there are a few new makers of similar chisel planes including the Veritas Edge Trimming Plane, also referred to as the Veritas Chisel Plane.

stanley 97 plane blade

Plane Construction

stanley 97 plane

Width: 57mm (2 1/4 inch)

Length Of Sole: 250mm

Knob: wooden, usually Rosewood

Plane finish: black

Stanley 97 Plane Blade / Cutter

Bottom Width: 56mm (2 1/4 inch)

Top Width: 32mm (1 1/4 inch)

Blade Thickness: 3mm

Top Of Blade Shape: Curved

Blade Markings: markings depending on time made, one of which is 'Stanley, SW, Made In U.S.A' (SW is inside a heart)

Plane Markings

"Stanley, No 97, Made In USA" - found on the top face at the rear, between knob and blade.

"Stanley, Made In USA" - found on the face of the knurled blade adjuster.

Manufactured Dates

<1906 - 1943>

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