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JOEL Joel's Blog

Photo Blog - Some Edward Preston Shoulder and Rebate Planes


Photo Blog - Some Edward Preston Shoulder and Rebate Planes 1
Download a hi-res version of the above image here
Edward Preston & Sons, a British toolmaker based in Birmingham, started making its adjustable shoulder planes around 1900. The planes beautiful pieces of Victorian metal work. Just look at the elegant shape and the beautiful texture on the finger grips. They really demonstrate the high art of sand casting iron. The first picture of the Preston 1366 (Clifton 400) is pretty much what I set out to capture. The second picture happened after I started putting everything away. The smaller planes all went into one main toolbox but I left the big shoulder plane out because it gets stored someplace else. As I was carrying it to its location, I realized how wonderful the logo on the front cover plate is. So I went back and photographed it. It's a very elegant logo. As you can see, the plane is lying on its side because the logo is on its side. Why they didn't put it right side too, I don't know. It's possible they just reused an existing stamp that was too big to go straight up. It's a puzzle. But it is so beautifully done.

Preston closed up during the great Depression in 1934 but the Sheffield-based Record Tool Factory bought the designs and took over their manufacture. When Record simplified their line in the 1970's, they sold the tooling and designs to an employee, Alan Reid, who started manufacturing under the Clifton name. When Alan retired,the company was sold and is now owned by Thomas Flinn & Co. The planes are still excellent and we are proud to stock them, although, unfortunately over the years some of the elegant Victorian detailing has been removed.

Photo Blog - Some Edward Preston Shoulder and Rebate Planes 2
Download a hi-res version of the above image here
The pictures in this blog are in medium resolution. If you like the pictures, feel free to click on the links to download pretty hi res versions (for up to about a 14" printed picture) for your own use. The pictures also might make a nice screen saver or the like.
Join the conversation
08/21/2022 Dan Moerman
What are the 2 screws for?
08/21/2022 Joel Moskowitz
The two screws just hold the label plate on. The label plate covers the hole in the front of the body casting. I also suppose you could not stamp your brand onto the cast iron, but you can stamp it onto the metal label plate.
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The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the blog's author and guests and in no way reflect the views of Tools for Working Wood.